Antidepressants and Depressants – Part 1

The report stated that many medical researchers are coming to the conclusion that antidepressant drugs are not effective and cause more harm than good. Most of the observed improvements can be attributed to the Placebo Effect. As usual, today’s medical philosophy dictates that medicine treats symptoms instead of addressing the root of the problem.

Recently I watched a report on “60 Minutes” about the “effectiveness” of the so-called ANTIDEPRESSANTS.

I need a PILL

The report stated that many medical researchers are coming to the conclusion that antidepressant drugs are not effective and cause more harm than good.  Most of the observed improvements can be attributed to the Placebo Effect.  As usual, today’s medical philosophy dictates that medicine treats symptoms instead of addressing the root of the problem.

The general public continues to be duped  by advertisers and medical professionals professing  that there is always a quick-fix pill.

It is so simple to understand.  There are a lot of stress factors in today’s society and people’s inability to cope with daily problems contributes greatly to the depression epidemic occurring in “advanced” societies.

Below are a few excerpts on the subject of depression and today’s life style:

HORWITZ AND WAKEFIELD:  Our book argues that, despite widespread beliefs to the contrary, the rate of depressive disorders in the population has not undergone a general upsurge.  In fact, careful studies that use the same criteria for diagnosis over time reveal no change in the prevalence of depression.  What has changed is the growing number of people who seek treatment for this condition, the increase in prescriptions for antidepressant medications, the number of articles about depression in the media and scientific literature, and the growing presence of depression as a phenomenon in popular culture.

The definition of “depression” is so broad now that  people are “depressed” and need a pill if they get a traffic ticket.  In reality it is what we call LIFE.

Who Tends to be Most Depressed?

This study found the following groups to be more likely to meet criteria for major depression:

  • Depression
    In the dark of depression

    persons 45-64 years of age

  • women

  • blacks, Hispanics, non-Hispanic persons of other races or multiple races

  • persons with less than a high school education

  • those previously married

  • individuals unable to work or unemployed

  •  persons without health insurance coverage

Clinical Trials – What the Drug Companies Don’t Report

What Dr. Kirsch and his colleagues found was that 80 percent of the medication response in the combined drug groups was duplicated in the placebo groups, and that the mean difference between the drug and placebo was a “clinically insignificant” two points on both the 17-item and 21-item Hamilton Depression Scale, regardless of the size of the drug dose.  The placebo factor ranged from a high of 89 percent for the Prozac response, according to the study, and a low of 69 percent for the Paxil response.  In four trials, the placebo equaled or achieved marginally better results than the drug.  In the nine expert commentaries published with the study, none of the commentators disputed the study’s main findings.

Depression is an illness with a purpose.  In a new website about coping with depression I recently published, I talk about depression, itself, being ‘OK’ – because ‘depression’ is merely a ‘signal’ that something in our life is not ‘right’.  This is simplifying things but what most treatments tend to do is address the symptoms…hence a ‘pill’ might make you ‘feel more normal’ by overwhelming the brain’s ability to use the ‘signal’ of depression to alert you to the need for sometimes significant change.  Masking the underlying problem by the use of chemistry is a popular way for allopathic medicine to help people cope with depression.  I personally do not think that in the long-run this really helps us address what we need to do.

Overuse of antidepressants
Life is good!

400% Increase

According to a 2010 report released by the CDC, antidepressants were the most frequently prescribed prescription drug between 2005 and 2008 for adults aged 18 to 44 years, and the third most commonly used drug for all ages.  That report also showed that the use of antidepressants increased by almost 400% for all ages from between 1988 and 1994 to the period between 2005 and 2008.

Teen Suicide Risk Similar Among Antidepressants

By Jennifer Warner
April 12, 2010

Antidepressants increase Kid's violence
Pills kill

Overall, the child and teen suicide rate after initiation of antidepressant use among participants in the study was five times higher than the rate reported among all teens aged 13 to 17 in British Columbia, which researchers say reflects the higher suicide risks among the depressed.

Psychiatrists and the pharmaceutical industry spokespeople are rushing to defend the use of the medications, which are currently being taken by 17 million Americans and bring in $11.3 billion a year to drug companies. (They are not giving up $13 Billion!)

As anecdotes, statistics and case studies are being bantered about by experts, the question that comes to my mind is why are so many of us being diagnosed with depression in the first place?  What is going on that we must rely on a medication to help us cope with everyday life in this country?

I believe that the root cause of our depression epidemic in the US is the fact that we cling to illusions about life that have no substance.  Our illusions tell us that life should always be happy and we should not suffer.

Standing behind the familiar surfaces of everyday life – our family, our work, the travel we undertake, our preferred recreation and so on – a single question confronts us all, rich and poor, in every country in the world:  How should we respond to a world slipping deeper into crisis each and every year?

This leads me to speculate that the repressed knowledge of this failure to confront reality may be among the root causes of the ‘depression epidemic’ noted in recent years.

Here is my prescription:

Exercise.  Gardening is great.  Get 8 hours of sleep.  Try meditation.  Watch your diet.  Change your social interactions.  If necessary, change your job.  Take a break and have a hobby.

Doing the above requires no health insurance, causes no money to go to big pharma and has no negative side effects.

Stress causes depression
"Advanced" society.

In most cases pills are not the answer.  Your attitude is.

Ponder this:  Doctors are considering to give antidepressants to kids as young as 2 years.  Don’t you think this is a symptom of a sick society?

Featuring Recent Posts WordPress Widget development by YD