Schizophrenia is a very severe and long-term illness that has caused major problems for many people throughout the country, including in Atlanta, Georgia. People who have schizophrenia often hear voices that are not there. They may think that other people can – and do – read their thoughts or are planning to hurt them. These are terrifying symptoms of a debilitating illness.
It can be hard to make sense of what a person with schizophrenia says, causing frustration with communication. Other times, a person who has schizophrenia will sit for hours without speaking or moving. People with schizophrenia may appear to be perfectly functional until they speak about what is on their mind.
Schizophrenia can majorly impact the way in which a family functions because people who have schizophrenia may find it impossible to keep a job or perform normal activities of living. This may place the burden of caring for a person with schizophrenia on family members, which can cause an incredible amount of stress on the family dynamic.
Fortunately, proper treatment and management can reduce or eliminate some of the symptoms of schizophrenia. However, most people with schizophrenia will have to learn to cope with their symptoms over their lifetime. All hope is not lost, many people who have schizophrenia are able to live meaningful lives as a productive member of their community. Scientists are researching more effective medications in order to better understand, treat, and prevent the development of schizophrenia in the future, and a proper therapy regimen in programs such as Riverwoods are an important component of healing.
At our hospital, we know that schizophrenia is a family disease and aim to work with both the family and the person with schizophrenia in order to create an appropriate plan for long-term care and treatment.
Why You Should Consider Treatment for Schizophrenia at our Facility near Atlanta, GA
We aim to learn as much about you and your loved ones as we can in order to develop a plan of treatment that addresses all aspects of this disorder. Our treatment team uses empirically validated scientifically proven methods of treatment. Additionally, we make sure that you are included during each step of the long-term schizophrenia treatment plan.
We know that schizophrenia can cause unimaginable stresses and complications in your life. We know that the thoughts you experience scare you, that you may not be able to discern hallucinations from real-life experiences and how much that must challenge you. The delusions you experience can be all-consuming and revolve around many different themes, all of which we’ve had plenty of experience working through. Our hospitals empathetic and caring staff is ready to help you reclaim your life and manage the symptoms of your disorder so that you can live your life a productive member of your community.
Our team of specialists will work tirelessly to understand you and what you go through as we work to create a treatment plan that is designed around your unique life circumstances. These specialists include doctors, psychiatrists, therapists, nurses, supportive staff, licensed clinicians, and other individuals all working with you to help you manage your disease. You will always have someone you can trust to turn to when you need us most.
Treatment provided by our team of specialists has been proven to be an effective way of helping people with schizophrenia become stabilized and learn to cope with the symptoms of their illness. Riverwoods aims to treat the whole person, not simply the disorder.
Our Facility Philosophy and Benefits
Riverwoods strongly believes in treating all aspects of a person, not just the symptoms of their schizophrenia. We believe that you hold the key to empowering yourself to become the best you that you can be and we’re here to guide you on your journey.
Our hospital’s individualized treatment plans are designed with help from you so that we work together to ensure that treatments are working and goals are being met. To us, you’re more than a number or case file: you’re a human being coping with a severe illness and we will treat you with the utmost dignity and respect in our safe and secure environment. Above all else, our facility is dedicated to doing right by you.
Treatments We Use To Treat Schizophrenia
The best approach for treating schizophrenia is in a hospital setting to allow for stabilization along with medication and therapeutic approaches. Our hospital is located South of Atlanta in Riverdale, Georgia. At our schizophrenia facility, you will work with your treatment team to determine what has worked for you in the past so that your plan of care will include the most innovative and effective treatments. Your treatment plan will also address the continuing need for treatment and management after you leave our doors.
Medication is often utilized in the care of people who have schizophrenia as symptom management is vital to allow for the usage of other therapeutic modalities. Types of medications that we will use in your treatment will depend on largely upon what has worked in the past and what has not. Likely, your medications will include antipsychotic medications. Antipsychotic medications have been around for many years and are divided into two categories: typical and atypical antipsychotics. Typical antipsychotics are far older medications that tend to cause more unpleasant side effects while the atypical medications are a more recent medication class that cause less side serious side effects and may work differently.
In addition to medication management, our hospital offers a number of psychosocial treatments that can help men and women with schizophrenia once they’ve been stabilized on an antipsychotic medication. These therapies are aimed to help people with schizophrenia cope with the challenges of everyday living such as self-care, maintaining interpersonal relations, and teaching the skills necessary to live and work. Learning these skills to face these challenges can allow those with schizophrenia to live a fuller life.
We offer individual therapy, which focuses on illness management techniques as well as integrating treatment for substance abuse, which is a common co-occurring disorder for those with schizophrenia. One-on-one therapy allows for a woman or man with schizophrenia to learn about their disorder and treatment in order to make informed decisions about their care. The coping skills learned in individual therapy can allow someone with schizophrenia to learn the symptoms of a relapse and create a plan to respond appropriately.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses upon the way we think and our behaviors. This therapy is used often for people who have schizophrenia whose symptoms do not dissipate with medication. A therapist will teach a schizophrenic person to test the reality of their perception and thoughts, how to ignore their voices and overall symptom management. CBT works well to reduce symptom severity and reduce the rates of relapse.
Strengths-based counseling can help a person with schizophrenia who has been stabilized on medications by allowing them to understand that they must take an active role in their treatment because they hold the key to their continued treatment success.
We’re incredibly proud of the group therapies we offer at our facility near Atlanta, Georgia, which include both process-based and psychoeducational groups. It’s likely that your treatment team will have you join a number of these groups to continue your healing. Process-based groups tend to focus on a specific topic about your disorder, such as managing symptoms and allows you to discuss your feelings and concerns in a safe and supportive environment. Psychoeducational groups are designed to teach you about adhering to a medication regime, warning signs of a relapse, how to cope with specific situations as well as symptoms of your disorder. Group therapy allows you to connect with other people who are facing similar situations so that you can learn and support each other.
Schizophrenia is a family disorder and as such our hosptial firmly believes in including your family in your recovery as much as you are comfortable with. Family sessions are used to discuss the family dynamics surrounding your illness, educate family members about symptoms of schizophrenia, and allow your family the space to share the feelings they have about your disorder. We will help to teach your family coping skills and problem-solving skills in order to ensure that they understand the importance of adhering to a treatment regimen. In addition, we will connect you with local area resources in your community to allow for continued support and healing.
In addition to the traditional therapies we offer at our facility near Atlanta, Georgia, we find that including experiential treatments into your treatment plan is important and effective for your continued healing. These may include:
- Music therapy
- Art therapy
- Recreational programs
- Nutrition and wellness counseling
- N.A. and A.A.
- Expressive therapy
With long-term management and education, schizophrenia can become a manageable illness that still allows you to live a fulfilled life.
Continuing Care – What Comes Next?
After you have stabilized your medications and have learned many coping strategies, you and your treatment team will eventually decide that you no longer require treatment at a hospital for schizophrenia. We will work with you to create a post-discharge plan that will allow for long-term continuity of care. It may be decided that you will benefit most from a residential facility, which will allow for a similar structure to treatment at a hospital with an extended stay.
Other people opt to join our Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHP) or Intensive Outpatient Programs which can be a great next step in the treatment plan. These treatments are similar but do vary in the hours per day and days per week that they meet.
In the event that you have made enough progress to be discharged to home, we will do everything that we can to appropriately educate your family about your disease, ways to cope with the symptoms, how to spot a relapse, and what to do in crisis situations. We will also connect you with a local provider for continued therapy as well as community resources for continued support and healing.
If you or someone you love is struggling with schizophrenia, please call one of our experts at our treatment facility near Atlanta, Georgia for a free and confidential consultation. From there, we can help you decide what happens next.