To Psychiatric Pharmaceuticals
one of the most dangerous things a person can do.
If you are ever tempted to take yourself, or to give to your child, an antidepressant, an amphetamine such as Ritalin, an anti-anxiety medication such as Xanax, anti-bipolar medication, an anti-psychotic, or any other psychotropic drug, first do any amount of research on your own into how these drugs affect people – short term and long term.
You’ll change your mind. You should change your mind.
Please, decide not to take yourself, or to force on a child, a psychopharmaceutical, psychoactive, neuroleptic, or psychotropic medication or drug.
The good news is that no matter how bad you feel now, you will feel better soon on your own – usually sooner than you think. The mind has great self-healing power. Let yourself heal. Give yourself time to heal.
The bad news is that no matter how bad you feel now, taking a psychotropic drug will make you feel worse – if not now, then later. It will damage your brain, permanently, as well. It doesn’t take years or decades for the negative physical effects of taking psychotropic drugs to occur – they are immediate, long-lasting, and cumulative.
The physical side effects of psychotropic pharmaceuticals are extremely painful and, because they involve the brain, can be extremely confusing psychologically. In fact, it is the physical side effects of taking psychopharmaceutical drugs, and also attempting to withdraw from them, that cause the increase in suicides, violence, and even homicides that are the result, for many people, adults and children, of taking these drugs.
Calling the physical effects of psychotropic drugs “side-effects” is misleading, however. The damaging effects of psychotropic drugs, which are really direct effects, happen right along with the intended (usually placebo) effects that the pharmaceutical companies tout when selling them.
Contrary to the pharmaceutical companies’ contentions, psychoactive drugs do not work by restoring the brain’s chemicals to a natural balanced level. They work by disabling the normal action of the brain as it works to operate the body in accordance with the thoughts of the brain’s owner.
Psychoactive drugs work not by correcting the brain’s neurotransmitters, but by partially shutting down or speeding up the action of its neurotransmitters, zombie-fying you. This can cause what psychiatrist Peter Breggin calls medication spellbinding – intoxication anosognosia – not knowing that you are intoxicated.
This is not as innocuous as it sounds. People “often do not recognize that they’ve become irrational, depressed, angry, or even euphoric since beginning the medication. Second, if they do realize that they are having painful emotional feelings, medication spellbinding causes them to blame their feelings on [themselves or other people, rather] than the drug.” This is dangerous. It is something that you should not do either to yourself or to your child.
Technically, psychoactive pharmaceuticals force the neurons of the brain – the brain’s cells – to flood the brain with unnatural levels of the physically energizing or quieting neurotransmitters that the cells produce, and/or delaying these neurotransmitters’ re-uptake by other cells.
That is not a little thing to happen to your brain. It’s unnatural, and over time, often a very, very short time (days to weeks), it causes damage to the brain itself. (Incidentally, it also causes damage to other of the body’s tissues and organs.)
The physical action of psychopharmaceutical drugs makes them highly addictive immediately. It is so painful, subjectively, to have the brain flooded with extremely high levels of euphoric chemicals and then to have the chemicals quickly fade away that one must take the drug that caused the initial release of neurotransmitters again and again, at closer and closer intervals, to avoid painful withdrawal symptoms.
As the brain and the body, over days and weeks, habituates to higher and higher levels of these chemicals (which means that the body/brain sets up defenses to them and finds ways to react less strongly to them), one must “up one’s dose” to achieve any noticeable change in state.
It is this change in state, usually interpreted as “euphoria” – the shutting out of perception – caused by unnatural levels of brain chemicals, followed immediately by withdrawal into a highly agitated or depressed state, followed by taking more drugs which make one feel better again, that makes people think that the drugs are “working”, if they “work” at all; they often don’t. Most of the time, they don’t work the way they are “supposed” to, and alternative drugs must be tried, or more than one drug tried in combination with another, until a chemical “high” is reached that is sufficient to cause the patient to believe that the drugs are “working”.
“They must really be working if their effects are so strong”, many people think; if the drugs have such a deep impact and make one feel that one can’t live without them, then one must have been abnormal to begin with, is often the mistaken conclusion of people who don’t realize what is going on in their brains and bodies.
The drugs make one feel euphoric until one becomes habituated to their effects – then one may (or may not) feel “normal” again. But it’s a false-normal. It’s a drugged “normal”. It’s not a back-to-normal.
Any true back-to-normal that occurs is either a placebo effect, or, more likely, what would have happened naturally, over time, anyway.
The independent scientific consensus is that psychiatric drugs are damaging to the brain and to the body, and more evidence is accumulating.
(I am not motivated to write about this due to any religious affiliation or polemical bent; I am concerned with people’s physical and emotional well-being. Any controversy over what I’ve written here – along with what has been written by many other scientists, doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, and independent reporters, researchers, and commentators – is maintained by the drugs’ manufacturers and distributors to discredit the independent science that has been done.)
Clinical psychologist Bertram P. Karon sums it up well: “Most, if not all, neuroleptic medications are neurotoxic,” he wrote. Many doctors, psychologists, and psychiatrics are aware of this, yet few tell their patients.
Drug companies that sell and doctors who prescribe these drugs attempt to convince their patients that the benefits of taking a neurotoxin outweigh the risks, but the risks are vastly downplayed both by the pharmaceutical companies that manufacture them and by the doctors that prescribe them.
Psychiatric drugs are not as safe or effective as they are promoted to be. Much safer and far more effective alternatives exist, such as empathic counseling to help to get at the root of and to heal the pain or fear that is at the root of all metal disturbance, if the patient is unable to access and to heal the disturbance his- or herself over time.
When feeling in need of emotional support, when presented with the option to take a psychiatric drug in attempted amelioration of any emotional or physical symptom, the safest decision is to refuse these drugs. Don’t be tempted. If necessary, find a skilled practitioner willing to do empathic talk therapy, instead.
If you are already on these drugs, however, do not stop them abruptly (or let your child stop them cold turkey) – that is extremely dangerous physically and psychologically. Taper off very, very gradually (lowering the dose minisculely, and no more often than every two to three weeks, if a “quicker” schedule that the doctor may recommend does not work well), and doing something mind-distracting such as exercising – even just walking – when the painful physical (and therefore emotional) withdrawal symptoms are at their peak.
The withdrawal symptoms don’t mean that you – or your child – is really crazy. They mean that the body must readjust itself to not being on the drug that was being taken. (The body will do so; you will feel better, and you will eventually be both free of the drug and mentally well again. Just be patient. “Bite the bullet” of the temporary pain for a much greater good – being drug free – in the very near future; I promise you that that will come.)
Show up at a doctor’s office for almost anything whatsoever, these days, and you may be handed a prescription for a literal poison. We are being brainwashed through advertising to the public, and doctors are being indoctrination into believing, that only the products of pharmaceutical companies can help us when we don’t feel the way that we want to. But these products don’t really help, any more than alcohol, tobacco, or overeating do.
Mental pain passes with time, with emotional support and understanding, and with love – even the placebo effect is a form of self-healing.
The damage that pharmaceutical drugs do doesn’t.
“Hugs, Not Drugs” includes psychiatric drugs, people.
When you are anxious or agitated, change your life – self-empower.
When you are sad, cry. You’ll feel better.
Depression is repression. Unrepress.
But if you are offered a psychotropic medication by a doctor, refuse it. Don’t give away your body and your mind to damaging substances that won’t help you in the long run, but make you feel worse.
Center for the Study of Empathic Therapy, Education & Living
Dr. Peter R. Breggin
Psychiatric Drug Facts
Dr. Peter R. Breggin
Dr. Peter R. Breggin
Psychiatric Drugs and Your Child
Dr. Peter Breggin
Coercion, Involuntary Treatment, Ethics
Dr. Peter R. Breggin
Behaviorism and Mental Health
An Alternative Perspective on Mental Disorders
Dr. Philip Hickey
Dr. David Healy
Psychiatrist, Psychopharmacologist, Scientist, Author
On Child Psychology here.
On Adult Psychology here.
Neuroleptics and Brain Shrinkage
Philip Hickey, Behaviorism and Mental Health (blog), June 29, 2013
Doctors Not Informed of Harmful Effects of Medicines During Sales Visits
Science Daily, April 10, 2013
The Psycho-Therapeutic School System: Pathologizing Childhood
John Whitehead, Belgrade News, April 9, 2013
Be Skeptical of Pharmaceutical Company Claims
Dr. Peter R. Breggin, Huffington Post, April 7, 2013
Never Again! The Real History of Psychiatry
Peter Breggin, Natural News (blog), March 19, 2013
Antipsychotics Associated with White-Matter Reduction
Mad in America, March 5, 2013
Anti-DSM Sentiment Rises in France
Why French Psychiatrists and Psychoanalysts are Opposed to the Diagnostic Manual
Christopher Lane, Ph.D., Psychology Today, September 28, 2012
Part 1 – The Epidemic of Mental Illness: Why?
Marcia Angell, The New York Times, June 23, 2011
Part 2 – The Illusions of Psychiatry
Marcia Angell, The New York Times, July 14, 2011
“The biggest mistake I ever made was going to see a psychiatrist” – Stevie Nicks
Monica Cassani, Beyond Meds, May 3, 2011
7 Things To Expect When Getting off Zoloft
Sean McNally, The Awl, May 19, 2010
The Depressing News About Antidepressants
“Studies suggest that the popular drugs are no more effective than a placebo.
In fact, they may be worse.”
Sharon Begley, Newsweek, January 28, 2010
Drug Companies & Doctors: A Story of Corruption
Marcia Angell, The New York Times, January 15, 2009
Your Dangerous Drugstore
Marcia Angell, The New York Times, June 8, 2006
Violence and Suicide Caused by Antidepressants Report to the FDA
Peter R. Breggin, M.D., Psychiatric Drug Facts (blog), August 23, 2004
Court Finds Prozac and Xanax Cause Criminal Conduct
Peter R. Breggin, M.D., Psychiatric Drug Facts (blog), undated
© 2013 Cathi Carol. All rights reserved. Please do not republish without permission.
Last Updated: July 20, 2013
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