The mythological underpinning of antidepressant use.
New research has shone a light on depression, finding that is in fact not caused by a ‘chemical imbalance’.
The breakthrough study was recently published in Molecular Psychiatry and calls into question the theory that depression can be cured with antidepressants.
According to the study, there is no clear evidence that depression is caused by low serotonin levels.
The research has been hailed as “ground-breaking”, as previous studies have found that as many as 85 to 90% of the public believes depression is caused by low serotonin or a chemical imbalance.
Most antidepressants are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), and were originally said to work by ‘correcting abnormally low serotonin levels’.
However, like most medical myths of our time, the theory has fallen apart when put under the microscope.
Now, the effectiveness of antidepressants is being questioned, with added concerns about the possible harmful side effects of taking medication.
The scientific evidence hints at the inability of the drug to target the root problem.
According to Dr. Mark Horowitz, co-author of the new study:
“Part of the reason why the story of chemical imbalances in depression has become so prevalent is because it was propagated by drug companies when they were marketing new antidepressants.”
Joanna Moncrieff, Professor of Psychiatry at UCL, who led the research, said:
“Antidepressants have been blockbuster drugs for the pharmaceutical industry, frequently ranking among their most profitable.”
For years, research has suggested that antidepressant withdrawal symptoms might be more common, more severe, and longer lasting than previously realised, with many patients reported to suffer with mental and physical withdrawal symptoms for months or even years.
Side effects of antidepressants may improve over time, but some usually persist, including:
- Feeling agitated, shaky or anxious
- Feeling and being sick
- Indigestion and stomach aches
- Diarrhoea or constipation
- Loss of appetite
- Not sleeping well, or feeling very sleep
- Loss of libido
- Difficulties achieving orgasm during sex or masturbation
- Difficulties obtaining or maintaining an erection (erectile dysfunction).
The reason people saw past these side effects?
Simple: Because they believed the benefits of ‘restoring chemical imbalances’ outweighed these negatives.
Now, it turns out to be a debunked theory.
Indeed, the popularity of the ‘chemical imbalance’ theory of depression has certainly coincided with a huge increase in the use of antidepressants across the world, including on children and teenagers.
A trend that might be very hard to reverse even with these revelations.
A massive spike in antidepressant usage has been observed across the world in the last decade.
In 2019, Australia’s annual prevalence of antidepressant use was 170.4 per 1000 women and 101.8 per 1000 men, an increase of 7.0% and 9.2% from 2015, respectively.
Sertraline – sold as Zoloft – recently entered Australian Prescriber’s top 10 most commonly taken medications on a standard daily-dose basis for the first time.
More than 4.7 million prescriptions for the antidepressant were issued between July 2019 and June 2020.
The measure time period overlaps with the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw a sharp rise in mental health issues, according to a large survey recently published in the Medical Journal of Australia.
Anti-anxiety drug prescription rates rose by between 13% and 22% over the eight weeks to the end of June.
Women in particular are being prescribed sertraline more, due to depression linked to cumulative life traumas.
Much of this trend began in the home of the pharma-complex, the United States.
In December 2005, as advertising for SSRI antidepressants flooded American magazines, talk shows, and network TV, the result of multibillion-dollar campaigns pitched in this case directly to consumers.
Dr. Marilyn M. Singleton warned in 2016: “About one in 10 Americans aged 12 and over and nearly one-quarter of women between ages 50 and 64 take antidepressants.”
Psychotropic drugs that affect brain function are given to children at a rate four times higher than adults, and to children in foster care at a rate three times higher than to other children.
Singleton raises: “Brain imaging studies of drug-addicted individuals show changes in areas of the brain that are critical to judgment, decision making, learning and memory, and behaviour control.”
Just like the Opioid epidemic, antidepressants are also a fraudulent industry causing harm. Just like Paracetamol being a placebo (doctors admit to prescribing placebos), antidepressants achieve nothing.
This new-age attitude of ‘a pill for every ill’ ultimately means that some people end up taking drugs they don’t need to, for harmful purposes, with taxpayer funding spent on avoidable prescriptions.
Humanity must REJECT the firm grip Big Pharma has on the lives of millions of people.
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