In our latest article we looked at pharmacology’s chance to be the solution to mental illness, and we came to the conclusion that psychiatric pharmacology has very little chance to solve the ever increasing problem.
Now why is that ? Well my argument is that mental disorders are not a medical problem but a lifestyle and society related problem. You and I, we create people with mental illness every day because of what we demand of each other. Next we give them a drug in the morning and at nighttime and society has taken care of the problem – and we’ve even saved our community a lot of money because it’s cheaper then therapy. Yet the problem is – psychiatric drugs calms the symptoms for a while, without curing the root problem, until the chemicals we’ve filled those people with has made them so sick that it bursts.
Mental illness has existed as long as history remembers – yet in the ancient times insanity was also used to cover up for ideas from people who was thinking things that was uncomfortable for the elite. Still mental illness was not nearly as common as today.
WHO estimates 300 million people suffering from depression world wide. Try to say this out loud – 300 million suffering from depression ! This does not include bipolar, schizophrenia, OCD, ADD, ADHD, etc…… dear friends, that’s a lot of people.
So when did we start to see this boom in mental illness ? Well it wouldn’t be to much of an assumption to say that the more industrialized our society has become the higher the count of people with mental disorders.
So what does that all tell us ? What has changed gradually as society has industrialized ?
1). Food quality : This is a sure winner. If something has changed for the worse along with industrialization this is it ! The more industrialized society has become the more our food has changed from low calories with lots of nutrients to higher in calories with less if any nutrients. More and more we use synthetic nutrients over the real thing, which often cause more turmoil then good.
2). Exercise : The more industrialized that our society has become the less manual labour has been done. Before industrialization the men worked hard in the fields, mines, on the docks, etc and the women worked just as hard by doing their chores in the home. All of it was manual labour. Exercise came as a natural part of life – today machines are doing most of our manual work and exercise is something we need to schedule.
3). Social life: The way we socialize with other people has also changed with industrialization. Industrialization has created a society where both husband and wife has to work and the hours we need to put into working is increasing. The result being that they loose social time together, with their children – who’s been parked at day care because mummy and daddy has to work. Those times has also passed when friends just dropped by to say hi – we need to schedule time to be social today.
Simultaniously we demand more and more of each other. Colleagues, employers and friends all expect of you to be perfect and always say YES ! Result – the intimate social relations we need from our spouses, children and friends suffer on the alter of career and living up to expectations.
In continuation of that, when I see the behavior of teens and young adults today, I see a frightening image of a group of people who long for recognition whether that’s if they look good enough, if what they do is good enough or if they themselfs are cool enough. I don’t know how you look at this image, but to me it’s increasingly frightening, and I can’t make any other conclusion that what they really lack is the attention of their parents, and if they dont get that then any attention good or bad is better then none.
In my opinion….before we start looking at how to treat mental illness we need to dig down below to the root cause, what has triggered all these cases ? Whats wrong and how do we make our primary circle work for us ? When I say primary circle I mean our selfs, the life we live, the people we soround ourselves with and the food we eat. We need to dig all the way down to, how do we get rid of the chronic inflammations that make our brains work against us rather then with us, how do we reclaim our right not to be perfect, how do we reestablish our social and intimate bonds with people and how do we get to the point where we can claim the right to therapy so that we got a chance to reprogram those mind patterns that has been disrupted, rather then taking dangerous life shortening medicine for life ?