Thursday, February 2, 2023

Tag: mental health recovery

On Recovery: Scaling the Wall of Fear

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I pray for a rich life, away from the fear of job insecurity, coercive medicine, and false labels. The question still remains as to how to handle societal fears about the ‘mentally ill’. My blessed family are like hypervigilance officers on the watch for the slightest behavioural aberration.

Lighting a Spark to Heal Trauma: An Interview with Jesse Zook...

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An interview with Jesse Zook Mann of Mental Health Media about trauma, medication withdrawal, and the possibility for recovery. Jesse was severely harmed by psychiatry, but uses language that reaches people who identify with the mainstream paradigm of mental health and mental illness.

My Mental Health Awakening

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Although it’s taken me a while to acknowledge my right to be in this world, I know that I am not “mentally ill,” but rather have a dynamic spiritual and emotional sensitivity to this world. I am here for a reason, and having to go into the depths of a very dark cave in order to see the light is how I was able to grow and discover that I don't have to take medications for the rest of my life.

United Nations Report Calls for Revolution in Mental Health Care

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In a new report, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Dr. Dainius Pūras, calls for a move away from the biomedical model and “excessive use of psychotropic medicines.”

Call for Chapters: Deconstructing Stigma in Mental Health

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IGI Global is calling for chapters in a forthcoming book, Deconstructing Stigma in Mental Health. The purpose of the book is to provide a historical context...

Curing Schizophrenia via Intensive Psychotherapy

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I believe that an Intensive Psychotherapy can lead to healing and, often, a cure of psychotic states. By cure I mean the cessation of delusions and hallucinations, and a gradual titration off of antipsychotic medication, with the cure lasting—even without continuing psychotherapy.

Most People with Common ‘Mental Disorders’ Get Better Without Treatment, Study...

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A new study suggests that most people diagnosed with depressive, anxiety, and substance abuse disorders recover without treatment within a year of diagnosis. “This...

My Journey of Recovery

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I was never anti-recovery. I will admit, however, that when the recovery movement first came to my attention in the 1990s, I was not drawn in. In recent years, this is another area in which I have needed to re-examine my assumptions.

Recovery: Compromise or Liberation?

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The 90s were labeled - rather optimistically - as the ‘decade of recovery.’ More recently, recovery has been placed slap bang central in mental health policy. Is supporting recovery pretty much good common sense? Or is the term being misused to pressure those suffering to behave in certain ways?

Belief Systems, Nuance, and Productive Advocacy Ideas

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For those with lived experience, do people believe your recovery story? What restrictions do people put on you when you tell your story? What one-liners have you found to defuse people's concerns so that they can hear you? How do you stay in the advocacy game instead of getting frustrated at being the only one who knows the data? This is my story of disclaimers, advocacy friends, respect for religious beliefs, and sustainable advocacy efforts.

“The Halfway Houses Keeping Mental Health Patients Out Of Hospital”

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For Buzzfeed, Laura Silver reports on the UK recovery houses where mental health patients in psychiatric crisis can work toward a meaningful recovery and avoid institutionalization. Unfortunately, she finds that funding for these houses is under increasing threat.

Bullying & its Long-Term Effects on Wellness

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Psychologist William Copeland writes for Mental Health Recovery that “bullying can occur at any age and the effects of which remain harmful long after the behavior has been endured.” “We, as a society, are just beginning to understand and come to terms with the havoc that bullying wreaks on the emotional lives of its victims.

Disease Theory of ‘Mental Illness’ Tied To Pessimism About Recovery

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Researchers recently completed a first of its kind, large-scale international survey of attitudes about mental health and they were surprised by the results. According to their analysis published in this month’s issue of the Journal of Affective Disorders, people in developed countries, like the United States, are more likely to assume that ‘mental illnesses’ are similar to physical illnesses and biological or genetic in origin, but they are also much less likely to think that individuals can overcome these challenges and recover

The Recovery After an Initial Schizophrenia Episode (RAISE) Study: Notes from...

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I was a psychiatrist who participated in the Recovery After an Initial Schizophrenia Episode Early Treatment Program (RAISE ETP). Although I welcomed the positive headlines that heralded the study's results, the reports left me with mixed feelings. What happened to render the notion that talking to people about their experiences and helping them find jobs or go back to school is something novel?

40,000 Suicides Annually and America Still Shrugs

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In my last two posts, Back in the Dark House Again: The Recurrent Nature of Clinical Depression and Am I Having a Breakdown or Breakthrough? Further Reflections on a Depressive Relapse, I have shared my recent relapse into depression. Although it has been tough, when I wake up each morning I am grateful for one thing — I am not suicidal. Others are not as fortunate.

How Competing in the Olympics is Like Mental Health Recovery

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I competed in the 1996 Olympics in Judo. I also achieved complete mental health recovery from 12 psychiatric diagnoses and 29 psychiatric medication. I've also now mostly recovered from a traumatic brain injury, which probably was exacerbated by a lifetime of contact sports, ten years of psych meds before I learned about mental health recovery, and seven shock treatments, that are totally ineffective at promoting mental health recovery.

Setting the Intention to Heal: The Starting Point of Mental Health...

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In my work facilitating depression support groups, I have discovered three essential factors to healing from depression, which I call ”the three pillars of mental health recovery.”  In my earlier blogs for Mad in America I wrote about two of these pillars --connecting with community and using a holistic approach to treat symptoms. Now I would like to present the first and MOST IMPORTANT pillar — Setting the Intention to Heal.

We Are Meant to Heal in a Community

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In my last blog, I talked about how I was attempting to cope with a “mini-relapse” without using psychiatric drugs. One Sunday morning in the midst of this episode I awoke in a particularly dismal state. I didn’t have a structure planned for the day. And without something to look forward to, both my anxiety and depression increased.

Opening the Dialogue: Can Families and Survivors Heal Together?

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If we believe that emotional problems are primarily disorders of the brain, then perhaps taking a “fill-in-the-blank” medical history is sufficient. However, if we believe that emotional crises and dis-ease are problems that exist between people, in our sticky or not-so-sticky web of relationships, then whether families, survivors and those in crisis can heal together is a much more relevant, if still complicated, question. Perhaps the most honest answer to this question is: “It depends..."

About Being Paul Revere

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A reader asked why more psychiatrists don’t speak up louder against psychiatric drugs. I’d like to think there’s someone in charge who could sound the alarm. It’s nice to imagine that working doctors have the power and freedom to speak up in a forceful and visible manner. If such a doctor exists, it’s not a psychiatrist who works in the trenches. A working doctor today is not in a position to be Paul Revere.

Building a Bridge to Hope

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Hope heals. Thousand of years of experience and, more recently, numerous hope studies, prove this to be true. Yet hope is still a 4-letter word in many mental health settings. How can we build a bridge to hope from hope-stealing physical and emotional pain, hopeless diagnoses and prognoses, and hope-numbing side effects?

Five Types of Mental Health Advocates

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I've figured out there are five types of mental health advocates. We need to respect all five types of motivations and viewpoints in order to support or combat their agendas. The question for us, is how can we each of us maximize our own impact to share awareness of this situation and then impact change? The answer is that each of us has to work from our own passions and interests and talents and skills and motivations.

Common Sense, Deferred: Lessons From the “Fresh Air” Fight, Part Two

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How and why the right to fresh air is continuously blocked by money, politics and ignorance. Plus, personal reflections on how nature heals.

What Are We Recovering From? Making a Case for Recovery

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Is “recovery” a useful concept or is it overused, co-opted or simply not an accurate way to describe the process of learning to work with and through madness and life’s challenges. Mother Bear Community Action Network explores these arguments and makes a case for recovery.

The First Ever USA Olympic Gold Medal in Judo – and...

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This morning Kayla Harrison won the first ever Olympic gold medal in the history of USA Judo. Kayla has overcome many, many obstacles on...