Mental Illness: Dangerous Prescription Medications Threat to Patients?

Mental Illness
Mental illness can involve a variety of disorders and maladies. Therefore, mental health treatment can be very complicated and fraught with irregularities. To make matters worse, there are several prescription medications used to treat mental illness that have been deemed potentially dangerous and a threat to mental health patients.

It is important to note that prescription medications do not cure mental illness. However, it has been shown that such medications can often significantly improve symptoms suffered by the mentally ill. Moreover, some prescribed medications can also help stabilize affected individuals and improve the efficiency of other treatments for mental illness, such as behavior modification and psychotherapy. Medications for the treatment of mental illness should be prescribed based on the individual’s specific needs, circumstances, and body considerations, which include factors such as age, weight, metabolism, and medical conditions/restrictions.

Some of the most commonly used prescription psychiatric medications used to treat mental illness include antidepressants, mood-stabilizing medications, antipsychotic medications, and anti-anxiety medications. Antidepressants are used to treat depression, anxiety, and other related conditions. These medications can help improve symptoms such as hopelessness, anxiety, sadness, lethargy, and diminished interest in social activities. Antidepressants are known to be non-addictive and generally do not cause dependency issues. However, several of these prescription medications used to treat mental illness have been deemed potentially dangerous, can result in serious side effects, and could be a threat to mental health patients. Therefore, they should be used with caution and under a doctor’s supervision.

Mood stabilizers are most commonly prescribed for treatment of mental illnesses that include bipolar disorders, which are also known as manic-depressive episodes. Moreover, mood stabilizers can also be used in combination with antidepressants for the treatment of severe depressive conditions.

Antipsychotic medications, which are also known as neuroleptics, are typically used to treat mental illnesses that include psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia. Moreover, these medications can also be used to treat bipolar disorders (manic depression) or used in combination with antidepressants to treat depression. However, several of these prescription medications used to treat mental illness have been deemed potentially dangerous and could be a threat to mental health patients. Therefore, the use of such medications should be closely monitored.

Anti-anxiety medications are used to treat mental illnesses that include anxiety disorders, such as panic attacks and generalized anxiety disorder. Moreover, these medications may also help reduce other related symptoms such as insomnia and irritability. Long-term anti-anxiety medications are generally limited to antidepressants that have been proven successful for anxiety treatment. It should be noted that there are fast-acting anti-anxiety medications on the market. However, these medications have been known to cause dependency issues and should only be used on a short-term basis.

Prescribed medications used to treat mental illness can result in a myriad of side effects–some mild and others more severe–including rapid or irregular heartbeat, drowsiness, dizziness, change in libido, skin rashes or skin sensitivity, weight changes, and muscle spasms, as well as a number of other possible side effects. In addition to potential side effects, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an advisory on certain anticonvulsants and antidepressant medicines used in the treatment of mental illness to the risk of suicide, as well as suicidal thoughts in some patients. Some of these potentially dangerous medications linked to mental health treatment include Lexapro, Prozac, and Paxil. As a result, the use of these medications should be limited and closely monitored.

Since mental illness can involve a variety of disorders and maladies, mental health treatment can be a very involved process and fraught with complexities. To make matters worse, there are several prescription medications used to treat mental illness that have been deemed potentially dangerous and a threat to mental health patients. While it is important to note that prescription medications do not cure mental illness, it has been shown that such medications can ameliorate symptoms suffered by the mentally ill. Moreover, some prescribed medications can also help stabilize affected individuals and make other treatments, such as psychotherapy and behavior modification, more effective. However, medications used to treat mental illness should be prescribed based on an individual’s needs, circumstances, and body considerations, such as age, weight, metabolism, and medical conditions/restrictions. In the wake of evidence that suggests several prescription medications used to treat mental illness have been deemed potentially dangerous, can result in serious side effects, and could be a threat to mental health patients, it is even more crucial to use such medications with caution and under a doctor’s supervision.

By Leigh Haugh

Other Articles by This Author:

Guardian Liberty Voice–Leigh Haugh

Sources:
Psychology Today
WebMD
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

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