New Civilization News: Serious Questions go Unanswered in Mental Health Movement    
 Serious Questions go Unanswered in Mental Health Movement12 comments
picture3 Jun 2007 @ 21:56, by Gerald Vest

Serious Probems Continue in MH -

"Simply understanding 'reasons' for our fears in an attempt to control them only strikes at the symptoms, not the cause. The real source of fear lies in our minds--adding more thoughts and concepts only supports the pattern of fear. We need a different approach. (Tarthang Tulku, Openness Mind, (p. 22)

I don't know how many of you notice that almost daily we have some serious reports in the news media about mental health treatment: over-diagnosing; drug research is flawed; psychiatrists and researchers taking money from the pharmaceutical industry; "stressed out moms receiving poor MH treatment;" failing to provide early MH care;" persons diagnosed with bipolar disease improperly treated and misdiagnosed;" colleges struggle with mental health crisis; and, the list goes on.

If you wish to visit these articles and read them, they are available on my forum. [link] I will post some links and headlines here so that you can quickly review the articles:

Psychotropic Drug Prescriptions For Teens Surge 250% Over 7 Year Period

Science Daily — "Psychotropic drug prescriptions for teenagers skyrocketed 250 percent between 1994 and 2001, rising particularly sharply after 1999, when the federal government allowed direct-to-consumer advertising and looser promotion of off-label use of prescription drugs, according to a new Brandeis University study in the journal Psychiatric Services."

A Battle With Depression and Suicidal Tendencies

"A decade ago the Minnesota Board of Medical Practice accused Dr. Faruk Abuzzahab of a reckless, if not willful, disregard for the welfare of 46 patients, 5 of whom died in his care or shortly afterward. The board suspended his license for seven months and restricted it for two years after that."
[link]

UC struggles with mental health crisis
29 students killed themselves in 2000-05, panel says; officials strive to find money to hire more counselors. By Richard C. Paddock
LOS ANGELES TIMES Article Launched: 05/31/2007 03:04:41 AM PDT" [link]

The mental health crisis that isn't
Statistics don't support fears of a psychological emergency on our college campuses.
By Mike Males, MIKE MALES, former sociology instructor at UC Santa Cruz, is senior researcher for the online information site YouthFacts.org. [link]

US: Bipolar Spectrum Disorder May Be Underrecognized and Improperly Treated
[link]

Older Patients with Major Depression Live Longer with Appropriate Treatment
Older patients with major depression whose primary care physicians team with depression care managers are 45% less likely to die within a 5-year time period than older adults with major depression who receive their care in primary care practices where there are no depression care managers. This study, conducted by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, appears in a recent issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

[link]

US: New Details in Schizophrenia Treatment Trial Emerge
Posted by Gary Holden at April 3, 2007 11:43 AM [link]

My personal experiences with mental health programs have shaped my feelings and interest in change.

I have many fond memories of working with my colleagues in designing, developing and administering a comprehensive MH/MR Program in Pittsburgh, Pa during the early 70's. I also have some pretty strong feelings about the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM) that serves as the classification system for Psychiatry and Psychology, primarily because these labels stick with most patients for a life time; there is no serious effort to change or expunge them when conditions change; and, our core values as a profession (and for medicine) is to support our clients with dignity and respect by offering "best practices & scientific research," including followup.

Some questions we might ask our colleagues to review and for psychiatry and psychology to repond to: Why do you accept money and samples from pharmaceutical companies? Why do you continue to define, categorize, and label your patients with a system that can not stand the test of reliability or validity? Why do you prescribe drugs that are not thoroughly tested by outside resources and without vested interests? Why won't you protest the practice of pharmaceutical companies doing their own research on their drugs? Why won't you explore and incorporate integrative health practices from many traditions that have demonstrated success over many centuries?

Furthermore, why have our health professionals accepted the concept of "Mental Health" as their focus, when, in fact, what affects the body affects the mind, emotions and spirit? Mind-body-spirit are integral and every thought or physical action represents a movement and change in relationships with our whole being. Thus, "mental health," is a misnomer--our whole being, its relationships and interactions are engaged in the process of change, health and well-being.

Unfortunately, many social workers have also jumped on the 'band wagon' and have wrapped themselves around this labeling system without fully understanding or appreciating the dangers and lack of validity and reliability of the entire system. It is particularly evident to me that MSW Licensing Exams & Licensing Boards for social workers have embraced labeling and the disease model with their tests and have accepted this system as their best source of understanding of our clients' problems. Medicine and social work have always maintained that their motto is--"Cause no Harm!" We consider ourselves scientists while offering little scientific evidence of the efficacy for diagnosis and treatment for mental health concerns. Yet, there is growing evidence that much of what they offer their patients is a scam. These reports that I am posting clearly show that "humpty dumpty-mental health is about to have a big fall."

Surely, after reading my earlier log on the DSM and with the inclusion of these recent articles showing the dangers of the MH System it appears to me that this system should be bulldozed and everyone working in the mental health industry should roll up their shirt sleeves and get to work cleaning up their ACT. I have many friends and colleagues in this industry and I know that many of them would like to see some radical changes; however, they also may not recognize the dangers, are fearful about speaking out, and are not encouraged or supported to present their views. Our universities throughout the country are also very timid about raising the Red Flag in regard to the MH system as many journals, accredited courses, grants, scholarships, and many sources of funding could be endangered should they speak the truth.

This log is really just an addendum to my earlier log showing how dysfunctional the MH System of America really is. It is very hard for me to have to put such a negative slant or picture on a whole network of mental health programs and activities. But, as long as social workers and allied mental health professionals adopt the psychiatric/psychological model of sick care, we will continue to enable a failed system and be a major part of the problem.

I encourage those of us who have the strength, courage and willingness to improve health services for individuals, couples, families, groups and communities, to begin adopting ecological, holistic or integrative health practices; applying, teaching and empowering our clients to maintain balance with daily health practices or routines that include our whole being--physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually; and, focus our efforts on primary prevention, improvement of schools, living conditions and on parenting skills. When basic human needs are ignored in our society, for the most part, the deprivation, abuse and neglect are the leading cause of mental illness.


Finally, I hope, the mental health movement and professionals will move out of their private offices and into the wider community, promote whole health, and get over their fear of physical interaction (touch) Perhaps the MH movement is failing, in part, because they have failed to recognize that every human being - therapists included, "...needs to touch and to be touched." See, Montagu, A. (1986). Touching - The human significance of the skin. NY: Harper & Row.

Also, do read this important contribution to medicine, psychiatry, psychology, social work, nursing and to others who fear touch. The following is an unsolicited website by Dr. Ofer Zur offering free articles that make more sense than much of our current mental health practices, theories and dogma. [link]


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12 comments

4 Jun 2007 @ 15:15 by shreepal : Fallacy of MH program
It requires courage to stand up alone to speak the truth that is out of synch with the time and it is this truth when you say "Unfortunately, many social workers have also jumped on the 'band wagon' and have wrapped themselves around this labeling system without fully understanding or appreciating the dangers and lack of validity and reliability of the entire (MH) system. It is particularly evident to me that MSW Licensing Exams & Licensing Boards for social workers have embraced labeling and the disease model with their tests and have accepted this system as their best source of understanding of our clients' problems.... We consider ourselves scientists while offering little scientific evidence of the efficacy for diagnosis and treatment for mental health concerns. Yet, there is growing evidence that much of what they offer their patients is a scam."

Labelling the symptoms is highly superficial approach to the whole MH problem and to get one's share of pie of the alloted funds related social workers and Drug companies jump in the fray to make the situation worse. Social workers armed with ever new logical concepts therapies, medical men with their newer drugs and psychiatrists with hypnotic intrusion into the minds of their 'clients' are making the MH problem really serious.
Mind is the mainframe of the whole personality of an individual and all the ingradients of his or her personality vitally affect this mental mainframe. To make a mind healty, human being's physical and emotional beings have to be made healthy. You cannot take out the mind, mend it and refit back in the disturbed physical and emotional beings to make it function in a healty way. This fact should be taught as the first lesson of any MH program.  



10 Jun 2007 @ 14:40 by jerryvest : Psychiatrists drug their patients
with little concern about their welfare as pointed out in this recent article.

Very good article (letter to the journal) in the April 2007, Social Work Journal, "Social Work and Psychotropic Medication," by Richard C. Kensinger.

For example:

"...medication issues are very pertinent to clinical social workers. In the public sector, which has been the majority of my experience, four out of five clients are prescribed psychotropic agents, often in combination. This includes adults and youth clients. And it is quite common to have these agents prescribed for "off label" purposes.

"I regard medication as a more invasive intervention than psychotherapy, and a strategy that should always be used in conjunction with psychosocial interventions. I have attended numerous psychiatric consultations with my clients. In my experience it is rare for the prescriber to ask the client if they are allergic to any of these agents, and they rarely discuss side effects and adverse events." (p.192)

In other words their patients are not fully informed about these issues as is clearly indicated in our Code of Ethics--eg. safety, respect and dignity as well as common decency.

 



10 Jun 2007 @ 21:19 by a-d : Dear Jerry,
I kinda put my comment to this your article in my own blog; comment space!.... It seemed fitting there as response to YOUR comment there! : ) (How silly!... )

You are so right about the madness going on in the Mental Health Care-as well as in the rest of it (broad strokes here...hehehe)
ALL Health Care CAN be so much better than it is today. But once again: We The People have to grow up and take charge of shaping our own lives -or we will continue to be handed what ever someone else decide they "want to" give us. When ever a person matures enough emotionally, they totally know to BYpass the Authority figures; the metaphorical Mommy & Daddy figures. That is 'when & where' one will start to be willing and interested to be in charge of one's own life, pulling the strings, choosing one's own truth from Within oneself as more valid in one;s life rather than accepting any cookie-cutter cut stereotype norms, be it in Psych-Care or Fashion!... doesn't matter; the same principle in action.  



10 Jun 2007 @ 22:28 by jerryvest : Thanks, Astrid....yes, what we have
traditionally been calling "health care" is really "sick care." And, we either learn that it is better to feel good and have energy than it is to be ill and have no energy. It looks like our planet and most everyone on it are at risk and heading for "sick care"--loss of energy or spirit. We have to find the authority in ourselves to take responsibility for our lives, our health and our wellbeing. Perhaps we will awaken to the recognition that as we improve our whole being, we will be able to more effectively solve problems that we are facing or at the very least not become part of the problem. And, as you suggest, move from dependence to autonomy and security.  


12 Jun 2007 @ 16:26 by a-d : I've been
reading the link you gave us. (VERY GOOD ONE!)....and.... ahhh.... I am taken aback, going through my whole life almost day by day as it happened and -once again- reviewing the events of that 'Daily life'. (I've been a neutral Observer of my self and my life as I lived each day, from the time I was appr.two years old) I can't tell you how incredibly accurate I find everything said in the link! We could talk for several hours about this! : ) But in the end it all boils down to ONE thing: Man, KNOW Thy Self!
Funny; in both Swedish and Finnish languages (my two parallel languages) "to know" and to "feel" is expressed by the same, one word and whether it is used as "know" or "feel" becomes clear from the rest of the sentence.
In English the two words that in their inherent MEANING have same kind of "awareness power" are: "see" and "understand" .... this is the best way I can express what kind of opening of our cosmic awareness is given to us in the use of our language, when given even the tiniest bit of reflexion; opening the doors for us back to our own Divinity and truth as Cosmic Light Beings!
The deeper we grasp the significance of these two sets of words, the more SELF Awareness we gain!... With gained awareness comes gained Co-creativity (with Universe) With the speed as that happens; our dignity and decency grows, I dare to say..... and touch is not a problem any longer.... regardless what we were fed via our arrival/ location here on Earth!
Man, KNOW Thy Self! Man, FEEL Thy Self! Man, SEE Thy Self! Man, UNDERSTAND Thy Self! : )
Love You!/ A-d  



13 Jun 2007 @ 15:07 by jerryvest : Astrid, you are a true source of love
caring and concern for humanity and our planet. It is interesting that your original language has such an impact on your life, relationships and observations as you trust what you feel and express what you know. I am only beginning to learn what 'Co-creativity' means from reading your articles and others who share this concept. I'm not certain, but it does seem that we are partners with our Creator and Creation. WE (All that exists)are living together on this planet and what affects one affects all, even beyond our awareness.

It's interesting to me that we are very delicate creatures and we often "wear our feelings on our shirt sleeves." We react to almost everything and everyone, often, without being aware of our sensitivity. We also will hurt and harm others who we are very close to while committing or claiming to love them unconditionally. We believe that we are mature, responsible adults, yet we blindly strike out at our children and others with little awareness and concern for their health and well-being, especially when we don't get our 'way.'

Anyway, I believe that you are right, there is a close relationship between Feelings and Knowing, but as human beings, we certainly need to learn how to become more conscious about how we assimilate and express their attributes.  



14 Jun 2007 @ 13:56 by jerryvest : This is a good article related to
mental health problems in the work place and why more workers won't get help for their problems.

June 12, 2007
Innerworkings: A Look at Mental Health in Today’s Workplace
Mental illness is the leading cause of indirect costs associated with lost work time, but employees still shun treatment, and managers are ill prepared to deal with the problem, HR-benefits directors report. Those are among the views shared by 515 respondents in a new survey, "Innerworkings: A Look at Mental Health in Today's Workplace," conducted by Employee Benefit News with help from The Partnership for Workplace Mental Health and funding from the Managed Markets division of Astra-Zeneca. "Innerworkings" also reveals that while more organizations are providing programs to help employees with mental health problems, stigma and lack of awareness prevent these benefits from being fully utilized.

[link]  



14 Jun 2007 @ 15:48 by a-d : My own personal
opinion, based on my own personal observations, based on my own experiencies in the field clued me in long time ago that Depression is nr one cause to ANY other medical/health/illness condition in the WORLD!
That conclusion of mine has not had any reason to change.But for the last 150 -or so years- : ) I have been asking Universe:WHAT EXACTLY is "depression"/WHAT CAUSES depression???....
I have finally received what I feel an answer that covers enough ground -for me to voice my opinions out loud about the issue: It is OUR OWN OPPRESSION of US! When you look "deep enough and focuses enough into the structure of our establishment and how it demands us to see ourselves and the life skills we were provided by it and what life-skills we were ripped off by it 'you'find that we are trained into blaming ourselves and take the heat for NOT being able to manifest our life the way Life wanted -and gave us Tools to do so! We blame ourselves, accepting their blame and adding even more guilt on us by feeling what we are told to feel: BAD for this and bad for that -with no end! ( Just look at the rigged DEBT -based Monetary System from which there is literally NO WAY OUT -unless you are willing to "sell your Soul/Mind (in modern lingo) to the Devil = Double Standards = SELFISHNESS and then jump into the Dog-Eat-Dog race from the Rat-Race! ONLY then can 'you' have a minute chance to create a
good life = a life that someone else dictated for you to live, but materially an "OK"-life!....
But the CONFLICT, that has been BUILT-IN-to our very Soul from our first Breath -(and meant to be there to our last gasp of air when dying)- persists and eats us alive from Within!
It starts with depression and -if we are lucky; it escalates to open anxiety and panick attacks. Now,if ever, do we have a chance to slow down and listen to the Cosmic Message from Within: our very Soul is turning up all the alarms to make us wake up and smell the coffee -as the saying goes.... and the Message is : WE ARE LIVING A LIFE NOT ORIGINALLY NOT MEANT BY LIFE/God! In other words: GET OUT and take your own God-given Powers/Skills back = be born again into your own authenticity; your own true Me ( also known in Ancient Times as "the Christos" = Christ Consciousness), which KNOWS -and STAYS TRUE to- its own Divinity!
There is no way around this TRUTH/FACT!
The first thing we as a unified Community of Divine Beings should do, is to flush down the current ENSLAVING Monetary System and create a new one, based on Abundance consciousness and only keep it as a practical tool in Goods Exchange. Money can NEVER replace Cosmic Energy!... which indeed is what keeps us alive and healthy and when we allow this same for ALL Living things we will indeed all be free -from ALL s--- that now/still plagues us .... This is the depth we need to go in and clean out "the House". Until this happens People will continue to be depressed; the usually totally un-acknowledged starting point for the rest of disasters that can befall us, both Mental/Physical and Social ( have you ever seen a one year old at the Internal Medicine Ward with diagnosis you can't even pronounce !?... and they died like flies!... Let me tell you: it was AWFUL!!! ....
I looked up "Blame the Victim" on Metacrawler yesterday and surpricingly little of true value could be found there. We still live under the curse of "ohh.. it the victim's own fault -except when the crooks themselves are the victim -whether for real -or for tightening the guilt screws on the rest of us! Then and only then is victimhood legitemate! The Socio/Psychopath; "the Bully" still uses this psychological torture tool quite successfully!.... whether the bully is a Private citizen/serf -or one from "higher" social stratas; the behaviour/ way of treating Life outside of bully's own skin, is the same  



18 Jun 2007 @ 18:11 by jerryvest : Depression is OUR OWN OPPRESSION of US!
This sounds right on to me, Astrid. As we experience daily with our world relations--our designated leaders in congress, administration, courts, local government and many parents and other adults in authority--are oppressors without realizing it. They selfishly impose their beliefs, plans, rules and authority on to others without awareness of consequences or of what is best for humanity and of nature. They seem to believe that they are in charge of everything and everyone without knowing themselves, or having the compassion, understaning and wisdom to serve in these responsible positions.

So we are oppressed by others and take it out on ourselves. Our authority figures or hierarchy can be very harsh, critical and threatening of our health, safety and security. We have all experienced the Puritan zealots and Evangelical movement who now rule our country and our planet. They feel as though God is on their side so they can do whatever they wish or get whatever they want.

As I see it, when we can not take "right action" because of many reasons, we turn against ourselves; blame others for our predicament; cover up our loving or caring feeling for ourselves and others; feel alone in the universe; feel abandoned, hopeless and frightened. Our position as a human being is threatened and we will probably stay depressed until we find a wait out of this "snake pit."

My experience for moving out of this state is to become more physical and maintain a daily health practice that balances our whole being.

I am remined by Ashley Montagu, "...as human beings, we have a basic need to touch and to be touched." Let's practice giving and receiving touch (physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually) every day and we will never experience depression--we will be "expressing" ourselves according to our true nature.

No Contact Rule in Schools  



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26 Jan 2017 @ 15:32 by download bbm for pc @115.178.193.234 : Thanks
colleges struggle with mental health crisis; and, the list goes on.  


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Other entries in
31 May 2010 @ 22:18: Our StressOut Mission and Activities
27 May 2008 @ 13:31: Another Critical Look at the DSM
4 May 2008 @ 02:25: Prototype Health Program for Wounded Warriors
21 Jan 2008 @ 20:58: What A Day Brings
16 Jan 2008 @ 14:31: Our Primary Concern is our Client ....
4 Jan 2008 @ 15:17: Study Finds, Drugs Offer No Benefit in Curbing Aggression
25 Nov 2007 @ 20:05: A Story about a Drug Representative of the Big Pharmas
14 Oct 2007 @ 14:27: Use of Touch & Integrative Methods
20 Jun 2007 @ 13:17: Alternatives for Mental Health Workers and their Clients
5 Jun 2007 @ 10:03: The US: One Big Drug Store



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