Are Medications The Only Solution To Mental Illness?

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Are Medications The Only Solution To Mental Illness?

The Only Solution To Mental Illness?

I’m mentally ill, and I will not take my medication. I don’t want to, and I feel a wave of indifference pass over me when I see others who do. The reason for my change of heart is due to losing many years of my life in a drug haze. Decades passed me by, and yet, I cannot remember huge chunks of my early life. I’m mentally ill, and to be honest, I wish I could have been free in my madness. This is my reason and my argument.

Medication For The Sick And The Mad

So, it’s a consensus that something must be done to heal the sick. We don’t just sit around and watch cancer patients die, so why would we watch the mentally ill perish or live in chaos. We don’t do that, we medicate them. From radiation to pills, if we can’t cure it, we treat it. After all, no one wants to endure too much pain, right?

So, what’s the problem, you ask. There’s apparently a wide gap between my hatred for medication and the need for help. The thing is, or rather, the problem is, medication doesn’t have to be all bad. I mean, it does help relieve symptoms so that our day to day routine can continue undisturbed. It does help us sleep, help us eat, and even help us socialize in some cases. But what’s too much? How do we draw the line?

Over-Prescribing

As for mental illness, psychotherapy is the gauge in which physicians determine the dosage and the need for prescription medication. Unfortunately, so many drugs are prescribed with no psychotherapy at all! Around 50% of patients receiving anti-depressants and psychotic drugs receive no other form of treatment. It’s check-in, get medicated and check out. It’s like fast food therapy for the mad!

Most of these drugs are used to treat depression or anxiety, and per witnesses, some of these drugs actually cause worse bouts of depression when discontinued for a short time. Also, if depression is treated for a long period with prescription drugs, it becomes labeled a disease rather than a temporary issue. Even though depression can be an alive long issue, there are those few who only experience temporary depression and need a whole other approach to the issue.

Unfortunately, the pharmaceutical industry thrives off sales, and any decline in those sales causes the industry to push for more clearly defined mental illness disease labels. What this means is the more mental illnesses are diagnosed, the more drugs that will enter the market and make money for the producer. This is another clear reason why over-prescribing is such a problem today.

Read What It Means To Have Treatment Resistant Depression?

When Medication Is Needed

Okay, so I pulled from my opinion about medication, now I want to talk about why some drugs are necessary. Yes, I guess I sound contradictory, but I want to be fair. Although I don’t care for medication, in some instances it works and can save lives.

Just like medicating pain from cancer treatments, medications for depression and other mental disorders is sometimes needed. In some instances, mental illness stems from “bad wiring” in the brain. Chemical levels can be off and message centers of the brain just don’t function in the way they should. In this case, there are certain medications that help bridge the gaps and temporarily rewire the broken regions of the mind.

Or, at least, that’s what they tell us.

When this is the issue, there’s nothing wrong with the right dosage of physician-prescribed medication. Sometimes, the only way to focus on the job, keep from having panic attacks, or simply get out of bed can depend upon one pill in the morning and once at night. Seriously, this is an exception.

I’m mentally ill, and I will not take my medication. But in my case, I simply prefer holistic methods and the like. Had ya fooled, didn’t I.

Before you go all radical like me, do your research. It’s okay to forego your traditional medication if you are familiar with many other ways to treat your disorder. Mental illness is no joke, but never forget, there are many ways to treat your problem besides prescription drugs.

Curious? Go get educated! Let me know what you find.

Read 9 Vital Steps To Protect Your Mental Health (backed by science)


Are Medications The Only Solution To Mental Illness?
The Only Solution To Mental Illness?

16 responses to “Are Medications The Only Solution To Mental Illness?”

  1. Laura Fievet Westover Avatar

    Meditation, meditation, meditation…..
    Oh shit, you said medication…didn’t you

  2. Aissatou Sunjata Avatar

    No, not the only solution, but there are those of us who live daily with a combination of symptoms. We have a chemical imbalance, also environmental symptoms attributed to mental illness. For us, medication, a comfort animal, therapy, journal writing, affirmations are all prongs. I know, I am in the utilizing all of them. It has been over a year and doing better. =D 😀

  3. Alican Er Avatar

    medications never the only solution to mental illness

    1. Aissatou Sunjata Avatar

      However, for those for whom a crisis may lead to suicide, if medication can alleviate the desire to end one’s life, then medication must be considered as an option. For those who live with a chemical imbalance, unless shock treatment or some other drastic measure, medication is the least of them to consider. What about those who are bipolar? They in a manic state need something. Carrie Fisher, the actress got shots every six weeks for her bipolar condition.=( =(

  4. Thandi Hönnemann Avatar

    Pills treat symptoms and not the root of the problem. Therapy and life skills needed in conjunction with meds.

  5. Leah Cassidy Avatar

    The only solution to mental illness is to embrace it

    1. Aissatou Sunjata Avatar

      Believe those who are committing horrendous crimes others could not begin to imagine are doing just that in that they are embracing their mental illness and endangering others.

    2. Leah Cassidy Avatar

      Erm ok I forgot to mention the ‘unless you are a violent psychopath’ part.

  6. Gary Ballard Avatar

    Pills usually just hide the problem.

    1. Aissatou Sunjata Avatar

      Pills are supposed to treat the symptom so the person can cope, or address issues brought on by mental illness. For some the pills may be temporary, for others, they may need medication for the duration of their lives.

    2. Gary Ballard Avatar

      Why are we treating symptoms?

  7. Patricia J. Dunstan Avatar

    Coping skills, not pills.

    1. Aissatou Sunjata Avatar

      However, in the meantime, while researching and finding a qualified person or book, or iPod program to learn those skills, what does someone who has a mental illness, like those who hear voices, or suffer from depression, anxiety, or some other symptom which incapacitate do in the meantime? Find a drug dealer?

    2. Patricia J. Dunstan Avatar

      Aissatou Sunjata, I feel that drugs are a short term solution while coping skills are learned. I have seen quite a few lives ruined by prescribed meds, especially the Benzos. I do want to add that I am excluding Schizophrenia and Bi-Polar from my statement.

    3. Aissatou Sunjata Avatar

      Patricia J. Dunstan Depression with a chemical imbalance and other conditions for which any measure other than medication warrants should also be excluded. Seeing others who may have for various reason not been helped by medication is not definitive. There are some people for whom medication is not short termed. For these people, it is the difference between coping and not being able to do so. A chemical imbalance is not going to be a short termed condition for which something else can replace what medication does for them.

    4. Patricia J. Dunstan Avatar

      There are always exceptions but I believe that in the case of depression and anxiety, we can through hard work, change the chemistry and develop new nuero- pathways in our brains. Exercise has been proven to increase endorphin’s and has been effective in my case, ( I was hospitalized with clinical depression and put on drugs years ago). I also feel that diet is another factor as well. But I understand that sometimes drugs are needed when one is down so low, one can not even bring them selves to get out of bed. Sending you blessings.

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