If you take or think you need to take antidepressants, I received the following e-mail from a patient of mine that shows you really don’t need them:
“Dear Dr. Shallenberger, I just wanted to let you know that my daughter followed your protocol for getting off antidepressants. She had been on them for over 20 years — off for two six-month periods, then went right back on. Recently she had been taking 90 mg of Cymbalta, and has been off it for months and is doing fine! She is convinced that she never needed to be on them in the first place. But I think they want everybody on these drugs. Thank you so very, very much! — Deena.”
Now here’s the thing. They do want everybody on them.
Big Pharma absolutely wants everyone to be convinced that they have some kind of disorder that requires a drug. Whether it’s social anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder, attention deficit disorder, traveling disorder, adjustment disorder, even arthritis and back pain, whatever, it doesn’t matter. Unless you are the most complete person in the universe, the odds are good that Big Pharma has a psychoactive drug for you.
Just for kicks, go look at www.depression-guide.com. This site lists all of the psychological disorders that they have invented so far. There are over 120 disorders listed there! And there’s no way that you don’t have at least a few of them. My personal favorite is “conduct disorder.”
I know I have that one. So it’s obvious that most of us need to be on some drug in order to be completely healthy.
Do you eat too much? You have compulsive eating disorder, and you need either Topamax or an SSRI. Are you too shy? You have avoidance personality disorder, and you need to take a tranquilizer and/or an SSRI. Are you too self-centered? It’s not your fault. You have narcissistic personality disorder, and you either need an antidepressant, an antipsychotic, or a mood stabilizer. I’m not kidding about this. The list goes on and on.
Do You Need Speed?
Oh, you’re tired, stressed out, can’t think, and don’t have enough energy. Well, you obviously have a bad case of attention deficit disorder. And you need to take speed. That’s right, amphetamine. Doctors are actually now dealing out speed! That’s what happened with a healthy, strong young man that I just saw recently.
This fellow was the epitome of health. He was a fitness expert and a competitive boxer. He was in top physical form. Sharp. Good looking. Owned his own business. The whole package. And then something not all that strange happened.
The economy declined, and so did his business. And then guess what? He became stressed. So stressed he could not sleep. One thing led to another, and he ended up seeing his doctor. What did the doctor do?
Did he help him deal with his stress? No. Did he clean up his high-sugar diet or offer him supplements that would help his body hold up under stress? No. His doctor gave him a disorder diagnosis, and then proceeded to make him addicted to an amphetamine called Adderall. Many recreational drug users call amphetamines “speed” because they are stimulants that increase focus and decrease fatigue and appetite. Yes, doctors prescribe “speed” for just about everyone these days (even children). Once again, I am not kidding. This healthy man became addicted to speed under his doctor’s orders.
Big Pharma and conventional doctors have now defined every emotional issue humans have as being a particular disorder. And, not surprisingly, there are approved medications for each “disorder.” Coincidentally, almost all of these medications are addictive.
According to the same site, “Psychological Disorders are very common in the United States and across the world. According to the survey and other population estimates, 26.2% of Americans above the age of 18 — which is about one in four adults — suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year. This comes down to a whopping figure of 57.7 million people as per 2004.” You might not think you need a drug, but there is a 26.2% chance you do, according to Big Pharma. These so-called mental disorders are now the leading cause of disability in the U.S. and Canada.
The Problem With SSRIs
The drugs that are most prescribed for these disorders are the SSRIs. The SSRIs are the class of drugs that includes Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Effexor, Luvox, Lexapro, and the one my patient’s daughter was hooked on, Cymbalta. An article in Psychology Today detailed some eye-popping facts about the misuse or overuse of SSRIs.
According to the article, “Researchers at the Rand Corporation in 2002 surveyed close to 700 adults who had received a prescription for an antidepressant. Of those who reported receiving the medication for depression, just 20% tested positive when screened for the disease. Fewer than 30% of those receiving the medication had any depressive symptoms at all.”
Or to put it another way, more than 80% of patients in the survey presented no actual need for antidepressant treatment. How about that? More than 80% of the people taking these drugs don’t need to be on them even by Big Pharma standards! But it gets worse. The numbers are climbing as we speak. Another report says that close to 5,000 Americans start taking an SSRI every day.
Christopher Lane is an English professor at Northwestern University. Previously, he taught at Emory University, where he was also director of the Psychoanalytic Studies Program in the Psychiatry Department. Because of this position, Lane had unprecedented access to the American Psychiatric Association archives, as well as memos from drug company executives that had been previously classified. It was there that Lane unearthed the disturbing truth.
With little scientific justification, the American Psychiatric Association and the drug companies defined hundreds of conditions — among them shyness and other normal human conditions — as psychiatric disorders that they considered treatable with drugs.
Lane wrote a bestselling book entitled, Shyness — How Normal Behavior Became an Illness. In it he describes how in the 1970s, a small group of leading psychiatrists met behind closed doors and literally rewrote the book on their profession.
According to The Yale University Press, these psychiatrists “revised and greatly expanded the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM for short), from what had been a thin, spiral-bound handbook of mental disorders into a hefty tome. Almost overnight the number of diagnoses exploded. The result was a windfall for the pharmaceutical industry and a massive conflict of interest for psychiatry at large.”
Here’s how Lane explains it in his book: “Before you sell the drug, you have to sell the disease. And never was this truer than of social anxiety disorder, which by the 1990s encompassed shyness, fear of urinating in a public lavatory, and concern about saying the wrong thing. The moment the American Psychiatric Association grouped these fears, calling them elements of a troubling under-reported problem, it not only defined a new segment of the population as ill, but also cast their woes in an entirely different form. A signal therefore went out that researchers and mental health professionals should unearth fresh remedies.”
And “fresh remedies” they did unearth. Fresh remedies they could take to the bank. The drug that Deena’s daughter had been needlessly hooked on, Cymbalta, made $2.77 billion in 2010 all by itself. That’s pretty fresh. But get this — she never needed the drug. I never even met Deena’s daughter. I was treating Deena for some of her issues, when she told me she was concerned that her daughter had been hooked on anti-depressant drugs. I simply made some quick recommendations to Deena to pass on to her daughter. It could not have taken more than 10 minutes. And they worked wonders.
That Doesn’t Stop Doctors From Prescribing These Drugs
According to the Washington Post, between 2002 and 2005 the sales of the amphetamine that the young man I told you about was hooked on, Adderall, soared by more than 3,100%! In just the last quarter of 2011, Adderall made $200 million all by itself. Can you see the reason why Big Pharma spends so much money sending drug detailers to train their doctors every month?
If you have a strong stomach, and you really want to know the full extent of this drug scam, then watch the three-hour documentary, “The Marketing of Madness.” This exposé goes into painful detail of all the facts in perhaps one of the greatest swindles ever foisted on the American public. All the facts are there. You can watch it for free at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uFkivsEy3CI.
Does all this make you just a little bit angry? It makes me crazy. It gives me a very bad case of anger disorder. But it makes no sense to get angry at Big Pharma. They are just doing what corporations do, make money. The problem is with us. Next week, I’ll show you another major issue with antidepressants — they can destroy your sex life. And I’ll show you how to avoid these drugs and feel great.
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Lane, Christopher. Shyness — How Normal Behavior Became an Illness, Publisher: Yale
“Overprescribing Antidepressants” By Christopher Lane, Ph.D. Created May 11 2009–12:26pm Published on Psychology Today (http://www.psychologytoday.com)