What is Involved in a Schizophrenia Test?
People are quick to label others as delusional, and we often will justify odd occurrences by claiming we are paranoid or must have been hallucinating. In a lot of instances, this is the truth. The human mind is capable of creating beliefs and images that are not actually factual, and it is often simple enough for human beings to understand this fact. However, those who are schizophrenic may have difficulties separating delusions and hallucinations from reality. In fact, for many people with this mental condition, delusions, hallucinations, or paranoia caused by schizophrenia are overwhelming and disruptive. If you have asked yourself, “Am I schizophrenic?” and are seeking to find a concrete answer, you may wish to consult your doctor to learn more about what is involved in a formal schizophrenic test.
Schizophrenia Test Options
Currently, there is not a standardized schizophrenic test available that gives practitioners the ability to diagnose the disorder based on physical factors. However, it is still important to undergo a physical examination if you believe that you may be schizophrenic. While there is no lab test for direct diagnosis of the condition, a physical exam can rule out other disorders that have similar symptoms to schizophrenia. Some examples are:
However, if you have been asking yourself, “Am I schizophrenic?” there are self-assessments you can take that will give you a better understanding of whether or not you have the mental disorder. Schizophrenia.com provides the schizophrenic test for free, which consists of the following 12 questions (for each of the questions, you can select disagree, somewhat disagree, not sure, slightly agree, somewhat agree, or definitely agree). Please note that this does not replace a test administered by a medical professional.
- I think that I have felt that there are odd or unusual things going on that I can’t explain.
- I think that I might be able to predict the future.
- I may have felt that there could possibly be something interrupting or controlling my thoughts, feelings, or actions.
- I have had the experience of doing something differently because of my superstitions.
- I think that I may get confused at times whether something I experience or perceive may be real or may be just part of my imagination or dreams.
- I have thought that it might be possible that other people can read my mind, or that I can read other’s minds.
- I wonder if people may be planning to hurt me or even may be about to hurt me.
- I believe that I have special natural or supernatural gifts beyond my talents and natural strengths.
- I think I might feel like my mind is “playing tricks” on me.
- I have had the experience of hearing faint or clear sounds of people or a person mumbling or talking when there is no one near me.
- I think that I may hear my own thoughts being said out loud.
- I have been concerned that I might be “going crazy.”
Schizophrenia Psychological Evaluation
In additional to a complete, thorough physical assessment, a psychological evaluation should be performed. This includes collecting the mental health history for both you and your family. In order for your mental health specialist to formally diagnose you as schizophrenic, you must first meet a set list of criteria. This list has been established by The American Psychological Association, and can be found in fifth edition of The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The set criteria is as follows:
- The presence of two or more of the following symptoms for at least 30 days:
- Disorganized speech
- Disorganized or catatonic behavior
- Negative symptoms (emotional flatness, apathy, lack of speech)
- Significant problems functioning at work or school, relating to other people, and taking care of oneself.
- Continuous signs of schizophrenia for at least six months, with active symptoms (hallucinations, delusions, etc.) for at least one month.
- No other mental health disorder, medical issue, or substance abuse problem is causing the symptoms.
Los Angeles Schizophrenia Clinical Trials
In order to attempt to develop a standardized test for schizophrenia, researchers frequently conduct clinical trials. A clinical trial is part of a medical study that recruits the assistance of volunteer participants who are willing to be test subjects for experimental treatments. These treatments may consist of medications, therapies, or medical devices. If you choose to take part in a clinical trial, you may be among the first few individuals who receive a novel, innovative schizophrenic test or treatment. Additionally, you will be in an environment where professionals are available to answer all of your questions. Lastly, clinical trials often offer participants financial compensation.
Schizophrenia is a condition that causes mental, emotional and physical difficulties for those who have it. A formal schizophrenic test does not yet exist, though there is a self-assessment quiz available. If you have been asking yourself, “Am I schizophrenic?” you should consult a professional so that you can receive both a physical and mental evaluation. Both of these assessments will allow your health practitioner to determine if you have an underlying medical condition or psychological history that could be contributing to your schizophrenic symptoms.
If you are interested in participating in a Los Angeles clinical trial for paranoid schizophrenia, contact the Pacific Institute for Medical Research, which is an independent clinical research site specializing in psychiatry since 1982. Visit us online or call us at (310) 208-7144.