It’s a serious mental illness that can be disabling without care. About 1% of Americans have it. People with the condition may hear voices, see imaginary sights, or believe other people control their thoughts. These sensations can frighten the person and lead to erratic behavior. Although there is no cure, treatment can usually manage the most serious symptoms. It is not the same as multiple personality disorder.
What Are the Symptoms?
Hallucinations: hearing or seeing imaginary things
Delusions: wildly false beliefs
Paranoia: the fear that others are plotting against you
Some signs, such as lack of enjoyment in everyday life and withdrawal from social activities, may mimic depression.
How It Affects Thoughts
People with schizophrenia may have trouble organizing their thoughts or making logical connections. They may feel like the mind is racing from one unrelated thought to another. Sometimes they have "thought withdrawal," a feeling tha…