What is Schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness, which affects many aspects of how a person thinks and perceives the world around them. Schizophrenia can cause people to develop delusional beliefs and hallucinations. Delusions are unshakeable beliefs which are frequently bizarre and which are held with total conviction.

Hallucinations occur when a person experiences a sensory stimulus, which they perceive as real but which has not actually occurred. For example, auditory hallucinations occur when the person has the experience of hearing a voice or voices when in fact nobody has spoken. Visual hallucinations occur when the person sees something which is not there in reality. The experience how ever, is totally 'real' to the person. Schizophrenia also impacts on a person's ability to establish and maintain friendships and to remain in school or employment.