Some people have suggested that schizoaffective disorder sits in the middle of a continuum, with schizophrenia at one end and bipolar disorder at the other. However, schizoaffective disorder is recognised as a separate diagnosis to both schizophrenia and bipolar, despite sharing many similar symptoms.
The word schizoaffective has two parts:
Schizoaffective disorder is a condition where symptoms of both psychotic and mood disorders are present together, or within a two week period of each other, during one episode.
You might have times when you struggle to look after yourself or when your doctors consider that you lack insight into your behaviour and how you are feeling. But you may also have times between episodes where you feel well too.
Episodes can vary in length. Some people have repeated episodes but this does not necessarily happen for everybody. Symptoms usually start when you are a young adult.