More About Serotonin

We often remark on serotonin when discussing psychiatric drugs, so we thought we’d describe it in more depth.

The word comes from the combination of sero- (serum) + tonic (from Greek tonos string or stretching) + -in (from Latin -ina a term used to form words). It was first named in 1948, although its effects had likely been observed since 1868.

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter hormone synthesized in the adrenal glands and elsewhere in the body from the essential amino acid tryptophan (chemical formula C10H12N2O, also called 5-hydroxytryptamine), found in the brain, blood, and mostly the digestive tract, which allows nerve cells throughout the body to communicate and interact with each other.

Some of its effects include:
— helping smooth muscles to contract, such as the abdominal muscles that aid digestion,
— helping to regulate expansion and contraction of blood vessels,
— assisting the clotting of blood to close a wound,
— helping to regulate mood, aggression, appetite, and sleep.

It helps to create a sense of well-being or comfort in the body, which is the starting point for the theory of using it as an antidepressant.

Since serotonin impacts every part of your body, messing with it can cause unwanted and dangerous side effects. Obviously, the body must closely regulate and balance the level of serotonin, since both a deficiency or an excess can be harmful.

It is mainly metabolized in the liver and the resulting products are excreted by the kidneys.

It is also found in animals, insects, fungi and plants.

Extremely high levels of serotonin can cause a condition known as serotonin syndrome, with toxic and potentially fatal effects. It can be caused by an overdose of drugs or interactions between drugs which increase the concentration of serotonin in the central nervous system, the most common of which are the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), whose purpose is to raise the level of serotonin in the brain.

A toxic level of serotonin can occur by taking two or more of these types of drugs, even if each is only a normal therapeutic dose. Many drugs, both legal and illegal, influence the level of serotonin in the brain — including some antidepressants, appetite suppressants, analgesics (pain drugs), sedatives, antipsychotics, anti-anxiety drugs, antimigraine drugs, antiemetics (for relief of nausea and vomiting), antiepileptics, cannabis (marijuana), LSD, MDMA (Ecstasy), psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms), and cannabidiol (CBD).

There aren’t any tests that can diagnose serotonin syndrome. Instead, one has to observe the extent and severity of the various adverse reactions. Some side effects of serotonin syndrome can be altered mental status, muscle twitching, confusion, high blood pressure, fever, restlessness, sweating, tremors, shivering, or death.

Some people have a genetic defect with cytochrome P450 enzymes which influences serotonin metabolism. Some research also suggests that the interactions of psychotropic drugs with cytochrome P450 in the brain may also influence serotonin metabolism. Basically, these interactions can be extremely complex, and the results are unpredictable — meaning that wild variations in serotonin concentration, both lower and higher than optimum, may occur, with the attendant adverse reactions.

The proponents of all these drugs basically ignore the fact that they mess with serotonin when making claims for safety and usefulness. Messing with neurotransmitters in the brain without totally understanding how they work is serious business. Researchers know that 60 to 70 percent of patients diagnosed with depression continue to feel depressed even while taking such drugs. There is still a lot unknown about such interactions and long term safety, so caution is definitely advised.

An article in the October, 2018 print issue of Scientific American (“Postpartum Relief” on page 22) makes an interesting point, saying, “Many women who suffer from postpartum depression receive standard antidepressants, including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors such as Prozac. It is unclear how well these drugs work, however, because the neurotransmitter serotonin may play only a secondary role in the condition or may not be involved at all.” (Emphasis ours.)

Researchers still only conjecture about any relationship between depression and serotonin, and they are coming to understand that the results do not support the hype.

Psychiatrists have known since the beginning of psychopharmacology that their drugs do not cure any disease. Further, there is no credible evidence that depression is genetic or linked to serotonin transport; these are just public relations theories to support the marketing and sale of drugs. The manufacturers of every such drug state in the fine print that they don’t really understand how it works. Psychiatric drugs are fraudulently marketed as safe and effective for the sole purpose of earning billions for the psycho-pharmaceutical industry.

These drugs mask the real cause of problems in life and debilitate the individual, so denying him or her the opportunity for real recovery and hope for the future. This is the real reason why psychiatry is a violation of human rights. Psychiatric treatment is not just a failure — it is routinely destructive to the individual and one’s mental health.

Guilty of Bad Taste

And we don’t mean the “Bad Taste” 1987 science-fiction comedy horror splatter film about aliens harvesting humans for their intergalactic fast food franchise.

We mean that something is in bad or poor taste when it exhibits poor judgment by being tasteless, unsuitable, unseemly, improper, inappropriate, politically incorrect, impolite, lewd, offensive, insensitive, vulgar, crude, rude, obscene, meanspirited, or uncalled for. It is not a morally wrong action, but the reporting of current events often hypes what is essentially just bad taste by elevating it to a crime or a mental illness.

It should be obvious that the judgment of what is in good or bad taste is pretty subjective, socially entangled, and can be described by hoards of synonymous words.

Of course, we all know what good taste is. It’s what we have, and other people don’t.

Then again, bad taste could just be a failure to police oneself due to some extremely distracting condition, such as intoxication.

It occurred to us, reviewing some of the recent “news” in main stream media, that psychiatry has been (horrors) guilty of labeling bad taste as mental disorders.

Here are some examples of what could be just incidents of bad taste, or related to incidents of bad taste, from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). These are the fraudulent psychiatric diagnoses for which harmful and addictive psychotropic drugs can be prescribed, and for which insurance will pay the cost.

Adult antisocial behavior
Alcohol intoxication
Caffeine intoxication
Caffeine withdrawal
Cannabis intoxication
Cannabis withdrawal
Child or adolescent antisocial behavior
Cocaine intoxication
Cocaine withdrawal
Conduct disorder
Discord with neighbor, lodger, or landlord
Disinhibited social engagement disorder
Exhibitionistic disorder
Histrionic personality disorder
Insomnia disorder
Intermittent explosive disorder
Narcissistic personality disorder
Opioid intoxication
Opioid withdrawal
Personal history of military deployment
Phase of life problem
Relationship distress with spouse or intimate partner
Sibling relational problem
Social exclusion or rejection
Target of (perceived) adverse discrimination or persecution
Tobacco withdrawal

There are undoubtedly more diagnoses that could fit this categorization.

In other words, by exhibiting bad taste one could be diagnosed with a mental disorder and prescribed harmful and addictive psychotropic drugs. And who among us has not slipped up and said something they later regret? The point is, bad taste is not a mental illness, but it has been used by the psychiatric industry as a money-maker and a control mechanism by psychiatrists who assert that they know how you should behave in every circumstance.

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, immigration, 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.

It used to be that the term “mentally ill” was limited to mean crazy people like those talking to themselves in the streets and those acting irrationally, oblivious to the world around them. However, the symptoms of mental illness, today, have been re-defined and broadened by psychiatry to fit under the umbrella of any non-optimum behavior, including what is considered normal for that age. Basically, “mentally ill” now is just an opinion about something that a psychiatrist doesn’t like.

Since there is no laboratory test that can identify mental illness or suicide risk, the diagnosis of a mental disorder or of a suicide risk is entirely subjective. Basically, it is the opinion of a psychiatrist who has decided he does not like what a person is thinking or feeling. This is what we mean when we say that psychiatry is being used as a social control mechanism.

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

People can and do experience depression, anxiety and sadness, children (and adults) do act out or misbehave, and some people can indeed become irrational or psychotic, or be guilty of bad taste. This does not make them “diseased.” There are non–psychiatric, non–drug solutions for people experiencing mental difficulty, there are non–harmful alternatives.

Now They Are Arguing About Exercise

Psychiatric researchers from Yale University and other brain research institutions have analyzed 1.2 million people to see how exercise affects a person’s mental health.

The results and subsequent discussions have been blasted across all news media, and are proliferating rapidly.

Anyone with an exercise bike has been chiming in; some say their depression didn’t go away with exercise, some say it did. With glee, many reporters emphasize one particular result of the study, that “there is such a thing as too much exercise.”

The researchers measured “self-reported mental health.” Naturally, they also reported that more study was needed; needing more study (i.e. needing more research funds) is a standard result of many self-perpetuating studies. One could say they are exercising their right to continue working.

For this study, the only mental health disorder that the researchers took into account was “depression,” using something called the “Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System,” with questions such as “Now thinking about your mental health, which includes stress, depression, and problems with emotions, for how many days during the past 30 days was your mental health not good?”

We’re incredulous that this ridiculous research is given so many column inches of press, and that it took 1.2 million people to decide that sometimes exercise helps one feel better and sometimes it doesn’t.

If exercising sarcasm were a disease, we’d probably be dead by now.

OK, let’s look at this from another point of view. First, what do people actually mean by “good mental health?” We often say that psychiatry produces no cures, and for good reason. But what would a mental health cure look like? We’d probably call that “good mental health.” Here’s what we think:

We generally take cure to mean the elimination of some unwanted condition with some effective treatment. The primary purpose of any mental health treatment must be the therapeutic care and treatment of individuals who are suffering emotional disturbance. The only effective measure of this treatment must be “patients recovering and being sent, sane, back into society as productive individuals.” This, we would call a cure.

So, good mental health must then be “operating sanely in society as productive individuals.”

Second, what do people actually mean by “depression?” We often say that there is no such disease as depression, since there are no clinical tests for it. There are two main possibilities — one is an undiagnosed and untreated medical condition; the other is the opposite of good mental health, which would be “operating insanely in society as non-productive individuals.”

So what is the cure? In the first case, using standard clinical tests (blood tests, urine tests, x-rays, DNA tests, MRI, ultrasound, etc.) find and treat the actual medical condition. In the second case, get busy being productive; and hence we get the occasional benefits of exercise as it relates to the productivity of one taking some responsibility for one’s own health.

We might say that depression could actually be low morale; and since morale is based on production, find something useful to do and hop to it!

Psychiatric Drugs, School Violence, and Big Pharma Cover-Up

A study published June 12, 2018 from the University of Illinois at Chicago suggests that more than one-third (37.2%) of U.S. adults may be using prescription drugs that have the potential to cause depression or increase the risk of suicide.
[JAMA. 2018;319(22);2289-2298. doi:10.1001/jama.2018.6741]

Information about more than 26,000 adults from 2005 to 2014 was analyzed, along with more than 200 commonly prescribed drugs. However, many of these drugs are also available over the counter, so these results may underestimate the true prevalence of drugs having side effects of depression.

In other words, the use of prescription drugs, not just psychiatric drugs, that have depression or suicide as a potential adverse reaction is fairly common, and the more drugs one takes (called polypharmacy), the greater the likelihood of depression occurring as a side effect. “The likelihood of concurrent depression was most pronounced among adults concurrently using 3 or more medications with depression as a potential adverse effect, including among adults treated with antidepressants.”

Approximately 15% of adults who used three or more of these drugs concurrently experienced symptoms of depression or suicidal thoughts, compared with just 5% for those not using any of these drugs. Roughly 7.6% of adults using just one of these drugs reported a side effect of depression or suicidal thoughts during the study period, and 9% for those using two of these drugs. These results were the same whether the drugs were psychotropic or not. Depression was determined by asking nine questions related to the symptoms defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

“Commonly used depression screening instruments, however, do not incorporate evaluations of prescribed medications that have depression as a potential adverse effect.” In other words, so-called depression screening tests can register false positives when the person is taking one or more of roughly 200 prescription drugs.

We thought we should dig a little deeper into this phenomenon.

First, understand that there is no depression “disease”. A person can certainly have symptoms of feeling depressed, but this is not a medical condition in itself. An example of a medical condition with a symptom of depression would be a vitamin B1 (thiamine) deficiency. You don’t fix it with an antidepressant; you fix it with vitamin B1. There are hundreds of medical conditions that may have mental symptoms, just as there are hundreds of drugs that can cause or worsen these symptoms. Finding the actual causes with appropriate clinical tests and then fixing what is found is the correct way to proceed.

This leads to a topic known as CYP450, which stands for Cytochrome P450 enzymes. Cytochrome means “cellular pigment” and is a protein found in blood cells. Scientists understand these enzymes to be responsible for metabolizing almost half of all drugs currently on the market, including psychiatric drugs.

These are the major enzymes involved in drug metabolism, which is the breakdown of drugs in the liver or other organs so that they can be eliminated from the body once they have performed their function.

If these drugs are not metabolized and eliminated once they have done their work, they build up and become concentrated in the body, and then act as toxins. The possibility of harmful side effects, or adverse reactions, increases as the toxic concentration increases. The ballpark estimate is that each year 2.2 million Americans are hospitalized for adverse reactions and over 100,000 die from them.

Some people are deficient in CYP450 or have diminished capacity to metabolize these drugs, which may be a genetic or other issue. Individuals with no or poorly performing CYP450 enzymes are much more likely to suffer the side effects of prescription drugs, particularly psychiatric drugs known to have side effects of depression, violence and suicide.

These metabolic processes are immature at birth and up to three years old, and this may result in an increased risk for drug toxicity in infants and young children. Furthermore, certain drugs or certain excipients in vaccines may inhibit activation of CYP450 enzymes, again resulting in an increased risk for the accumulation of non-metabolized drugs and the resultant increase in adverse side effects such as depression, violence and suicide.

The side effects caused by a CYP450 deficiency and its subsequent failure to metabolize any one of hundreds of drugs can then be misdiagnosed as a mental illness, the patient then being prescribed more psychiatric drugs in a mistaken attempt to treat those side effects, further complicating the problems.

It is estimated that 10% of Caucasians and 7% of African Americans are Cytochrome P450 deficient.

The psychiatric and pharmaceutical industries have been aware of this phenomenon for some time, yet they have continued to push psychiatric drugs at an ever increasing rate, and the dramatic increase in symptoms of depression, suicide, and school violence is a direct result.

No one should be prescribed these types of drugs without adequate testing for a CYP450 deficiency, in order to determine their risk potential for adverse reactions. The test is not “standard of care” so one has to ask for it; but beware, they will still recommend an alternative drug if the original one cannot be easily metabolized. Better yet, stop prescribing all psychiatric drugs and find out with proper medical, clinical tests what the real problems are and treat those. Full informed consent is always indicated.

Any psychiatrist or pharmaceutical company that has knowingly withheld evidence about the relationship between CYP450 enzymes and drug side effects should be subject to both prosecution and litigation.

Medical students should be educated about these relationships.

For more information click on any of the links in this newsletter.

Patients For Life

A leading cause of death in patients diagnosed with a serious mental condition (such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression) has been preventable medical conditions such as cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes, metabolic disorders which are typical side effects of being treated with second generation (atypical) antipsychotics.

The majority of those who screen positive for these types of metabolic disorders do not receive treatment for these medical conditions. Even worse, the majority of patients being treated with these antipsychotics are not even screened, with simple blood tests, for these side effects.

A tremendous amount of effort, lasting over at least the last 15 years, has been expended in trying to change the U.S. medical system to implement simple blood test screening protocols for patients being prescribed antipsychotics. Many reasons have been given for this reluctance to change, but the most obvious reasons were not among them — the fact that no one knows how these drugs work, that they are addictive, harmful, and are causing side effects that produce continuing income from these patients for life, a life albeit shortened by the metabolic disorders caused by the drugs.

The general attitude of the mental health care industry is that mental disorders are comorbid with metabolic disorders. This means that there is a simultaneous presence of these two chronic conditions in a patient, with little thought given to the fact that metabolic disorders can be the side effect of the drugs being given for the mental disorder. Since the drugs are addictive, harmful, and have nasty side effects, the obvious solution is to stop prescribing the drugs and use one or more of the many non-drug alternatives. This, however, would deprive the industry of one of its top money-makers.

Patients already presenting with CVD or diabetes, or who have known risk factors for these, should not even be considered as candidates for antipsychotics, and should also be screened for any other undiagnosed and untreated medical conditions which may be causing mental symptoms.

A case could be made for malpractice if blood test screening for metabolic disorders is not being performed for patients vulnerable to these diseases, especially since the medications that psychiatrists prescribe increase vulnerability to metabolic syndrome. [Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of metabolic disorders, usually including increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol or triglyceride levels — that occur together, increasing the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.]

Psychiatrists should be responsible for monitoring any potential side effects associated with the drugs that they prescribe; therefore, it is negligent if monitoring is not being done.

We are seeing a huge increase in the rate of antipsychotic prescriptions among younger pediatric patients, yet the younger one is, the lower one’s chances of being monitored.

Based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), statistics are touted about near “epidemic” rates of mental illness in order to demand more government funds and sell more harmful drugs, making people “patients for life” as the drug adverse events then require more drugs to handle these harmful side effects.

Contact your local, state and federal authorities and legislators and demand that funding for psychiatric promises be revoked until the mental health industry can prove its effectiveness with actual cures.

Vraylar to the Vrescue

We are now seeing TV ads for Vraylar (generic cariprazine) for “manic or mixed episodes of bipolar I disorder.” An atypical antipsychotic, it alters levels of dopamine and serotonin in the brain. Vraylar was first approved by the FDA to treat schizophrenia in 2015. It can be compared to the antipsychotic risperidone, which is now available as a generic and thus not as expensive as the newer drug Vraylar. They say cariprazine is “less risky” than risperidone, but we think it was approved because it is more expensive.

Hungarian drugmaker Gedeon Richter, the developer of the drug, licensed it to the Dublin pharmaceutical company Allergan and receives royalties on its sales. It cost about $400 million to develop, and its projected income at the time was $300 million per year. Allergan’s Vraylar revenue for 2017 was $287.8 million. A month’s supply for one person costs approximately $1,050 (depending on dosage.)

The exact way Vraylar is supposed to work is totally unknown. It is another example of the debunked medical model of psychiatry which fraudulently supposes that messing with the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain can help. The prevailing psychiatric theory is that mental disorders result from a chemical imbalance in the brain; however, there is no biological or other evidence to prove this.

Basically, psychiatrists gave it in clinical trials to a bunch of people with mental disturbances and performed extensive statistical analyses to “prove” that symptoms of mental distress were less severe while taking the drug than while taking a placebo; while at the same time recording, but discounting, all the adverse reactions.

The most common side effects during clinical tests were uncontrolled movements of the face and body (tardive dyskinesia), muscle stiffness, indigestion, vomiting, sleepiness, and restlessness (akathisia). Other possible side effects are stroke, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, falls, seizures, agitation, anxiety — basically most of the adverse reactions we’ve come to associate with similar psychotropic drugs. This particular formulation stays in the body for weeks even after you stop taking it, so that side effects may occur long after you start or stop taking it.

During clinical trials, 12% of the patients who received Vraylar for a diagnosis of bipolar I discontinued treatment due to an adverse reaction. They say that the drug is not habit-forming, but it has withdrawal symptoms. The trials did not run long enough to actually test for physical addiction, although withdrawal symptoms were reported in newborns whose mothers were exposed to it during the third trimester of pregnancy. Also, the drug carries a black box warning that elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis are at an increased risk of death, just like any other atypical antipsychotic.

“Bipolar I disorder” used to be called “manic-depressive”. All it means is that a person roller-coasters — sometimes being up and other times being down. Bipolar disorder is characterized by unusual shifts in a person’s mood, energy and ability to function. Its symptoms are severe mood swings from one extreme of overly high or irritable (mania) to sad and hopeless (depression), then back again. In the 1800s, bipolar was known as manic depression, a term invented by German psychiatrist Emil Kraepelin. In 1953, another German psychiatrist, Karl Kleist coined the term “bipolar.” There is no objective clinical medical test for the condition.

Psychiatric treatment for schizophrenia and bipolar is complicated by high rates of relapse, indicating that the treatments do not really work. The failures to adequately treat bipolar apparently caused the psychiatric industry to split up the diagnosis into bipolar I and bipolar II, where bipolar II means that the individual has not experienced a full manic episode, just an elevated state of irritable mood that is less severe than a full manic episode. It’s splitting a hair that is completely irrelevant to anything except which drug to prescribe.

An estrogen imbalance, hypoglycemia (abnormal decrease in blood sugar), allergies, caffeine sensitivity, thyroid problems, vitamin B deficiencies, stress, and excessive copper in the body can all cause the symptoms fraudulently labeled as  “bipolar disorder.”

“Schizophrenia,” “bipolar,” and all other psychiatric labels have only one purpose: to make psychiatry millions in insurance reimbursement, government funds and profits from drug sales. If you are told that a psychiatric condition is due to a brain-biochemical imbalance, ask to see the test results.

The global bipolar drug market is growing, possibly due to increasing stress in life. For information about how stress can cause someone to roller-coaster, see our blog here. Click here for more information about bipolar, and here for more information about schizophrenia.

What is Happiness?

If you want happiness for an hour — take a nap.
If you want happiness for a day — go fishing.
If you want happiness for a year — inherit a fortune.
If you want happiness for a lifetime — help someone else.

[Chinese Proverb]

What is happiness, really? Is it “happy pills?” Mother’s little helper? Is “happiness” the opposite of “depression,” so that an anti-depressant should make one happy? Unfortunately, what anti-depressants do is actually detach one from reality; and the only happiness accrues to pharmaceutical companies who rake in $80 billion a year worldwide for psychiatric drugs.

As is usual with English words, “happiness” has more than one definition: 1) transient pleasure; 2) overcoming not unknowable obstacles toward a known goal; 3) a condition or state of well-being, contentment, pleasure; 4) joyful, cheerful, untroubled existence; 5) the reaction to having nice things happen to one.

Psychiatry, however, redefines happiness as a manic or hypomanic indication (associated with a bipolar diagnosis) which occurs in 14 separate entries in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5.)

Manic: characterized by frenetic activity or wild excitement; excitement of psychotic proportions manifested by mental and physical hyperactivity, disorganization of behavior and elevation of mood.
Hypomanic: A mild form of mania, marked by elation and hyperactivity; a mood state characterized by persistent dis-inhibition and pervasive euphoria.

“Treatment” generally includes psychotropic mood stabilizers, unless the state is a result of drug abuse or drug side effects — in which case the “treatment” may include psychotropic sedatives. All of these psychotropic drugs are addictive, mess up the central nervous system, and can have many disastrous side effects including violence and suicide.

For more information about mood stabilizers such as Lithium, Depakote (sodium valproate), Depakene (sodium valproate), Lamictal (lamotrigine), Lamictin (lamotrigine), Lamogine (lamotrigine); download and read the booklet Mood Stabilizers — the facts about the effects.

One psychologist even overtly proposed happiness as a psychiatric disorder. [From the website of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, a division of the National Institutes of Health]. One might think this was an April Fool’s joke, except that it was published in June.

Published in the Journal of Medical Ethics – J Med Ethics. 1992 Jun;18(2):94-8
“A proposal to classify happiness as a psychiatric disorder”
Richard P Bentall, Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Liverpool in the UK:

“It is proposed that happiness be classified as a psychiatric disorder and be included in future editions of the major diagnostic manuals under the new name: major affective disorder, pleasant type. In a review of the relevant literature it is shown that happiness is statistically abnormal, consists of a discrete cluster of symptoms, is associated with a range of cognitive abnormalities, and probably reflects the abnormal functioning of the central nervous system. One possible objection to this proposal remains–that happiness is not negatively valued. However, this objection is dismissed as scientifically irrelevant.”

We think we can safely say this psychologist’s attitude is a misanthropic manifestation; the DSM-5 might call it “Adult antisocial behavior”, “Antisocial personality disorder”, or maybe just “Unspecified anxiety disorder”.

It is true that a euphoric condition is often associated with certain hallucinogenic drugs. We wouldn’t actually call that “happiness”, however; and the mania associated with many psychiatric drugs is not sustainable.

What would promote happiness is an actual cure for mental distress. The psychiatric industry itself admits it has no capacity to cure. We generally take cure to mean the elimination of some unwanted condition by some effective treatment. The primary purpose of any mental health treatment must be the therapeutic care and treatment of individuals who are suffering emotional disturbance. The only effective measure of this treatment must be “patients recovering and being sent, sane, back into society as productive individuals.” This, we would call a cure.

While it is illegal for FDA-regulated products to make cure claims, there are in fact many non-drug and non-psychiatric alternatives which may prove effective in handling traumatic conditions. The trick is in finding out what is really wrong and fixing that, not just suppressing the central nervous system with drugs so that one does not feel the bad emotions.

Click here for more information about alternatives to fraudulent and abusive psychiatric treatments.

Click here for the truth about psychiatric drugs.

Click here for The Way To Happiness, the first moral code based wholly on common sense, containing twenty-one basic principles that guide one to a better quality of life.

Are You Depressed?

The sudden realization that someone might actually enjoy one’s company is a better antidepressant than anything one could get on a prescription.
[With thanks to Charles Stross, The Atrocity Archive.]

Psychiatry is heavily pushing false data about depression. You should know exactly what psychiatry and psychiatrists are:

  • Psychiatry is an antisocial enemy of the people.
  • Psychiatrists are undesirable antisocial elements.

What exactly is “depression?” The dictionary has this to say about what “depression” means:

A condition of feeling sad, despondent, hopeless, or inadequacy; A reduction in physiological vigor or activity such as fatigue.

The fact is, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Medical Association and the National Institute of Mental Health admit that there are no medical tests to confirm mental disorders as a disease but do nothing to counter the false idea that these are biological/medical conditions when in fact, diagnosis is simply done by a checklist of behaviors.

Yes, people experience symptoms of depression. This does not make them “mentally diseased” and there is no evidence of physical/medical abnormality for the so-called diagnosis of “depression.” This doesn’t mean that there aren’t solutions for people experiencing difficulty; there are non harmful, medical alternatives. But they do not require a psychiatric “label” to treat them. There is no mental illness test that is scientifically/medically proven. This isn’t a matter of opinion — psychiatrists who are opposed to the labeling of behaviors as mental illness openly admit this.

There are understandable possibilities for someone experiencing symptoms of depression. One is an undiagnosed and untreated medical condition that presents mental symptoms; and there are many of these medical conditions, requiring a full and searching clinical examination by a competent medical—not psychiatric—doctor to find the underlying undiagnosed and untreated physical problem. Go to this site for examples of medical conditions which can have mental symptoms. These all have non-psychiatric-drug alternatives.
A second possibility arises from stress, which is actually a situation in which a person is being suppressed in some area of their life — meaning there is something in their life, such as an antisocial person or element, which is putting them down, stopping them from getting better, invalidating or making less of one or one’s efforts.

Another possibility is simply a life event, such as grief, which has occasioned sadness or fatigue.

In the news now is a major source of false information about depression. Google is promoting this false information by teaming up with the National Alliance for Mental Illness to present a questionnaire to people who search for the word “depression” to recognize if what they are feeling is what psychiatrists call “clinical depression.” Don’t be fooled; this is simply an attempt to funnel vulnerable people into the mental health care system and prescribe them harmful and addictive psychiatric drugs. This questionnaire takes about five minutes to complete, and is just a list of behaviors, or as Dr. Thomas Szasz said, “The term ‘mental illness’ refers to the undesirable thoughts, feelings, and behaviors of persons.” More properly, it is just what psychiatry and psychiatrists have inappropriately labeled as “undesirable behavior;” the prime undesirable antisocial people on the planet telling you what they think is undesirable!

This questionnaire has no clinical value, using ten questions such as “Over the last 2 weeks, how often have you been bothered by feeling down, depressed, or hopeless?” or do you have “trouble falling or staying asleep?” If you are logged in to Google while taking this questionnaire you will be sharing this information about yourself with Google.

Click here for more information about psychiatric abuse.

Knock Yourself Out

The drug Ketamine is now being advertised as a “treatment” for “depression.” Don’t be fooled; this drug is serious business.

Ketamine, categorized as a “dissociative anesthetic,” is used in powdered or liquid form as an anesthetic, on animals as well as people. It can be injected, consumed in drinks, snorted, or added to joints or cigarettes.

By “dissociative anesthetic” we mean that this drug distorts perception of sight and sound and produces feelings of detachment (dissociation) from the environment and self.

Short- and long-term effects include increased heart rate and blood pressure, nausea, vomiting, numbness, depression, amnesia, hallucinations and potentially fatal respiratory problems. Ketamine users can also develop cravings for the drug. At high doses, users experience an effect referred to as “K-Hole,” an “out of body” or “near-death” experience.

Due to the detached, dreamlike state it creates, where the user finds it difficult to move, ketamine has been used as a “date-rape” drug. The increase in illicit use prompted ketamine’s placement in Schedule III of the United States Controlled Substance Act in August 1999.

[Update 9/5/2018 from Consumer Reports] “All these drugs [Ketamine, Phenylbutazone, Chloramphenicol] are prohibited in beef, poultry, and pork consumed in the U.S. Yet government data obtained by Consumer Reports suggest that trace amounts of these and other banned or severely restricted drugs may appear in the U.S. meat supply more often than was previously known.”

Ketamine is being promoted as an intravenous treatment for depression by an anesthesiologist in the St. Louis area. It does not cure anything, any effect it does have is of short duration, and must be administered on a regular basis to have a continuing effect. Its actual mechanism of operation is not well understood, but one can see that as an anesthetic it simply reduces ones general awareness, so the awareness of one’s depressive thoughts are suppressed. These return once the drug wears off.

Note that “depression” is not an actual medical illness; it is simply a symptom of some undiagnosed and untreated condition.

Currently, ketamine is not approved for the treatment of depression, and so this is an off-label use. Ketamine use as a recreational drug has been implicated in deaths globally. 10% to 20% of patients at anesthetic doses experience adverse reactions.

Its use to treat so-called depression is unethical and actually harmful, since it precludes the patient from finding out what is actually wrong and getting that treated.

Go here for more information about alternatives to drugs.

The Skinny on the Skin Drug

We saw a TV commercial recently for the drug Otezla® (generic apremilast), from Celgene Corporation, which was approved by the FDA in 2014 for the treatment of symptoms of moderate to severe plaque psoriasis (skin lesions) and psoriatic arthritis.

Our attention was caught by the statement that Otezla is associated with an increase in adverse reactions of depression, suicidal thoughts, or suicidal behavior. We wondered why, since this drug is not used for psychiatric diagnoses, and psychiatric drugs all have such potential side effects.

The drug inhibits the enzyme phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4), but the exact way in which it is supposed to work “isn’t completely understood”.

The estimated wholesale price is $22,500 for a year of treatment.

Digging deeper, we find that apremilast is an analog of thalidomide which was primarily prescribed as a psychotropic sedative or hypnotic and which was banned in 1961 for causing disastrous birth defects. Depression is also a common side effect of thalidomide.

In 1998 thalidomide was approved again by the FDA for use in multiple myeloma, a type of cancer, because it apparently had some kind of anti-inflammatory effect. It still is not known how it is supposed to work. Analogs of thalidomide were then developed to try to limit the side effects; an analog is a compound having a chemical structure similar to that of another one, but differing from it in respect of a certain component. Analogs are developed to see if they can improve upon the function of the base drug.

Well, apparently this one side effect — depression — did not get eliminated in the transformation from thalidomide to apremilast.

If someone has been given the full range of pros and cons for a drug or other treatment (i.e. full informed consent), with all applicable alternatives and even the alternative of no treatment, and then decides to take the drug or treatment, they made a fully informed decision. But we know that such informed consent is rarely, if ever, obtained prior to a psychiatrist or other doctor writing a prescription for a psychotropic drug. Click here to learn more about informed consent.