Natural News – September 1, 2011
by Monica G. Young
Imagine if the beloved young characters in Mark Twain’s classic, “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,” lived today. Based on current psychiatric criteria, Tom and Huck could be designated mentally ill and prescribed mind-altering drugs. Quiet, listless and numb, their legendary adventures would be over.
Describing a day in school, Twain wrote: “The harder Tom tried to fasten his mind on his book, the more his ideas wandered.” His “heart ached to be free, or else to have something of interest to do to pass the dreary time.” That’s a text book so-called symptom of ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder). A teacher today could refer him to a psychiatrist who would dope him with stimulants. Yet like any typical boy, Tom had no trouble focusing attention on something he found interesting – like finding a hidden treasure.
Tom’s friend Huckleberry might fare worse. An avowed non-conformist, a psychiatric checklist could tag him with ODD – oppositional defiant disorder. And having run away from an abusive father, Huck would land in the hands of Child Protective Services who would sedate him on psychoactive drugs subsidized by government funds.
Although no brain scan, blood test or x-ray had been done, the psych doctors would claim the boys’ mental illness stemmed from a neurobiological disorder involving chemical imbalances in the brain, probably hereditary.
Tom and Huck would likely experience insomnia, stomach aches, high blood pressure, stunted growth or some other “side” effects, and more drugs would be added to treat these. They would start feeling despondent and have mood swings, leading to probable depression or bipolar disorder diagnoses and more drug cocktails. The once spirited youths might end up as life-long pharmaceutical junkies.
Psychiatry revealed as an industry of fakers
Recently Harvard-trained psychiatrist Daniel Carlat exposed psychiatry as essentially a field of imposters. His book, “Unhinged; the Trouble with Psychiatry – a Doctor’s Revelations about a Profession in Crisis,” reads much like a confession – and rightly so.
Despite all their years in medical school, psychiatrists do not use any medical tests in diagnosing. Instead their labels are entirely subjective, opinionated and based upon a manual of disorders voted into existence by a psychiatric committee.
Yet these “experts” have transformed boyhood into “ADHD,” shyness into “social anxiety disorder” and menstrual discomfort into “premenstrual dysphoric disorder.” Some toddlers are labeled before given a chance to learn to talk.
Carlat states, “Psychiatrists have cordoned off the most painful versions of normal life, defined them as syndromes, and have given them medical-sounding names.” Yes, there are people who suffer from severe mental disturbances, but he says it’s “an illusion that we understand our patients when all we are doing is assigning them labels.”
Where is the science in all this? He writes, “While the scientific literature contains thousands of papers proposing neurobiological theories to explain PTSD [post traumatic stress disorder], depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and other psychiatric disorders, these theories remain unproven…” And he confides, “the shocking truth is that psychiatry has yet to develop a convincing explanation for the pathophysiology of any illness at all.”
In regards the chemical imbalance rant, Carlat says this is nothing more than a “convenient myth” so psychiatrists can appear authoritative and avoid looking ignorant with their patients.
This is an industry riveted to drugs, drugs and more drugs. Forget really listening to and understanding a patient’s troubles in life. Now it’s all about lucrative fifteen-minute monthly med checks – about as personal as Wendy’s drive-through.
Pharmaceutical industry influence has vast bearing on what medications psychiatrists use and how often. Carlat admits, “We have been seduced by the constant encouragement from drug companies to prescribe more medications…” Such seduction ranges from a drug rep bringing a doctor his favorite drink from Starbucks, to companies paying him up to a million or more to be their marketing mouthpiece.
Psycho-Pharma’s drug obsession diverts society’s attention off non-harmful solutions like teaching life skills, improving education, better nutrition and exercise, and addressing environmental factors.
In short, for all their diplomas, chic offices, puffed-up terminology and high fees, this is a field where greed and deception replace ethics and scientific methodology. Fortunately some like Daniel Carlat are blowing the whistle.
Most unforgivable is the dispensing of labels and drugs to millions of children. The leading gurus of this campaign have been psychiatrists deep in the pockets of Big Pharma, such as the exalted Dr. Joseph Biederman – flanked by an army of Pharma-paid “advocacy” groups.
Perhaps we should ourselves vote on labels to categorize such mentally-depraved individuals, such as conscience deficit hyper-lying disorder (CDHD) or better yet, false representation and underhandedness disorder (FRAUD).
Sources for this article include:
“The book, “Unhinged; the Trouble with Psychiatry – a Doctor’s Revelations about a Profession in Crisis,” by Daniel J. Carlat, M.D.