That Emotional Drug

Let me just say right up front that I do not think drugs are the answer to fear, anxiety, depression, anger, or any other emotional condition. The rampant use of drugs for emotional stress has always concerned me. The fact that we so readily “solve” problems with medication is troubling. And even more troubling was the fact that so many people did not seem to be all that concerned about it.
At least some people are beginning to voice their concerns. Recently, David Healy spoke at the American Psychiatric Association’s annual meeting and claimed psychiatrists were committing professional suicide by becoming so intimate with drug companies.
You may not know that drug companies spend somewhere in the neighborhood of ½ trillion dollars annually to market their drugs. The vast majority of that marketing is attempting to win over the doctors who prescribe drugs. Before these doctors even leave medical school, they are being taken to lunch and given gifts from drug companies.
It is almost like they are being recruited.
It is just another part of the aggressive tactics drug companies have developed to get their drugs sold. After all, a doctor who is “paid off” is less likely to ask questions about new drugs. And, as long as drug companies continue to spin the results of their studies, they can get their drugs out there even if the drugs are less than effective or even downright dangerous.
When we peel away all of the layers, at the center of the problem is that we have convinced ourselves that drugs are the answer. Drugs are a temporary band-aid until real change can occur. They are not the answer. Both drug companies and psychiatrists say there is no conflict of interest. They claim nothing unethical is taking place. They want all of this swept under the rug. They do not want anyone to look under the rug.
Until we seek a solution that is bigger than drugs, we remain at the mercy of drugs companies and the psychiatrists that they recruit.


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