Schizoaffective disorder is its own unique disease, with its own unique challenges. So why are there no unique drugs and hardly any unique research available for this debilitating disease? Schizoaffective disorder is an orphan disease, often lumped in with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia and not clearly identified as its own separate condition. This means research on the efficacy of medications in schizoaffective disorder is minimal at best. At Fountainhead Clinic, we view schizoaffective disorder as a separate diagnosis and tailor treatment to that of the individual and his or her unique symptoms.
Schizoaffective disorder is characterized by persistent delusions and hallucinations, most often associated with schizophrenia, accompanied by symptoms of an affective mood disorder, either major depressive episodes (depressive type), or manic episodes (with or without depression, in the bipolar type), characteristic of bipolar disorder. It is often misdiagnosed because the initial presenting symptoms may only be delusions/hallucinations or a manic or depressive episode. Further exploration into a thorough history is not done, thereby missing clues as to the schizoaffective nature of the disease process. Conventional management of the disorder is often poor because of this lack of insight into the actual diagnosis and the lack of research into proper medication management. The sad part about this is, when managed well, schizoaffective disorder actually has a better prognosis (meaning greater chance of remission and higher functioning) than schizophrenia.
At Fountainhead Clinic, we take an individualized approach to every treatment, finding the best medicine for the individual that will stimulate healing and those with schizoaffective disorder are no exception.
How do you treat schizoaffective disorder naturally?
At Fountainhead Clinic we have developed a system of treating mental health disorders that is second to none. The first step of our process involves looking at the patient as an individual and whole person. We take their diagnosis into consideration secondly, as a means to guide us in our therapeutic decision-making. Lastly we consider obstacles to cure, and use other therapies to remove these obstacles and help aid the healing process.
The first step in our treatment method involves the use of homeopathy. Homeopathy is a system of medicine which stimulates the body to heal itself. When homeopathic medicines are prescribed properly, they work quickly to alleviate symptoms and improve overall health. At Fountainhead clinic we feel very strongly that homeopathy is the most effective treatment and the most vital step to our success in helping someone achieve perfect health.
Remove obstacles to cure:
Occasionally there are roadblocks in homeopathic treatment, meaning there is something that is preventing a person from being capable of healing, even with the power of homeopathy. This could be anything from a thyroid imbalance, to a nutritional deficiency, to a toxic relationship. At Fountainhead clinic we are trained to identify these obstacles to cure, and remove them (when possible), so that the healing process can continue smoothly.
Any additional therapies that we choose to implement, based on a person’s individual need, is only to assist the healing process stimulated by homeopathy. This includes orthomolecular medicine, nutrition, thyroid therapies, medications, and supplements.
Click here to read more about medication management.
Dan is a 22-year-old male that came to Dr. Janikula seeking help for schizoaffective disorder. He had been on many anti-psychotics with limited success, and was facing a last resort medication, Clozaril, as his only option. He was hoping to avoid having to take the medication because in his opinion, his previous prescriptions had caused more harm than they had helped, and he was worried about what would happen to him if this medication also failed to help him. He had been in and out of hospitals for his condition, each stay longer than the last. He was starting to feel hopeless.
Dan’s symptoms began in high school with delusions of persecution and mood instability. They progressed to include visual and auditory hallucinations, the worst involving violence against his parents. He felt frightened most of the time, and had started to withdraw greatly from his life. He was no longer able to work or live on his own. His mood continued to fluctuate between periods of extreme depression and mania. His hallucinations remained, even when his mood felt stable. At times, the visions of violence, and the voices he was hearing telling him to hurt himself and others became so overwhelming that he would himself become violent out of an intense fear. A few times the police had to be called to the house because he was threatening his mother with a knife.
During the interview with Dan and his mother, Dr. Janikula discovered that Dan’s symptoms were always worse at night. He had a particularly strong fear of the dark and of being alone. Many nights he would awaken screaming at the top of his lungs, his mother would go into his room and observe him flailing his arms around, striking at imaginary objects, with a terrified expression on his face. She would go over to soothe him and he would grasp at her frantically, holding her tightly. They started leaving the light on, which seemed to help somewhat with his nighttime hallucinations. Dan also had a peculiar fear of and aversion to water. His mother could hardly convince him to shower once a week because he was so frightened of the running water. Dehydration was also a problem because he would frequently choke when trying to take a sip of water, which made him averse to drinking.
Based on Dan’s most individual, characteristic symptoms Dr. Janikula prescribed the homeopathic remedy Stramonium 200C.
After six months of treatment with a few adjustments to his homeopathic remedies, Dan is doing much better. His mood has remained relatively stable with only one mild episode of depression, which was quickly corrected, and no manias. His visual hallucinations have decreased incrementally over the past few months and he has not experienced any in the last month. Though he still hears some voices, they are no longer saying horrible things and he feels like he has some control over quieting them. He is able to sleep through the night with the light off, and is no longer fearful of water.