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Prodrome is a medical term for early signs or symptoms of an illness or health problem that appear before the major signs or symptoms start.
Psychosis, a group of symptoms found in disorders like schizophrenia, is one illness with a specific prodrome. With psychosis, prodrome signs and symptoms start before full symptoms like hallucinations and delusions appear.
Common symptoms in the prodrome of psychosis include:
Low mood or mood swings
Difficulties concentrating or focusing
Disorganized thoughts or confusion
Sensitivity to noise, lights, and other sensations
Withdrawal from others
These symptoms are found in many other mental illnesses, so it isn’t always clear at the time if this is a prodrome of psychosis or schizophrenia or something else. It’s best to seek help whenever you are concerned about your mental health or a loved one’s mental health. Psychosis and schizophrenia are much easier to manage and treat when treatment starts early.
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About the author
The Canadian Mental Health Association promotes the mental health of all and supports the resilience and recovery of people experiencing a mental illness through public education, community-based research, advocacy, and direct services. Visit www.cmha.bc.ca.