Although the precise cause of schizophrenia isn't known, certain factors seem to increase the risk of developing or triggering schizophrenia, including:
- Having a family history of schizophrenia
- Exposure to viruses, toxins or malnutrition while in the womb
- Abnormal activation of the immune system, such as from inflammation or autoimmune diseases
- Older age of the father
- Taking psychoactive drugs during teen years
Schizophrenia symptoms generally start in the late teens to the mid-30s. It's uncommon for children to be diagnosed with schizophrenia. Early-onset schizophrenia occurs in children younger than age 17. Very early-onset schizophrenia in children younger than age 13 is rare.
Feb. 28, 2014
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- Huxsahl JE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 30, 2013.
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