Schizophrenia and Quality of Life

A recent study in Singapore explores the quality of life of Asian patients suffering from schizophrenia. In the past, a psychiatrist might have been more focused on reducing patient symptoms. Today, however, there’s a new, more holistic approach to the condition. Mental health professionals in Asia are focusing more on quality of life when treating their schizophrenic patients, choosing to prioritise well-being over a reduction in symptoms.


To gain data, the research team located 43 patients diagnosed with schizophrenia and invited them to fill out some questionnaires. Around 65% of the patients were women, and the age range of all patients was between 18 and 5.


Using SPSS Version 23, the team analysed all the data they gathered from these 43 patients. To predict quality of life, the researchers used five different predictors: social support, avoidant coping, positive re-appraisal, education, and duration of hospitalisation.

The Effect of Education

In an interesting twist, the team discovered that people with more education (post-secondary or higher) expressed a better quality of life that those with very limited education. Higher education contributes to better success in the job market and greater potential to realise life goals, so that may be a contributing factor.

The Downside of a Long Hospital Stay

In contrast, patients with a longer stay in the hospital due to their schizophrenia had a lower quality of life rating. A long hospital stay equals a more severe case of the illness or a slower recovery, which also affects social function after the patient leaves and returns to normal life. The researchers expected this correlation between quality of life and hospital stays; other studies have revealed similar results.

Factors in a Higher Quality of Life

The schizophrenic patients who showed the highest quality of life had combined a couple different styles of coping with their condition. They mixed some avoidant coping strategies with re-appraisal strategies, allowing them to sidestep triggers and re-think or re-interpret their experiences if necessary. These patients also had more social support, didn’t stay in the hospital as long, and had more education.

Severity of the Schizophrenia

The more severe schizophrenia is, the lower the quality of life for patients. Schizophrenia can affect aspects of the brain that interfere with perception of reality, communication, and planning, which could in turn keep the patient from holding a job, in spite of their level of education or social support. So the study authors recognise that in very severe cases of schizophrenia, the holistic route may not be effective, and stronger treatment is necessary.

The study also noted that a mental health clinics should also look for comorbid illnesses alongside the schizophrenia. For schizophrenic patients, depression can be a common partner with the condition.

A Better Life for Schizophrenic Patients

Have you been diagnosed with schizophrenia? At Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic – Psychiatrists and Psychologists for Mental Health in Singapore, we embrace a holistic approach to treating mental health issues. We offer several services including art therapy, child counselling, and eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) to help with post-traumatic stress disorder. Contact us today so we can help you move forward and enjoy a better quality of life, in spite of schizophrenia.

News Feed from Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic

Source: PsychCentral