Archive for February, 2014

DSM of the Future

Sunday, February 16th, 2014

DSM of the Future

We’re reading a novel by Rick Moody called The Four Fingers of Death (2010, Little, Brown and Company,) about the adventures of astronauts on a mission to Mars in the very near future, among other amazing occurrences.

Not that we’re particularly reviewing or recommending this novel, but the author regularly lampoons the DSM, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, used by the psychiatric industry to record every condition for which they are allowed to bill insurance carriers.

The current version is DSM-5. The novel quotes a future eighth revision. I thought it might be amusing to list a few of the imaginary disorders from the book. We’re only up to page 136 out of 725, so we’re expecting many more gems from DSM-VIII.

  • Gambling para-addiction syndrome with socially unacceptable perspiration feature
  • Aggravated hydrophobia with hygiene aversion
  • Mixed caffeine obsession with chronic caffeine dependence
  • Conversational pseudo-uremia
  • Unorthodox chess openings
  • Waitstaff, habitual harassment thereof
  • Belief in extraterrestrial intelligence
  • Repeated re-organizing of household objects
  • Hearty laughter at neutral remarks
  • Fear of photosynthesis and photosynthesizers
  • Elective pseudodementia
  • Planetary exile syndrome
  • Interplanetary disinhibiting disorder

Don’t even ask me what these are; and if you ask psychiatrists, you’re liable to get a different answer from each one.

OK, we’ve had our fun. What’s the point?

With the DSM, psychiatry has taken countless aspects of human behavior and reclassified them as a “mental illness” simply by adding the term “disorder” onto them. While even key DSM contributors admit that there is no scientific or medical validity to the “disorders,” the DSM nonetheless serves as a diagnostic tool, not only for individual treatment, but also for child custody disputes, discrimination cases, court testimony, education and more. As the diagnoses completely lack scientific criteria, anyone can be labeled mentally ill, and subjected to dangerous and life threatening “treatments” based solely on opinion.

The psychiatricizing of normal everyday behavior by including personality quirks and traits is a lucrative business for the APA because by expanding the number of “mental illnesses” even ordinary people can become patients and added to the psychiatric marketing pool.

Every single psychiatric label stigmatizes the person being labeled and as long as we continue to use psychiatric labels (contained within the DSM) to describe behaviors—psychiatry will continue to profit while the public suffers.

Psychiatric disorders are not medical diseases. There are no lab tests, brain scans, X-rays or chemical imbalance tests that can verify any mental disorder is a physical condition. This is not to say that people do not get depressed, or that people can’t experience emotional or mental duress, but psychiatry has repackaged these emotions and behaviors as “disease” in order to sell drugs. This is a brilliant marketing campaign, but it is not science.

Coming up with new lists of behaviors and new “disorders” is the bedrock of the multi-billion dollar psychiatric/pharmaceutical industry. It’s how they get paid. Remember, no psychiatric label, no billing insurance. No psychiatric label, no drug prescribed. The psychiatric labels are backed by corporate interests—not medicine, and not science.

By educating yourself with the facts about psychiatry, you will have the information you need to never become a victim of this vicious pseudo-science. Protect yourself with the truth. Find out what psychiatrists don’t want you to know. Watch the CCHR documentary Psychiatry’s Deadliest Scam; show it to your family, friends and associates.

Contact your State Senator and Representative and ask them to remove all references to the DSM from your state’s Law.

Stress

Sunday, February 9th, 2014

Stress

Our research leading to the recent newsletter on Marijuana turned up many references to “stress” — the relief of stress by smoking pot; the stress caused by not having access to pot; the tension caused by opposing points of view on the use of pot; myriad stress-relief programs; the stress caused by adverse reactions, side effects and withdrawal symptoms of pot-smoking.

We thought it would be appropriate, therefore, to write about the subject of stress. It is obviously a term of great interest to psychiatry as well. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), the billing bible of the mental health care industry, names it explicitly as a billable diagnosis.

  • Acute Stress Disorder (308.3, DSM-IV)
  • Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (309.81, DSM-IV)
  • Trauma- and Stressor-Related Disorders (an entire chapter in DSM-5); including various manifestations of PTSD, acute stress disorder, adjustment disorders, and reactive attachment disorder.

There are even “DSM-5 Self-Exam Questions” with which you can diagnose yourself for stress-related symptoms.

Then there is ICD-10, the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision. This is a coding of diseases and signs, symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances and external causes of injury or diseases, as classified by the World Health Organization. ICD-10 has its own classification of various stressors such as phobias, anxieties, adjustment disorders, and so on. The deadline for the United States to begin using Clinical Modification ICD-10-CM for diagnosis coding is currently October 1, 2014.

Let’s go over the basics, the dictionary definitions of the word “stress.” There are many; here are some:

  • a state of mental tension and worry caused by problems in life or work
  • something that causes strong feelings of worry or anxiety
  • physical force or pressure
  • a constraining force or influence
  • the burden on one’s emotional or mental well-being created by demands or difficulties

[from Middle English stresse stress, distress, hardship, short for destresse which is from Anglo-French destresce, from Latin districtus, past participle of distringere to grip with force, to draw tight]

“Acute stress response” was first described by Walter Cannon in the 1920s as a theory that animals react to threats with a general discharge of the sympathetic nervous system. The response was later recognized as the first stage of a general adaptation syndrome that regulates stress responses among vertebrates and other organisms (from Wikipedia.)

Here are some additional terms and phrases associated with the concept of stress that one might consider as either causes or symptoms:

  • suppression on one or more parts of one’s life
  • boredom
  • lack of a goal or purpose in life
  • exhaustion
  • overwhelm
  • physical or mental shock
  • exposure to someone antagonistic to oneself or one’s efforts
  • an accumulation in life of turmoil, distress, failure, pain, loss or injury

For comparison, here are some of the concepts encompassing opposites of stress (which we might generally just consider as an absence of stress):

  • survival
  • success
  • health
  • vitality
  • comfort
  • relaxation

We would like to make it very clear that STRESS IS NOT A MENTAL ILLNESS! It is the reaction to a stressor. It is not a deficiency of cannabis or Prozac, and cannot be fixed with a drug. It can only be fixed by finding and eliminating the causes of the stress. Notice we said “causes” plural; if you knew the one thing that was causing your stress, you would have already fixed it. Of course, there are many, many single things that, when found and fixed, could significantly reduce or eliminate those particular stressors.

Bodies also have their own forms of stress, for example chronic age-related diseases are linked to inflammation in the body; and oxidative stress occurs when the body is exposed to an excessive number of free radicals.

What’s keeping people from handling their stress?

Well, there are vested interests who want the general populace immobilized by stress. The psychopharmaceutical industry, for example.

Psychiatrists will not tell you that there are many safe and effective, non-psychiatric options for mental and emotional turmoil.

While life is full of problems, and those problems can sometimes be overwhelming, it is important to know that psychiatry, with its unscientific diagnoses and harmful treatments, are the wrong way to go. Their most common treatment, psychiatric drugs, only chemically mask problems and symptoms; they cannot and never will be able to solve life’s problems. Once the drug has worn off, the original problem remains, or may even deteriorate. Though psychiatrists classify their drugs as a solution to life’s problems, in the long run, they only make things worse.

According to top experts, the majority of people having mental problems are actually suffering from non-psychiatric disorders, which can cause emotional stress.

You can get a thorough physical examination from a competent medical—not a psychiatric—doctor to check for any underlying injury or illness that may be causing emotional distress.

It’s up to every individual to insist on it, and to insist on fully informed consent to any treatment.

New York Bill Requires Psychological Screening for Schoolchildren

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

New York Bill Requires Psychological Screening for Schoolchildren

We just signed the petition “State Rep. Margaret Markey: Stop Mandatory Psychological Screening of our Children” on Change.org. It’s important. Will you sign it too? Here’s the link:

https://www.change.org/petitions/state-rep-margaret-markey-stop-mandatory-psychological-screening-of-our-children

This petition seeks to gain your help to stop the passing of Bill A8186-2013 that would require all children attending public schools in New York to go through psychological screening as part of their required health certificate. The specific wording from the Bill is:

“EACH SUCH CERTIFICATE SHALL ALSO STATE THAT A PSYCHOLOGICAL EXAMINATION WAS PERFORMED AND THAT THE CHILD IS MENTALLY FIT TO PERMIT ATTENDANCE AT SCHOOL.”

You can find the bill here for more information: http://open.nysenate.gov/legislation/bill/A8186-2013

As of January 8th this bill has been referred to the Committee on Education for review. We need to let the New York Assemblywoman supporting this [Margaret Markey] know that we don’t agree with this Bill which is an invasion of the privacy of our children. We do not need our children to be given a screening potentially leading to a lifetime of fraudulent psychiatric labels and harmful psychotropic drugs.

In 2003 a report on “mental health care” presented to the federal government recommended that all 52 million American schoolchildren be screened for “mental illness,” claiming—without a shred of scientific evidence—that “early detection, assessment, and links with treatment” could “prevent mental health problems from worsening.” Already implemented in many states, screening and “intervention” is to be provided through primary health care facilities, schools, juvenile justice and child welfare—to anyone aged between 3 and 21. Millions of taxpayer dollars have already been allocated to this, which means that America’s already burgeoning numbers of children being prescribed potentially lethal psychiatric drugs could treble within a few years to 30 million.

Ten million American children are already prescribed drugs that can kill them or predispose them to later illicit drug abuse, violence or suicide.

Screening Doesn’t Prevent Suicide; Drugs Increase It!

Parents need to know that unlike medical diseases there is no x-ray, blood or other physical test to determine if a child has a “mental disorder;” that mental health screening is based on subjective questions not medical science; that parents must actively sign an informed consent form to allow any such screening; and that any informed consent form must contain the above information.

Government funding should never be used for mental health-screening programs and should be allocated, instead, to better educational facilities, teachers and tutoring to improve the literacy and educational standards of students.

Click here for more information about mental health screening.