My son is sz (paranoid) and I don’t get what positive and negative symptoms are. Could you guys give me examples? he doesn’t feel like doing anything, i.e he sits most days (he does work out every day at the gym), would this be a negative? I read people taking about it and it just doesn’t click with me. Thanks!
Positive symptoms are things like delusions and hallucinations. Negative symptoms are things like avolition, anhedonia, etc.
So him not doing much is a negative?
Yes. And it can be quite a problem without meds just as a feature of sz on its own. The tranquilizing effects of our meds greatly amplify the negative symptoms. Took me years to learn how to function around that, and I’m still not at a point that I would consider acceptable.
My family member chooses not to take medication and has many negative symptoms.
My son gets a shot twice a month, his mum is his 24/7 caretaker. Can negative get better as he grows older?
You can try to start our small, and build small. This means setting very small goals, and adding very small goals gradually, and staying positive (thanking him when he does something, even if it’s something normal people would just do) as opposed to getting upset on days he doesn’t do it.
My own mother is sometimes good with this (she has a lot of faults when it comes to relating, but some things she does well and this is one of them). It’s one of her strengths when it comes to dealing with me, I would say.
When I’m not doing very well at all, she might ask me very kindly to take a shower because she knows it would make me feel better. Whether or not this is true, it’s a non-confrontational, non-shaming way to ask me, and she also seems to be able to gauge (usually) when taking a shower it a big, exhausting deal. Sometimes I will forget within 15 minutes that she brought it up, and then she tries again later, and I remember like “doh”.
When I’m doing better she gives me tasks like starting dinner before she gets home, or unloading the dishwasher. She doesn’t get angry if I have a bad day and don’t do it, but it gives me ideas on how I can help when I am having better days, it gives me a way that I can contribute to the household.
Not everyone is going to be like me in these regards, so don’t expect, but definitely try.
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It’s good that he goes to the gym. See if there are other activities he might consider trying. Like swimming, walking, helping out around the house. it’s good to be active even if you suffer from negative symptoms.
I have anhedonia. I feel no joy or happiness. I don’t feel depression either. I feel nothing. But I keep doing things I used to like before I got ill. Maybe some day I will get that “click” in my brain that makes me feel good.
Anhedonia is a negative symptom. My brain does not get the reward of feeling good when I have done something good or something that is supposed to be fun. This is really hard because I am a parent. I need to act happy feelings to my kids so they won’t feel neglected. I’m a master at this. But they also see my other side. When I’m in bed all day not doing anything at all.
I have lack of initiative, drive, motivation.
I also feel less pleasure and don’t feel connected socially.
I feel lifeless - kind of like I’m just existing but barely.
I’m no longer depressed.
Look at the Diagnosed board and the Medication board. There is a lot of info about an amino acid called sarcosine, which seems to help a lot of people with whatever symptoms. You could encourage your son to try it.