The road to hell is paved with good intentions. That saying is especially true when it comes to mental health treatments.
In 2017, most mental health professionals have abandoned simply talking to their patients in favor of pulling out their prescription pads.
In fact, according to a recent article in Scientific American, about 17 percent of Americans take at least one psychiatric drug. That figure rose from just 10 percent two years earlier.
Of course, antidepressants are the most common type of psychiatric drug prescribed. Twelve percent of adults received a prescription for an antidepressant. Furthermore, 8.3 percent of adults received a prescription for anti-anxiety, sedative, and/or sleep medications.
Finally, 1.6 percent of adults received antipsychotic drugs for the management of major mental illnesses.
That’s over 3 million people.
Once upon a time, these patients would have received professional care in inpatient health facilities. Instead, today, we cast them loose with the stroke of a prescription pad. And, statistics show, some of these patients end up committing suicide and even mass homicide as an apparent disastrous side effect of taking these drugs.
Depression can be a way of masking anger with oneself. But when unmasked with an antidepressant, the anger can manifest as self-destruction. And in some cases, patients turn that same anger and violence outward — against others.
Indeed, as I have reported before, there is a strong association between psychiatric drugs and incidents of mass murder and homicide. Furthermore, the presence of these drugs correlates far more closely with mass violence than does the presence of firearms.
Thankfully, I am finally hearing some policymakers beginning to make the connection between psychiatric drugs and mass violence as well.
We know they cause harm, but do antidepressants help at all?
So now — onto the big question.
Has the recent increase in these psychiatric medications boosted our mental health? After all, improving mental health is the ultimate goal, right?
According by Edmund S. Higgins, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina (where I once spoke back in 1984), mental health has not improved. In his 2013 publication entitled Is Mental Health Declining in the U.S.?, he revealed the “inconvenient truth” that mental health status has actually deteriorated, despite all the drugs intended to help.
Suicide rates per 100,000 people have increased to a 30-year high. (During this same period all the new antidepressant drugs came on the scene.) Substance abuse also increased, particularly the abuse of opiate pain drugs. (Tragically, mainstream medicine gives little attention to the many safe and effective non-drug approaches for acute and chronic pain. You can learn all about them in my in my new book with Sebhia Dibra, Overcoming Acute and Chronic Pain. And for detailed, step-by-step instruction on how to put natural pain-relief alternatives to use in your own life, check out my Arthritis Relief & Reversal online learning protocol. You can learn more about it or enroll today by clicking here.
Government disability payments for mental disorders have also increased dramatically since 1980. And the Department of Veterans Affairs can’t keep up with the surge in post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD).
We can hardly look to the “updated” Diagnostics and Statistics Manual (DSM) — the psychiatric diagnosis and practice “bible” — for guidance through these difficult times. It appears to me as though the DSM’s main effort is to redefine deviancy and “normalize” aberrant behaviors that are a danger to society and individuals.
The authors of the DSM also seem quite good at inventing whole new categories of disorders in search of new drugs. This strategy, of course, ensures they can recommend a prescription drug for every condition — old or newly invented. Not surprisingly, many of the psychiatrists involved in this travesty have been called out for their ties to big pharma, as I have reported previously.
Despite these efforts at “improving” psychiatric diagnosis and treatment, Higgins concludes that a “lack of precision and objectivity in diagnosis and treating mental illness has stalled our progress.”
While true, I see the real problem in a different way.
The real problem ultimately stems from failing to treat each patient as a unique individual. The mainstream tries, and fails, to shoe-horn everyone into a “one-size-fits-all” prescription for a “standard dosage form” drug, no matter what their real problems.
According to one observer, “American psychiatry, in collusion with the pharmaceutical industry, may be perpetrating the biggest case of iatrogenesis — harmful medical treatment — in history.”
Fortunately, you have many safe and effective non-drug approaches to prevent and treat depression. First, you must know your personality type or “emotional type.”
Then you can better match the right non-drug therapy for you based on your individual personality type. You can take my short online quiz to learn more about your personality type.
For deeper discussion, read my book with Mike Jawer, Your Emotional Type: Finding the Right Treatments That Will Work for You.
“Is Mental Health Declining in the U.S.?” Scientific American (www.scientificamerican.com) 1/7/2017
“Psychiatrists Must Face Possibility That Medications Hurt More Than They Help,” Scientific American (www.scientificamerican.com) 12/13/2016