The Difference Between Autism and Schizophrenia

The medical world has through its lifetime undergone through a series of self-understanding as it tries to uncover different truths about different situations in a human being.

A human being has proven to be as complex as ever with each passing minute due to the difference in character and biology.

Although doctors understand the anatomy of a human being, no one really understands or predicts the happenings or the medical or psychological path of these human beings.

One minute you might be living the best tie of your life and the next you might be wondering what the purpose of your life in this world is.

Any medical condition that affects a human mind is considered one of the most sad and depressing conditions to the patient himself and to the people around him or her.

This is due to the fact that you get to experience what the patient is experiencing, especially for a loved one, throughout the period her she suffers from it without the ability to provide help or a cure.

Autism or ASD and Schizophrenia are two different medical conditions that are linked to a human brain which have from years back been considered to be one and the same thing.

However, there has been some rising disputes and concern about the diagnosis of these medical conditions in a bid to offer better treatment.

Some doctors and researchers argue that both Autism and Schizophrenia are different onsets of the same medical condition and have different symptoms due to the different stages a patient undergoes through.

Other researchers have found some ground to challenge this long standing fact which will be very beneficial in how both conditions are handled.

Autism is conspired as a wide spectrum disorder hence the name Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

This is a development disability which can occur in any human being caused by brain abnormality.

A typical definition of an individual suffering from autism is that he or she is suffering from social and communication skills development.

However, Autism Spectrum Disorder occurs differently in all patients and although there are similar characteristics in all patients, they all have different and unique characteristics at some stage in their life as well as their portrayal of strength and challenges.

This creates three categories based on the strengths and challenges under ASD. Asperger’s Syndrome, Pervasive Development Disorder and Childhood Disintegrative Disorder.

Statistically all these disorders occur in about 1 child in every 59 in America and tends to occur more in boys than girls.


This is medical disorder caused by a brain disorder affecting the thoughts, feelings and how this individual acts.

This disorder is chronic and statistics indicate that is currently affects about 1 percent of the global adult population.

There has been a general though in the world attributing violence to schizophrenia but this has over the past few years been disputed as symptoms vary from one individual to the other.

There are four major categories of this disorder which are:

Positive Symptoms

These include hallucinations which are the most common symptoms in most Schizophrenia patients.

Negative Symptoms

The negative term is bought out to show the elements which are subtracted from a person’s life when he or she is suffering from Schizophrenia. This includes the absence of facial expressions.

Cognitive Symptoms

This involves any symptom that is directly linked to the though process of an individual such as their concentration levels.

Emotional Symptoms

Emotions are a common thing to test on when diagnosing a client for Schizophrenia as it is the major thing affected by this disorder.

The diagnosis and Onset of Autism and Schizophrenia

Autism and Schizophrenia have long been considered as different stages of the same medical disorder due to their many similarities.

However, in distinguishing between these two, it has been stated that both have different ages in a human being where a doctor or any other individual can notice or diagnose the possibility of these two disorders.

Autism occurs very early in an individual and this can happen as early as 6 months after the birth of a child.

Clear indications or signs of this disorder occur or can be visible within the first three years of a child’s life.

Some will develop normally within the first few years of this bracket only to have a full blown effect at the last few months the three years while others will have a gradual occurrence of the symptoms.

On the other hand, Schizophrenia occurs later in a young individual’s life starting at around 16 to 30 years.

This aspect makes Schizophrenia very disabling in an individual’s life as they have already established a system in their life which they are unable to continue when diagnosed with this disability.

More males tend to develop the symptoms of Schizophrenia at an earlier age as compared to females.

This disorder has the ability to mask itself in a person’s life for many years but come on to undo his or her life at a later stage.

Social Dysfunctions

Autistic and Schizophrenic patients all suffer from social impairment as they lose the ability to show emotions as well as judgement of other people’s feelings and emotions.

This is due to the fact that researchers have discovered that some brain cells in these patients that process social information become less active with every passing day of the disorders.

However, Schizophrenic patients have been attributed to ill will in the society as they tend to be more reactive to peoples actions in the efforts of helping them.

This is also linked to the high hallucination rate suffered by any person suffering from Schizophrenia.

Autistic patients on the other hand have portrayed a more mild reaction and suffer from very few hallucinations as compared to Schizophrenia.

They are also more socially cynical based on their past experiences with people trying to handle or understand their behaviour.

Although these two disorders are increasingly becoming more prevalent in the global population, it is evident that separating them from their early stages and diagnosing one against the other has made it easier to treat and handle Autism and Schizophrenia which is the ultimate goal by the researchers and doctors in the medical world.

A Complete List Of Common Mental Health Diseases

Here’s a list of the most common mental illnesses along with description and symptoms.


Delusions, disturbed thinking, hallucinations and complete withdrawal of all social activities are all signs that point to schizophrenia.

It’s a common mental illness that doesn’t have a specific cause.

While there’s no cure as of today, there are effective treatment methods available for those who are suffering from it.

Many patients diagnosed with schizophrenia can still live their lives with the help of science and medical breakthroughs.


Psychosis in itself is a term used to indicate the patient’s state of mind.

The most common condition is loss of contact with reality, followed by paranoia, disorganized speech and thoughts, delusions and hallucination.

The individual experiencing psychosis will think that these illusions are so real that it affects the person’s behavior, thoughts and feelings.

Pre-existing disorders can trigger psychosis, i.e., psychotic depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, etc.

Personality Disorders

Personality disorders may come in different variations, but they all share long-term behavioral thought patterns that cause people to feel, think and behave in a socially distressing manner.

This impairment hinders the individual’s ability to form relationships and work in a normal setting.

Mood Disorders


Depression is a common mental disease that’s likely to affect all individuals at one point in their lives.

A depressed person will feel despair, frustration and discouragement for days or weeks before ending abruptly.

For some people, depression will continue in a series of lows.

Depression is a seriously debilitating disease that changes how a person acts, thinks and feels.

Moreover, this mental condition can last for months or even years.

If left untreated, the person who has it can become permanently disabled.

Depression is a condition that can affect the whole body.

It can negatively affect sleeping and eating patterns while increasing fatigue and restlessness.

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder can affect how a person acts, thinks and feels.

Dramatic shifts in terms of mood will be on display when an individual suffers from bipolar disorder.

The person’s feelings can be unnaturally high due to mania, or extremely low from severe depression.

This cycle can last for weeks or months and can cause disruption at work or in relationships.

Patients will need treatment to overcome this debilitating mental disease.

In between the highs and the lows, the patient can function well within society.

If left untreated, the episodes can get worse and happen more often.

A person suffering from bouts of mania can ramp up huge amounts of debt, quit his or her job or feel fully rested after only sleeping a couple of hours.

That same person can feel self-loathing and hopeless over the fact that they accrued too much debt and are jobless and prefer to stay in bed all day.

Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety is an everyday reaction that’s entirely normal.

However, when there’s a degree of life disruption a doctor may diagnose a patient with anxiety disorder.

Those who are suffering from anxiety disorders will find it difficult to adjust to various life aspects, including school, work, family relationships and social interaction.

Panic Disorder

Panic disorders are punctuated by a terrible feeling of impending doom, with extreme terror, fearfulness or apprehension.

These reactions are often accompanied by the following symptoms- chest pain, a choking or smothering feeling, palpitation and shortness of breath.

Panic disorder is diagnosed if an individual experiences recurring and unexpected panic attacks.


Panic attacks become agoraphobia if the person who experienced it will go to great lengths in order to avoid being in the same situation again.

Agoraphobia is the fear of experiencing an episodic panic attack where the individual thinks there’s no chance of escape, or when they think that help is impossible.

Social Anxiety Disorder

Social phobia, aka social anxiety disorder is perhaps the most common form of anxiety disorder.

An individual suffering from this mental disease has a fear of being judged by others that could result in humiliation or embarrassment.

They will avoid speaking in public, doing presentations, eating in restaurants or becoming a part of a gathering of crowds.

Moreover, these individuals will shy away from meeting new people and going on social gatherings.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

A person can get PTSD if he or she has experienced a traumatic event that causes distressing psychological symptoms.

Some of the most common symptoms include emotional numbness, flashbacks where the individual “re-lives” the moment, detachment from society, unexplained irritability, recurring nightmares and feelings of immense anger.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

OCD is a mental disorder that causes the affected individual to experience impulses, images or thoughts.

It can be so disturbing that it makes the person obsessive.

On the other hand, that same person can feel compulsion to do certain acts in order to get rid of their anxiety.

The fears associated with OCD may include doubting, fear of contamination, having the impulse to hurt another person, thinking of doing acts that are inappropriate and many more.

Compulsions can range from overly and constantly organizing, washing, counting, touching or checking personal possessions.

Eating Disorders

Binge Eating Disorder

People who are diagnosed with this mental condition eat excessive amounts of food to comfort themselves or once they quit a diet program.

Anorexia Nervosa

Anorexia nervosa is the opposite of binge eating disorder as the person goes to extremes in limiting his or her diet and food intake

The belief that one can gain control over his or her life by controlling the amount of food they eat marks this debilitating mental condition.

Bulimia Nervosa

Bulimia nervosa is a combination of anorexia nervosa and binge eating disorder.

A person afflicted with this mental disease alternates between bingeing on food and then purging it out of his or her body.

Much like anorexia nervosa, the individual feels that his or her body shape and weight lends to the illusion that they can control life’s worries.

The cycle starts when that person starts “bingeing”, or eating excessive amounts of food in one go.

They start feeling anxious and guilty about all the weight they gained.

They then try to get rid of it by using diuretics, enemas, laxatives, by vomiting, excessive exercising, by going on another diet or skipping meals.