Are Alternative Therapies Right for You?
At this time, no alternative therapy has been shown to work against schizophrenia. This does not mean an alternative therapy will not someday be shown to be effective. All it would take for this to occur would be the demonstration of positive results from a reproducible, well-controlled research study conducted with a large enough group of people. Unfortunately, for many therapies, that is a big hurdle.
Why Do People Think Alternative Approaches Work?
The fact that some people still recommend untested treatments can be explained in several ways. A minority of patients recover from schizophrenia or experience periods of relative improvement on their own. This is possible because disease symptoms can wax and wane in some individuals and some even recover.
In addition, some companies may promote alternative treatments for profit, and some individuals who truly believe in the effectiveness of their theory or favored treatment promote it prematurely. The only way for medical science to progress and benefit the most people is for it to use scientifically proven treatments. So far, no alternative therapies have passed this test as well as standard treatments have.
Diet is a crucial part of good health. Poor nutrition can contribute to both physical and mental problems. Anyone dealing with schizophrenia, both patients and caregivers, will benefit from a healthy diet.
This does not mean anyone has yet identified a diet that will cure schizophrenia. People have tried taking large doses of vitamins, which is advocated by those practicing orthomolecular psychiatry or megavitamin therapy, but there is no reproducible, convincing evidence it works.