Mental Health & Wellness Clinic located in Woodbridge, VA


If you develop schizophrenia symptoms, call board-certified psychiatric nurse practitioner Nola Ayoola-Yussuf, PMHNP-BC, Akua Amponsah-Adjei, PMHNP-BC, and Lesley Grzybowski, PMHNP, and the team at Potomac Shores Mental Health and Wellness. Schizophrenia causes hallucinations and delusions (psychosis) and affects speech, behaviors, thinking, and focus. Nola offers in-person and telehealth consultations to support you in facing reality and successfully managing schizophrenia. Call Potomac Shores Mental Health and Wellness in Woodbridge, Virginia, today or book an appointment online for expert schizophrenia diagnosis and treatment.

What is schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia is a severe psychiatric disorder that usually starts causing symptoms in early adulthood. Women tend to develop schizophrenia later than men, sometimes not until their 30s. It’s rare for children or people over 40 to develop schizophrenia.

Schizophrenia is a long-term, complex medical illness caused by changes in the brain rather than psychological problems. It interferes with your ability to manage emotions, think clearly, make decisions, and relate to others.

The number of Americans with schizophrenia could be between 1.5 million and 2 million.

What symptoms does schizophrenia cause?

Schizophrenia causes various symptoms, including:

  • Difficulty organizing thoughts and speech
  • Problems sleeping
  • Lack of motivation and interest
  • Social withdrawal
  • Seeming lack of emotion
  • Disconnected or dull speaking
  • Inability to start or complete activities
  • Problems maintaining relationships
  • Difficulties remembering things
  • Delusions and hallucinations

Delusions are false beliefs. For example, you might believe someone’s following you even when others present facts that challenge that belief. People with delusions often have confused thoughts and difficulty concentrating.

Hallucinations include hearing voices and seeing people and things that aren’t there. Hallucinations are very real to a person with schizophrenia, so they behave as though what they see and hear is real. Hallucinated voices are frequently critical or frightening.

People with schizophrenia often have anosognosia (lack of insight) and might be unaware they’re ill. This can make treatment far more challenging.

How is schizophrenia diagnosed?

No single test can diagnose schizophrenia. During the diagnostic phase, Nola Ayoola-Yussuf at Potomac Shores Mental Health and Wellness will rule out other causes, like bipolar disorder.

To receive a schizophrenia diagnosis, you must have persistently reduced functioning and regularly experience two or more symptoms.

Identifying schizophrenia early improves your prospects of managing your condition and reducing psychotic episodes.

How is schizophrenia treated?

There’s no cure for schizophrenia, but you can manage your symptoms better with the proper treatment and resources. Nola provides compassionate treatment and support for people with schizophrenia. She helps you attend school or work with fewer problems and worries.

Schizophrenia patients usually benefit from antipsychotic medication that reduces the likelihood of experiencing delusions and hallucinations. Psychotherapy (talk therapy) can be invaluable for people with schizophrenia. Nola also helps you learn self-management strategies and find community support services.

Call Potomac Shores Mental Health and Wellness today or book an appointment online to get an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment for schizophrenia.