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Psychiatry, drugs, science, me, and Scientology, too.

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    Page-Page- Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    First of all, it's good to see a convert. Welcome to the real world.

    Secondly, bring me evidence of "rampant drugging" and then we'll talk.

    Oh, I wish.

    I don't know how many of you have been under the strict influence of something as pervasive as a religion, or even tried to have a logic-based conversation with such a person. I've experienced both. The simple fact is that religion deals in revealed truth. Somebody says something and thus it is so. You can't ask them to produce evidence, because the very statement of a fact is the evidence that supports that fact. Then you add on to that the teaching that contrary sources are not to be trusted and you've got one epic logical snafu.

    As I said, my boss was at the point where he was refuting my claims of data and evidence procured through scientific study, with anecdotal evidence. He even took it a step further and told me that his, or any, anecdotal evidence was more valid than anything I could cite from actual tests and studies. Why? Because "What is true is what is true for you. No one has any right to force data on you and command you to believe it or else. If it is not true for you, it isn't true. Think your own way through things, accept what is true for you, discard the rest. There is nothing unhappier than one who tries to live in a chaos of lies." There is some monstrous doublethink going on underneath most of our conversations.

    So, while I can't really ask for him to produce real evidence, I think I can use some of my own. Because as easy as it is to believe things just because you think you've experienced them, I'm hoping it may be harder to ignore actual facts.

    Page- on
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    JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    That sounds like a reasonable use of drugs.

    JebusUD on
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    CorvusCorvus . VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    I always wonder whether things need to be medicated as much as they are, or if traditional and behavioral therapy would work better.

    It depends on the specific problem, the medication or combination of medications and the individual as to what treatment is going to be "best" for that specific patient. Different folks will have very different reactions to certain medications for example. I've read H/A threads where people detailed all their reactions to certain medications, including some bad side effects for an anti-depressant I was on for a while, and I had none of the problems some of them had. Mental health problems seem to be an area where the treatment is very, very, dependant on the individual.

    Mental health problems are just a lot more complex and less well understood than physical health problems I think. Its not like say, a dental problem where you have a tooth with a cavity and its automatic that the treatment is to drill and fill.

    As was mentioned by someone else earlier, the ideal is to combine therapy with medication, but some people just aren't comfortable with therapy, may not respond to it, or may not have it available, etc etc.

    And consider this: Many people with mental health problems are so affected by their problems that they are likely not able to seek out and keep up with therapy. Medication may well provide those folks with the platform to take that step.

    Corvus on
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    Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    That sounds like a reasonable use of drugs.

    So what's an unreasonable use?

    And be careful about making accusations of relying on drugs, because I don't think you've ever been deeply involved in a major psychiatric disorder.

    Wonder_Hippie on
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    Apothe0sisApothe0sis Have you ever questioned the nature of your reality? Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I am glad we are on the same page, and I think your second paragraph is hitting it exactly on the head, ESPECIALLY the meeting bit.

    That said, psychology is very much science just as psychiatry is.

    Apothe0sis on
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    JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    That sounds like a reasonable use of drugs.

    So what's an unreasonable use?

    And be careful about making accusations of relying on drugs, because I don't think you've ever been deeply involved in a major psychiatric disorder.

    Chill dude. For serious. I wasnt saying "We are definitely overusing drugs!" I just said, I wonder if there is a better way. Maybe there isnt.

    JebusUD on
    and I wonder about my neighbors even though I don't have them
    but they're listening to every word I say
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    Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    JebusUD wrote: »
    That sounds like a reasonable use of drugs.

    So what's an unreasonable use?

    And be careful about making accusations of relying on drugs, because I don't think you've ever been deeply involved in a major psychiatric disorder.

    Chill dude. For serious. I wasnt saying "We are definitely overusing drugs!" I just said, I wonder if there is a better way. Maybe there isnt.

    The better way is just going to be when we actually know what all this shit does. Give it about 20-30 years.

    Wonder_Hippie on
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    JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Corvus wrote: »
    And consider this: Many people with mental health problems are so affected by their problems that they are likely not able to seek out and keep up with therapy. Medication may well provide those folks with the platform to take that step.

    Surely. These things should probably be temporary if possible.

    JebusUD on
    and I wonder about my neighbors even though I don't have them
    but they're listening to every word I say
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    IncenjucarIncenjucar VChatter Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Chemical psychological issues are permanent.

    I can't say I know for sure, but I don't think they are all permanent.

    "Chemical" was a poor choice of words on my part - thinking about doughnuts is chemical.

    There are psychological problems which stem from the actual cellular structure of an individual's brain or other organs as determined by their genetics and/or phenotype (DNA is just part of it). This shit is, for the most part, permanent, particularly if it's genetic. Certain deep psychological traumas are just as resiliant, depending on the individual. A very very very large amount of this is permanet. Either the person is biologically incapable of getting over it, or the conditions to overcome it simply will never come about.

    More minor things can sometimes be nearly completely dealt with. Things like a fear of snakes or kissing or something along those lines, and things like grief are usually dealt with in their own time, but self-medication for these things is standard practice in human society to begin with. Hugs are natural pills for grief, etc.

    The stuff we usually medicate for, however, is the genetic/phenotypical stuff. The stuff that the individual human being is not capable of changing in themselves anymore than they can change their natural hair color. You cannot simply talk someone out of hearing voices the same way you could help someone get over the loss of their dog.

    --

    People who think they're fine now and can stop using medication generally relapse really really really hard.

    Which is especially bad because at that point their support usually dries up. People don't respond well to "Oh great Susie isn't taking her meds and is shitting on the lawn again."

    Incenjucar on
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    WagsWags Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    JebusUD wrote: »
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Chemical psychological issues are permanent.

    I can't say I know for sure, but I don't think they are all permanent.

    "Chemical" was a poor choice of words on my part - thinking about doughnuts is chemical.

    There are psychological problems which stem from the actual cellular structure of an individual's brain or other organs as determined by their genetics and/or phenotype (DNA is just part of it). This shit is, for the most part, permanent, particularly if it's genetic. Certain deep psychological traumas are just as resiliant, depending on the individual. A very very very large amount of this is permanet. Either the person is biologically incapable of getting over it, or the conditions to overcome it simply will never come about.

    More minor things can sometimes be nearly completely dealt with. Things like a fear of snakes or kissing or something along those lines, and things like grief are usually dealt with in their own time, but self-medication for these things is standard practice in human society to begin with. Hugs are natural pills for grief, etc.

    The stuff we usually medicate for, however, is the genetic/phenotypical stuff. The stuff that the individual human being is not capable of changing in themselves anymore than they can change their natural hair color. You cannot simply talk someone out of hearing voices the same way you could help someone get over the loss of their dog.

    --

    People who think they're fine now and can stop using medication generally relapse really really really hard.

    Which is especially bad because at that point their support usually dries up. People don't respond well to "Oh great Susie isn't taking her meds and is shitting on the lawn again."

    Last I heard, there wasn't a super strong correlation for genetic heritability and mental illness. There appears to be some evidence for a genetic component, but it isn't a strong correlation yet. However when it comes to things like depression and anxiety, and I'd gather a great deal other mental illnesses, it's always a chemical thing regardless of how it came about, whether one day your brain fucks up what it's supposed to be producing or you lost your job and wife in the same day. Life events can affect behavior which can affect thoughts which can affect how the brain is working as well as the complete opposite direction. The layman idea that I've seen from time to time that there is a chemical and non-chemical depression is a misnomer.

    I don't know if I'd say things are permanent, but definitely depending on how things are treated and the outcome of initial episodes, a person very much can develop a future vulnerability. But the brain can "heal" itself when it comes to things like depression and anxiety. In this case meds are really a band aid to give the brain time to heal.

    Wags on
    The gods certainly weren't role models in our sense, unless you wanted to model a Mount Olympus trailer park.
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    Page-Page- Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    So, I gather that psychiatrists prescribing drugs is quite common? This is the major point of the last argument I had with my boss.

    Specifically: He thinks that prescribing drugs for psychological problems is bad across the board. He then went on to say that there is a significant percentage of psychs who are against prescribing drugs, either totally, or they just think it's being done too much. Further, he said that many, if not most, psychs do not prescribe drugs, or at least they rarely do.

    Is there really an organized dissent in the psychiatric community? How controversial are psych drugs (within the profession), and what are the arguments against it?

    I just want to make sure this isn't like the ID guys insisting that schools should "teach the controversy" when there clearly isn't any controversy to begin with.

    Page- on
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    TostitosTostitos __BANNED USERS regular
    edited August 2008
    Drugs that alter brain chemistry are like performing surgery on a running automobile engine. Wonderful things can be done, and things can also be greatly fucked up.

    Could you please clarify for the lol xenu crowd that alien costumes, "Longcat is long" signs, corporate produced anarchy masks, calling it "$cn," and materials from the higher levels of scientology really wouldn't have done anything to sway or influence you? Too many people like to believe in that.

    Tostitos on
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    Page-Page- Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Well, at first, and this is the state 99% of Scientologists are in, there was just no way I would ever listen to any claim made by something like xenu.net, let alone Anonymous. On the off chance that I did run in to such opinions the natural reactions would be A: they don't know any better, and B: they're doing it for more subversive reasons. The prevailing wisdom in Scientology is that if something is good or successful then people will attack it, and to the degree that it is good or successful people will attack it with vigour. It gets to the point that for some Scientologists the mere fact that people disagree or attack a group (not just Scientology) lends legitimacy to it.

    I got over those ideas after about 10 minutes of honest thought.

    The real reason I've chosen to mostly do without those other opinions are that, honestly, Anonymous is obnoxious and childish, and highly ineffective (for the reasons I just mentioned). A group with that kind of track record wouldn't last 10 seconds against a Scientologist, and because of that every possible valid point they could bring up would be ignored.

    More importantly, and as I said, I have more invested than just myself. My mother, my brothers and sister, my boss and his family, a lot of people I know are Scientologists. If I want to have any hope of influencing them, or at least having them understand and accept my new beliefs, I couldn't use the "$cientology" approach, because that's a non-starter. No amount of outward pressure will have any real effect, at least not a positive one. I decided that I needed to use a more rational and logic based approach, because you can plug your ears and LALALA all day long if someone's bringing up crimes that you don't think exist involving people you can easily ignore, but when the cold grip of scientific logic takes hold you have to relent, or at least start thinking about things, since science is demonstrably a good thing, and LRH himself had a lot of good things to say about it (especially about engineers), and you can't really point out a global conspiracy against a 50 year old religion amongst thousands of years of unbiased mental achievement.

    Really, it was just the approach that I think will get me the results I want. I know it's working with my boss; I don't attack Scientology around him, but when I continually and consistently lay out facts and reasoned arguments he's forced to really think about things. It worked with evolution, it worked with organized religion, I'm hoping it will keep working.

    Page- on
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    Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS regular
    edited August 2008
    Page- wrote: »
    So, I gather that psychiatrists prescribing drugs is quite common? This is the major point of the last argument I had with my boss.

    Specifically: He thinks that prescribing drugs for psychological problems is bad across the board. He then went on to say that there is a significant percentage of psychs who are against prescribing drugs, either totally, or they just think it's being done too much. Further, he said that many, if not most, psychs do not prescribe drugs, or at least they rarely do.

    Is there really an organized dissent in the psychiatric community? How controversial are psych drugs (within the profession), and what are the arguments against it?

    I just want to make sure this isn't like the ID guys insisting that schools should "teach the controversy" when there clearly isn't any controversy to begin with.

    It basically is an ID situation whenever a Scientologist talks about psychology in any capacity. There's a current of dissent among people like Thomas Szasz, but Scientologists take his philosophies and work and skew it, when in fact he's just against the social aspects and perception of psychology and mental health labelling and such, but saying that a "significant percentage" are against it is just a flat-out lie.

    What it comes down to is this: the vast majority of psychologists prescribe medications with perfectly appropriate frequency. There is no conspiracy. Irresponsibility and misuse happens on an individual level. The campaign of misinformation carried on by Scientologists is based on scaremongering and outright lies. But you know what's really interesting about this? All these accusations of overmedicating are funny when you notice how undermedicated people are when because of stingy insurance companies that don't buy the very concept of mental health.

    Despite so many people, even around here on these forums, going on about how overmedicated America is, I have yet to actually see any evidence of it. Give me some evidence that there's a problem.

    Wonder_Hippie on
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    AdrienAdrien Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    What it comes down to is this: the vast majority of psychologists prescribe medications with perfectly appropriate frequency. There is no conspiracy. Irresponsibility and misuse happens on an individual level. The campaign of misinformation carried on by Scientologists is based on scaremongering and outright lies. But you know what's really interesting about this? All these accusations of overmedicating are funny when you notice how undermedicated people are when because of stingy insurance companies that don't buy the very concept of mental health.

    Boy, I hope not.

    (Psychiatrists are doctors, and are licensed to prescribe. Psychologists, though many of them lovely people, are not. Sorry, pet peeve :P)

    Adrien on
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    InfidelInfidel Heretic Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I am perfectly fine with people choosing to use psych medication.

    But god damn, it's something I am personally terrified of. I don't even take painkillers if I can avoid it. There are conditions that I could be on meds for, but I have chosen to live with them rather than give up control of my own faculties.

    Rationally I realize that I could very likely be fine on them, but the idea of changing how I think or perceive is just too much for me to gamble with. I like the way I operate and my work/hobbies depend on my problem-solving skills, I'd be in trouble if I fucked with that.

    Infidel on
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    DaenrisDaenris Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Adrien wrote: »
    What it comes down to is this: the vast majority of psychologists prescribe medications with perfectly appropriate frequency. There is no conspiracy. Irresponsibility and misuse happens on an individual level. The campaign of misinformation carried on by Scientologists is based on scaremongering and outright lies. But you know what's really interesting about this? All these accusations of overmedicating are funny when you notice how undermedicated people are when because of stingy insurance companies that don't buy the very concept of mental health.

    Boy, I hope not.

    (Psychiatrists are doctors, and are licensed to prescribe. Psychologists, though many of them lovely people, are not. Sorry, pet peeve :P)

    Yes, for the most part. However, this is changing and some Clinical Psychologists now undergo additional training/education/licensing which allows them to prescribe drugs.

    Daenris on
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    MrMonroeMrMonroe passed out on the floor nowRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I've seen plenty of people prescribed medication when they needed a change in living situations (my ex, for one), I've seen plenty of kids prescribed drugs they don't need or are inappropriate because the parents 'just have to try something.' (My brother got ritalin for his... Radical Attachment Disorder?) The thing is, I see this happen a lot more with kids than with adults. I'm sure there is an over-prescription tendency among some psychiatrists. However, that doesn't imply for a second that those drugs are useless or that anyone who takes them is going to be harmed by them. When used correctly, they work pretty damn well.

    Also, keep up with that independent thought kick you're on. Knowledge is power!:whistle:

    MrMonroe on
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    GungHoGungHo Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Tostitos wrote: »
    Drugs that alter brain chemistry are like performing surgery on a running automobile engine. Wonderful things can be done, and things can also be greatly fucked up.
    I don't disagree with this. There's still a bit of trial and error with some medications/conditions, whether it's the amount or the type. Some stuff would seriously mess me up, some would do nothing. Missing a dose or doubling a dose can also seriously screw you up, and you may not notice the difference until much later. It's definitely a commitment.

    GungHo on
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    RocketSauceRocketSauce Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    I always wonder whether things need to be medicated as much as they are, or if traditional and behavioral therapy would work better.

    Medication is meant to be used in conjunction with therapy. And a lot of people who need to be on medication often do not take it, and refuse to participate in therapy. We're talking about seriously mentally ill people.

    RocketSauce on
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    sanstodosanstodo Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Page, great OP. It sounds like you're making a lot of tough decisions, and I applaud you for facing them with courage.

    Some more anecdotal evidence for you: After my first year of college, I was severely depressed for a variety of reasons. I went to therapy for about six months, twice a week. My therapist recommended that I try a low dosage of anti-depressants since they had worked well for my brother (he's off them now but was on them successfully for about two years). I said no, that I wanted to work things out without drugs.

    And that was that. He never asked me about it again. It felt pretty good, and I knew that they were there if things got really bad and I needed them to avoid a crash. That crash never came and I still recommend that therapist to people to this day.

    On a related note, my mom used to suffer from night panics. She would go to bed at 10 PM since she had to get up for work at 5:45 AM. But about 3 times a week, she'd wake up around 2 AM with a night panic and be unable to go back to sleep. A combination of yoga a few times a week and a light dosage of anti-depressants has stopped them entirely. Like, completely. She doesn't have them at all anymore and it has vastly improved her life.

    Hope that helps!

    sanstodo on
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    sanstodosanstodo Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    I always wonder whether things need to be medicated as much as they are, or if traditional and behavioral therapy would work better.

    Medication is meant to be used in conjunction with therapy. And a lot of people who need to be on medication often do not take it, and refuse to participate in therapy. We're talking about seriously mentally ill people.

    Yup. I've definitely seen that quite a bit. It's sad; they take their meds and start getting their lives back together. But once things get good, they decide that they don't need their meds anymore and things fall apart.

    I had a friend in college repeat that cycle at least three times (I lost count). He was a class older than I am. I graduated two years ago. He's still trying to graduate. If only he'd just stay on his meds, he would be so much happier.

    sanstodo on
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    DmanDman Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I think a lot of people have a very hard time dealing with their own or their loved ones mental illnesses. One of the major steps is often denial. This denial often amounts to Drugs are bad, psychiatrists are bad.

    My brother has schizophrenia, and some drugs he has been on have harsh side effects, some don't work that well (for him). But his current prescription works well and I know for a fact he needs those drugs, unquestionably. On them, he is going to university and getting good grades doing about half the normal student course load.

    Without his meds things go downhill fast. For example, washing & drying his hands endlessly even after they are red and raw trying to get "the mold" off them when there was never any mold. Or just freaking out completely and running away down the street because "They are after him" conspiracy theory style. On or off meds my brother would never hurt a fly, which is why I hate the media stereo type of schizophrenia, but there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that psychiatry has helped him immensely and that he NEEDS his drugs.

    Also, bravo to the OP for embracing reason over belief.

    Dman on
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    CauldCauld Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I'm not well versed on either Scientology or Psychiatric drugs, but I'd probably take this approach:

    Why are you treating drugs perscribed by psychiatrists any differently from other drugs, perscribed or not? I would focus on the more mundane drugs and work my way up. Do you drink coffee in the morning to help you wake up or have more energy? Do you drink a beer or a glass of wine to help you settle down after a rough time?

    Those both affect brian chemistry, but are more commonly accepted drugs. Then move on to slightly stronger "dugs". The Nicotine patch and non-perscription sleep aids, for example. Does this help you quit smoking (This one may not work well with Scientology)? Does this help you sleep when you can't?

    Cauld on
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    RocketSauceRocketSauce Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    There's such a stigma about mental health, and especially medication. If I don't take my allergy medication, my life sucks. I have to take it to be able to function normally. There's not really any stigma with that.

    However, if someone's who's Bipolar has to take medication, suddenly they're "crazy". No, they just need to take medication to be able to function normally. Just like wearing contacts, or allergy medication. It's about functioning better than you would without the medication, not that you're suddenly "sane", or you were "crazy" without it.

    RocketSauce on
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    DmanDman Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    There's such a stigma about mental health, and especially medication. If I don't take my allergy medication, my life sucks. I have to take it to be able to function normally. There's not really any stigma with that.

    However, if someone's who's Bipolar has to take medication, suddenly they're "crazy". No, they just need to take medication to be able to function normally. Just like wearing contacts, or allergy medication. It's about functioning better than you would without the medication, not that you're suddenly "sane", or you were "crazy" without it.

    :^:

    Dman on
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    JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    I always wonder whether things need to be medicated as much as they are, or if traditional and behavioral therapy would work better.

    Medication is meant to be used in conjunction with therapy. And a lot of people who need to be on medication often do not take it, and refuse to participate in therapy. We're talking about seriously mentally ill people.

    Welcome to last nights conversation. :P

    JebusUD on
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    FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    JebusUD wrote: »
    There is very rarely such things as one-time, permanent behavioral modification unless you're talking about some pseudoscientific pop psychology crap that doesn't work anyway. About the only thing that can be treated as such is a phobia.

    Many people with debilitating psychological disorders are going to be spending protracted periods of time throughout their lives in therapy, depending on availability of funds, of course.

    Hmm. I suppose.

    So the more heavily effected would probably be better off with the drugs, while the lighter ailments may be better of the other way.

    I know you dealt with this last night, but I wanted to add two points that relate to each other: first, drugs work faster than therapy. Second, mental illness can interfere with therapy itself. Depression is an easy example - it reduces your energy and motivation to take action on your own life. It makes potential outcomes seem worse than they are, and reduces your capacity to enjoy pleasurable things, so when some of your life changes start to take shape depression can make it seem like that change is coming more slowly than it actually is.

    You medicate early to prevent the illness itself from sabotaging therapy. This is why the typical layman idea of "therapy first and then drugs if therapy doesn't work" is fallacious - it's a little like saying that you replace your car battery first and then try a jumpstart if the new battery doesn't work.
    Wags wrote: »
    Last I heard, there wasn't a super strong correlation for genetic heritability and mental illness.

    It depends entirely on the illness. Schizophrenia is more "inheritable" than mild depression, for instance.

    Feral on
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    FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Page- wrote: »
    My boss flat-out told me that he wasn't interested in studies.

    If he is skeptical of the scientific method in general, there's no getting through to him. You might as well be arguing with a Creationist. And I would straight-up tell him that. Either he believes studies or he doesn't. If he doesn't believe studies, he needs to have a substantial methodological criticism of those studies and a reasonable alternative explanation that fits the data. In the absence of substantial, logical criticism, he's exactly the same, intellectually, as a flat-earther or a Creationist.

    Controlled scientific evidence shows that the risks of drug side effects are in general far, far less than the risks of suicide, psychotic episode, lost productivity, addiction, etc. if you don't medicate. The vast majority of drug side effects are relatively mild, and go away after the drug is discontinued. The mass media makes a big deal out of the suicide risk from antidepressants but even that is a really small risk, and the risk of suicide from untreated depression is significantly greater.

    Also, most studies on the subject have determined that psych drugs in general are underprescribed. There are small subsegments of the population that get psych drugs too easily - usually white and middle or upper class. However, there are vast swaths of the population, particularly ethnic minorities, immigrants, and the poor who don't get the drugs that they need. And those people greatly outnumber the rich white folks who pop Prozac or Ritalin needlessly, and many of them have very severe problems like major depression or schizophrenia.
    Page- wrote: »
    Specifically: He thinks that prescribing drugs for psychological problems is bad across the board. He then went on to say that there is a significant percentage of psychs who are against prescribing drugs, either totally, or they just think it's being done too much. Further, he said that many, if not most, psychs do not prescribe drugs, or at least they rarely do.

    Is there really an organized dissent in the psychiatric community? How controversial are psych drugs (within the profession), and what are the arguments against it?

    No, there is no organized dissent in the psychiatric community at all. This is fabricated.

    He's misunderstanding how the psych industry is organized.

    There are psychiatrists, who are medical doctors. They go to medical school where they learn how to stitch up wounds, they poke around cadavers, do all the stuff doctors do. Then they spend a couple years specializing in psychiatry. They can prescribe drugs.

    Then there are psychologists. They are not medical doctors. They did not go to medical school. They got a PhD or a PsyD (a special doctorate) in psychology which involved doing some scientific research and doing face-to-face therapy with volunteers as an intern. They cannot prescribe drugs, except in a few special cases: New Mexico and Lousiana have passed laws that give psychologists limited prescribing power, and in the Armed Forces psychologists are given limited prescribing privileges.

    (Also there are therapists, who are like psychologists with a little less education - master's degrees, generally.)

    There is a professional rivalry between psychologists and psychiatrists, mostly on whether or not psychologists should be given the power to prescribe in other states. However, this is not a controversy over the value of medication at all - medication is generally recognized as a useful but powerful tool in the entire mental health field.

    There are controversies over whether specific drugs should be used or whether specific diseases benefit from medication, but there is no widespread controversy over the benefit of medication in general.

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
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    FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    By the way, regarding the professional rivalry between psychologists and psychiatrists, here's an illustrative example. Both professions have their own professional organization. There is an American Psychological Association (www.apa.org) and an American Psychiatric Assocation (www.psych.org). Note that the two organizations both have the same initials: APA.

    When each organization refers to themselves, they capitalize it APA. When they refer to the rival organization, they capitalize it ApA or apa.

    The academic pissing contest between those two organizations would be funny if it didn't waste so goddamn much time.

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
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    TofystedethTofystedeth Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Man, this thread has had more triple posts...

    Glad to hear your story Page-. You seemed like a nice guy last time we had the scientology thread, and it sounded like you were having some struggles. I'm glad things are starting to clarify for you.

    Tofystedeth on
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    witch_iewitch_ie Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I think it's great that you're trying to get more information on psychiatry and psychology, but I have to say that if you're trying to get your boss to change his thinking about scientology in general, given his experiences, talking about psychiatry isn't necessarily the best way to do it.

    You mentioned that his father had problems with psychiatric treatment. I've had the same with several of my family members and while rationally, I understand that psychiatry is not "evil," based on these experiences, I have a strong visceral reaction towards psychiatry in general. Essentially, I hate it and while I've known others who have benefited from it - specifically close friends with depression and anxiety, and understand that much of it has been scientifically proven to be beneficial, I still feel (not think, but feel) it causes more harm than good. Your boss may be in the same situation and depsite the facts that you're able to present, he may not be able to change his attitude towards it.

    witch_ie on
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    Page-Page- Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Helpful posts. This is info I've needed, and I'm glad to get it. I have to admit that I've been starved for sources, especially regarding psychology and psychiatry, and that's been a major stumbling block.

    And, in a way, my decision to step back from Scientology was quite easy. I was just reading, listening to lectures, thinking, and one day, in one moment, I realized that this was a completely different world than the insular one I'd known of as a Scientologist, and that the two just couldn't coexist. From there I pretty much defaulted, because I knew I couldn't unlearn facts.

    The really tough part, and what I'm still struggling with, is what to do next. What I lost was a near absolute moral certainty, and the idea that, no matter what the problem was, something concrete and effective could be done about it. My newly forming world didn't deal in such confident absolutes, especially when dealing with the mind and mental health. That's the problem I'm running into with my boss. He knows Scientology has the answers for any and every mental problem. The alternative I present is a lot less certain, deals a lot with things that work pretty well, things that work most of the time, things still being looked into. It's hard to throw out certainty for percentages and chances, I understand that.

    As far as actually changing my life, these decisions have had little to no effect so far. But emotionally it's been really, really hard at times. The biggest problem for me is that I have nobody else to talk to, and sometimes you just need to vent, you know?

    But thats kind of off topic.
    witch_ie wrote: »
    I think it's great that you're trying to get more information on psychiatry and psychology, but I have to say that if you're trying to get your boss to change his thinking about scientology in general, given his experiences, talking about psychiatry isn't necessarily the best way to do it.

    You mentioned that his father had problems with psychiatric treatment. I've had the same with several of my family members and while rationally, I understand that psychiatry is not "evil," based on these experiences, I have a strong visceral reaction towards psychiatry in general. Essentially, I hate it and while I've known others who have benefited from it - specifically close friends with depression and anxiety, and understand that much of it has been scientifically proven to be beneficial, I still feel (not think, but feel) it causes more harm than good. Your boss may be in the same situation and depsite the facts that you're able to present, he may not be able to change his attitude towards it.

    I understand this. That's the impression I have, too, except that he's added to that a whole lot of anti-psych propaganda and a religions philosophy that forbids other practises.

    I think that's why he was calling down studies. His evidence is all anecdotal, and he goes along with the whole "What is true is what is true for you" line, so his personal experience trumps calculated research. He did tell me to produce my own anecdotal and personal cases of people being helped by psych drugs, and that's why I started this topic. I won't know how effective this has been until Monday, since we didn't work today, but I'm hoping that either he's calmed down by then and is ready to listen to reason and logic, or he'll be forced to accept that many people (probably most people, but that might be stretching it) are helped by psychs and psych drugs.

    Page- on
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    FeralFeral MEMETICHARIZARD interior crocodile alligator ⇔ ǝɹʇɐǝɥʇ ǝᴉʌoɯ ʇǝloɹʌǝɥɔ ɐ ǝʌᴉɹp ᴉRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Page- wrote: »
    What I lost was a near absolute moral certainty, and the idea that, no matter what the problem was, something concrete and effective could be done about it. My newly forming world didn't deal in such confident absolutes, especially when dealing with the mind and mental health.

    The world doesn't deal with confident absolutes, either. It's fuzzy, often contradictory, sometimes confusing.
    Page- wrote: »
    That's the problem I'm running into with my boss. He knows Scientology has the answers for any and every mental problem. The alternative I present is a lot less certain, deals a lot with things that work pretty well, things that work most of the time, things still being looked into. It's hard to throw out certainty for percentages and chances, I understand that.

    So he's basically a fundamentalist. You're not going to convince him of anything. What's going to have to happen is he'll have to experience a breakdown in his worldview; a crisis that he doesn't have the tools to handle. The world will eventually throw the limitations of his viewpoint in his face.

    As far as actually changing my life, these decisions have had little to no effect so far. But emotionally it's been really, really hard at times. The biggest problem for me is that I have nobody else to talk to, and sometimes you just need to vent, you know?

    But thats kind of off topic.
    Page- wrote: »
    He did tell me to produce my own anecdotal and personal cases of people being helped by psych drugs, and that's why I started this topic.

    *raises hand*

    Here's my personal story with psych drugs.

    I had early-onset depression; it started around age 20. Early-onset depression is the one of the forms of depression that responds the least to non-pharmaceutical therapy; it is also one of the more inheritable. Both my parents had early-onset depression as well... so there is a strong likelihood that it is in my genes.

    However, I managed it without pharmaceutical help for a long time. Then around the age of 23, I got very physically sick. A severe respiratory and tonsil infection resulted me developing chronic sleep apnea, so the sleep I was getting was of poor quality. It was like being sleep-deprived all the time.

    The combination of my natural tendency towards depression with this illness made it impossible for me to manage it without drugs. My brain felt rusted over. I got no enjoyment from anything, and trying to get work done or even chores done with my brain the way it was felt like I was pushing a dead car up a hill. So I tried antidepressants. First one I tried was Celexa - it did nothing except give me a headache. Second one was Zoloft - it worked, but it made my stomach very upset. So then I tried Effexor.

    Well, the Effexor not only counteracted a lot of the low energy and depression I was feeling from my sleep apnea, but it also alleviated a lot of other, more nebulous, aspects of my depression. For instance, prior to Effexor, I had this persistent feeling that the world was just wrong somehow. Remember in The Matrix when Morpheus says "What you know you can't explain, but you feel it. You've felt it your entire life, that there's something wrong with the world. You don't know what it is, but it's there, like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad."

    I had that feeling all the time in my early 20s. Everywhere I looked, there would be something subtly wrong with whatever I was looking at. I'd enjoy driving, but I couldn't get the environmental impact of my car out of my mind to truly enjoy it. Sex was fun, but I'd wonder if I was using it as a substitute for more intellectual, less carnal pursuits. Work might be rewarding, but I'd wonder if I was contributing to a capitalist system that ultimately exploited people.

    Effexor turned a lot of those thoughts off. Not so much to cripple my critical thinking abilities - I mean, I can still judge a corporation and decide that I don't want to work there because they're unethical; I can still evaluate whether a car that I'm looking at buying has good emissions standards... but they stopped nagging me constantly. I could actually enjoy things like sex, concerts, video games, driving, work, etc. without Morpheus's splinter stinging somewhere in the back of my mind.

    Now that the feeling was gone, I was able to introspectively identify where it came from. I was able to look at aspects of my childhood and my upbringing that contributed to it. I was able to heal some very, very old wounds that had been going untreated because I didn't quite have the tools for it prior to going on antidepressants.

    Within a couple years, I got my sleep apnea surgically corrected and started exercising again and my energy levels went mostly back to normal. However, since then I've gone back on Effexor twice - if I encounter an event in my life that is extremely stressful or traumatic and I need time to fully deal with it internally, I see no reason not to employ medication as one of the tools in my toolkit. It accelerates recovery and allows me to deal with issues with a little clearer head, a little less brain fog.

    Edit: There's one important part of this story that I'm leaving out, because I don't want to post it in the thread, but it doesn't change the overall message.

    Feral on
    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.

    the "no true scotch man" fallacy.
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    Page-Page- Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Thanks for the candid response, Feral.

    And I just want to add that I'm going to be out of town this weekend and probably won't have direct access to the internet. So if anyone posts and wonders why I haven't responded, it has nothing to do with Scientology secret police or anything like that.

    Page- on
    Competitive Gaming and Writing Blog Updated in October: "Song (and Story) of the Day"
    Anyone want to beta read a paranormal mystery novella? Here's your chance.
    stream
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    InfidelInfidel Heretic Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Page- wrote: »
    And I just want to add that I'm going to be out of town this weekend and probably won't have direct access to the internet. So if anyone posts and wonders why I haven't responded, it has nothing to do with Scientology secret police or anything like that.

    Oh shit, they've already got him. D:

    Infidel on
    OrokosPA.png
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    JebusUDJebusUD Adventure! Candy IslandRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Feral wrote: »
    Page- wrote: »
    What I lost was a near absolute moral certainty, and the idea that, no matter what the problem was, something concrete and effective could be done about it. My newly forming world didn't deal in such confident absolutes, especially when dealing with the mind and mental health.

    The world doesn't deal with confident absolutes, either. It's fuzzy, often contradictory, sometimes confusing.
    Watch this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXi_ldNRNtM

    Edit: where do you suppose the all drugs are always bad stigma comes from? The war on drugs, after school special, culture?

    JebusUD on
    and I wonder about my neighbors even though I don't have them
    but they're listening to every word I say
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    Page-Page- Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    That video is <3.

    The stigma against drugs? Are you talking in general, or specifically Scientologists'?

    There are a couple of reasons for Scientologists. In general, though, I do think that many, if not most, street drugs are harmful, perhaps even pot. I've never personally had the desire to take drugs and never did, but I have friends who smoke pot on occasion. It doesn't bother me, though I can't stand the smell. Really, it's to the point where I don't even like to go to concerts anymore. :/

    Page- on
    Competitive Gaming and Writing Blog Updated in October: "Song (and Story) of the Day"
    Anyone want to beta read a paranormal mystery novella? Here's your chance.
    stream
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    Apothe0sisApothe0sis Have you ever questioned the nature of your reality? Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Feral wrote: »
    Edit: There's one important part of this story that I'm leaving out, because I don't want to post it in the thread, but it doesn't change the overall message.

    What colour is Effexor? Are the pills blue or red?

    You left out that you're The One, didn't you?

    Apothe0sis on
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    MahnmutMahnmut Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I'm impressed that you dare to argue religion with your very-Scientologist boss. If I were you I'd get myself safely employed somewhere outside the church, then educate. Is your whole workplace Scientology-affiliated?

    Mahnmut on
    Steam/LoL: Jericho89
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