Colorado Recovery Forum

Mental Illness Guide: Care, Support, and Education
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Cure

There is no cure for schizophrenia. We do know that schizophrenia is a very treatable illness. Taking medicine helps to manage unwanted symptoms. With the help of new medicines, many people with schizophrenia live very good lives. The trick is to stick to your treatment and do not use illegal street drugs or alcohol. People with schizophrenia who do this go on to have very productive lives.

For more information regarding people with schizophrenia and outcome studies, please visit the National Institute for Mental Health Website.

Better outlook for schizophrenia

Even though there is no cure for schizophrenia, the outlook for people with this illness has improved over the last 25 years. Although no totally effective therapy has yet been devised, it is important to remember that many people with the illness improve enough to lead independent, satisfying lives. As we learn more about the causes and treatments of schizophrenia, we should be able to help more people achieve successful outcomes.

More research is needed

Given the complexity of schizophrenia, the major questions about this disorder, its cause or causes, prevention, and treatment must be addressed with research. The public should beware of those offering "the cure" for (or "the cause" of) schizophrenia. Such claims can provoke unrealistic expectations that, when unfulfilled, lead to further disappointment.

Although progress has been made toward better understanding and treatment of schizophrenia, continued investigation is urgently needed. As the lead Federal agency for research on mental disorders, National Institute of Mental Health conducts and supports a broad spectrum of mental illness research from molecular genetics to large-scale studies of populations. It is thought that this wide-ranging research effort, including basic studies on the brain, will continue to teach us processes and principles important for understanding the causes of schizophrenia and for developing better treatments.