Saturday, December 14, 2019

Comments by piers

Showing 5 of 5 comments.

  • It seems like we can never make the leap to asking about the etiology of these do-called “diseases.” If we did we might be surprised at some of the anthropological data. Addiction, for example, is not a hazard of being human. It only occurs under certain social conditions, and does not occur among intact indigenous populations. That means that our society actual provides fertile ground for addiction. Addiction is not so much about defective or vulnerable individuals taking drugs, but is a direct consequence of how we live. This is especially evident if we expand the franchise and acknowledge other forms of addiction (eg shopping, digital devices, gambling, food).
    If we look at psychosis we see something similar. Folks suffering from psychosis are much more likely to heal in the undeveloped world. And in many cultures psychosis was regarded with something like awe. Meaning, it was understood in spiritual terms.
    It any of this is of interest, I highly recommend Bruce Alexander’s book, The Globalization of Addiction: a Study in Poverty of Spirit.

  • I am an addict in long-term recovery who has worked in the field of chemical dependency treatment for many years. I have had thousands of clients and I can say that folks coming off bzs and alcohol (combined) often have the worst – most protracted and severe – withdrawal symptoms I have ever seen. And many of these people only started taking bzs after they consulted with their provider about their drinking and anxiety. It is a commonplace for doctors to prescribe alcoholics benzos to alcoholics on the logic that the bz will “treat” the anxiety that is driving the drinking. I have never seen that happen, even once. For that matter, I have never seen a psychiatrist successfully treat an addict or alcoholic. Yet they run the show. A giant big pharma scam. So long as the addict continues to relapse he serves as a cash cow for the industry. Thus we are told that opiate addiction is a “chronically relapsing” condition. False and misleading and dangerous.

    Robert, you are strong and brave and doing the right thing. Thanks you for speaking your truth.

  • Lynne,

    Thank you for writing addressing this very important topic.

    I have worked with drug addicts on a holistic basis (12 Steps, yoga, contemplative practice) for over 2 decades. Over that time I have seen very few positive outcomes with addicts who take psychiatric medications. This is especially true of those who are prescribed neuroleptics.

    I should note that “dual diagnosis” is a creature of welfare reform and not the cutting edge intervention it is usually made out to be. From 1974 – 1996 addicts and alcoholics could get SSI/SSDI benefits with a diagnosis of alcoholism or drug addiction. That ended with Bill Clinton and welfare reform. However, this policy change did not lower the rolls or the disabled so much as it incentivized getting a secondary diagnosis. Addicts needed the diagnosis to keep their food stamps and Section 8 housing. Big pharma needed dual diagnosis to maximize profits. Now we are in a situation where addicts are increasingly medicated to no effect while effective abstinence-based modalities are marginalized. (If you would like to read more about this please google Helena Hanson).

    I am really interested in your research and hope to read about it on MIA on the near future!
    Thanks