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to research, "The clinical picture is dominated by relatively stable, often paranoid, delusions, usually accompanied by hallucinations, particularly of the auditory variety, and perceptual disturbances," (World Health Organization 1992:1). Paranoid schizophrenia crease intense paranoid delusions in within patients who suffer from the disorder. They hear "hallucinatory voices that threaten the patient or give commands, or auditory hallucinations without verbal form, such as whistling, humming, or laughing," (World Health Organization 1992:1). These voices are complete fabrications within their own minds and represent the internal paranoia and self-loathing that typically occurs within patients. Compared to other forms of schizophrenia, it is the most common form seen around the world. Its "Affect is usually less blunted than in other varieties of schizophrenia, but a minor degree of incongruity is common, as mood disturbances such as irritability, sudden anger, fearfulness, and suspicion," (World Health Organization 1992:1). Thus, this picture is what people typically picture when they think of schizophrenia.
People all over the world battle paranoid schizophrenia, and it can hit even the most successful and put together people. One example of the intense onset of paranoid schizophrenia can be seen in the world renown football player Lionel Aldridge. Lionel Aldridge was a famous football player who played with the Green Bay Packers. After his athletic career, he took a lucrative position on television as a nightly sports caster who kept the nation informed about recent sports games and events. He helped the Packers win two Super Bowls and was a member of the NFL Hall of Fame (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill 2005). However, this all would slowly fall apart thanks to his battle with schizophrenia. He started hearing voices in 1974, "at first they were just stray, nagging worries that dogged me through the day, self-doubts that we all have from time to time," (Aldridge 2009:1). Eventually, the random and ignorable voices became more dramatic and panic causing. They haunted him every where he went, including his work and family atmospheres; "They seemed to rise up out of nowhere-vague thoughts with an accusing age," (Aldridge 2009:1). Their messages became extremely scary and confusing.
Based on his rigorous training as a professional athlete, Aldridge was not one to quickly turn to get help and admit his problems. So, for a while, Aldridge kept his schizophrenia to himself. He attempted to rid himself of them by simply ignoring them. However, the voices began to get more and more intense and Aldridge had a harder and harder time keeping his illness a secret. The voices became incredibly antagonizing and tortured Aldridge with delusions of incompetence and extreme self-loathing. Eventually, he could no longer control his reactions to the voices, "I started talking back to the voices, bickering and pleading and cursing," (Aldridge 2009:1). Thus, with this erratic behavior, rumors began circling about Aldridge being on drugs and in an unstable mental state. His declining state led him to loose his job, family, and friends. He lost everything and became a nomad dominated by his illness. Eventually he agreed to be hospitalized by the urgings of his old friends. There he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and "slowly the doctors hit upon some drugs that helped. Little by little my condition improved, the voices gradually subsided," (Aldridge 2009:5). After a long, uphill battle, Aldridge began to regain his hold on his life and his mind. When he recovered, he made it a point to be open about his battle with the disease to help provide the support of a successful recovery case that was not available to him when he needed it based on the stigma attached to schizophrenia; "After finally receiving beneficial treatment and achieving recovery from his illness, Aldridge became an outspoken mental illness advocate, working with such national organizations as NAMI," (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill 2005:1). His charitable work now lives on with the work of his two daughters.
Aldridge, Lionel. (2009). He was a star with the champion Green Bay Packers, then a popular TV commentator with a golden future. Voices. Guideposts. Retrieved November 1, 2009 at http://www.guideposts.com/story/Lionel-Aldridge-Green-Bay-schizophrenia
National Alliance for the Mentally Ill. (2005). Lionel's house-football star charity to benefit community. Schizophrenia Update. 2(31):1. Retrieved November 1, 2009 at http://www.namiscc.org/News/2005/Newsletters/Summer/Schizophrenia2-31.htm#lionel
World Health Organization. (1992). Paranoid schizophrenia. Schizophrenia.com. Retrieved November 1, 2009 at http://www.schizophrenia.com/szparanoid.ht[continue]
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