Therapy of psychoses
How important is it to take the medication regularly?
Antipsychotic medications should not only improve your mood, but should also maintain your sense of well-being. This means that you must also continue with the medication after you have begun to feel better.
There are some individuals suffering from psychoses who don't take their medicines at all or only very irregularly. Nevertheless, there are imperative reasons why persons who are affected should or must even take in their medications regularly. Here, some examples:
- Without a medicinal therapy, a long-term improvement in the symptoms and cure of the illness will not be possible for most of those who are afflicted.
- Without a medicinal therapy, many of those who are afflicted will no longer be able to live on their own over the long-term; that is, they will not be able to work and will not be able to live alone.
- When discontinuing or reducing the level of medication, the risk for a renewed psychotic phase increases five-fold. In this renewed phase, most persons affected need substantially higher doses of antipsychotics; they need them for a clearly longer period of time in order to stabilize their condition once again, and about 20-30% of these people continue to suffer from these psychotic symptoms permanently.
- And those who do not take their medication have an additional risk of suicide or of attempting suicide, and an increased risk of developing a chronic course of their illness, with all the associated consequences.
Correct, however, is that some individuals who are frequently afflicted have good reasons, not to take their medication. Here are some examples:
- Negative attitude to medications
- A lacking understanding or acceptance on the part of the individual who is affected
- Side effects which cannot be tolerated
- Inadequate effects
- Complicated modes of administration
Solutions are available for all of these cases! It is possible to learn to live with the illness, even if it appears to be difficult at the beginning. The physician must talk to you about the effects and side effects of the antipsychotic agent, and should be able to change the therapy according to your needs and desires. Imperative for this is that you must be informed in detail, so that you will be able to play a role in choosing the optimal therapy for your situation.