Doped Up

6 thoughts on “Doped Up”

  1. rtav is a bit on the aggressive side, but I’m with him on this one. There seems to be a general lack of understanding on your part for those who *do* need to take these drugs. Yes, modern medicine does allow for abuse of the system (in the US as well as in Canada). But that’s not the rule, it’s the exception.

    As one of the people who needs to take a variety of medications every day for the rest of my life, I’m annoyed with the way you’ve written this entry. Have you ever needed to take medication such as anti-depressants? Or are you just talking out of your ass on this? Just because I like you Peechie doesn’t mean I won’t get annoyed with someone making comments without relevant information.

  2. Yes, and I don’t think that GPs should be able to prescribe insulin or medicines that regulate blood-sugar without also ensuring that a patient is making the proper modifications to his diet/living space/work space/etc. etc. etc.. After all, he _can’t_ just be taking these pillls that would allow him to function—fuck no. He needs to try his utmost to change _everything_ but the fact of his being a chemical being. Everything else we can allow to vary, but as soon as it’s suggesting that a few milligrams of some compound, taken daily, will for all intents and purposes take care of a problem, well, that’s terrible. After all, there are _other options_. And of course they’re better, because drugs are evil. Altering your mind—rather, your chemistry—should be a last resort, taken only by the those in the most dire of circumstances.

    And why the fuck is that?

    We don’t have morphine and nothing else. We have various degrees of medications for relieving physical pain. Why is it so strange to suggest that we should have various degrees of medications for relieving mental pain/illness?

    Why isn’t depression reducable to an undesirable state that the chemical-brain gets into that can be fixed by the introduction of another chemical? Why not? Would you psychoanalyze someone with diabetes to determine “why” he has diabetes? It’s a deficiency of his metabolism/chemistry insofar as they don’t produce a state which he desires. Might therapy help? Sure. Might various chemicals in a vacuum also help? Sure. Different courses of action are required for different people.

    Why should they be a last resort? What are we supposed to wait for? Are we supposed to say that “anti-depressants are only for people who have attempted to kill themselves?” Well, that sounds excellent! We can restrict them as a “last resort”, being a sort of thing designed only to deal with that other, far more final last resort that some people, unfortunately, see as a useful or at least tenable option.

    Sure there are other solutions, but this brain-dead idea that “better living through chemistry” is somehow nothing but a “last resort” simply helps, in part, to perpetuate the idea that the bulk of mentally ill people are that way, somehow, because those chose to be. After all, unless it’s _really al that desperate_, they could snap out of it on their own, right?

    Yeah, this is sorta rambly. Basically, to see which side of the fence you sit on, see the following hypothetical:

    A pill is discovered which will render all subjects not necessarily “happy”, but “functional”. It’s not euphoric, it just ensures that _no one_ will _ever_ slip into anything like depression or schizophrenia or any other mental illness. It regulates the brain in spite of whatever imbalance it might suffer from. Wouldn’t it be OK for everyone to swallow one of these every day, just because?

    Yes? You’re sane and you have something approximating a love for humanity insofar as you want to eliminate suffering.

    No? Fuck off and die, plz kthnx.

  3. An additional roadblock to this problem is that good mental care is a luxury by our health care system. It’s not just easier to get a GP to prescribe drugs alone, it’s also a helluva lot cheaper.

    Pyschologists are NOT covered by basic medical, they are completely out of reach of lower income patients, aside from special exceptions, but even those exceptions are currently being reduced by our provincial government. For instance, several grants for victims of abuse have been discontinued within the past two years.

    Pyschiatrists are covered, but our lovely trend towards ‘system reform’ has reduced the reasons under which a patient can be referred to a pyschiatrist. Even after the referral, waiting lists are 6+ months. Choosing which psychiatrist you are comfortable with = another luxury.

    There is an alternative. You can head down to the hospital and get coverage by entering yourself into the PAU (psychiatric assement unit) because it’s considered an emergency service.

    PAU is an option that I would NOT recommend. I’ve worked in the unit at VGH and it’s not a friendly place. Yes, the doctors are capable, but they are overworked and our hospitals are currently concerned with the bottom line: reduce beds. It’s a rush to send you to the outpatient ward, which equates to the exact same problem outside of PAU: pump you full of drugs.

    Interesting that you bring up the word tolerance, because I think that’s the problem with our system: Too much tolerance for quick and cheap fixes and not enough tolerance for people with actual illnesses.

  4. You know what’s strange? I’ve heard of studies that have been done suggesting that if people were getting the proper amount of essential vitamins and minerals, there would be less mental illness. Makes a lot of sense to me. I feel way less crazy when I’m eating properly.

    And in truth, I’m not absolutely against the drugs in question, but I agree that they should be a last resort.

  5. That wasn’t too long…
    I agree, drugs are takin far to much these days as an end onto themselves.
    Does it hurt?…Take this pill.
    Are you confused?…Here’s a pill for that to.
    All the while, and under the surface,
    the problem festers……..
    Tis a strange world, non?

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