Many people have a lot of misconceptions about all sorts of mental illnesses. There is especially a lot of misinformation out there about schizophrenia. 

Dr. Ileana Berman is a cognitive science researcher. Throughout her 30+ year career, her work has largely focused on drawing connections between obsessive compulsive disorder and schizophrenia. Her work has earned her great recognition, including the Young Investigator Award. Here are some myths and facts about schizophrenia.

  • Myth: People with schizophrenia are violent. 
  • Fact: Most people with this condition are not violent, especially if they are receiving treatment. Actually, they are more likely to be victims of violence or to harm themselves. If a person is violent, there is usually another issue going on that is making them aggressive. 

  • Myth: The onset is sudden and intense.
  • Fact: It is common for symptoms to appear gradually over time, and can even be hard to notice. Delusions and hallucinations can show up much later. 

  • Myth: People with schizophrenia have multiple personalities. 
  • Fact: This is a common misconception. Having ‘multiple personalities’ is a serrated, distinct disorder called Dissociative Identity Disorder, and it is extremely rare.