Seclusion rooms are found in a variety of mental health facilities, education campuses and hospitals to help manage specific situations involving patients with schizophrenia or other related mental health conditions.
Garnering negative attention, these types of padded rooms should not be viewed as a punishment for patients, but rather as a safe space for the patient to calm themselves. When it comes to the employment of these types of padded spaces for schizophrenia patients, the intention of their use should always revolve around minimizing harm to the patients and others and to provide the appropriate care.
With advances in mental health treatments including seclusion rooms and de-escalation environments, here are a few ways these safe spaces have proven to be effective in treating such debilitating disorders.
Safety and Mitigation of Harm
Seclusion rooms may be used when a patient is at immediate risk of harming themselves or others due to severe agitation, aggression, or psychotic symptoms.
In situations where a patient’s behavior becomes extremely agitated or aggressive, secluding them can protect the safety of both the patient and the staff. It can prevent physical altercations that could lead to injuries.
Seclusion rooms are sometimes used as a means of providing a quiet and controlled environment where a patient can calm down and de-escalate during a crisis. In many of these situations, the goal is to reduce the intensity of symptoms and agitation and these types of calm and safe environments do just that for patients.
Observation and Assessment
In some cases, patients may be placed in seclusion for a brief period to allow healthcare professionals to closely observe and assess their condition. This can be particularly important when rapid assessment is needed to determine appropriate treatment interventions.
While this approach was once very controversial, many legislative changes have aided in ensuring these spaces are well designed and regulated. The health and safety of the patient is always priority number one and seclusion environments and de-escalation rooms for schizophrenia patients continue to be approached with great caution and care.