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After the symptoms are controlled, psychotherapy and self-help groups can help people who have schizophrenia:
- Develop social skills
- Cope with stress
- Identify early warning signs of relapse
- Prolong periods of remission.
Support groups and family therapy can give loved ones a better understanding of the illness and help them provide the compassion and support that play an important role in recovery. The good news is that many of those who have schizophrenia can work, live in the community or with their families, and enjoy friends if they receive continuous, appropriate treatment. According to The National Alliance on Mental Illness, schizophrenia treatment is successful in 60 percent of patients.
The outlook for people with schizophrenia has improved over the last 30 years or so. Although a cure still does not exist, effective treatments have been developed and many people with schizophrenia improve enough to lead independent, satisfying lives.
This is a very exciting time for schizophrenia research. The explosion of knowledge in genetics, neuroscience, and behavioral research are all being used to understand the causes of the disorder, how to prevent it, and how to develop better treatments to allow those with schizophrenia to achieve their full potential.