America is well-known for being a highly medicated society. Antidepressants in particular are a big moneymaker for the pharmaceutical industry, since at least 1 in 10 Americans are on these pills. But when you compare our level of pharmaceutical consumption to that of other countries, it’s obvious that our doctors are prescribing them to people who are not actually depressed.
A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry came to the same conclusion. The researchers conducted multiple interviews with antidepressant users in the Baltimore area. They found that 69% of them never had a depression disorder. They also considered other conditions that are commonly treated with antidepressants, such as OCD, panic disorder, social phobia, and anxiety disorder. 38% of the patients never met the criteria for those ailments.
There were however, several traits that these patients frequently shared, which had nothing to do with their mental health. They were mainly of Caucasian descent, and had recently suffered physical problems like back pain, hypertension, or loss of bladder control. One factor stood out the most for having some awful implications. “Recent mental health facility visits were associated with antidepressant use in addition to mental disorders.” In other words, people are showing up to mental health facilities with benign mental problems, and rather than using their expertise to filter out the people who aren’t sick, the doctors are giving pills to almost everyone.
Joshua Krause is a reporter, writer and researcher at The Daily Sheeple. He was born and raised in the Bay Area and is a freelance writer and author. You can follow Joshua’s reports at Facebook or on his personal Twitter. Joshua’s website is Strange Danger.