Schizophrenia: Categorizing Mental Illness

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Mental illnesses have been recognized and acknowledged for thousands of years, but the way they had once been treated and handled differ from the way they are dealt with today. There was a point in time where all mental illnesses were thought of as one and they were treated in a similar way. Many theories were associated with the cause of these mental disorders and many of them today are deemed as obnoxious. Emil Kraeplin, a German physician was one of the first to categorize mental disorders and he used the term dementia praecox for individuals who had symptoms that we now associate with schizophrenia. Since then our understanding of this mental illness has evolved even though the causes of this illness to this day remain hard to comprehend. (Weiner, 1997) Schizophrenia usually strikes in late adolescence or in early adulthood. In some cases it can affect a person in middle age or even later and in rare cases it affects children. In general, the earlier this disease onsets, the more severe it gets as time goes by. Usually, the onset of this illness is gradual with subtle warning signs, but sometimes symptoms can appear all of a sudden and without warning. In initial phases people suffering from schizophrenia seem disconnected and isolated, emotionless, eccentric and reclusive. They begin to show an indifference to life and they stop caring about the way they appear. They stop doing things they once liked doing and the quality of work at school or work starts to
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