Stop Medicine for Schizophrenia

Woman with her head down holding a glass of water in one hand and a white pill in the other
Do I have to take this pill?

The Question: Stop Medicine for Schizophrenia?

We got an email from a reader in Canada asking if he could stop his medicine for schizophrenia. He sent it to us through the website email with little other information. He just simply explained that he was taking medicine for schizophrenia and asking if he could stop it.

Stopping a Medicine You Are Taking to Treat Schizophrenia is Usually a Bad Idea

We wrote back, explaining that stopping a medicine he’s taking to treat symptoms of schizophrenia is not an easy question to answer. And, beyond that, as people running a website, we would not be able to answer it.

When To and When Not To Stop a Medicine for Schizophrenia

There are times when a doctor will advise, or at least, should advise, a person to stop a schizophrenia medicine. It the medicine is causing really uncomfortable side effects it might be a good idea to stop it. If the side effects are even worse than uncomfortable, it might be an even better idea to stop it. Another reason to stop a medicine is if it’s not doing anything, not helping. But, you should always talk with your doctor before deciding to stop such an important medicine. If things go badly, your doctor will need to know what was changed so that she can help you.

We Answered “Probably Not” Stop Your Medicine, and Talk with Your Doctor

When we wrote back, we did offer an opinion that he probably would not be able to stop his medicine for schizophrenia. But, we added, we’re just a website. He really needs to talk with his doctor. Maybe stop the medicine and start a different one? Maybe lower the dose and add a bit of a second medicine? His doctor would have ideas of the best next step.

Not The Answer He Wanted to Hear?

He didn’t write back. We didn’t hear from him again, so we assume maybe that was not the answer he wanted to hear. Most readers who write to us exchange a few emails before stopping. We do have a page on treating schizophrenia with a lot of good information. And based on his email we added an entire page on getting off treatment for schizophrenia.

Helpful Hot Links

As the Mayo Clinic website says, “Schizophrenia requires lifelong treatment, even when symptoms have subsided.”

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