More Americans on Prescription Drugs That May Increase Depression Risk


From the Tampa Bay Times: More than a third of American adults are taking prescription drugs, including hormones for contraception, blood pressure medications and medicines for heartburn, that carry a potential risk of depression, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The study found that people who took multiple drugs associated with a possible increased risk of depression were also more likely to be depressed, but researchers couldn’t distinguish whether the medications were the cause. It’s possible people already had a medical history of depression prior to taking the drugs, or the medical conditions they were being treated for could have contributed to their depression.

The work is part of a provocative and growing body of research that documents how polypharmacy — the use of multiple prescription drugs at the same time — has risen in the U.S. The number of Americans taking at least five prescription drugs at the same time rose sharply between 1999 and 2012, and the elderly are particularly at risk for dangerous interactions between drugs.

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  1. Poly pharmacy is a huge societal problem, especially since the medical community often doesn’t check for drug interactions. As an art teacher, I can look at a child’s art work and know when children are on drugs with major drug interactions, and it breaks my heart how many children are needlessly being harmed by doctors, who don’t bother to check for drug interactions.

    And a big part of this problem relates to today’s DSM “bipolar” drug cocktail recommendations. Today’s DSM recommendations for “bipolar” include combining the mood stabilizers, antipsychotics, antidepressants, antidepressant-antipsychotics, and anti-anxiety medications, according to the Mayo Clinic.

    Despite the reality that both the antidepressants and the antipsychotics are cholinergic drugs, which especially when combined, can cause anticholinergic toxidrome.

    And anticholinergic toxidrome is a drug induced poisoning that mimics the symptoms associated with the “serious DSM disorders,” like psychosis and hallucinations. Yet this known psychiatric drug induced toxidrome is, for reasons of profit I’m certain, conveniently missing from the DSM.

    I do hope the psychiatric industry changes their massive poly pharmacy drug cocktail recommendations for “bipolar” soon.

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