Choosing the Right Medication

The doctor will choose a medication based on an assessment of the condition and the lifestyle needs of the person with the condition. It’s important to work with the doctor to figure out which medicine is most appropriate and effective.

Managing medication and side effects

Side effects from medication are possible. Every person is different, so it’s difficult to predict how the medication will affect each individual. It’s always important to talk to the doctor about the possible side effects of medication, and to ask what should be done if side effects occur.

All side effects should be discussed with the doctor. He or she may be able to offer a coping strategy or perhaps recommend a different medication option that may be more tolerable.

Being able to communicate openly with the doctor about the medications is very important. Read more about communicating with the doctor here.

For some people, it is helpful to have a friend or family member attend doctor appointments. Having another person listen to information the doctor presents, take notes, and ask questions can be helpful.

It is important to have an ongoing conversation with the doctor about medication in order to better understand how medication might benefit the mental health recovery process. Talking to the doctor can help a person understand the risks and benefits of each medication. At the next appointment, ask the doctor and recovery team to recommend other resources or pamphlets that may be helpful.

One good Web site with information about medication for schizophrenia is the National Institute of Mental Health: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/schizophrenia/how-is-schizophrenia-treated.html. It is also possible to find out more about a particular medication by visiting the medication’s Web site.

Click here to learn more about additional supportive treatment in schizophrenia.

Read the next section: Schizoaffective Disorder

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