Scientific Flaws in Psychiatric Treatment and the Call for Social Solutions: Uncovering a Discrepancy in Mental Health Care

Psychiatric Treatment

The scientific underpinnings of the prescription of psychiatric drugs are questioned by a trailblazing analysis of various psychiatric treatment methods.

Unlike other prescription drugs that have to pass through an elaborate process of testing for their safety and effectiveness, there is a lack of scientific evidence supporting the widespread use of psychiatric drugs.

This has been occasioned by the fact that no research has definitively revealed any physiological or genetic causes for mental illnesses like depression and anxiety, thereby raising questions on the basis used to prescribe these medications.

Over a span of more than a century, an all-inclusive assessment reveals that NIMH invested hundreds of billions of dollars in research attempting to locate biological origins for psychiatric disorders.

However, this prolonged effort has achieved limited success, raising serious doubts about its medical value.

Despite massive public expenditure on psychiatric treatments, certain fundamental structures in healthcare science such as diagnosis, explanation and treatment have little or no influence on the field of mental health care.

Psychiatry’s most authoritative tool for diagnosis is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), which lacks validation as well as reliability.

Additionally, the popularly advertised chemical imbalance theory advanced as a cause for mental disorders cannot withstand scrutiny from science.

For example, antidepressants which are commonly used in psychiatric treatments lack superiority over placebos in long term efficacy and can even be harmful when used over extended periods.

There is also some evidence that psychiatric journals and researchers may be disseminating misinformation to medical practitioners about these drugs.

Studies apparently supporting the efficacy of psychiatric treatments frequently misrepresent them with careful data analysis showing they are equivalent to placebo.

As such patients are exposed to an argument favoring medicalized mental health care which does not hold up upon closer examination, yet it may actually worsen symptoms rather than alleviate them.

However, it is not true that biological factors are primarily responsible for causing mental diseases according to overwhelming scientific literature.

Studies have demonstrated that bad environmental conditions like poverty, trauma and stress are positively correlated with the occurrence of mental disorders.

For example, Nature Neuroscience published a study indicating that children from low-income families had lower brain surface area and DNA changes resulting from stressful environment.

However, positive change in living conditions has shown the possibility to reverse these effects indicating that the brain can be shaped by positive changes.

Moreover, research investigating the effect of socioeconomic interventions on mental health has emphasized on non-medical approaches.

Income supplementation for poor households significantly improved children’s cognitive and language abilities according to studies.

Similarly, reducing income disparity led to a significant decline in the number of people diagnosed with mental illnesses.

Contrary to this flawed medical model, extensive research consistently demonstrates that psychological interventions reduce mental illness more effectively than medical treatments.

Researches highlight the superiority of psychotherapy over drugs in treating depression since studies on relapse rates indicate that this approach is more effective than medication.

Despite overwhelming evidence supporting social and psychological interventions over pharmaceuticals within mental health care, psychiatric drugs remain as the primary psychiatric treatment option.

Consequently, it continues to perpetuate the narrative that mental disorders are biologically based which is reinforced by psychiatry, drug manufacturers and mainstream media ignoring the scientific evidence offering alternatives.

The difference in approaches to treatment, however, indicates a serious oversight and healthcare’s double standard where psychiatric treatment lacks the same level of scientific rigor as that applied to physical illnesses.

This results in a failure that is perpetuated by vested financial interests rather than patient-centered care, therefore making it an unsustainable system that worsens rather than reduces mental illnesses.

The dominant ideology in mental health care, supported by vested interests and lacking scientific accountability, has affected millions.

In this regard, there is need for a fresh look at psychiatric treatment strategies so as to embrace evidence-based, social and psychological approaches to enhance efficient and compassionate mental healthcare.

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  • Scientific Flaws in Psychiatric Treatment and the Call for Social Solutions: Uncovering a Discrepancy in Mental Health Care