Antidepressants do not work for most people...On tonight's 60 Minutes.
I don't think the entire segment is up yet but they talk about in the overtime clip. The whole segment should be up later or by tomorrow.
It seems the FDA allows the drug companies to toss all trials that show they don't work and how really bad the side effects are and only need to show two studies that they work. So if they do 100 clinical trials and 98 show they don't work and have deadly side effect they only have to show the 2 that show the opposite.
Good ol' bought and paid for FDA.
They need to fire every single person who works for the FDA and start over.
Pharmaceuticals are satanic money hungry leeches.
This again? They do work, remarkably so in some cases, but they don't work for everyone.
The approval studies exclude so many conditions in patients commonly seen in the shrink's office to make them irrelevant. For people with mild to moderate depression, the benefit of antidepressants is difficult to seperate from placebo. In classic severe depression, the results are much more clear.
they don't work. The NYRB had a good two part article on it.
Geeee, speaking about chucking the water out with the baby.
Not a SINGLE anti depressant works? You must be kidding me. So, there is NO SUCH a thing as a anti depressant? It's all a scam? It's all a mind game?
60 Minutes is playing with people's lives. It is irresponsible sensational journalism, just because one guy, ONE guy in Harvard Medical School said so.
Leslie Stahl should be ashamed of her old wrinkled self.
If I say, and there are more than just one person saying so, that homosexuality is a disease, would you believe me, too?
They do work ... but no better than placebo, when you consider all the studies (not just the ones that were cherry-picked by the drug companies).
My line of work requires me to be acquainted with how the FDA works; the FDA does not work like how most people think it does, and it does not "watch out" for consumers nor does it pretend to.
lead, the fall of Rome etc.
I'm BI...POLAR! :)
This reminds me of a story from when I first became a nurse. I made a medication error. I gave the wrong medication to a patient. I was sick to my stomach as soon as I realized it and had to really prevent myself from passing out.
I told the head nurse what I did and she told me I needed to call the patient's doctor, identify myself, and tell him what happened. I begged her to please call him and tell him what I did, give him my name but please don't make me talk to him. She said no, it's your mistake, you must deal with the consequences.
So I called the office and left a message. I continued giving out medication until they called me to the desk and told me the doctor was on the phone. I told him what happened and he said, "Don't worry about it. The PDR lists that medication as essentially ineffective."
I looked it up in the PDR and sure enough, the drug was never really shown to have any benefit or any risk. We'd spent all this time in school looking drugs up in the PDR, but we looked up action, dosage, side effects, etc. We never read all the way down to where it was stated whether or not the drug was more effective than a placebo.
Turns out LOTS of medication was no more effective than a placebo.
Bullshit. They have been working for me for almost 20 years. I would be dead without them. No question. Don't be so ignorant.
r10, Nobody is telling you to stop taking your meds. The point is that the science indicates that if you were taking a placebo for the past 20 years you might be in the same place.
The placebo effect is known, and proven, and powerful.
Your post does beg the question: why do you think you'd be "dead without them"?
The only thing I know is when I wanted off the stuff and stopped taking my antidepressant cold turkey, I lost my mind and ended up in the mental hospital. With no prior experience of ever needing medical mental intervention.
Once you are prescribed them there is no getting off those suckers.
[quote]This again? They do work, remarkably so in some cases, but they don't work for everyone.
It's pretty easy to tell on this thread who takes them, huh?
Across the board scientific evaluation says they work no better than taking a sugar pill.
And, as far as the effects when going off of them are concerned, that's part of the problem. They are ineffective for what they are supposed to do but the side effects are atrocious, including those when going off of them.
Oh, they do what they say they do. The SRIs stop the reuptake of serotonin in the brain. The problem is that science is showing that serotonin levels in the brain probably don't play the role in depression that they thought they did. So, basically, your medication is doing nothing for the depression but is changing your brain chemistry in potentially dangerous ways.
As usual, I am filled with gratitude for the highly advanced medical expertise of a few bitchy queens posting on DataLounge. Thank you for clearing up this incredibly complex scientific issue with a few dismissive offhand statements.
Research has now shown that conditions like IBS are caused by low serotonin in the stomach. I wonder if depression can be treated however they treat that.
r15 is so pilled out that he rattles.
Saw 60 minutes and R3 states it correctly.
For mild to moderate depression, anti-depressants don't work. In England, they no longer prescribe them for patients who are not severely depressed.
I found this hard to believe myself.
My antidepressants haven't worked while I'm watching 60 Minutes since Andy Rooney died.
R5 I agree. 60 Minutes needs to take their old dated show off the air they're so out of touch. I know MANY people on antidepressants (including myself) who have had great success with them. It is true that not all antidepressants agree with you; I had to try three different kinds before I found one that helped but the same can be said for any other different type of medication.
If you don't agree with anti-depresants, don't take them. Simple as that. But if your life is a misery and your desperate for help, it's worth trying.
[quote]For mild to moderate depression, anti-depressants don't work. In England, they no longer prescribe them for patients who are not severely depressed.
Oh that's smart. No wonder England is a country full of alcoholics and binge drinkers - it's their only coping mechanisim.
Well, my detailed response post was eaten by DL so I'll just say this...
R21/22, you sound like an addict.
Science is based on facts. You want to believe fiction because you're an addict. Enjoy.
So it's true that London has strrets full of drunks laying in the road every weekend?
I was on Lexipro for four months. I guess it worked. But I gained weight and felt lethargic and dull. So I went off them. It was my mistake to go cold turkey, I didn't do my research. But DAMN, for the next three weeks I was insane. I don't remember much of that time. I would talk to myself. I told a friend a was going to commit suicide, though I wasn't suicidal. I left her a painting on her doorstep as an olive branch. No idea why. I argued with a bum because I offered to buy him a meatball sub and when he asked for turkey (I had seen him on the street and offered to buy him a mean). I told him that meatballs were what he needed. I was completely manic, and mania was something I had never experienced. I wrote long emails to old friends, came up with a new formula for writing jazz (I'm NOT a musician), I couldn't stop shaking my legs.
Maybe they work for some people, but any drug that does that to you after only four months is something I don't want to touch again.
[quote]Science is based on facts. You want to believe fiction because you're an addict. Enjoy.
Are you part of the anti-psychiatry group and "religion" Scientology by any chance?
Ah, the addict speaks again at R26.
BTW, I really love that you were so honest in signing your post.
Ugh, why do people always have to be either-or?
Anti-depressants work to vastly different degrees for different people. There is a lot of bullshit going on and there are largely ineffective drugs. But, other ADs really do help SOME people.
A lot of people on this thread don't seem to understand the placebo effect.
I could always tell most anti-depressants were placebos based on the way people described the effect they had on them. People would swear by them, claim they solved all their problems, say that they never felt better! All because big pharma offered a means to say, "It's not your fault you're depressed, it's just a chemical imbalance." Something which is much easier for people to accept than actually doing any investigative work into the nature of their emotional development, much less depression.
People don't even understand what depression is. Depression, clinical depression, is not SADNESS. It is a complete lack of feeling, a complete numbness which is deadening. Sadness is a feeling.
Big pharma intuited that people like the idea of a pill that takes all your sadness away. What a surprise.
Mother Jones wrote an extensive investigative piece on this three or four years ago. Drug companies get to choose which studies they publish, so they only publish the ones favorable to their product. And most studies of anti-depressant drugs are not favorable. Also, there are horrible side-effects if you attempt to go off them, including a sensation of electrical shocks in your head. A magazine published an article entitled, "My Chemical Romance," some months back, that detailed a writer's nightmarish experience trying to get off them. Sorry, but I can't remember the name of the magazine. It may have been, Men's Health.
R29 is correct about people not understanding the placebo effect.
The studies suggest that giving a sugar pill had a very similar effectiveness rate as giving an antidepressant for mild to moderate depression.
What this means is that for those who swear antidepressants helped them, it was actually the placebo effect, not the actual drug.
Drug companies = Satan
Which is to say, R31, that people should recognise they have the capacity within themselves to solve their problems without medication. Which is no bad thing.
I've had episodes of severe depression and oddly, the first two "placeboes" did nothing, but the third, Remeron, worked well. My life is still boring and often frustrating, but at least I don't feel unending despair.
The side effects are managable and it's dirt cheap. It's true that antidepresants don't work much of the time, but one did for me.
I got lucky.
The segment went on to say that in England, mild to moderate depression is treated with talk therapy and/or regular excercise, no drugs are prescribed.
A big problem in the US is that it is faster to just write a prescription than to talk to the patient to find out what is really going on and offer strategies to deal with it.
I can see the clock ticking in my GP's head from the moment he comes into the room. I have 5 minutes. I'm an RN and love to piss him off by asking a lot of questions. He actually gets exasperated! I would avoid him for anything serious.
R34, it was said several times in the thread: the placebo effect seems to be involved for MILD to MODERATE depression.
Antidepressants are still recommended for SEVERE depression.
Anyone who tries to go off anti-depressants cold turkey is an idiot who doesn't listen, is too lazy to read, or they don't care enough to research what could happen. Your doctor, your pharmacist, the warnings printed big and bold on the bills themselves, as well as an abundance of info on the internet (if you ever bothered to research what your putting into your body) ALL say....."do not stop taking anti-depressants without consulting your doctor." You have to wean off them slowly.
Many drugs for other illnesses have side effects too, but people would be dead without them. You have to weigh the benefits vs the side effects. If someone with debilitating depression is helped a great deal by taking an anti-depressant, but their skin breaks out, then it's still worth it, of course. You can always treat the acne separately. Patients should be carefully monitored for side effects until the right drug at the right dose is found (the most help with the least problems). Often just taking the meds gets a depressed person to a place mentally and emotionally where they are able to care enough to get better so they can begin the hard work of therapy.
To make the most responsible and effective use of anti-depressants, they should be carefully monitored by a psychiatrist in conjunction with therapy. However, I fear that they are not being used this way for many people. Instead, they are often being prescribed by GP's who do not monitor carefully for effectiveness and side effects and they are given to patients who my not be clinically depressed (but are bipolar, have anxiety, or just a mild case of the "sads"). Furthermore, they are too often used as a magic pill with no therapy as part of the treatment plan.
[quote]The segment went on to say that in England, mild to moderate depression is treated with talk therapy and/or regular excercise, no drugs are prescribed.
This statement alone is blatant proof that the 60 Minutes segment was a crock of shit. Anyone who would have the ability and motivation to exercise IS NOT DEPRESSED and should not be given meds anyway. A person who is clinically depressed has no motivation to get off the couch let alone jump on a treadmill. They are the people these meds are for and they can help them tremendously. It is highly irresponsible to say anti-depressants are ineffective when they can help the people they are designed to help. They are not meant for teenage girls who are sad because they just broke up with their boyfriends---they can get on the fucking treadmill and jog it out. Problem solved.
This is a problem of diagnosis, people. Not everyone who is sad is depressed, so of course anti-depressants will have not effect.
When prescribed appropriately by a psychiatrist, not an internist, antidepressants work very well in severe depression. They often are of limited benefit in patients who do not have the classic symptoms of depression.
The problem today is the SSRIs are overprescribed by internists for anxiety, not depression.
They work -- if you find the one that works for you. That may take time, plus, since these drugs take 4-6 weeks to work after starting them, you KNOW when it is or isn't taking.
[quote]Anyone who would have the ability and motivation to exercise IS NOT DEPRESSED and should not be given meds anyway
You're simply wrong. Exercise has been proven to help people even with severe depression. Not just for your hypothetical 'teenage girl'.
It's interesting that people defend something so vigorously that medical research has disproven. As someone else mentioned it's a *good* thing to discover the pills are no better than placebo, because if you took them and felt better, it means *you* have the ability to make yourself better. Why would you oppose this? It seems as though there are depressives who are drawn to the idea of being depressed.
It seems that 60 Minutes and a lot of people on this thread are dismissing the tremendous amount of research that has shown that the most effective treatment for depression is a mixture of talk therapy and medication. People in the studies who had the combination did better in managing their depression than people who only used either medication or talk therapy alone. If the person only used one treatment method, talk therapy showed greater results.
R41 knows no one who is clinically depressed. Depressed people do not have the ability to exercise on their own.
Maybe in a controlled (hospital?) setting where patients might have been forced (as part of a study) to get up and work out, then yes, some benefit could result. But a truly depressed person does not have the motivation that makes self directed exercise possible. So, outside of these 'studies', in the real world--exercise is NOT a solution for the vast majority of truly depressed people. To say so is ignorant and condescending--like handing a BandAid to someone with a gaping flesh wound.
After the meds kick in, then yes, depressed patients are often at a place where diet, exercise and therapy can do a world of good.
[quote] the tremendous amount of research that has shown that the most effective treatment for depression is a mixture of talk therapy and medication.
What is problematic is that the 'tremendous amount of research' is vetted by the pharma companies, and they discard the studies that say the drugs are useless. When all the studies are included, the results are that pills don't work.
Depression is real, and it's awful (i've been there) but it's irresponsible to present the 'chemical imbalance' idea as something other than a marketing message. There's no science behind it.
People are just latching onto this to play superiority over the mentally ill. It's the same way they treat fat people, and everyone else. They want to shame people, and basically call them out as lazy fuckers who can't deal with day to day life.
This thread is one big stereotype.
Give it a rest, twats.
[italic]You're simply wrong. Exercise has been proven to help people even with severe depression. Not just for your hypothetical 'teenage girl'.
It's interesting that people defend something so vigorously that medical research has disproven. As someone else mentioned it's a *good* thing to discover the pills are no better than placebo, because if you took them and felt better, it means *you* have the ability to make yourself better. Why would you oppose this? It seems as though there are depressives who are drawn to the idea of being depressed.[/italic]
Tell me, where did you get your medical licence from?
r43, you're wrong. Not only have i known clinically depressed people, i've been clinically depressed. You're wrong when you say "Depressed people do not have the ability to exercise on their own". That's a self-defeating belief and it's simply untrue. Those kinds of beliefs worsen depression.
You think you're being compassionate but you are just spreading ideas that will make depressed people feel even worse.
It's the hardest thing in the world to even get out of bed when you are depressed but if you can start out small -- take a shower and go for a walk -- you can build up to serious exercise, and this has been proven in many studies to be the best treatment for depression, and the best way to prevent/shorten recurrence.
Stop giving depression so much power. That attitude is a big part of the problem.
[quote]Science is based on facts. You want to believe fiction because you're an addict. Enjoy.
Scientology Freak alert!
[quote]Depression is real, and it's awful (i've been there) but it's irresponsible to present the 'chemical imbalance' idea as something other than a marketing message. There's no science behind it.
You're exactly the same as those who scream, "Show me the gay gene!"
Good going, ignor-anus!
Medical writer here. Have been doing research on this subject for many years.
At this point in time, I'm sorry to say everyone so far is wrong. And right. Because no matter what the FDA, the drug companies, doctors, and researchers say, there is no conclusive evidence one way or the other. Yes, placebos work almost as well as some anti-depressants, but then again, for some people, the anti-depressant really does work, and the placebo doesn't. For some people, no anti-depressant will ever work. For most people, it's probably a toss up between placebos, exercise, food (yes, food), pills, talk therapy, herbal remedies (yes, for some people, certain supplements such as st. john's wort work, although it's a small percentage of the population), and so on.
So the fact is, in 2012, there is no magic bullet. There is only a lot of conflicting evidence, badly run trials, badly run government administrations, and most of all, a multi-billion dollar industry profiting off of it all.
I've had severe chronic depression for many years, and none of the anti-depressants prescribed to me ever made a significant difference.
What does work miracles for me is daily exercise.
I run in place on a rebounder (mini-trampoline) for at least 30 minutes a day, but an hour is better.
As long as I do my rebounding, I feel great, am happy and easy going and on top of the world, but if I miss exercising for more than two days, my mood starts to blacken, and if I go three or four days, I'm back to wanting to stay in bed with the covers pulled over my head.
I also have to watch my blood sugar, particularly when I exercise. If I have a long exercise session and don't get the endocannabinol (runner's high) effect (which is better than any drug), I must have some fruit or raisins or orange juice, etc., immediately, or I will become suicidal, want to quit my job, hate my friends, hate my life, etc.
The weird thing is that my blood sugar doesn't even have to be particularly low, it just has to drop 20 points or more in a short time.
What mystifies me is why medical researchers aren't doing studies on the placebo effect and figuring out more about how to induce it.
Instead they brush it off, as if it's irrelevant.
Of course, I know the reason they don't study it instead of the drugs. Pharmaceutical companies pay for drug research; they aren't going to pay for research into how to get the same benefits without taking the drug.
[quote]I've had severe chronic depression for many years, and none of the anti-depressants prescribed to me ever made a significant difference.
Which ones did you take? How long did you wait to see if they would work? Were you seeing a psychiatrist? Did you have talk therapy?
You might as well put everyone on Lithium. They used to find it in water supplies. Problem solved!
r49, ask the person who prescribed your meds what your brain serotonin levels are. Then ask him/her what they were before you started taking meds. Then ask him/her what the 'balanced' level is, ie at what point can you say you no longer suffer from an 'imbalance'?
With other drugs efficacy is easily measured through blood/body chemistry. With these, they are claimed to be addressing chemical abnormalities -- but they do so with no data, no baselines.
It's marketing, it's NOT medicine.
Great post r50. My experience with a bunch of SSRIs several years ago was that they didn't really alter my mood or thinking, they just made my body feel kind of weird. It didn't make sense to me to continue to take meds that weren't having the desired effect. Eventually, I came to feel better but I think that is partly to do with just growing older and letting go of some old thinking, and some talk therapy. Just my experience - and I was fortunately never debilitated by depression to the extent of some. Different things work for different people.
For those opposed to big pharma, but get the sads, have anxiety or trouble sleeping try valerian root capsules. I've been taking it for a month after a friend's recommendation and it works really well with my body chemistry, unlike melatoning. Valerian starts working immediately and takes the edge off. I'm clear thinking and relaxed. They don't call it nature's sunshine for nothing. Google it.
[quote]It's the hardest thing in the world to even get out of bed when you are depressed but if you can start out small -- take a shower and go for a walk -- you can build up to serious exercise, and this has been proven in many studies to be the best treatment for depression, and the best way to prevent/shorten recurrence.
Keep blaming the victim. Yeah, if you're depressed it's your own fault for being such a sloth.
Someone already said it upthread, this isn't a new DL meme. We're all about blaming obese people for being fat and drug/alcohol addicts for their crippling addictions. Why should mental illness be any different? Just get on the treadmill you lazy fuck.
The truth is these drugs are meant for people who have major depression with symptoms that have significantly impaired their daily functioning. They were never meant for milder forms of depression that often responds to psychotherapy or the simple passage of time.
The pharma companies pushed prescribing to primary care physicians to increase sales. The introduction of SSRIs in the 80s changed the perception of safety and ease of prescribing of antidepressants, which had previously been limited to psychiatrists. The tricyclics were more difficult to prescribe and had a lot more side effects. They were also fatal if overdosed on.
Clinical depression is a relatively small market versus anxiety syndromes. The pharma companies were very successful in expanding approved indications to many anxiety conditions, even though they do not work as well as depression.
The drugs work in depressed patients, but there are some patients who do not respond well. In general, the drugs are very effective for melancholic depression with anxiety.
We were so depressed!
I think we also have to include environment into this discussion -- not only physical environment, but social and cultural environment. People trapped in toxic jobs, for example, often collapse in front of the TV or go straight to bed at the end of the work day -- there is nothing left to fuel a trip to the gym or a bike ride. They are just barely holding it together in a bad economy where bad jobs can no longer be blithely left in the dust. These are people haunted by the future where one false move means permanent ruin thanks to the HR files and credit reports that will follow them forever.
Another problem is social environment -- those who live in bad neighborhoods often fear risking going out at night -- even for a walk, even for the short trip to their cars to drive to the gym. Even those who would take this risk would have to take a bus to a safe gym -- a long journey of time they can't afford to a place that charges fees that they can't afford either.
Add to this the physical environment, where even people free to walk and drive are limited by geography to area where the air quality is so poor that exercise makes them feel worse, and you have a large band of the population able, willing, but blocked from partaking in the activities that make for positive mental health. It is facing such obstructions where depression often begins, and the syndrome grows from the frustration these obstacles create.
Nobody is blaming anyone or calling anyone a lazy fuck, r57. My point is that exercise has been proven to be helpful for people with depression. Why would this good news trigger such a hateful response? It is very interesting -- and telling -- that you compare depression with addiction.
r61 has an excuse for everything.
What did I tell you, you stupid aggots? This proves that my religion is right. Submit yourselves t the glory of Scientology
Studies are flawed. This is nothing new in the pharma industry or the medical field in general.
The SSRIs were and remain a very significant advance in treating depression because they are far more tolerable and safer than the tricyclics used for decades. They are not more effective than the old drugs.
Depression is a self-limiting event that often resolves in nine to twelve months on its own. No one knows why, but there are people who suffer chronically as well. Because the SSRIs are safer and better-tolerated, most people stay on them long enough to see a benefit if they are taking an effective dose.
The most effective treatment is a combination of talk therapy and medication for severe depression.
[quote]It is very interesting -- and telling -- that you compare depression with addiction.
Not "telling" at all R57, but it is interesting and telling that you tried to twist what I said to fit your purpose. The same way you "twist" the interpretation of studies that show exercise can help people with a case of the blues to mean it is also the answer for people who are severely depressed. They are not the same thing. Truly depressed people do not feel sad, they feel nothing. There is no reason to want to exercise when you feel empty inside and hopeless. YOU are the one equating depression to personal weakness (laziness), not me. The same exact way many DL'ers equate obesity and addictions to personal weakness.
R52, Zoloft, Prozac, Effexor and some others that I don't recall but could look up. Some of them may not even be currently used, as I started trying to get help in the early '90s.
I was seeing a psychiatrist for several years and used each one for at least six months (some for far longer) before deciding they weren't helping.
And I hated the side-effects, particularly impotence, weight gain, insomnia.
I also did talk therapy for seven years and ended it when I decided if it hadn't helped in seven years, it wasn't ever going to.
I was always kind of sporadic with exercise and working out, and I never made the correlation between exercise and lack of depression when I was trying medical intervention, unfortunately. But I didn't usually work out every day. Usually two or three times a week, and that wasn't enough, at least for me it wasn't enough.
I had read, of course, that exercise can be effective in mild to moderate depression, but I knew I have severe depression, and didn't think it would make a significant difference, and as I said, it didn't do much for me that I could tell.
And then one day after I had quit medical intervention and pretty much resigned myself to living a miserable life, I was doing cardio and got a runner's high for the first time, and not only did I feel that initial high for several minutes, I felt great and actually glad to be alive for the rest of the day and even the next morning.
So I started doing it every day, and very quickly my whole life changed. But as I said, it only takes two or three days without it before I am sliding back into that black hole, so I rarely miss it now, and I never miss more than one day.
Here is why people do not want to hear exercise helps.
They are lazy fucks who use 'depression' as the reason they are fat. If you make them exercise and feel better they have no more venue for getting attention. You erase their existence.
The 60 Minutes report came up in Anatomy this morning (and we were talking about the physiology of digestion, so how we got there is something I still haven't quite figured out). Our professor, who will go on a liberal rant at the drop of a hat (seriously, dude makes me look like Rick Santorum's campaign manager), tried to use it to illustrate a point about how people with letters after their names sometimes get too impressed with themselves.
However, having suffered from at-times debilitating depression for most of my adult life, I'm not will to ascribe everything to placebo effect.
The Voice of the Night
[quote]The same way you "twist" the interpretation of studies that show exercise can help people with a case of the blues to mean it is also the answer for people who are severely depressed.
I didn't twist anything, i merely stated the fact that exercise has been proven to be an effective treatment for depression, even severe depression. If you choose to put blinders on and deny this fact, that is your choice.
I understand that it doesn't fit well with your ideological position that there is nothing except medication that helps severe clinical depression. This is incorrect. Please stop falsely accusing me of calling depressed people lazy. I did no such thing. That is your spin, not mine.
[quote]The same exact way many DL'ers equate obesity and addictions to personal weakness.
Hmm...maybe because they ARE personal weakness.
That's not true, R68. I'm the poster boy for exercise being effective for severe chronic long-term depression, and it had nothing to do with being a lazy fuck.
It had to do with the nature of how depression works, and the fact that for me, I had worked out for years and never had much benefits that I could tell from it.
It was an accidental discovery of what kind of exercise works for me and how long and how frequently I have to do it in order to have relief from my depression.
I could go back to a strength-training regimen two or three times a week, which most people and many medical professionals consider entirely reasonable, and I would lose most, if not all, of the benefits I get from exercise related to depression.
And unless you have personally experienced severe depression, 68, you cannot know how difficult it is just to brush your teeth and put on clothes some days.
It's not about being a lazy fuck.
Please go back and read what r50 said.
No better than a placebo? Consider that many of us who have taken them have been on ones that clearly do not work well for us. No placebo effect. And you seem to have a fundamental misunderstanding of what depression is and what it feels like. Severe depression is incredibly powerful. It's impossible to do it justice. The placebo effect is no match for it.
I've been on anti-depressants for the past several years (Zoloft, Lexapro, Effexor, Celexa, Wellbutrin, and now Cymbalta) and I definitely believe in the placebo affect. A pill has never led to me being happy, ever. When I'm nurturing my spirit / mind / body / and social life, things in my life are going well. When I adopt a defeatist mentality, things suck. It's so easy to sit back and bitch and moan about how difficult life is, but it's hard to take responsibility.
Maybe the placebo effect is that someone is telling you, "We want you to be happy, you are GOING to be happy- and this is the pill that's guaranteed to do it for you". Suddenly you think "I'm on my way to happiness'.
Do they do therapy anymore, try to find out WHY you're 'sad'- or do they just hand you a prescription and send you home?
Has anyone tried Ketamine for depession?
[quote]A pill has never led to me being happy, ever.
I don't think antidepressants are supposed to make you happy, just help you to get to a place where you can function.
[quote]I don't think antidepressants are supposed to make you happy, just help you to get to a place where you can function.
The Voice of the Night
Wow, R75 unwittingly states the problem in a nutshell.
Anti-depressants are not meant to "make you happy." They are meant to help you function so you care enough to exercise, eat right and get much needed therapy.
R75, you have never been depressed, just situationally unhappy. You had a case of the sads and your incompetent doctor gave you meds to cure your blue mood. It would be quite surprising if they DID "make you happy."
I've always wondered: do these drugs disable your ability to be cynical, suspicious or paranoid? I had a friend I used to have a lot of fun with- she was a big gossip and funny. Then she got on Prozac and changed. I would express an offbeat theory and she would just sort of cock her head like, "What does he mean?". Very Stepford. We drifted apart.
All psychiatric drugs, including antidepressants, treat symptoms and are never a cure. They are not "happy pills" but relieve severe symptoms so that patients can then explore and utilize other tools, whether psychotherapy, exercise, getting a divorce, etc., much more effectively.
As with any drug, there are risks and benefits. These are unique to each patient and should be discussed together with your psychiatrist. No one person is the same nor does mental illness affect every person the same way. People's individual personalities, brain chemistry and coping mechanisms are different. What works for someone else may not work for you and vice versa.
The placebo effect is a factor in any drug. However, the true test of the placebo effect is whether it relieves all the symptoms. For people with milder depression, it very well may. For others with more severe depression, no placebo ever works completely.
This is a complex matter that is far from cut and dry. Sensational media stories and flawed meta-analysis of prior studies isn't going to provide the ultimate answer.
I think at least one of the failed FDA studies must have been a 5-minute visit browsing Datalounge.
They do work I know people who tried diet, exercise, therapy, meditation, etc. for depression or mental health issues and none of it worked except an SSRI/SSNRI or an anti-depressant.
Whether they work or not, they are incomplete cures at best. Any psychiatrist knows this very well from clinical experience with patients.
We're never going to learn the answer to treating depression or any other mental illness by doing meta-analysis of studies or listening to randomized controls designed to show a statistical effect. These are designed to show a non-existent condition, not provide cures to human condition.
Patients know when the drugs are really working or not. If they aren't working, they get off them and try another mode of treatment.
[quote]I think we also have to include environment into this discussion -- not only physical environment, but social and cultural environment.
This is the core problem. We live in a sick society.
Drug companies are immoral.
[quote] I've always wondered: do these drugs disable your ability to be cynical, suspicious or paranoid?
You might feel it all but just stop caring, and react less or differently.
[quote]I've always wondered: do these drugs disable your ability to be cynical, suspicious or paranoid?
Let me ask you something: you may have read a few of my postings. Do I seem to have some sort of disability to be cynical?
The Voice of the Night
But the government is always protecting us!
I was put on an anti-depressant not for psychiatric symptoms but for pain management for chronic pain after disabling injuries. And it worked in helping me cope with the pain. But I also found it helped with other problems, e.g., I'd been overeating out of boredom and frustration because I felt so trapped. The desipramine helped me stop that. Also, I suspect I was suffering undiagnosed post-head-trauma depression. Maybe I was in a better mood because I felt less pain, but whatever. It worked.
I am very grateful for antidepressants having battled major depression all my life. I am certain they are highly oversubscribed with little efficacy for a great many people (and that this - like much in our lives - is a testament to our mad prescription drug culture), but to say they have absolutely no effectiveness is completely irresponsible.
Many, like myself, have genuinely been helped by them. Man of us, believing we may no longer need them have tried, gradually and with a doctor's care, to wean off of them, and have been unsuccessful, in spite of a strong desire (talk about placebo) to live well without medication, because of recurrence of major depression.
Why should it be so difficult to understand that disabling brain chemistry, for some, if not for the multitudes subject to overprescription, is a a cause of genuine organic disability - no different than any other biochemical malady - which manifests itself in a chronic illness that for many of us can be better managed with the aid of - among other things - medication?
You can give people blood tests, and get a level back saying how much of the antidepressant is flowing in the bloodstream. It's not a sugar pill.
People who come off Pristiq get brain shocks. You think a placebo is going to give you that?
You might as well put everyone on Lithium. Can't fake that.
[quote]I was put on an anti-depressant not for psychiatric symptoms but for pain management for chronic pain after disabling injuries. And it worked in helping me cope with the pain.
Yep, and they also give them for PMS.
This 60 Minutes story was BS, and they aired it because they knew the idiots in this thread would eat it up.
Antidepressants are merely to get you stable. It doesn't mean that talk therapy is unnecessary. HOWEVER, there are doctors who feel that if you change the brain chemistry, that's a total fix.
If you have major depression in your genetic makeup, there may not be much going on in your daily life making you depressed. The talk therapy would basically consist of helping you deal with the issue of severe depression. There may not be any issue except genetics. It does run in families.
Look at people with OCD. They're given antidepressants and anti-anxiety meds. A placebo isn't going to fix that.
People like to judge others, and it's the same old, "Snap out of it." This is the same line of logic used by homophobes. People are not ending up in mental institutions because they're seeking treatment. Some still do, but they're not locked away with no cure.
Yes, pharmaceutical companies are big business. It's part of the health care industry. That doesn't mean that the people seeking treatment aren't really at death's door.
This is what Scientology believes. Then you get the ones that end up killing their parents, because Tammy Cruise and co. prescribed vitamins instead of meds. Look it up.
People get ECT for major depression, but that's after all other treatments haven't worked.
R10 and R12, you two need to get a grip. They also said if you are currently taking medication, you should not stop on your own. And, R12, you should never stop taking meds without consulting your physician first. If either of you have a severe mental disorder, some medication has been shown to be effective.
R38, you are a moron. In England, talk therapy and exercise are both MEDICAL treatments for depression. Get that???? MEDICAL. That means that they are carried out by appointment, monitored and symptoms are tracked. It isn't a case of take two situps and call me in the morning. You really need to quit spouting until you've seen the episode.
R92, the piece on 60 Minutes was clear that for severe depression, anti-depressives can be effective. From your description, it seems like that is your problem.
Yeah, R96, that's why so many Brits are raging alcoholics. Self medicating because they're told to jog and do sit ups to cure their debilitating depression. Gee, if only Amy Winehouse had a Stairmaster at her disposal.
The real issue in all of this sensationalism is recognizing the limitations of psychiatric drugs and what they can really do. They do not magically cure patients of all their problems, nor do they always work well in relieving symptoms effectively. If they did, all the psychologists and social workers would have nothing to do and everyone could just pop a pill.
Despite their limitations, that doesn't mean they don't work. For many people with severe illness, the drugs can be very effective and life-saving in some cases. But they are not the only answer and are overprescribed by primary care physicians who are not qualified to treat depression or any other mental illness.
If you have symptoms severe enough to warrant drug treatment, your care should be provided by a psychiatrist. That's not always possible in some areas of the U.S. where psychiatrists are in short supply, but it should be the goal. In many cases, psychotherapy combined with medication provides the best outcome.
There isn't one answer for everyone. Some people are helped tremendously by medication, others are not.
[quote]Look at people with OCD. They're given antidepressants and anti-anxiety meds. A placebo isn't going to fix that.
Yes it some cases a placebo will 'fix that'. That is what the placebo effect is all about. But it shouldn't fix it at rates higher than for approved drugs.
It seems many people here don't understand the point about placebo. Nobody is arguing against taking a drug if it makes you feel better and you believe it works. In the 60 minutes piece, Leslie Stahl talks about how she's seen them work with her husband, who had major depression for years. Now she understands it could well have been the placebo effect.
The problem is that the drugs don't pass scientific muster for safety and effectiveness. If something is no better than placebo, it doesn't mean that it's not working. It could be working very well for many, as people here attest. What is means is that it works no better than giving people a sugar pill. The people who get the sugar pill also insist it works. That is the placebo effect.
The shift from “talk therapy” to drugs as the dominant mode of treatment coincides with the emergence over the past four decades of the theory that mental illness is caused primarily by chemical imbalances in the brain that can be corrected by specific drugs. That theory became broadly accepted, by the media and the public as well as by the medical profession, after Prozac came to market in 1987 and was intensively promoted as a corrective for a deficiency of serotonin in the brain. The number of people treated for depression tripled in the following ten years, and about 10 percent of Americans over age six now take antidepressants. The increased use of drugs to treat psychosis is even more dramatic.
this is from:
Overall, placebos were 82 percent as effective as the drugs, as measured by the Hamilton Depression Scale (HAM-D), a widely used score of symptoms of depression. The average difference between drug and placebo was only 1.8 points on the HAM-D, a difference that, while statistically significant, was clinically meaningless. The results were much the same for all six drugs: they were all equally unimpressive. Yet because the positive studies were extensively publicized, while the negative ones were hidden, the public and the medical profession came to believe that these drugs were highly effective antidepressants
from the NYRB article
from part 2
"Psychiatrists began to refer to themselves as psychopharmacologists, and they had less and less interest in exploring the life stories of their patients. Their main concern was to eliminate or reduce symptoms by treating sufferers with drugs that would alter brain function....
When psychoactive drugs were first introduced, there was a brief period of optimism in the psychiatric profession, but by the 1970s, optimism gave way to a sense of threat. Serious side effects of the drugs were becoming apparent, and an antipsychiatry movement had taken root, as exemplified by the writings of Thomas Szasz and the movie One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. There was also growing competition for patients from psychologists and social workers. In addition, psychiatrists were plagued by internal divisions: some embraced the new biological model, some still clung to the Freudian model, and a few saw mental illness as an essentially sane response to an insane world. Moreover, within the larger medical profession, psychiatrists were regarded as something like poor relations; even with their new drugs, they were seen as less scientific than other specialists, and their income was generally lower.
In the late 1970s, the psychiatric profession struck back—hard. As Robert Whitaker tells it in Anatomy of an Epidemic, the medical director of the American Psychiatric Association (APA), Melvin Sabshin, declared in 1977 that “a vigorous effort to remedicalize psychiatry should be strongly supported,” and he launched an all-out media and public relations campaign to do exactly that.
Psychiatry had a powerful weapon that its competitors lacked. Since psychiatrists must qualify as MDs, they have the legal authority to write prescriptions. By fully embracing the biological model of mental illness and the use of psychoactive drugs to treat it, psychiatry was able to relegate other mental health care providers to ancillary positions and also to identify itself as a scientific discipline along with the rest of the medical profession. Most important, by emphasizing drug treatment, psychiatry became the darling of the pharmaceutical industry, which soon made its gratitude tangible.
As psychiatry became a drug-intensive specialty, the pharmaceutical industry was quick to see the advantages of forming an alliance with the psychiatric profession. Drug companies began to lavish attention and largesse on psychiatrists, both individually and collectively, directly and indirectly. They showered gifts and free samples on practicing psychiatrists, hired them as consultants and speakers, bought them meals, helped pay for them to attend conferences, and supplied them with “educational” materials. When Minnesota and Vermont implemented “sunshine laws” that require drug companies to report all payments to doctors, psychiatrists were found to receive more money than physicians in any other specialty. The pharmaceutical industry also subsidizes meetings of the APA and other psychiatric conferences. About a fifth of APA funding now comes from drug companies.
Drug companies are particularly eager to win over faculty psychiatrists at prestigious academic medical centers. Called “key opinion leaders” (KOLs) by the industry, these are the people who through their writing and teaching influence how mental illness will be diagnosed and treated. They also publish much of the clinical research on drugs and, most importantly, largely determine the content of the DSM. In a sense, they are the best sales force the industry could have, and are worth every cent spent on them. Of the 170 contributors to the current version of the DSM (the DSM-IV-TR), almost all of whom would be described as KOLs, ninety-five had financial ties to drug companies, including all of the contributors to the sections on mood disorders and schizophrenia
Marcia Angell (and other similar authors) raises important issues in her book that are well-known in the profession, including the oversize influence of pharma companies in paying key psychiatrists to push their drugs. But that doesn't mean we have to throw out the baby with the bath water.
These issues are nothing new in psychiatry and have been hotly debated since the 50s when the first psychiatric drugs came on the scene. Every experienced psychiatrist knows and understands the limitations of medication, but there are many patients who benefit from them when appropriately prescribed. Some do not benefit and stop taking them.
It's not a big conspiracy or secret.
..and while antidepressants themselves are statistically unlikely to be effective for most people, during the time they've been prescribed rates of treatment-resistant depression have quadrupled -- raising suspicions that their side effects may be concrete and long-lasting.
"In the early 1990s, El-Mallakh notes, only about 10% to 15% of patients with major depressive illness had treatment-resistant depression (and thus were chronically ill.) In 2006, researchers reported that nearly 40% of patients were now treatment-resistant. In a period when use of SSRI antidepressants exploded, refractory depression went on the march."
I had severe clinical depression. Like many have said, if you're just sad, that's not depression. I was depressed.
This was my last episode. I had been laid off. I had so little energy I couldn't even watch TV. I would simply sit on the sofa and stare at it. I was so lethargic I couldn't even force my EYES to move. I had no food in the house. I was getting by on the remnants of stuff I'd had for years, like old packs of Lance crackers and cans of Campbell's chicken noodle soup. I simply could not force myself to leave the house. I mean, after all -- what was out there that I hadn't seen dozens of times before?
It was just by the skin of my teeth that after many weeks of this, I forced myself to drive the three miles to my doctor's office. And as soon as I got to the front desk, I burst into tears.
Antidepressants saved my life. And no, I will never go off of them. And you know what? I'm OK with that.
If you have never suffered from depression, you need to shut your mouth. Don't criticize what other people have to do to get by unless you've walked a mile in their shoes.
Thanks for posting that R106. I'm curious about something you said though. You say you will never go off them. Have you ever tried to wean slowly off? If so, what happened? The reason I say that is because it seems like your depression was triggered by an event---being layed off. So, if your life is better now, maybe you wouldn't need the meds anymore. Not being critical, just wondering if meds that get you through a rough patch are necessary to stay on long term.
Also R106, are you in therapy as well? I do wonder if people ever get to the point, after being in therapy along with meds, that they make so much progress they can later wean off the meds.
r106 glad you were helped, and are doing better. i also wonder where you got the idea that you need them for the rest of your life?
When these drugs first came out, they were considered appropriate for short-term use, until depression resolved/abated (which it usually does). Now it seems the goal is to get us to believe we need them forever.
Depression is a recurring condition. Over 60 percent of people who have an episode of major depression will have another.
It is also not unusual for people who recover from an episode of severe depression with medication to realize, looking back at their history, this was actually not the first episode. Earlier and milder episodes are often remembered once a remission is achieved.
Most people do slowly wean off the antidepressant after a period of stability, but some find their symptoms eventually return. These patients are candidates for longer term treatment if the antidepressant works and the side effects tolerable.
the scary thing about the NYRB article someone posted is that is seems SSRIs actually diminish your brain's ability to 'bounce back'. that's what I worry about. It does seem like people get very dependent on SSRIs, in some cases to avoid brain zaps and other side effects of weaning off them.
That theory, R110, is entirely speculation and unproven. On the other side of the coin, the hypothesis that SSRIs induce neurogenesis is also completely unproven.
The fact is no one is able to know for certain just how antidepressants work exactly. It's not like we can cut open someone's brain and take tissue samples to determine what's happening. And even then, we may not know.
What is known is depression can be a recurring and chronic condition for some people and their lifetime risk of suicide increases with each episode that is untreated or undertreated. For this reason, the SSRIs have been proven (so far) to be safe and effective in their 25 year history for longer term use.
Most patients do not need to stay on an antidepressant for life and it is an exaggeration to say many or most do. In fact, many more patients should be taking them longer and don't.
r111 do you work for pfizer? seriously, how can you say "many more patients should be taking them longer and don't"? And your 'entirely speculation and unproven' epithet also describes the 'chemical imbalance' theory, which is now pretty much discredited by scientists (but not by drug marketers).
The fact is they are *not* safe and effective. The side effects can be horrible, much worse than any other drug i've taken. As far as effectiveness they are no better than placebo, when you include all studies.
Anyone who has experienced depression wouldn't want someone else to to through the complete lack of life force and sheer hell that it brings. Nobody wants people to stop any treatment that is working. The point is they drug treatment works roughly in the same proportion as placebo.
We need to know more about the mechanism of placebo.
Copious amounts of pot, of course.
I've been on 200mg of Zoloft for 15 years with no side effects. Before that, I was suicidal, had lost 30lbs., could not read a sentence in a newspaper, and slept two hours a night.
When you've suffered from severe depression, it takes a very long time to recover. If you're lucky enough to respond to meds, it can be months before you see the full results. It is not a placebo effect.
I have no doubt that many people may have been prescribed an antidepressant when they probably didn't need it. But the fact is there are people like me who do and respond very well and are lucky.
The data has been out for nearly two decades that antidepressants don't work, people just don't want to hear it and the pharmaceutical industry has done an unprecedented level of mass media coverage and advertising for their products.
They only BARELY work in SEVERE cases of depression. The real truth is that outside of these extremely severe cases (for the layman, think Kirsten Dunst in Melancholia) they do absolutely nothing. I mean zero. Everything else is placebo effect.
This also includes the scams of Fibromyalgia (doesn't exist), IBS (you overeat terrible foods and are gassy), restless leg syndrome (you sit on your fat ass too much and your body desperately needs to move) and a host of other absurdly named ailments that ONLY the US diagnoses.
There's a reason that the only developed country that has a wide spread use of these drugs is the US. It's money money money and nothing more. Doctors don't prescribe them in Europe. They are not a part of healthcare there.
It's basically akin to snake oil. Pharmaceutical companies, the reps, and the doctors who push this stuff are no better than mustache twirling charlatans selling tonics out of the back of their covered wagons in the 1800s.
Not only do they not work but...SURPRISE! They mess you up even more and make you want to commit suicide.
Pharmaceutical companies are the banks of the medical industry. A thoroughly disreputable industry.
I suffer from major depression and moderate anxiety: I've been on 90 mg of Cymbalta for three years and it's changed my life 100% for the better.
Only negative side effects are a slight decrease in appetite and sex drive, but I've adjusted to it.
Also, I don't drink alcohol, as it is a depressant! So that helps keep my happy as well.
I've gone off them and it obviously took some experimentation to get to the proper dosage so I know how transformative it can be.
Also, I don't attend therapy regularly, but I do go occasionally to ensure I'm managing my self healthily and properly.
Depression is something you manage. I still deal with it on a daily basis, but the pills help me better able to cope cognitively. It doesn't sedate me, it just allows me to deal with my emotions like a "normal" person.
r114, How do you know it's not the placebo effect?
The placebo effect isn't "nothing happens". The placebo effect is: you give a drug to X amount of people. You also give an inert pill to X amount of (other) people. Then you ask them how much the pill worked, and you measure it.
If the percentage of people who said it worked in the first group equals the same percentage in the second, it suggests the drug is useless. If the percentage in the first group is higher, it strongly suggests the drug is active, ie its effect is greater than the placebo effect.
Most people don't get this. Just because you've been taking a pill for 15 years and you feel it works doesn't mean it ISN'T the placebo effect.
R115, it's interesting that you mentioned fibromyalgia and IBS. I think a quite a few of those diagnosed cases are just physical manifestations of depression and/or anxiety.
I've suffered from depression and anxiety since puberty and I've been on and off SSRIs for almost a decade. I've noticed that during the periods that I'm not on meds and I'm feeling particularly stressed, I suffer from way more digestive problems than when I am medicated, even when taking into account my diet. I also went through much of high school, during which I was not on meds, with these physical problems. It could be that the placebo effect made me feel better in my head, but I have little doubt that the meds helped out with my intestines, being that most serotonin is actually there and not the brain.
The power of the placebo is overstated in many studies of antidepressants due to very poorly designed studies. The exclusion criteria used in many of the preapproval studies make the pool of patients in the sample very unreliable and completely different from the average outpatient seen in the psychiatrist's office. Because of this, the value of the studies is almost meaningless.
Depression is very rarely seen without co-morbid conditions like anxiety, OCD, bipolar, addiction, etc. Yet, there are almost no studies showing how the drugs perform on the typical patient.
Most of this nonsense is being driven by the antipsychiatry and scientology forces who are against psychiatric drugs in general. Psychologists have been pushing CBT and other forms of psychotherapy as superior or equal to the effectiveness of medication in depression, even though the studies are just as poorly designed and don't prove anything.
If the drug is safe (and the SSRIs are very safe) and people benefit, there is no reason to question the outcome. It's not like benzo addiction where people end up in rehab for detox, although some act like SSRI withdrawal is just as serious (which it's not).
All of the drugging is simply due to the power of drug companies.
Depression is due to things that happen in people's lives.
So r122 you're saying that Marcia Angell and Irving Kirsch and other MDs are tools of the 'antipsychiatry and scientology forces'? Are you for real?
I think maybe most of *your* nonsense and apologizing for useless drugs is driven by big pharma forces.
It pisses me off that so many gay people (including me) have been depressed because so many ignorant people still hate us, and if we feel
really down and seek help for it, the r122s in the world will tell us there's something wrong with US and we need a pill to fix our "chemical imbalance". No, there's something wrong with all the anti-gay assholes out there that are making us depressed.
Not every9one who is depressed needs an antidepressant. That's part of the problem why the approval studies are so unreliable. The pool of patients they recruit are often not suffering from severe depression with all of the classic symptoms and are highly susceptible to placebo and the care provided.
If you're depressed due to life circumstances, as many people are, psychotherapy and making healthy changes in your life are often sufficient. But if you're suffering from severe depression that interferes with your ability to function on a daily basis, medication may be necessary.
R126 for the win.
r126 are there published studies that show which SSRIs are most helpful for severe depression?
I wonder why so many so-called "healthy" people seem to be threatened by the concept of depression?
[quote]The segment went on to say that in England, mild to moderate depression is treated with talk therapy and/or regular excercise, no drugs are prescribed.
I'm sorry but whomever wrote/researched that segment knows absolutely fuck all about England. Over here, if you go to an NHS GP for even minor depression, prozac is pretty much the first (only) thing you will be offered. You can get a certain number of sessions (can't remember how many it is, 3 or 4?) with the surgery's mental health practitioner. To get anything else you have to be referred which involves a long waiting list, and then you might get 12 sessions with a therapist.
To get 'proper' talk therapy or something like CBT, you have to really fight for it. I was in group therapy for 8 months and it took 3 years of being suicidal through c-ptsd. It was supposed to be much more long-term but the therapist became pregnant and decided to go back to her own country, so the entire programme was cancelled abruptly because there was no one to replace her. I've received nothing since then apart from offers of pills. I've never heard of the NHS offering exercise therapy (not saying it doesn't exist, but it's not commonplace).
I am a supporter of the NHS, definitely, but mental health is one of the NHS's biggest flaws. It's simply not considered important enough and is hugely underfunded. This is considered a big problem in Britain and there are plenty of people who are very vocal about criticizing the fact British GPs are so reliant on psych drugs - not because GPs believe in psych drugs or are being influenced by drug reps (I don't think we have those) - most GPs would love to prescribe talk therapy more, but they know there is no money for it and if they recommend someone for therapy they will be on a waiting list for a long time.
Perhaps whoever made the segment has read some of the criticism or the NHS's response to the criticism and misunderstood or were very sloppy in their research. In an ideal world it would be great if everyone had access to talk therapy, exercise therapy, CBT, etc. but we are a long way from that.
r129 I don't see much evidence of what you claim; most people acknowledge the medical reality of depression.
What's up for debate is how it's treated, and whether drug companies have been fleecing us.
Why is it that most "depressed" people come from rich countries? Go anywhere in the world, and you'll find people who deal with life's issues without taking pills, and they have bigger problems than anyone in this country. I live in NYC, and the only people I know on pills and therapy are rich people whose problems would be the envy of 90% of the world.
Go to a third world country where people are dying of hunger, and you'll find happier people than you would in a place like Beverly Hills where everyone is on anti-depressants and paying for a therapy for years and years.
drug companies have been fleecing people
And you're basing this on your wide experience of living in third world countries?
I grew up in a third world country, and I spend 6 months living on the streets in London and many more years living below the poverty line. Believe me, there is plenty of severe depression and other mental illness amongst poor and non-first world people, the only difference is it's much more likely to go undiagnosed and untreated.
Nice elaborate scenario, R134.
Fuck you cunt it happened. People like you make me sick. You stupid rich white people who think everyone is just like you and like to talk about poor people like you know anything about us. You don't have a fucking clue what you're talking about. Do you have any idea how condescending and RACIST you are? You really believe this myth that non-first world people are all happy and smiling and innocent even if they are your words "dying of hunger." For fuck's sake, you really can't see what is condescending and racist about that??
FUCK YOU. Educate yourself out of your rich person bubble before you start spouting off, cunt.
Ok r134/136, so you're poor, a misogynist AND psychotic. Got it.
I'm r132 (not r135) and yes I come from a thrird world country and lived in others as well. And no, I'm not rich. IN the USA, I'm considered poor, but I know compared to the rest of the world, I might as well be part of the 1%.
And go learn some reading skills. I never said that poor people are all happy, smiling and innocent. Just that they deal with their problems without wasting money on magic pills and useless therapists.
And of course, there are always exceptions to everything.
Yes, and a lot of people "deal" with their problems in very dysfunctional ways when they have no access to good medical care: alcohol, drugs, crime, violence, domestic abuse, etc.
Um, I'm female.
You come into a thread that's specifically about people with mental illness and start posting inane, ignorant generalisations about how mental illness is a rich American problem, including incredibly condescending and ignorant comments about smiling third worlders who are happy even though they're dying of hunger (I'm amazed you didn't manage to get some comment about mammies eating watermelon while you were at it, the racial stereotyping in that post).
Then you decide to attack someone who you know is severely mentally ill, ex-homeless, raised in third world/poverty etc and call me a liar simply for pointing out that your ridiculous 'belief' - which is obviously not based on any real familiarity with the third world or poverty - is simplistic, offensive, and inaccurate.
Exactly what did you expect?
It doesn't matter who is wrong or right, just as long as you give your money to big pharmaceutical companies.
PS I don't believe for a second that you're really from a third world country. What the fuck part of the "third world" do you come from where people are happy and smiling even though they're dying of hunger, and mental illness is unknown? From the third world to living amongst the rich in NYC, yeah that's not EST-ey at all.
r138 = idiot.
So people who use alcohol, drugs, and violence to solve their problems are poor people?
If anything your posts reveals how materialistic you are. In your mind, if you don't have money to spend on expensive "medical care" provided by drug companies (which we all know have our best interests in mind) than your only way of dealing would be alcohol, drugs, and violence?
If you're not the same poster at 135 then fine, I apologise. But your initial post is still inaccurate, and I really don't see how "hey mental illness affects the poor and non-first worlders too" is so extreme a statement as to deserve this kind of response.
I would assume r135 will also be along soon, to accuse you of being an EST too, /joke/ It does seem a coincidence that there are two posters with an interest in mental illness both from third world countries. What country are you from? Maybe you are telling the truth but I find it difficult to believe that there are countries were people dying of hunger are so happy. In my personal experience (and there are many many studies to back it up) there is a clear link between poverty and mental illness.
"Um, I'm female."
Even worse! Using the "C" word, and saying "I'm female" it's just as pathetic as me (a gay man) going around calling people by the "F" word and then claiming I'm not being homophobic cause I'm gay.
"ignorant comments about smiling third worlders who are happy even though they're dying of hunger"
I guess you still haven't learned to read. When did I say that?
"Then you decide to attack someone who you know is severely mentally ill, ex-homeless"
Wow, you really are crazy! Since when do I "know" you?
"What the fuck part of the "third world" do you come from where people are happy and smiling even though they're dying of hunger"
When did I say that? What I said was that I've met happier people while in third world countries than I've met in places like Beverly Hills.
"What country are you from?"
I'm from Brasil, and for the first 13 years of my life, I lived in a favela with TONS of poor people! They all had their bad days, and life sucked (and of course there were crazy people), yet overall people didn't complain and bitch as much as the rich people I've met in the USA do. Maybe that's because I'm from a country where money isn't the most important thing in the world. That certainly is the case in this country.
"From the third world to living amongst the rich in NYC, yeah that's not EST-ey at all."
Again, when did I say I lived among the rich? Do you have to be rich in order to know rich people? Do you guys have to twist everything I say to fit your agendas? As for how I got here... It's called a "scholarship."
This coming from someone who thinks depression is a rich person's problem
It's well-established that people who do not have access to adequate mental health care are more likely to self-medicate.
R132/142/144 = ridiculous fucktard. You must not know whether you're coming or going the way you turn simple logic around in your pea brain. LOL.
[quote]PS I don't believe for a second that you're really from a third world country.
Says the venom spewing elaborate scenario writer claiming to be from "a third-world country."
Oh no r146 said I have a pea brain, and the other poster called me the "c" word.
I'm gonna go pop a pill now so I don't cry. Boohoohoo, I have such a horrible life. If only people understood my pain and suffering. I'm such a victim.
So growing up in Brasil makes you an expert on depression and the complex relationship between socioeconomic status and mental illness does it?
[quote]Why is it that most "depressed" people come from rich countries? Go anywhere in the world, and you'll find people who deal with life's issues without taking pills. Go to a third world country where people are dying of hunger, and you'll find happier people than in Beverly Hills.
For fuck's sake, that is ridiculous. First depression is an ILLNESS. It's not a case of "not dealing with life's issues" or being self-indulgent or falling victim to some evil drug company. People with mental illness are SICK, they need medical help. Telling someone with mental illness they should just pull themselves together and stop complaining because plenty of people have it worse is like telling someone with cancer to just stop having cancer. Do your research. People from all countries and all socio-economic backgrounds suffer from mental illness. The link between poverty and mental illness is well established. Research suicide rates amongst people living below the poverty line, or suicide rates in third world countries. To say that depression/mental illness mainly only affects the rich is simply ignorant and not borne out by the facts. To imply mentally ill people just need to pull themselves together and stop bitching and be like those happy starving third worlders who deal with their problems just fine is offensive and dangerous.
I'm sorry you had a tough upbringing. I completely understand why you would be frustrated with seeing rich people bitching about minor problems, considering what you grew up witnessing. I do too, a lot of the time. But for God's sake, there is a difference between being a spoiled brat whining about stupid shit, and actually having a real, serious mental illness! Yes, I do think doctors wildly over-diagnose and over-prescribe psych meds. There are plenty of people on Prozac who really don't need to be. But there are plenty of people out there who genuinely do have a severe mental illness, and these illnesses are just as 'real' and have just as real a need for treatment as cancer or any physical illness.
Have you ever been diagnosed with a serious mental illness? Do you know anyone (apart from the spoiled rich Americans you seem to have so much contempt for) who has been diagnosed with a serious mental illness?
r132 are you a Scientologist?
R149, do you have fibromyalgia?
What the hell is fibromyalgia?
[quote]I was in group therapy for 8 months
Group therapy obviously does not work either.
"First depression is an ILLNESS. It's not a case of "not dealing with life's issues" or being self-indulgent or falling victim to some evil drug company. People with mental illness are SICK, they need medical help. Telling someone with mental illness they should just pull themselves together and stop complaining because plenty of people have it worse is like telling someone with cancer to just stop having cancer."
I agree with all of this. I already stated that I do believe there are people that suffer from REAL depression. In Brasil, I met plenty of poor people with mental problems. In NYC, I've also met rich people with REAL mental problems. The whole point of my posts has been that in the USA, people become "depressed" over everything so I have a hard time believing life is so hard for so many people who have it so well off compared to other parts of the world where people deal with much tougher issues.
So yes, I do believe rich Americans can suffer from depression. I also believe that most (certainly not all!) of those rich Americans claiming to suffer from depression are spoiled bitches being fooled by drug companies.
r150, no, I'm actually agnostic. To me, religious people (atheists too) are fools who believe in things without having any proof.
[quote]The whole point of my posts has been that in the USA, people become "depressed" over everything so I have a hard time believing life is so hard for so many people who have it so well off compared to other parts of the world where people deal with much tougher issues.
You made this clear at R132. You are repeating yourself.
Okay now I do feel bad and want to apologise again. Thank you for explaining. I think we really were talking at cross purposes, since I did not get that was what you meant at all. I really thought you didn't believe depression existed and was all just spoiled people who need to pull themselves together (an attitude that sadly many do have).
When you made the 'mainly rich people get depressed post" - in a thread about treatment options for the genuinely mentally ill, and the ways in which conventional treatment and the mental health industry fails them, I think it was easy to misinterpret.
I'm not saying there isn't a lot of validity in what you're saying. There is. The issue of overdiagnosis (especially self-diagnosis) and overprescription is huge. I do actually have a big interest in that and would like to study that specific subject - what I call the 'over-psych-ification' phenomenon' - at postgrad school one day. (I'd like to recommend some great books on the subject if you have an interest, 'The Psychopath Test' by Jon Ronson, which has a very interesting history of the DSM, and 'Crazy Like Us' by Ethan Watters.)
Can someone answer: When did antidepressants go from being a 'bridge' treatment that would help you get through a bad period, to being something you were told you had to take for the rest of your life?
the articles linked at R101 and R103 show how psychiatry became corrupt from the pharmaceutical industry - they changed how they viewed and treated patients - drugging them. Started in the 70s and 80s and becoming more aggressive every year (creating new disorders to sell more drugs etc)
and the drugs are worthless
Why am I not surprised that a thread about psychiatric medication attracts DL posters like flies to shit?
So many posters talking out of their asses. Why so hostile?