Treating Schizophrenia

Treating Schizophrenia

Treatment will usually be a combination of medication, which is needed to reduce the symptoms of schizophrenia, psychoeducation and psychotherapy, which can help you to understand how to successfully manage your illness, and to get on with your life.

It is important that treatment goals are tailored to you and agreed jointly between you, your family and your care team before your treatment begins, but overall, the goals of schizophrenia treatment are to:

  • Control or reduce your symptoms
  • Prevent relapses from occurring
  • Prevent or reduce the need for you to visit or stay in hospital
  • Enable you to return to normal, everyday activities such as work, education, independent living, travel, and maintaining social relationships
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Your healthcare team will work with you to achieve all of this, while avoiding or reducing undesirable side-effects that you may have experienced from your medication.

When setting treatment goals, it is important that you:

  1. Establish what you want your treatment to achieve and how you feel about the options available
  2. Thoroughly discuss all medical options and the frequency of administration, including daily, bi-weekly, monthly, so that you and your healthcare team can choose the option that is best for you
  3. Make sure you understand the benefits of your treatment, for both the short and the longer term, and the importance of you continuing to take your prescribed medication as directed
  4. Make a commitment to stick to your agreed treatment plan
  5. Commit to regularly reviewing your progress and adapting your treatment to minimise side-effects and maximise the benefits



National Institute for Clinical Excellence. Psychosis and schizophrenia in adults: prevention and management. 2014. CG178.
APA Clinical Guidelines. American Psychiatric Association. Practice Guidelines for the treatment of patients with schizophrenia. 2004.
Hasan et al. World J Biol Psychiatry 2012; 13: 318─378.