While the most infamous (and conspicuous) symptoms of schizophrenia are hallucinations, delusions, and disordered thinking, known as “positive” symptoms, or things a person wouldn’t normally experience, the brain disorder is also characterized by “negative” symptoms. “Negative symptoms are things that are missing—a sense of motivation, mental energy, willingness to do things, lack of interest, and a sense of apathy,” says Russell Margolis, M.D., clinical director Johns Hopkins Schizophrenia Center and professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences.

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Blunted Affect

A blunted or flattening affect is when someone is can’t show emotions or expressions and their face is essentially flat in response to conversation. They may also make poor eye contact or have a minimal hand gestures.

Updated: Nov 12, 2020
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