Ageing is Truth from #Omphalos: Time passes. Listen. Time passes.
Ageing is truth from omphalos
"Time passes. Listen. Time passes
Sculpture: "The Ageing stone" by Dr Peter J. Gordon
Track: "Truth" by Hue & Cry
The Latin inscription (copied and translated below) was carved on Mavisbank house in 1724:
Concedatque Deus, Nunquam Vel Sero Senescas
Seroque Terrenas Experiare Vices
Integra Reddantur. Que Plurima Saecula Rodant
Delui Et Ut Serio Pulchrior Eniteas.
And may God concede that you grow old either never or late,
and that you experience earthly changes late.
And may what the numerous ages erode be restored intact,
and may it be granted that the older you are,
the more beautiful you may shine."
Cognitive behavioural therapy for psychosis
prevention: a systematic review and meta-analysis
P Hutton and PJ Taylor
Psychological Medicine, March 2013, pp 1-20
Clinical equipoise regarding preventative treatments for psychosis has encouraged the development and
evaluation of psychosocial treatments, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).
A systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted, examining the evidence for the effectiveness of CBT-informed treatment for preventing psychosis in people who are not taking antipsychotic medication, when compared to usual or non-specific control treatment. Included studies had to meet basic quality criteria, such as concealed and random allocation to treatment groups.
Our search produced 1940 titles, out of which we found seven completed trials (six published). The relative risk (RR) of developing psychosis was reduced by more than 50% for those receiving CBT at every time point [RR at 6 months 0.47, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.27-0.82, p=0.008 (fixed-effects only: six randomized controlled trials (RCTs), n=800); RR at 12 months 0.45, 95% CI 0.28-0.73, p=0.001 (six RCTs, n=800); RR at 18-24 months 0.41, 95% CI 0.23-0.72, p=0.002 (four RCTs, n=452)]. Heterogeneity was low in every analysis and the results were largely robust to the risk of an unpublished 12-month study having unfavourable results. CBT was also associated with reduced subthreshold symptoms at 12 months, but not at 6 or 18-24 months. No effects on functioning, symptom-related distress or quality oflife were observed. CBT was not associated with increased rates of clinical depression or social anxiety (two studies).
CBT-informed treatment is associated with a reduced risk of transition to psychosis at 6, 12 and 18-24 months, and reduced symptoms at 12 months. Methodological limitations and recommendations for trial
reporting are discussed."
Read complete article
"Bruce Scott presents one of the very few pieces of research carried out with people who have been residents of the Philadelphia Association, set up in the 1960's by R.D.Laing and colleagues.
Today, there are few places left for people to escape our modern plight; the cognitive and neuroscientific imperialistic discourse of mental distress. Testimony of Experience is an attempt to transcend this oppressive discourse. It does so by presenting over 40-years-worth of the experiences of ex-residents of Philadelphia Association (PA) communities. These were set up by R.D. Laing and others in the 1960s as a response to reductive medical and scientific theories of mental suffering.
The tyranny of scientific certainty and striving for 'knowing' so prevalent within our state-sanctioned 'mental health' institutions deprives us of other ways of accommodating our curtailed subjectivities, of what it is to suffer, to live, to be human.
This book re-examines an ancient dictum which is dying out today - the Docta Ignorantia - the doctrine of wise unknowing. Through a philosophically informed critique of positivistic research methodology and an analysis and deconstruction of interviews with ex-residents of the PA communities, this book asks the question that must be uttered to regain our subjectivity; is there room for wise unknowing in mental suffering in a world of certainty?"
Mad in America blog posts by Tina Minkowitz & Faith Rhyne
"We Name It as Torture" by Tina Minkowitz
"Spending a lot of time in UN meetings I have come to feel like I am operating an avatar of myself, letting something come through me that uses logic and legal reasoning to add up to the inevitable conclusion, based on the definition in the Convention against Torture, forced psychiatry is an act of torture. But it has begun to feel curiously cold, as if it is more a trick than the truth. UN advocacy is all about getting the right words on paper, and it can breed cynicism on all sides.
What I've done when I allow something to come through me in those meetings, is at best to allow the truth to speak itself. It is always hard to call up that state of being in myself that can remember and critically shape advocacy at the same time; it is justified when the creative force shapes ideas in a new way so that I am bringing something into the world. But when it feels like I am just dressing up the same ideas in new clothing, trying to sell my orphans to the highest bidder, I get tired.
We need more than the right words on paper. We need allies who are in it with us for the long haul. We need to build our own bases of power, and to share power and resources with each other so that no one has to feel rejected; there are too few of us for rivalry to make any sense. We need to not exploit each other."
Read Blog Post
"Trigger Warning: Why Is It So Hard to Think About Torture?" by Faith Rhyne
"June 26th is the United Nations International Day In Support of Victims of Torture. Last month, the Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry (CHRUSP) and the World Network of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry (WNUSP) put out a broad call to activists in various sectors of the consumers/survivors/ex-patients movement asking that people involved in the psychiatric human rights and c/s/x movements consider dialogue about the United Nations determination that many routine psychiatric interventions meet the criteria for torture. We were asked to discuss the implications of the fact that, under the myths of medical necessity, people regularly and routinely have their human rights violated in psychiatric treatment, often in ways that constitute torture.
People do die as a result of psychiatric interventions, but in formal definitions of torture it is made clear that torture involves far more than physical injury. Torture is about isolation and it is about powerlessness. It is about fear and abject vulnerability. It is torture to believe that you are utterly alone. When people are tortured, they are stripped of their personhood and the human right to defend oneself or to make choices or to be free in the most basic human ways of movement and communication."
Chrys: "remembering my mother whose birthday was 26 June, a woman who was a psychiatric inpatient after nervous breakdowns in the 1950's and 1960's, when she was given courses of ECT against her will, was latterly on a depot injection for more than 20 years yet lived a life of purpose and meaning. Despite having to live with the effects of this psychiatric drug in her system, limiting her movements and affecting her sleep patterns, causing her anxiety and indecision."
Read Blog Post
Photo of my mum with me circa 1953:
'Madness Contested: Power and Practice' edited by Steven Coles, Sarah Keenan, Bob Diamond
Review by Jonathan Gadsby
"Across the contributions are a number of repeated themes. As we turn away from reductive biological explanations, the horizons of what may be considered important in viewing madness suddenly expand to include almost everything. In particular, social and political themes become of paramount importance in understanding not only madness but also the shape of the institution to combat it: contemporary psychiatry. Madness ceases to be primarily a property of persons but rather of 'a complex web of agents and interests'."
From David Pilgrim and Floris Tomasini, 'Mental Disorder and the Socioethical Challenge of Reasonableness':
" ..[A] good case could be made for a curfew on all under 30s to be off the streets between dusk on Fridays and dawn on Mondays. This would save many lives from the reduction of road traffic accidents, rates of sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies would drop, as would the rate of sexual offences and violence, perpetrated by sane citizens [and] replayed every weekend in town centres and urban homes. But legislation that enforced such a curfew would, understandably, be met with derision and scorn by most of us. However, for those deemed mentally disordered the law warrants intrusions of this sort on their freedom, and is simply accepted as being justifiable and even claimed to be a form of social progress."
'Tomorrow I Was Always a Lion' by Arnhild Lauveng
"I used to spend my days as a sheep.
Every day the shepherds gathered everyone in the ward to herd them out in a flock
And the sheep dogs yapped furiously if anyone was reluctant to go outdoors.
I may have bleated a little, softly,
as they hurried me through the corridors,
but no-one ever asked why
- once you are mad, you can bleat all you like.
I used to spend my days as a sheep.
They herded us along the paths around the hospital in a flock,
A dawdling herd of motley individuals no-one could be bothered to see.
Because we had become a flock
And the whole flock had to go out for a walk,
And the whole flock had to be locked up again.
I used to spend my days as a sheep.
The shepherds cut my mane and clipped my claws
So that I could merge into the flock more easily.
I padded along with well groomed donkeys, bears, squirrels and crocodiles
Wondering why no-one wanted to see.
I used to spend my days as a sheep
while everything in me longed to run across the savannahs.
And I let myself be driven from pen to enclosure to barn
if they said that was best for a sheep.
And I knew it was wrong.
And I knew it wouldn't be forever.
I used to spend my days as a sheep.
But tomorrow I was always a lion."
Tomorrow I Was Always a Lion by Arnhild Lauveng, one of the speakers at this year's ISPS conference in Warsaw, Poland, 22-25 August 2013.
"The United Nations Human Rights Committee has asked the U.S. government to clarify how the possibilities for nonconsensual medication in psychiatric institutions comply with their obligations under Article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - i.e. the obligation to ensure that no one is subjected to torture and ill-treatment. This is the question they asked:
15. Please clarify how, in the State party's view, the possibilities for non-consensual use of medication in psychiatric institutions and for research and experimentation, as outlined in paragraph 31 of the Committee's previous concluding observations, are in conformity with the obligations upon a State party under 7 of the Covenant.
This is the fruit of successful advocacy by Maxima Kalitventsev and myself; we went to Geneva last month to meet with members of the Human Rights Committee and urge them to ask questions related to forced psychiatry and psychiatric profiling as violations of our human rights."
"February 26, I left behind locked, steel doors, inmates, languishing, wandering through cinder block rooms and long hallways. The core of their humanity being drug drenched, blunted into the vapor of ghosts. This last visit I was not heavily drugged. They were no longer ghosts. I saw their humanity. Some became my friends.
I had walked out of those doors six times before. This time I would treasure, not trash everything that reminded me of this experience: the sponge rubber crafts I made and the clothes I wore over and over. For once, for this two-month stay, I had not been really drugged. I wanted to know who these people were, why they were here."
Maxima's website Healing 'Mental Illness'
If Only ... Poem by Scottish Friend
"If only you knew how it feels...
To go in as a voluntary admission
Because you knew all you needed was sleep
And then, as if in your worst nightmare,
Find out that you can't get out.
To be imprisoned, confined and incarcerated.
To be pinned to the bed by medication.
To ingest so much quetiapine, haloperidol,
Risperadol, lorazepam, diazepam, seroquel
That you begin to lose yourself.
If only you knew how that felt.
If only you knew how it feels...
To be labelled "presenting as dishevelled"
When your hair is the maddest thing about you.
To be threatened by other patients
When you won't drink their stolen vodka.
To take the hairdryer cord from your friend's
Neck and be sent to your room for interfering.
To be given all the drugs the pharmaceuticals
Can offer (provided you queue like a good girl)
But be deprived of the one thing you need -
Someone to listen.
If only you knew how that felt.
... Read complete poem"
'Psychiatry beyond the current paradigm' by Pat Bracken et al
Article in British Journal of Psychiatry, 3 December 2012, by Pat Bracken, Philip Thomas, Sami Timimi, Eia Asen, Graham Behr, Carl Beuster, Seth Bhunnoo, Ivor Browne, Navjyoat Chhina, Duncan Double, Simon Downer, Chris Evans, Suman Fernando, Malcolm R. Garland, William Hopkins, Rhodri Huws, Bob Johnson, Brian Martindale, Hugh Middleton, Daniel Moldavsky, Joanna Moncrieff, Simon Mullins, Julia Nelki, Matteo Pizzo, James Rodger, Marcellino Smyth, Derek Summerfield, Jeremy Wallace and David Yeomans.
A series of editorials in this Journal have argued that psychiatry is in the midst of a crisis. The various solutions proposed would all involve a strengthening of psychiatry's identity as essentially 'applied neuroscience'. Although not discounting the importance of the brain sciences and psychopharmacology, we argue that psychiatry needs to move beyond the dominance of the current, technological paradigm. This would be more in keeping with the evidence about how positive outcomes are achieved and could also serve to foster more meaningful collaboration with the growing service user movement."
'Inquiry into the Schizophrenia Label - Preliminary Results Out Now!' by Phil Thomas
': Time to Discard the Diagnosis?
Preliminary findings from the independent Inquiry into the 'Schizophrenia' Label (ISL) finds that over 80% of those who gave evidence believe the diagnosis is damaging and dangerous.
"The label has destroyed my life, friendships, relationships and employment prospects." [Survey respondent]
"The doctor at the hospital kept asking me if I heard voices. I didn't know what she meant by this. Was she checking my hearing, my awareness? Was she using a metaphor? I didn't know. I said yes as I could hear the voices of nurses and patients on the ward down the corridor. That sealed my fate." [Testimony submission]
"When [my son] found that some people recovered he was adamant that he would be one of these and this has helped him to fight for services he needs and to maintain good self-awareness. Therefore largely the label has not been unhelpful - but very very scary." [Survey respondent]"
Read complete blog post on MIA from Dr Phil Thomas - Inquiry into the Schizophrenia Label - Preliminary Results Out Now!
And on the ISL website: Update:Inquiry into Schizophrenia Label
The effectiveness of electroconvulsive therapy
A literature review by John Read and Richard Bentall
To review the literature on the efficacy of electroconvulsive therapy [ECT], with a particular focus on depression, its primary target group.
PsycINFO, Medline, previous reviews and meta-analyses were searched in an attempt to identify all studies comparing ECT with simulated-ECT [SECT].
These placebo controlled studies show minimal support for effectiveness with either depression or 'schizophrenia' during the course of treatment (i.e., only for some patients, on some measures, sometimes perceived only by psychiatrists but not by other raters), and no evidence, for either diagnostic group, of any benefits beyond the treatment period. There are no placebo-controlled studies evaluating the hypothesis that ECT prevents suicide, and no robust evidence from other kinds of studies to support the hypothesis.
Given the strong evidence (summarised here) of persistent and, for some, permanent brain dysfunction, primarily evidenced in the form of retrograde and anterograde amnesia, and the evidence of a slight but significant increased risk of death, the cost-benefit analysis for ECT is so poor that its use cannot be scientifically justified."
Are our mental health services driving people to suicide?
Blog post by Vivek Datta MD
"When trying to establish whether more mentally ill people are committing suicide now than in the past, we immediately hit upon a stumbling block: the definition of mental illness has vastly expanded to cover a range of maladies and miseries that were not defined as such a century ago. How then, can we evaluate the claim that more mentally ill people die by suicide? There seem two possible ways to go about this. One is to consider only those cases of mental illness that would have been regarded as mental illness in the past - the type of 'lunacy' or 'melancholia' that mostly led to hospitalization. The second possibility is to reclassify cases that today would be regarded as having a mental disorder present. The problem with the latter is it does not allow us to discern whether suicide is more common in the mentally ill today than in the past, or whether it just looks like that. We return to the arguments surrounding the social construction and social reality of mental illness....."
Read complete Blog post
Pharmageddon, Book by Dr David Healy
"This searing indictment, David Healy's most comprehensive and forceful argument against the pharmaceuticalization of medicine, tackles problems in health care that are leading to a growing number of deaths and disabilities. Healy, who was the first to draw attention to the now well-publicized suicide-inducing side effects of many anti-depressants, attributes our current state of affairs to three key factors: product rather than process patents on drugs, the classification of certain drugs as prescription-only, and industry-controlled drug trials. These developments have tied the survival of pharmaceutical companies to the development of blockbuster drugs, so that they must overhype benefits and deny real hazards. Healy further explains why these trends have basically ended the possibility of universal health care in the United States and elsewhere around the world. He concludes with suggestions for reform of our currently corrupted evidence-based medical system." Amazon.com
Scotland the Brave Article - Andrew Roberts
"Scotland pioneered the user movement in the United Kingdom, according to recent research by the Survivor History Group. At least twice in as many decades it was Scottish patients who put their full force on the lever of history. Academic historians have given the credit, for both occasions, to London. But new evidence suggests Scotland led the way."
Survivors History archive of "Scotland the Brave" by Andrew Roberts - Secretary of the Survivors History Group. Originally published in Mental Health Today July/August 2009 (Pavilion Journals (Brighton) Ltd).
Link to article on Survivors History website: studymore.org.uk
Joanna Moncrieff Interview - The Myth of the Chemical Cure
Dr Joanna Moncrieff, course organiser for the Royal College of Psychiatrists examinations, is the author of 'The Myth of the Chemical Cure: A Critique of Psychiatric Drug Treatment'. Here is a link to a 2009 interview with Michael F Shaughnessy, Senior Columnist at EducationNews.org, Eastern New Mexico University where Dr Moncrieff responds to questions about this so-called 'chemical imbalance' and the treatment of depression: Interview
"We are pretending to treat or cure people with mental illness because that makes us feel alright about controlling them. Sometimes we need to control them but we should at least be honest about what we are doing. Pharmaceutical companies are cashing in on our dishonesty."
Crazy Like Us: The Globalisation of the Western Mind
Book by Ethan Watters
"It is well known that US culture is a dominant force and its exportation of everything from movies to junk food is a world-wide phenomenon. But it is possible that its most troubling export has yet to be accounted for? In Crazy Like Us
, Ethan Watters reveals that the most devastating consequence of the spread of US culture has been the bulldozing of the human psyche itself: it is in the process of homogenizing the way the world goes mad." Amazon
Myth of Mental Health Nursing and the Challenge of Recovery
The latest paper by Prof Phil Barker and Poppy Buchanan-Barker 'Myth of mental health nursing and the challenge of recovery' is published in the International Journal of Mental Health Nursing.
"Abstract: Although the concept of 'mental health nursing' has grown in popularity over the past 35 years, it remains a myth. People believe that they know what it is and value it highly, but cannot describe or define it other than in vague terms. This paper briefly charts the rise of 'mental health nursing', emphasizing its political implications, and in particular, the drive towards an embrace of a person-centred, recovery-focused approach to care. If nurses are to realize such ambitions, they must resolve their historical association with psychiatric nursing. The concept of the 'mental health nurse' might signal the emergence of a new vision for human services, but might also signal the need for 'mental health nurses' to negotiate a formal separation from the traditional 'psychiatric' family."
Robert Whitaker (Anatomy of an Epidemic) Video
Bob Whitaker, author of Anatomy of an Epidemic, speaks in Victoria, Canada on May 17, 2011. He overviews the past 30 years of scientific research into psychiatric medications, showing how the drugs seem to be creating the very chemical imbalances they're supposed to cure, and why they develop chronicity in the long term: "a societal delusion driving us - we're fixing this 'known biological problem'"
Book for Carers
A Straight Talking Introduction to Caring for Someone with Mental Health Problems
Edited by Jen Kilyon and Theresa Smith
This book tells how family and friends of people with complex mental health needs frequently have to battle for, and often with, mental health services, whilst they themselves can be stigmatised. Jen Kilyon and Theresa Smith help carers tell their stories. Although some of these stories end with a positive outcome and others tell of continuing battles, all demonstrate that it is frequently the carers alone who keep hope for recovery alive.
The book includes things they found most helpful in their struggles. Rather than accept that solutions to mental health problems are owned by the medical professions, these books look at alternatives and provide information so that the users of psychiatric services, their families and carers can make more decisions about their own lives.
Doctoring the Mind
Doctoring the Mind - Is our Current Treatment of Mental Illness Really Any Good? - by Richard P Bentall
Bentall is one of psychiatry's most eloquent enemies . . . the drugs don't work (Sunday Times )
"Bentall's thesis is that, for all the apparent advances in understanding psychiatric disorders, psychiatric treatment has done little to improve human welfare, because the scientific research which has led to the favouring of mind-altering drugs is, as he puts it, "fatally flawed". He cites some startling evidence from the World Health Organisation that suggests patients suffering psychotic episodes in developing countries recover "better" than those from the industrialised world and the aim of the book is broadly to suggest why this might be so."
Salley Vickers, The Observer, Sunday 21 June 2009
Unshrinking Psychosis - Understanding and Healing the Wounded Soul - by John Watkins
"This book takes a bold quantum leap beyond restrictive bio medical terms of discrete illnesses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder to view these conditions from a holistic perspective that reveals a method of madness of psychosis. Some episodes may function as a desperate coping strategy while others reflect a profound developmental crisis or spontaneous self-helping process. As they originate in deepseated spiritual imperatives some tumultuous episodes are appropriately viewed as spiritual emergencies or potentially transformative psychospiritual crises."
Amazon UK - Kindle edition - for a paper book copy contact
Working to Recovery
Leeds Survivor Led Crisis Service
"LSCS is, at heart, a crisis sanctuary operating from 6pm-2am Fridays to Sundays, the hours when most mental health services are closed and isolation can, in particular, hurt. Support workers are on hand at Dial House which prides itself on offering non-judgemental empathy, safety and refuge space. The service offers itself as an alternative to hospital admission. Strong feelings of suicide are common. Visitors usually have a history of trauma. Those with 'challenging' behaviour are welcomed."
Read full article about the Leeds service in psychminded.co.uk.
History Beyond Trauma
By Francoise Davoine and Jean-Max Gaudilliere, professors at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris, who both hold advanced degrees in classics - French, Latin and Greek literature - and doctorates in sociology.
History Beyond Trauma
"In the course of nearly thirty years of work with patients in psychiatric hospitals and private practice, Francoise Davoine and Jean-Max Gaudilliere have uncovered the ways in which transference and countertransference are affected by the experience of social catastrophe. Handed down from one generation to the next, the unspoken horrors of war, betrayal, dissociation, and disaster in the families of patient and analyst alike are not only revived in the therapeutic relationship but, when understood, actually provide the keys to the healing process.
The authors present vivid examples of clinical work with severely traumatised patients, reaching inward to their own intimate family histories as shaped by the Second World War and outward toward an exceptionally broad range of cultural references to literature, philosophy, political theory, and anthropology. Using examples from medieval carnivals and Japanese No theater, to Wittgenstein and Hannah Arendt, to Sioux rituals in North Dakota, they reveal the ways in which psychological damage is done - and undone."
Postpsychiatry - a new direction for mental health
A British Medical Journal article by Patrick Bracken and Philip Thomas, consultant psychiatrists - Postpsychiatry - a new direction for mental health 2001 - talks about the diminishing belief in the ability of science and technology to resolve human and social problems.
From the conclusion:
" ... Postpsychiatry tries to move beyond the conflict between psychiatry and antipsychiatry. Antipsychiatry argued that psychiatry was repressive and based on a mistaken medical ideology, and its proponents wanted to liberate mental patients from its clutches. In turn, psychiatry condemned its opponents as being driven by ideology. Both groups were united by the assumption that there could be a correct way to understand madness; that the truth could, and should, be spoken about madness and distress. Postpsychiatry frames these issues in a different way. It does not propose new theories about madness, but it opens up spaces in which other perspectives can assume a validity previously denied them. Crucially, it argues that the voices of service users and survivors should now be centre stage."
The Trail is the Thing - new book from KU
Introducing a new book, hot off the press, from the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare, Office of Mental Health Research & Training - The Trail is the Thing - a year of daily reflections based on their successful Pathways to Recovery strengths self help workbook.
"The thing to remember when travelling is that the trail is the thing, not the end of the trail." ~ Louis L'Amour
This book "is the result of almost 2 years of work from 4 authors and more than 20 individuals who provided their ideas, edits and support to bring readers of Pathways to Recovery a new tool ... it is about finding the things in life that give passion, purpose and meaning." The authors of this book do not receive profit from sales of this workbook. All profits are designated for reprinting of the book and to provide scholarships for Kansas residents with the lived experience of mental illness or trauma to return to post-secondary education.
Pathways to Recovery, Supported Education Group, Office of Mental Health Research and Training @ School of Social Welfare, The University of Kansas
The Caring Focus of RD Laing
Phil Barker and Poppy Buchanan-Barker 2001
"... Laing's influence extended far beyond psychiatry, psychotherapy and medicine. However, the practical application of Laing's thought - by the man himself and some of his most famous allies and former pupils - was largely non-medical. Indeed, we might interpret the application of his philosophy - especially through his frequently revised views on psychotherapy - as a nursing approach, focused on nurturing the conditions - social and interpersonal - under which people might finally seize their own power and use this, constructively, to define themselves, rather then be subjugated, if not actually driven to madness, by others ..."
Open Dialogue Approach Finland
Five-year experience of first-episode nonaffective psychosis in
open-dialogue approach: Treatment principles, follow-up outcomes,
and two case studies
Psychotherapy Research, March 2006; 16(2): 214-228
Abstract: The open dialogue (OD) family and network approach aims at treating psychotic patients in their homes. The treatment
involves the patient's social network and starts within 24 hrs after contact. Responsibility for the entire treatment process
rests with the same team in both inpatient and outpatient settings. The general aim is to generate dialogue with the family to
construct words for the experiences that occur when psychotic symptoms exist. In the Finnish Western Lapland a historical
comparison of 5-year follow-ups of two groups of first-episode nonaffective psychotic patients were compared ...
Anatomy of an Epidemic
Anatomy of an Epidemic, a book by Robert Whitaker, author of 'Mad in America' and investigative journalist.
"Anatomy of an Epidemic investigates a profoundly troubling question: do psychiatric medications increase the likelihood that people taking them, far from being helped, are more likely to become chronically ill? In making a compelling case that our current psychotropic drugs are causing as much - if not more - harm than good, Robert Whitaker reviews the scientific literature thoroughly, demonstrating how much of the evidence is on his side. There is nothing unorthodox here - this case is solid and evidence-backed. If psychiatry wants to retain its credibility with the public, it will now have to engage with the scientific argument at the core of this cogently and elegantly written book."
David Healy, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry, Cardiff University and author of The Antidepressant Era and Let Them Eat Prozac
Still Crazy after all these Years
San Diego Weekly Reader, Vol. 32, No. 2, Jan. 9, 2003
"Dr Loren Mosher, a San Diego psychiatrist, was the principal architect of the Soteria experiment. What unfolded during the years it operated (1971 through 1983) shaped his ideas about schizophrenia, a condition estimated to afflict 1 to 2 out of every 100 Americans. Unlike the majority of his professional colleagues, Mosher was never persuaded that psychotic behavior is caused by brain abnormalities. He moreover came to believe that if schizophrenia is not an organic disease, then it's wrong to force schizophrenics to take drugs that change their brains. He acknowledges that the powerful antipsychotic medications prescribed for schizophrenia nowadays often do suppress the symptoms of lunacy and make disturbed individuals easier to control. But Mosher argues that there are better ways to help most schizophrenics recover their sanity - cheaper, more humane and libertarian, less devastating to the human body and soul."
Crisis and Connection
"Psychiatric interventions for crisis care lie at the center of the conflict between forced treatment and recovery/wellness systems in mental health services. Though crisis can mean completely different things to people who have the experience, the general public has been taught a unilateral fear response based on media representation. More and more
this has led to social control but is erroneously still called treatment This does nothing to help the person and in fact further confuses people already trying to make meaning of their experience.
This paper offers a fundamental change in understanding and working with psychiatric crises. Rather than objectifying and naming the crisis experience in relation to the construct of illness, people can begin to explore the subjective experience of the person in crisis while offering their own subjective reality to the relationship."
Shery Mead & David Hilton
Leadership for Empowerment and Equality:
By Mary O'Hagan
Published in the International Journal of Leadership in Public Services
Volume 5, Issue 4, December 2009:
"The leadership of people with lived experience of mental health problems is underdeveloped, when it comes to leadership in one's own recovery, at the service level, and at the systemic level. Unlike the mental health system, the user/survivor movement has a values base of empowerment and equality. But the movement has not yet created an explicit model of leadership based on these values. "
An action plan for allied health professionals in mental health
"I just want to get back to an ordinary life that I can function in .."
Realising Potential is a document that brings together the work of the allied health professions (AHPs) in mental health, in partnership with service users and carers, professional organisations and NHS boards.
"...it brings benefits
to service users through the promotion
of realistic hope of meaningful recovery
and positive engagement with social,
educational and work opportunities." from the Foreword by Shona Robison MSP, Minister for Public Health and Sport.
What is Narrative Therapy?
An easy-to-read introduction on Narrative Therapy by author Alice Morgan. It includes simple and concise explanations of the thinking behind narrative practices as well as many practical examples of therapeutic conversations.
"Narrative therapists are interested in working with people to bring forth and thicken stories that do not support or sustain problems. As people begin to inhabit and live out the alternative stories, the results are beyond solving problems. Within the new stories, people live out new self images, new possibilities for relationships and new futures."
Mental Health Ethics: The Human Context
Phil Barker is the editor of a new book - Mental Health Ethics: The human context.
Offering a comprehensive and interdisciplinary perspective, it includes six parts, each with their own introduction, summary and set of ethical challenges, covering:
fundamental ethical principles
specific challenges for different professional groups
working with different service user groups
models of care and treatment
recovery and human rights perspectives.
Full details from www.amazon.co.uk.
The Dundee Advanced Interventions Service is a specialist service providing assessment and treatment for severe and chronic treatment-refractory depression (TRD) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). This includes NMD, neurosurgery for mental disorder or brain surgery for mental illness.
Link to 2007 presentation by DAIS team.