The symptoms of schizophrenia are numerous and debilitating. Most schizophrenics will suffer from symptoms throughout their lives, though there can be periods where symptoms are absent. Schizophrenia symptoms are divided into three categories: positive symptoms, disorganized symptoms, and negative symptoms.
Positive Symptoms: Positive symptoms of schizophrenia are those symptoms that involve an excess of normal bodily functions. For instance, if you are schizophrenic your senses may operate at a heightened and excessive state. Positive signs of schizophrenia include delusions, or beliefs that have no basis in reality. You may feel persecuted (paranoid delusions), you may feel as if the television or radio is talking directly to you (delusions of references), you may hold false beliefs about your physical state (somatic delusions) or you may feel that you have special abilities or powers (delusions of grandeur).
Many schizophrenics also experience hallucinations due to overactive senses. You may see things that aren't really there, you may hear people talking to you, and you may even be able to smell, touch, and taste things that other people can't. These hallucinations may be quite scary for both the schizophrenic and for family and friends.
Disorganized Symptoms: Disorganized symptoms are those symptoms that exhibit the confusion caused within the brain. Often, a schizophrenic will have trouble maintaining a conversation, may engage in unpredictable behaviors, or may act bizarrely in certain situations. People with schizophrenia also have difficulty achieving goals or acting with any purpose. For example, schizophrenics may hold unusual poses for extended periods of time.
Negative Symptoms: Negative symptoms of schizophrenia are those symptoms that involve a decrease in normal bodily functions. These symptoms may involve withdrawal from society or refusal to speak. Schizophrenics often are disinterested in life and lack the ability to act in order to achieve simple goals. If you are suffering from the disorder, your voice may become monotone or you may be unable to change facial expressions or body language according to mood.