Our thoughts about meds were a struggle to define. Whether true or not, my husband and I have come to agree or accept these thoughts between us. This is our own opinion, how much of it is for our peace of mind - well you can all be the judge.
We believe the previous version of our son would want to be medicated. We know the current version of our son does not currently want to be medicated. We do believe that a large percentage of his decision is due to anosognosia and other factors of scz.
If you held a scale up and had symptom risks on one side and drug risks on the other side you would really need a big scale.
A lot of today’s drugs (non APs) are advertised on television and have warnings that sound (to us) like the old Saturday Night Live joke commercials’ risk list for the “Happy Fun Ball”. Long term effects take a long time to find out, its their nature:)
What works? I don’t know. None of the drugs cure schizophrenia. They all attempt to alleviate the symptoms. As Nick (Peer to Peer instructor and trainer - scz) once said regarding meds, “there is something wrong with a very tiny part of your brain and they try to shoot these drugs at your whole brain”.
Our personal conclusion? We think the drugs are trying to sedate the brain the best they can to alleviate symptoms. Some people respond marvelously and have sunshine lives on meds (sorry @Vallpen, could not resist;) others get some relief and others get no relief. To keep any of them on meds long enough so they can actually adjust to the med and try to have a life around its side effects that they find worth taking the meds, can be extremely tricky.
I think homeopathic drugs could work for some of our family members. I know my son does really well on large amounts of caffeine.
I have never given my son meds secretly yet he is quite positive that I have put meds into his groceries. When this accusation showed up - we said to each other “and he thinks this because why??” Because he has a brain disorder, thats why. Looking back, wish I had tried slipping meds into him, just because I would like to have tried everything possible short of lying about him to get him into a courtroom or jail - just never did feel 100% about that idea - though lots of people push it.
Some sources claim that meds “stop the advancement of schizophrenia”. Well that would be nice and may be true for some people, I don’t know.
What we do know is that its a lifelong brain disorder and usually has 3 distinct phases. Prodromal, active and residual. Scientific guesstimates based on records show that its about 25 years before you hit the residual stage. When do they start the 25 year clock? Perhaps at the beginning of the prodromal or is it at the beginning of the active? Well, take your own guess at that one. There are enough variations of patient histories that it makes your head spin when you want answers. And its a disorder full of exceptions, so don’t get too comfortable with the answers you do get.