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Caring for Your Loved One

Being there for someone living with schizophrenia involves a lot of important decisions and record keeping, but with the right tools you can make it easier to keep track.

Caregiver Responsibilities

The role of a caregiver for someone living with schizophrenia isn't only to intervene on bad days, it's about being there for your loved one every day. Some ways to be a great supporter can include:

  • Partnering with your loved one’s treatment team. Join them at appointments, ask questions, and step in as your loved one's advocate as needed to help communicate what they're feeling. It's also important to ask questions and help handle insurance and financial paperwork
  • Educating yourself about schizophrenia and its symptoms
  • Helping with day-to-day tasks
  • Keeping a journal of accomplishments, symptoms, setbacks, medications, and dosages as a way of staying alert for episodes, and as a record of your loved one's recovery process
Patrick and his father sitting together outsidePatrick and his father sitting together outside with their feet in a pool

Helping on a Recovery Journey

Managing any chronic condition is an ongoing process, and schizophrenia is no different. Schizophrenia recovery isn't a single outcome—there are ups and downs along the way—but it's important to be hopeful.

In addition to controlling symptoms with the help of medication and working with your loved one's treatment team, recovery also involves helping your loved one move toward their treatment goals, like getting a job or furthering their education.

Caring for Your Loved One

Maye* is actively involved in her son Jason's recovery journey and his shift to a long-acting injection (LAI).

*Maye is a volunteer with the SHARE Network, a volunteer program dedicated to helping adults living with schizophrenia share their personal health stories.

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Treatment Recovery Plan Workbook

Have a discussion with your loved one about their goals, and how you can work toward those goals together. You can download our Treatment Plan Workbook to help take notes during the conversation.

Download Worksheet

Delaying Episodes

An episode is when schizophrenia symptoms re-emerge or get worse. Although they can't be avoided entirely, there are things you can do to delay the time between episodes.

Help your loved one manage their stress levels

Make sure your loved one is staying on track with their medication and understands the importance of medication in their overall treatment journey

Try to build a sense of routine by involving your loved one in fun, day-to-day activities like meal preparation

Episode Warning Signs

Even when your loved one is seemingly doing well, be sure to keep an eye out for early warning signs of an episode. Your loved one might not be able to notice warning signs in their own behavior or thoughts, so it's important to know what to look for.

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Episode Action Plan

For specific information about the warning signs of an episode and how you can help

Download Worksheet

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