Mental treatment removes more brain cells than it adds. Do you agree?
The shock treatment of mental patients is terrible. I think the shock damages a lot of the patient's brains. Is it true that a defective brain is rectified by removing brain cells rather than adding cells?
You are right on target. Electroshock therapy (ECT) in both its original form and its new, milder form, does a lot of damage to the brain, and little else.
The same is true of almost every prescription medicine for a psychological condition. (Lithium is an exception.) Almost all of them reduce blood flow to the brain and kill brain cells.
True treatment of mental illness is quite easy and affordable in a sane society - effective therapy exists. But few psychiatrists or psychologists have the knack. So we keep using solutions that don't work, and, worse, actually backfire, increasing insanity, suicide, and murder.
I don't agree at all. Electroshock therapy is rarely used today and when it is used, it is done as a last resort and is an elective procedure, not a forced one. It is actually quite difficult in the US to get into a mental facility even if you need one. They are too few of them and the demand is enormous.
It has also become fashionable to say that psychisatric drugs are bad and therapy is good. The problem is, it isn't true. Many forms of severe depression absolutely require proper medication to manage successfully--in most cases combined with cognitive behavioral theory and social support. Ditto PTSD.
Depression and anxiety disorders are at epidemic levels in the U.S. When large portions of the population require psychiatric medication just to function at a marginal level (and they do--SSRIs are the most frequently prescribed med in the US by a large percentage), then you have to take a look at how a society is structured. If you look at US society, what you see is a lot of moral judgment and ignorance, a lot of anger and rage, and an enormous amount of stress.
We work longer and harder for less money than any other developed nation. We have the worst health care (#27 on the WHO chart), terrible infant mortality, record rates of obesity and malnutrition (often going hand in hand), and we imprison more people by far than even our worst enemies ever have. The poverty rate is increasing at a ridiculous rate, and more people are living on the streets than I have seen in my lifetime. Twenty-five percent of children in the US don't get enough to eat.
So why on earth are Americans anxious and depressed? Gee, I wonder.
Say what you will about psychiatric care, but I can tell you for certain that thirty years ago we didn't throw mentally ill people into the street and tell them to suck it up. Now that's what we do. It isn't working out for us and why would it?
We need more, better, and cheaper mental health care, not less.
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