Sunday, July 23, 2017

Blogs

Essays by a diverse group of writers, in the United States and abroad, engaged in rethinking psychiatry.

Has Psychiatry Gone Uniquely Astray?

Science is supposed to be evidence-respecting and thereby open-minded; psychiatry is presently not. But is psychiatry really unique in this respect? Is it the only field of medicine where dogmatically held theories contrary to evidence have held sway for long periods?

9 Questions the US Senate Should Ask Dr. McCance-Katz

Mental health agencies are mainly asking about her positions regarding “recovery” and “peers,” but here are some tougher questions for President Trump's new "mental health czar": Do you support court-ordered psychiatric drugging? Do you endorse the use of federal money for it? Why aren’t non-drug alternatives offered to Americans?

Makers of Risperdal Sued for Breast Development in Boys

Thousands of boys and young men are lined up in courthouses around the country to sue J&J for gynecomastia caused by taking Risperdal as young children. The condition is irreversible except by surgical removal. Collectively, they have become known as the Risperdal Boys.

People of Great Britain! Our Beast Descends Upon Your Children

Scientific evidence indicates that antidepressants do not help children. In light of such high risks to the child’s wellbeing, these psychiatric chemicals are clearly doing more harm than good. What kind of society would permit this assault on its children?

Methylphenidate: How to Avoid Importing the American Disaster?

Even though it is extremely unlikely that in France we would reach the kinds of percentages we see in the USA, where in some states nearly 10% of children are treated with methylphenidate or other psychostimulants not used in France, overprescription is highly probable. Why?

While Psychiatry Slept (Part II)

The new wave of psychosocial treatments is encouraging, but does not go far enough in recognizing psychosis as an attempt by the psyche to heal itself. Until psychiatrists receive training in metaphor and symbol, we will continue gluing the pieces of Humpty-Dumpty back together again.

“Heartbeats of Hope: The Empowerment Way to Recover” – A Book Review

We seldom have a chance to hear from someone who combines the perspective of a longtime psychiatric survivor and activist with that of being a psychiatrist. I disagreed with only one significant point — that a person does not have to be off all medications to show “complete recovery” from “mental illness.”

Hearing Voices in the USA

The World Hearing Voices Congress will be landing in Boston, Massachusetts in August. The Hearing Voices movement is up against a lot in this culture where there's so little tolerance for uncertainty and exploration. This movement, this event, and so many people's lives depend on all of us to carry this perspective forward.

Benzo Injury? Tell the FDA!

For World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day, we are asking everyone to submit an FDA report about their injury. We have teams of people willing to help with this. This problem has been going on for 60 years, and we can be the generation that stops it, but we need to come together and take action.

Why World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day?

I am participating in World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day today, and you should too, because you know somebody right now who is taking a benzodiazepine and that person might just be dealing with chronic health problems, unaware that they are result of taking the medication as prescribed.

Three Suicides: Honoring Lives Lost to Benzodiazepines

I am still trying to reconcile what these chemicals are capable of, how the urge can morph into an action, how we maybe just don’t understand suicide all that well. For me, the suffering was so intense it was too painful to stay alive. I understand how my friends felt in their last moments.

Tapering Strips for Benzodiazepines

One size fits all does not work. It is not possible to use the same tapering schedule for all patients who wish to stop with a certain drug. Therefore we had to come up with a flexible solution that was both practical and allowed doctors and patients to make the choice they deemed appropriate.

“Benzo Blue”: a Song of Protest and a Search for Liberation

In commemoration of World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day coming on July 11th, I am providing an early first time debut at Mad in America of a new song and music video titled “Benzo Blue,” along with a brief commentary on the evolution and significance of this song.

Senate Quietly Rubber-Stamps Trump’s “Mental Health Czar”

This “Mental Health Czar” appointment is moving below the radar of many people. The US Senate should be asking some tough questions of Dr. McCance-Katz before deciding on her confirmation. Everyone should contact their Senators, now!

New Resources from the WHO’s QualityRights Initiative

The challenge to promote the rights of persons with psychosocial, intellectual and cognitive disabilities and to transform mental health services across the world is colossal. The QualityRights initiative seeks to provide actors everywhere with the tools that they need to become active agents for change.

Uniting Critical Voices: Where can we Collaborate?

If we are to achieve the much-needed paradigm shift in the way we respond to human suffering, it is imperative that we unite. Given the powerful vested interests sustaining the dominant bio-medical model, a fragmented opposition will possess insufficient power to transform the system.

So You Say You Want a Revolution Part Two

Establishing a comprehensive drug review map will make possible a complete assessment of the expenditures on psychiatric drugs. I predict that these expenditures are going to surprise and concern anyone responsible for managing these costs.

Landmark Victory against the “Oak Ridge Torturers” — Do We Cheer or Cry?

With reports of the horrid abuse at Oak Ridge surfacing frequently over the years, how could this travesty have continued unabated for so long? What is wrong with the “therapeutic” community that what happened here was hailed as a major advance?

No Psychiatrist Needs to Use ECT

Modern psychiatrists are taught that all mental disorder is biological in nature. As a result, they aren't taught psychotherapy, and when they get a complicated patient, they don't know what to do. Thus, they very quickly reach the limit of their skill set and have no option but to reach for the electrodes.

Do Psychiatrists Harm their Patients out of Stupidity?

I think it is fair to say that many psychiatrists display an enormous lack of good sense and judgment. Psychiatrists are in the firm grip of a collective force field of an almost fundamentalist belief system that blinds them to the harm they unwittingly do and the human rights abuses they commit.

French and American Approaches to “ADHD”

It now looks as if the U.S. approach to mental health is fast gaining purchase in a country that formerly boasted a great, perhaps too sophisticated (Lacan et al.) psychoanalytic tradition, but also a holistic psychosocial tradition when dealing with psychological disturbance in children.

Data Shows That Nutrients Reduce Aggression: Why is Policy Not Changing?

Despite study after study after study showing that there is a simple, cheap solution to reducing aggression in many people, the message hasn’t carried through to changing policies or treatment approaches. If a drug were shown to reduce aggression with no side effects, would it be ignored?

Robert Whitaker Refutes Jeffrey Lieberman; But Is Psychiatry Reformable?

When the neuroleptics-are-necessary-to-treat-schizophrenia myth falls, psychiatry is finished. And that is why the Goff et al paper was produced: a desperate attempt to maintain its position by a profession that is truly on the ropes. For psychiatry this is a death-struggle.

An Open Letter to the President’s Commission on Combating Addiction and the Opioid Crisis

The Commission was addressed by organizations engaged with various aspects of addiction treatment. Much of the input seemed apropos, but one voice was missing. Speakers failed to include even one practicing physician or advocate for the pain patients who have been blamed for the so-called “opioid epidemic.”

MIA RADIO: Expanding the Audience for “Critical Psychiatry” Perspectives

We are now launching a new effort, one that has us excited about its possibilities. MIA Radio will begin airing podcasts on July 1. We will be both producing our own MIA podcasts and serving as a host for independently produced critical psychiatry podcasts.

Follow Us

18,711FansLike
9,845FollowersFollow
1,294SubscribersSubscribe