Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

What does being on the right medication look & feel like?

Hi, Thank you for all your wondeful advice on the form. I read it almost everyday.

I need perspective on when someone is on the right medication and what it looks like.
How do you know if the medication is working ?
What should we expect from the right medication?
Do they wake up one day and say its working & think different?

My son who is a 23 yrs, college student (sr year) is 7months out after 1st hospitalizaton for a psychotic break. He has had a medication change this week ( upped the dose of Halodol and Seroquel)
He has not been phycotic since he has been home from the hospital and improved but he still has situational delustions when stressed, paranoia, i.e people are talking about him through projective thought ), His biggest issue is thought projection. i.e he thinks we can see and hear his thoughts and he can hear others thoughts ) otherwise he functions and communicates well with others and around the house, he just gets very nerveous when these things happen and wants to leave the situation.

I cant tell if his medication is working… this is the situation currently… he is saying now that his delustions & thought projections are his over active imagination and insecurities and he feels he can stop thinking this way if he practices… He still wants and will take his meds but he says he thinks he can get a hold of this if he changes the way he thinks with practice. He does see a therapist once a week and his psychiatrist once a month.
Does this mean he is getting perspctive and the meds are working and hes putting things in place or is this a grandeos delustion and hes trying to make sense out of nonsense?

How do you know if the medication is working ?

This Disorder is not for the weak !!

Thank you for your time.

I think there is a lot of variation.

With my husband, within the first two weeks, I stopped having that “walk on eggshells” feeling around him and we could converse a little.

Within 4-6 weeks, he seemed more comfortable doing things outside the house as long as we drove to a different town where he knew no one.

Within about two months, he’d started trying things occasionally on his own (such as returning a video).

Within about 2 1/2 months, he started having more normal reactions to people (i.e. feeling good when they said something positive to him), although he’d loose the good feelings relatively quickly.

Within 4 1/2 months, he was back working and was beginning to engage in voluntary social contact.

It took even longer before he seemed relatively close to his usual self to me - probably in part because his medication was mildly sedating.

He continued to take his medications voluntarily (if reluctantly) but never really believed he needed them or acknowledged them as helpful (although he did become very conscientious about taking them and would check with me to make sure we had them if we were going on a trip). He always expected the day to come when “this will all be over”.


Firstly it seems your son has insight and that’s amazing in its self , seeing a therapist and med complaint , fantastic . You should see changes for the better if he is on the right meds but need to consider that the meds doesn’t really help the negative symptoms . If you see improvement in the positive symptoms then thats great . I would give it a little more time and see if his delusions get better . My son is stable but still has delusions about his muscles shrinking and has developed an eating disorder too ( deciding what he is or isn’t allowed to eat so his muscles won’t shrink ) he is isolated , barely works and seems content . He has been on the same meds since his diagnosis . It was switched twice and both times was a disaster so he is back on the same meds Abilify and still has positive and negative symptoms but is stable .

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