Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Hypnotic Medications Linked to Suicide Risk

A recent review found that hypnotic medications are associated with risks of suicide and suicidal ideation.

iPad Use Before Surgery as Effective as Sedatives for Children

A group of French doctors presented a new study in the area of pediatric anesthesiology at this year’s World Congress of Anaesthesiologists in Hong...

German Psychologists Declare “the Drugs Don’t Work”

Jürgen Margraf and Silvia Schneider, both well-known psychologists at the University of Bochum in Germany, claim that psychotropic drugs are no solution to mental...

Psychiatric Drug Ads Lead to More Prescriptions and Worse Treatment

A new analysis published in the The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry investigates the public health effects of direct-to-consumer advertisements for psychiatric drugs. The researchers...

Petition Calls on Pharma Companies to Offer Tapering Kits for Depression and Anxiety Drugs

A change.org petition out of the United Kingdom is addressing the extreme difficulty faced by people who attempt to taper off of antidepressants and...

The FDA’s Latest Black Box Warning: Don’t Mix Opioids, Benzos

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration yesterday mandated updated labels for nearly 400 opioids and benzodiazepines, following a review of scientific evidence and a citizen...

Who and What Killed Prince and Michael Jackson? Will the Role of Benzos Ever...

It is the deadly cocktail of benzodiazepines and opiates that is most responsible for the rising rate of opiate overdose deaths... and benzos may actually be THE decisive deadly component in the lethal drug combination. Yes, fentanyl and propofol can be dangerous drugs, but to focus the main attention in this crisis on these rarely used drugs is deliberately misleading...This minimizes the critical role of benzos and rather conveniently lets certain institutions and their leaders off the hook as the main suspects in such a vast number of cases that should be labeled as crimes of negligent homicide.

Pushing for an Informed Consent Benzo Bill in Texas

Dr. Raymond Armstrong and I are currently working together to push Texas lawmakers to adopt restrictions on the prescription of benzodiazepines and sleep drugs. We feel fortunate to be able to draw from the experience of the benzo movement in Massachusetts, and we are grateful for the information that long time advocates like Geraldine Burns have provided us.

Falling Through the Cracks

I am an award-winning singer/songwriter with a number one record to my credit. I also owned several small businesses and founded a 501c3 non-profit for women's health. I ate healthy, swam and cycled every day and had a very active lifestyle. This was before benzos came into my life. Since withdrawing from benzodiazepines five months ago, I still cannot play one of my own compositions all the way through without a mistake.

Latest World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day (W-BAD) Video

“We asked people from all over the world to share about the iatrogenic injury they sustained from taking benzodiazepines as prescribed and why they...

Announcing an International Symposium and Institute on Psychiatric Drug Risks and Withdrawal

I have given up on psychiatry as a system capable of “being there” for people who are dealing with life and death issues. Psychiatry as a system of care lacks validity. Every day — unfortunately — we learn of new examples proving this statement. But here's the good news: every day we meet people who show us that the predictions of psychiatry are not true; that there are “cures,” that it is possible to reduce or withdraw psychiatric drugs.

Benzos: A Dance With the Devil

Beginning with the glamorization of Miltown in the 1950’s, the “I don’t care” pill was a way to ease the growing awareness that the world is indeed unsafe, and that something is deeply bankrupt in the promises of burgeoning science, technology, and industrialization. Still, we sought to heal these wounds through application of more of the same mentality – one of dominance, management, and suppression of all obstacles into submission. As our bodies, minds, and spirits become more and more separated from nature, each other, and ourselves, the worry, discomfort, and unease mount. Now that the going has gotten very tough, we are reaching for medications more than ever. Surely, however, turning off the smoke alarm is not the best way to deal with a fire.

“Are Anxiety Drugs Making Us Less Eager To Lend A Helping Hand?”

For the Huffington Post, David Freeman asks “By tamping down anxious feelings, could it be that these so-called “anxiolytic” drugs are blunting our empathy and...

Air Pollution Linked to Mental Health Problems in Children

A new study, published in BMJ Open-Access this week, found a significant link between the level of air pollution in a community and the mental health of the children living there. After controlling for socio-economic status and other potential variables, researchers in Sweden discovered a strong association between the concentration of air pollution in a neighborhood and the amount of ‘antipsychotic’ and psychiatric drugs prescribed to children. The link remained strong even at pollution levels well below half of what is considered acceptable by the World Health Organization (WHO).

New Video For World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day

In a new video for World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day (W-BAD) people from all over the world share about the iatrogenic harm they sustained from taking...

“Focus on Opioids May Obscure Other Drug Issues”

“The war against the opioid epidemic in Massachusetts may be pushing another potential public health crisis into the shadows,” the Metro West Daily News...

“World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day Set for July 11th”

The 11 July 2016 will be the inaugural World Benzodiazepine Awareness Day, part of a campaign to raise global awareness about the issue of doctor-induced benzodiazepine dependency, which affects...

“Study Reveals Benzodiazepines Frequently Prescribed to High-Risk Patients”

A new study in the Journal of General Internal Medicine found that benzodiazepines are prescribed at high doses to patients at a high rate...

“Psychiatric Drugs Killing More Users than Heroin, Cocaine, Say Health Experts”

A groundbreaking article for The Province is “sounding the alarm over the heightened risk of death linked to the use of psychiatric drugs.” They report on...

“World Benzo Awareness Day, First Step To End Global Dependency Woes”

“In a bid to raise awareness towards the global epidemic of abuse on Benzodiazepine or ‘benzos’ abuse, a global campaign dubbed as World Benzo Awareness...

World Benzo Awareness Day Launch

Today, organizers have released a statement announcing a "World Benzo Awareness Day" to take place on Monday, 11th July 2016. "This day has been made...

Update: Massachusetts Benzodiazepine Bill Hearing

The hearing for Bill H4062: Informed Consent for Benzodiazepines and Non-benzodiazepine Hypnotics took place on Monday – in the middle of an April snowstorm! The discussion clarified some important points in the legislation and gave survivors an opportunity to tell their stories. I was so proud to be there and witness the courage, camaraderie, resilience, advocacy, and vulnerability of fellow survivors. This legislation is our chance to be heard. As one survivor said, through tears, to the committee, “Do not let my suffering be in vain. I beg you to pass this bill.”

Call to Action: Massachusetts Benzodiazepine Bill is Going to Committee

The Massachusetts Benzo Bill H4062: Informed consent for benzodiazepines and non-benzodiazepine hypnotics was just scheduled to be heard by the Joint Committee on Mental Health and Substance Abuse on Monday, April 4th. Less than a week away! The committee will decide whether the bill moves forward to the house and senate, goes to study, or is denied.

Bridging the Benzo Divide: Iatrogenic Dependence and/or Addiction?

As the benzodiazepine crisis spreads throughout the United States and other parts of the world, so does the debate within the benzo victim/survivor community. We know that it can be terribly invalidating to label and treat a person as a “drug addict” who is only physically dependent on benzos — and taking these drugs exactly as prescribed by a doctor. However, it can be equally invalidating to deny that “iatrogenic benzo dependence” intersects in multiple ways in the lives of people struggling with “addiction.” People will ALSO SUFFER when yanked off of their benzos, or forced into similar rapid tapers when a doctor becomes aware of their addiction history. 

Call To Action: Massachusetts Bill H4062 for Informed Benzodiazepine Use is Official

On February 24th, 2016 Bill HD4554 - An Act relative to benzodiazepines and non-benzodiazepine hypnotics was filed by Representative Paul McMurtry in the Massachusetts State House. The bill received 47 co-sponsors during the seven-day open period in which legislators can co-sponsor. This is an impressive and promising turnout.

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