Schizotypal Disorder


The schizotypal disorder is a part of the schizophrenia spectrum. The emotions, behaviors, and thinking of a person would be disturbed. To be diagnosed with this disorder, one must experience at least 3-to 4 of the symptoms discussed here continuously or at intervals for a minimum of 2 years.  

The general appearance or behavior of someone with the schizotypal disorder may seem odd and out of context. An example of this would be An individual wearing furry winter boots in an extremely warm season. They struggle to make and maintain relationships with others. They also isolate themselves, withdraw from social situations, and are unable to hold a conversation with others.  The way that they talk is usually pretty unusual which reflects their distorted ways of thinking. They might describe an event in excruciating detail, talking using a lot of unnecessary metaphors in a conversation, they may keep beating around the bush but never get to the point or speak a lot about illogical things. They may seem cold-

hearted and indifferent because they usually display inappropriate reactions to situations. Even if they do show appropriate emotions they are of low intensity.  They hold strange and bizarre beliefs, which is also known as magical thinking. An example of this would be They believe that it snowed today only because they wished that it would, the night before. They also might believe that they have psychic abilities and hence can predict the future.  They also have strong suspicions about other people and their motivation and intention toward them. They may also believe that someone is plotting and scheming against them and or their loved ones. A person with this disorder may constantly keep thinking about the same thoughts over and over again, the general themes of which are mostly sexual and aggressive. This means that they continuously have thoughts related to sex or aggression. They may also feel detached from their environment and even their own body. This means that they might feel like they are walking in a dream, the world doesn't feel real. When we talk about feeling detached from their own body, it may feel like their arms are not really theirs but someone else’s, or the movements that they make with their body might not feel real. For the treatment of this disorder, an individual would have to seek treatment from both a psychiatrist and a psychologist simultaneously. This is because medications are needed for treatment along with psychotherapy.  

Difference between schizotypal disorder and schizoid personality disorder 
 Ø There are no paranoid delusions present in someone diagnosed with schizoid disorder but they would be present in someone diagnosed with schizotypal disorder. 
Ø Lack of social connections and isolation that is present in both occurs due to different causes in each of these disorders. In schizotypal disorder, this is present due to their odd mannerisms or social anxiety but in the case of schizoid personality disorder, the cause of this is lack of interest. They would rather be with themselves instead of being in the company of other people.  

Difference between schizotypal disorder and paranoid schizophrenia 

Ø In the case of paranoid schizophrenia a person would experience hallucinations that would be absent in a person diagnosed with schizotypal disorder. 

Ø Paranoid beliefs and suspicions are continuously present through the course of the illness in case of paranoid schizophrenia but they can be continuously or intermittently present in case of schizotypal disorder.