Helping you to stay well in the future

Professionals and services that can help you stay well

Once you have recovered from an episode of psychosis or schizophrenia, you can continue to receive care and treatment from the early intervention service or from another local team of professionals called a 'community-based team'. This team should offer you treatment, and support you to stay well in the future. If you need help and support from more than one service, a 'care coordinator' should organise all the care you receive.

You should have an annual appointment to check that your medication is still working and any side effects are manageable.

If you feel well enough, your care can be transferred to your GP, if you prefer. When this happens your GP should do a health check, which should include your mental and physical health (see Looking after your general health).

If you are moving and need support and treatment from another mental health or social care service, this should be discussed with you first (and with your family or carer if you agree). While your care is being transferred to the other service, your healthcare team should make sure you still receive the support you need, especially during a crisis.

Support with work and education

If possible you should be supported by mental health services to stay in work or education, or find new work or education opportunities. You may also be offered a place on an employment scheme or other training or activities, including help to continue with your education at home or at a special college until you get better.

Treatments to help you stay well

Taking medication and continuing psychological therapy can help you to recover and stay well in the future.

Your healthcare professional should help you decide on the best medication for you and the best way for you to take it in the long term.

This could be by taking an antipsychotic medication that has long-lasting effects (called 'depot antipsychotics'). These are usually given every 2–4 weeks (depending on the type) by injection into muscle. You should be asked whether you want to receive your medication in this way and where (for example, at your GP's surgery, a day hospital or at home).

If you decide to try a depot antipsychotic, your healthcare professional should give you a test dose to check that it suits you. Once you are taking it you should have your treatment reviewed regularly.

It is usually better to take medication regularly. But if you would prefer not to take medication all the time or you have had unpleasant side effects, you may be given the option of taking medication only when you to start to feel ill again.

If you start to feel ill again

Your GP should check your care plan and may refer you to your care coordinator or psychiatrist if:

  • you start to have symptoms again

  • your treatment is not working

  • you have unpleasant side effects from your medication

  • you are using alcohol or drugs

  • there is a risk to yourself or others.

If you need further treatment the healthcare professionals should take account of your wishes and discuss side effects and other treatments you would like to try.

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