Causes of schizophrenia
Researchers have not been able to pinpoint any definite cause of schizophrenia yet. However, experts do not believe that drug abuse causes schizophrenia, although schizophrenics use drugs more in comparison to the entire population. And, an abnormal balance of the neurotransmitters dopamine and glutamate may have something to do with schizophrenia. Problems during birth or during development while in the womb may be a contributing cause of schizophrenia. Scientists have speculated that malnutrition while the baby is in the womb may be one contributing cause. Also possible is exposure to viruses while the baby is developing in the womb.
Doctors believe that a person's genetic make-up plays some role in developing schizophrenia. It's also worthwhile to note that 10% of all schizophrenics have an immediate family member (a parent or sibling) who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia as well. However, environmental factors are also thought to trigger the onset of the mental illness. Environment risk factors include the development of virus while in the womb, other problems during birth, or a stressful environment. Finally, many of the first signs of schizophrenia start to manifest between the ages 15-25.
Because schizophrenia is a widely misunderstood disease, some symptoms may be mistaken. To learn how to identify symptoms of schizophrenia, read the next section on symptoms schizophrenia now.
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