Researchers: “Antidepressants Should Be Avoided in Bipolar Depression”
New research finds that antidepressants are not effective for bipolar disorder and can worsen symptoms of mania.
Sean Blackwell: Breathwork for Bipolar and Psychosis
Do bipolar and psychosis have a healing potential blocked by suppression, medications, and avoidance? What if we could help people safely and intentionally explore, express, and understand these frightening states? Can breathwork ceremonies open the doors of perception like psychedelics — but without the drugs or risks?
The Hopkins Doctor Diagnoses Me by Ann Bracken
The Hopkins psychiatrist glances up at me, then looks at my chart. “I remember the first time—and the second—when the depression lifted I felt like a party girl.” How long did that last? “A couple of days…three, maybe.” That’s a couple of days too long. You have all the signs of bipolar II.
People Diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder at Increased Risk for Parkinson’s
Increased Parkinson's risk could be related to lithium, antipsychotic, and antiepileptic drug use.
Bright Light Therapy More Effective Than Medication Alone for Bipolar Depression
A new randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial has found bright light therapy to be a powerful intervention that could provide an alternative to medication for people with “bipolar depression.”
Promoting Healing After Psychosis
It makes sense to be cautious about any kind of exploratory practice that might send someone who has been "psychotic" into another period of being lost and confused. But we should also beware the risk of trying to be too stable and "normal" after psychosis — the risk of avoiding the transformative work that might need to happen for that person.
U-M Team Concludes Bipolar Disorder Has Many Causes
From Science Magazine: After studying over 1,100 individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorder for 12 years, a University of Michigan research team has found that no...
Army Lifts Ban on Waivers for Recruits With Mental Health Issues
From USA Today: The Army will now allow recruits with a history of self-harm, bipolar disorder, depression, and drug and alcohol abuse to seek waivers...
Researchers Probe Connections Between Physical Activity and ‘Severe Mental Illness’
How does physical activity affect people diagnosed with bipolar, schizophrenia and major depressive disorders?
New Research Documents Widening Mortality Gap for Bipolar and Schizophrenia
Analysis of longitudinal data from 2000-2014 demonstrate mortality gap is widening between persons with a diagnosis of bipolar or schizophrenia compared to the general population
Love: At the Intersection of Anti-Racism and Anti-Stigma
In this piece for Beyond Meds, Chris Cole examines the intersection of racism and oppression against people labeled "mentally ill." "This is where social justice becomes...
In this piece for Healing Journey, Anne O'Beirne briefly summarizes the history of the medical usage of lithium and describes the impact that the drug has...
Bipolar Disorder: Childhood Trauma Modulates Impact
From Psychiatry Advisor: Childhood trauma modulates the effects of bipolar disorder on the amygdala and hippocampus; it is associated with increased volumes of gray matter. "'Childhood maltreatment has...
Could ‘Treatment Resistance’ be an Effect of Antidepressants?
Previously taking antidepressants could make individuals less likely to respond to treatment for bipolar II depression.
Yes, Your Sleep Schedule is Making you Sick
From The New York Times: Clinicians have long known that sleep schedules and levels of exposure to sunlight can have a significant impact on...
Carrie Fisher, Bipolar Disorder, and the Spread of False Information
As a child of the 80s, I had a childhood dream of growing up to be Princess Leia, and — of course — marrying Han Solo. What I did not dream of was fighting an empire that seems only to grow over time, and with no Harrison Ford by my side to make it all better. The death of Carrie Fisher is heartbreaking; the news coverage of her life and suffering is a tragedy.
Bipolar Diagnosis Linked to Childhood Adversity
With the ties between traumatic childhood experiences and mental health issues, should we continue to focus on biological approaches?
Backing Away from Psychiatry
I believe now that fifteen years is more than a fair try. Fifteen years of getting treatment without returning to function is actually insanity. I should have given up after year two. Instead of trusting my intuition and insight, I pushed it down and down... until it finally fought its way back to the surface.
“Former Navy Pilot Sues U.S. Government Over Bipolar Diagnosis”
A former Navy pilot claims that a VA doctor misdiagnosed him with a mental disorder that prevented him from flying and ended his career. William Royster was told in 2004 that he was bipolar, that it was a permanent condition, and that he could no longer work in any capacity, according to the Navy Times. A different psychiatrist, however, later told Royster that he never met the criteria for diagnosis.
SSRI Antidepressants Increase Surgery Risks
There is accumulating evidence that taking SSRI antidepressants increases the risk of bleeding and other complications during surgery, according to a review published in the British Journal of Anaesthesia.
Reasons Not to Believe in Lithium
‘I Don’t Believe in God, But I Believe in Lithium’ is the title of Jamie Lowe’s moving account of her manic depression in the New York Times. The piece reminds us how devastating and frightening this condition can be, so it is understandable that the author put her faith in the miracle cure psychiatrists have been recommending since the 1950s: lithium. The main problem is that there is no study in which people who have been started on lithium have been compared with people who haven’t.
I Believe Most of us Have a Broken Heart, Not a...
Some of you might know me from co-founding The Icarus Project, an online community, real-life support network, and alternative media project by and for people living with the complex gifts that are too often labeled as “mental illness.” Some of you might not know that I'm also a poet. I've been asked to share my work here on Mad in America. This first poem I'm going to offer you is about trauma and resilience; the ways that the world breaks our hearts, and the ways we survive to find our voices again.
I was never voluntary, no matter how much I convinced myself I was. Only now, my mind, body, and spirit fully free from the mental health system, am I coming to understand this. After desperately searching for answers to that once perplexing question of “Who am I?” I have found that I’m connecting with a true, authentic sense of my Self for the first time.
The United Met States of Psychiatry
Psychiatry’s desperate drive to legitimize itself as a profitable medical authority has resulted in a mass delusion so pervasive and destructive that it's put us on a path towards societal collapse. This is not an overstatement, in my opinion, as the statistics are mind-boggling— one in five Americans are on psychiatric drugs. One in five. By my calculations, this means that 62,913,200 people ingest mind-altering, body-altering, spirit-altering pills they believe to be “medications” on a daily basis.
Chapter Twenty-Seven: Reignition
Silent hours unfolded as I devoured the words, a symphonic consciousness crescendoing as door after door of new awareness opened inside of me. It...