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Sunday 28 June 2015

The Psychological Misuse of Solitude with Children in Society- A NEW OPINION PIECE BY DAVE TRAXSON - June 2015


 " Children's seeking of emotional warmth is the very 'driver' that pushes their foot down on the 'accelerator pedal' of their 'car of life' and which they undoubtedly 'steer' towards hopefully trusted others."
 Dave Traxson, 2015.

If the function of children's sometimes challenging behaviour is to seek emotional warmth as I and many other child mental health professionals now believe and not just attention seeking, then why as do we as a society and particularly schools often give them the very opposite response to what they are striving to find?

"We know professionally and personally the pivotal importance of meaningful attachments and how they give children the security to explore a very challenging world."


- "Sit on the naughty step." (ALONE)
- "Sit at the back of the class." (ALONE)
- "Go into the corridor."(ALONE)
- "Go to isolation." Now regularly used in schools (where you will sit in a cold sterile room they sit ALONE possibly for whole days)
- AND ultimately solitary confinement.( used with juveniles in the U.S. to 'protect' 16 year olds to 'protect' them in a Safeguarding sense from predatory inmates.
+ ALSO now all too frequently biochemical solitude with psychotropic drugs.

using solitude as a punishment which then conditions young people in later life to not perceive or realise the therapeutic benefits of solitude achieved for thousands of years by SOLITUDE using 'retreats' and meditation etc. etc.

We should not traumatise a child with punitive isolation or aversive solitude  as each time they consider it or experience it in the future they may be retraumatised.

What should we be doing instead?

- Building any form of human to human therapeutic support / relationship.
- 'Human Bridge' relationships to help them cross their current river of stress.
- Starting with 'Special Minutes' with a carer, teaching assistant or 'behaviour buddy.'
- Tell them you 'love them' but not certain behaviours + consequences.
- 1:1 coaching or mentoring with an adult or peer.
- 'Incident Debriefs' including feelings for others.
- Therapeutic mentoring with someone they attach to.
- "Quality Time' with a trusted adult.
- A walk in the countryside with a trusted adult or peer tutor.
- Forest School strategies in a safe environment with a skilled leader.
- Adventure Therapy with a skilled leader.
- Counselling within school.
- External 1:1 therapeutic support.

POINT OF CLARIFICATION - 'Time Out' in Behavioural Theory is the removal of rewards for a short period of time and NOT a physical isolation of a child in a solitary space.

This is clearly a revolutionary reverse of existing practice in schools and society at large.

"Emotion is often what we all rely upon to carry us across the unfathomable voids in our intelligence," Bridget Wright.

Thursday 25 June 2015

How Parents Can Protect Their Kids From too Many Pills Beware of pill pushing by drug companies and doctors.Post published by Allen J Frances M.D.and Child Psychologist Dave Traxson in Psychology Today

We are turning our kids into pill poppers. The rate of ADHD has tripled in just 20 years - it is now diagnosed in 11 percent of all children aged four to 17 and is medicated in six percent of them. And the percentages get really crazy for teenage boys- 20 pecent are diagnosed and 10 percent are medicated.
There is also compelling evidence that most of this "ADHD" comes from careless diagnosis. How else to explain that a child's date of birth is the best predictor of whether he gets the label- the youngest kid in the class is almost twice as likely as the oldest to be diagnosed with ADHD. Misplaced diagnostic exuberance has turned age-appropriate immaturity into a psychiatric disease and treats it with a pill, rather than just letting the kid grow up.
The drug companies are delighted. Their annual revenue from ADHD drugs has exploded- it is now 50 times greater than 20 years ago, up to almost $10 billion a year. Wouldn't most of this money be better spent not on pills but rather to reduce class sizes and provide more gym periods so that fidgety kids could blow off steam?
It gets worse. Prescribed stimulants are now a favorite drug of abuse in colleges and high schools. Visits to emergency rooms because of overdoses have quadrupled in the last few years as ADHD pills provide easy access to legal speed.
And it gets scary ridiculous- 10,000 toddlers under age three are receiving ADHD drugs. How can this possibly make any sense?
The kiddie pill pushing is not restricted to ADHD. Having saturated the adult market for antidepressants, the drug companies began recruiting kids. Children are ideal long term customers because they start early and may stay on pills for life. An amazing four percent of teenagers are already on antidepressants despite the fact that these meds are less effective and more risky in this age group.
Antipsychotics round out the marketing nightmare. They are prescribed loosely and without clear indication for all sorts of childhood behavioral problems- even though they can turn kids into zombies, promote massive obesity, and raise the risk of diabetes and heart disease. Some kids are taking a whole cocktail combination of different pills with additive side effects and risks.
The drug companies successfully penetrated and then saturated the kiddie market by employing aggressive marketing to doctors and a massive direct advertising campaign to consumers (note that this shameful practice is permitted only in the US and New Zealand). They have sold the misleading message that psychiatric problems were under diagnosed in kids, easy to diagnose, caused by a chemical imbalance, and easily treated with a pill.
The marketing was mostly aimed at primary care doctors who now do the bulk of prescribing of psychiatric medicines. They usually write quick and unnecessary scrip after a very brief visit, seeing the child on his worst day. Kids change a lot from month to month without intervention and are the toughest patients to diagnose. Medication should be a last resort used only for the clearest, most impairing, and most persistent disorders. Instead the meds are often prescribed carelessly- almost like candy.
The pill pushing, disease mongering, fear inducing advertising has been aimed at parents, teachers, and the kids. It is everywhere on TV, the internet, and print and usually ends with "Ask your doctor!'' If you do, he is primed by drug salesmen to write a scrip or give you a free sample.
This is great for profits, terrible for kids. The long term benefits of inappropriately prescribed meds are questionable, the long term risks real. We are in effect doing an uncontrolled experiment bathing immature brains with powerful chemicals- without knowing what will be their ultimate impact.
Because parents are the best protection against this glut of kiddie medicating, I have asked Dave Traxson to offer his advice. Dave is a practising Educational Psychologist, a member of the Division of Educational Psychology Committee of the British Psychological Society, and a tireless campaigner against the over-prescription of psychotropic drugs for school aged children. Here are his tips for parent to safeguard their children from excessive diagnosis and medication treatment:

1) If the ADHD behavior is not severe and does not occur in all settings, then medication may well be inappropriate. Try ‘watchful waiting’ instead- i.e. see if improvements occur naturally or with changes in environment, exercise, expectations, diet, schedules, routines, and parenting. Counselling and relaxation training can really help and should be tried before medication.
2) Increasing physical activity can help fidgety kids. Enroll them in a teamsport, swimming, yoga, martial arts, dance or tumbling - anything to let the kid blow off steam and acquire discipline.
3) Realize that there is a wide range of normal when it comes to activity and focus. Not every difference is a sign of disease.
4) Kids also differ in the pace of their development. Immaturity is not a disease.
5) Many drug advisory bodies around the world say avoid medication if your child is under the age of five.
6) Children on psychotropic pills for longer than two years should have a ‘drug holiday' to see if they still need them.
7) If you are worried about the cumulative toxicity from a ’drug cocktail’ ask the advice of both your pharmacist and your physician. The more opinions the better.
8) If you or your child’s school have noticed adverse side effects, consult your physician and also inform yourself by internet search (e.g. enter ‘Factsheet – Ritalin side effects’). The factsheet gets you started and also provides good additional references.
9) If your child has high levels of anxiety, psycho-stimulants can raise agitation levels.
10) Do you regularly worry about the wisdom of your action to co-operate with your child’s medication for behavioral issues - then a good ‘rule of thumb’ is to discuss the situation with a range of people whose opinion you trust and then reflect on the courses of action available.
11) When your school is pressing for your child to be medicated, first, don’t be railroaded. They are worried most about quieting the class; you need to worry most about the welfare of your child.
12) When you make a well informed decision to withdraw your child from a medication due to concerns about side effects etc. always do it under medical supervision and based on information provided by reliable sources. Medicine should always be started carefully, but should also always be withdrawn carefully.
Thanks Dave for the great advice.
Parents need to know that psychiatric drugs are being way over-prescribed for kids and that common sense changes in life style and parenting are much better than a headlong rush to pills. There is, for example, no evidence that pills improve long term academic achievement and every reason to fear long term complications.
This is not to say pills are never needed. They can be helpful, sometimes essential, for clear cut and severe cases when all else has failed- as a last resort, not a careless panacea.
Nelson Mandela said: “There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children.”
We should be treating our kids with fewer drug company pushed pills and with moreloveunderstanding, and exercise.

Wednesday 24 June 2015

OFFICIAL STATEMENT of The Collective Initiative for the Clinic of the Subject STOP DSM: - Courtesy of Patrick Landeman, Child Psychiatrist, Paris

OFFICIAL STATEMENT of  The Collective Initiative for the Clinic of the Subject STOP DSM:

On the occasion of the publication of the French version of the DSM 5 (fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), we wish to reaffirm our radical opposition to the foundations and use of the Manual. For more than thirty years, DSM has dominated the world’s psychiatric community. Originally a statistical tool intended to serve epidemiological and pharmacological research, it progressively invaded the entire field of psychiatry and especially its teaching to the different mental health actors, as well as its clinical practice. The DSM has failed in its effort to renew and modernize the diagnostic procedure and its reliability: the diagnostic categories listed in it are neither reliable nor valid, as the generalization of comorbid disorders clearly shows. Moreover, their usefulness for scientific research is equally dubious. The DSM has helped destroy the foundations of traditional clinical psychiatry, in the name of a hope for a soon-to-come discovery of biological markers, a hope that has failed to materialize. In supporting this belief, it has created a fertile ground for the worst kind of scientific reductionism, favoring the biological and medical model over the social environment and psychic reality.  Its approach, based on the systematic behaviorist exploitation of mental disorders, has blurred the lines between the normal and the pathological, giving rise to false epidemics and chimeras, encouraging the over-pathologizing of emotions and behavior, including the extremes that are part of human life, as well over-diagnosis, especially concerning children. Separated from the context in which they manifest, mental disorders have become the priority targets of medication, leading to over-prescription by lowering the inclusion thresholds. The DSM, which lacks any kind of solid scientific basis, has nevertheless become the reference tool for the entire healthcare economy and the assessment methods used by healthcare authorities. It has encouraged the development of a uniform way of thinking and a kind of newspeak, destroying the conditions of a honest scientific debate in the field of mental health; because the numerous conflicts of interests in its history, it has also created a severe crisis of trust, of legitimacy and reliability within the world’s psychiatric community. For all these clinical, ethical, scientific and public health reasons, we call for a rejection of the DSM as a reference. Instead, we encourage clinicians to refer to the CFTMEA (The French Classification of Child and Adolescent Mental Disorders), as well as the future CFTMA (French Classification of Adult Mental Disorders), which will be issued in late 2015, and open up a wide public debate on the questions surrounding these classifications.

Thursday 11 June 2015

Informed Consent for All Medication? It would greatly reduce 'overzealous prescribing,' in children.(Sir Simon Wellesley - President of the Royal College of Psychiatry) Courtesy of 'Saving Normal' website

Doctors prescribe way too many medicines for patients who don't really need them. A lot of the pressure comes from intense drug company marketing. Some comes from patients who aren't happy leaving the office without a pill. And doctors have too little time with each patient to explain non-pill solutions to problems. Wild prescribing is not new. For thousands of years, doctors have given patients useless (and often quite harmful) drugs and patients have taken them.
Modern medicine was meant to be different- it would be based on scientific evidence that could tease out real effect from placebo effect. Unfortunately, evidence-based medicine is only as good as the evidence it is based on. And in many instances our evidence is not very good because it comes from biased drug company studies.
This is particularly true for the "off label" prescription of medicines- use based not on the systematic study required for an FDA indication. Off-label prescribing is the wild west of medicine- any doctor can prescribe any drug for any problem.
Kim Witczak became involved as an ardent drug safety advocate after the death of her husband, Tim “Woody” Witczak, in 2003 as a result of a drug side effect that had not been disclosed to him. She has taken her personal experience and launched a national drug safety campaign through www.woodymatters.com(link is external).
"Doctors routinely give powerful drugs off-label to their patients, without strong scientific evidence proving the drugs will be safe or effective, and sometimes despite warnings that such prescribing could cause serious harm.
All the while, patients have no idea that the drug that’s being recommended to them does NOT have FDA approval for the particular condition. They just assume and trust their doctor.
Once a drug has been approved for sale for one purpose, physicians are free to prescribe it for any other purpose. They are not limited to official, FDA-approved indications. Off-label prescription use is very common. Up to one-fifth of all drugs are prescribed off-label and amongst psychiatric drugs, off-label use rises to 31 percent.
A recent study reveals that one third of children in foster care diagnosed with ADHDhave been treated off-label with an atypical antipsychotic medication. As a parent, would you consent to your child being prescribed an antipsychotic medication? The name alone should raise a red flag. And most atypical antipsychotics are NOT approved by the FDA for use by children.
Drugs are often used off-label, with nearly 80 percent of off-label prescriptions lacking “strong scientific evidence,” which means we do not know if their risks outweigh their benefits. Ultimately, its buyer beware.
It’s one thing if you have a rare disease and are desperate to try something that might offer hope. Its another thing if you went into your doctor because you’re having troublesleeping due to stress of a new job. Again, it’s a fine (yet potentially deadly) line patients are walking. We need to be told if the FDA has approved the product or if its being used off-label based on an article that appeared in some journal. Otherwise, we are just guinea pigs.
The FDA may soon make matters worse. It is considering new policies on distributing reprints of medical and scientific journal publications. In its new draft guidance entitled, “Distributing Scientific and Medical Publications on Unapproved New Uses–Recommended Practices." The drug industry will be allowed to distribute journal articles and clinical practice guidelines (CPGs) regarding off-label use of their products to the medical community. This is basically a loophole for the pharmaceutical companies to promote their products off-label.
In recent years, over $13 billion in fines have been paid by major drug companies to settle lawsuits against them for their fraudulent marketing practices, including off-label promotion of their drugs/devices not approved by the FDA.
It’s a fine line between the drug company informing doctors about a new potential benefit in an off-label indication and the illegal promotion of product for increasing sales.
In my opinion, this new guidance sends mixed messages. On the one hand, the FDA states that it “recognizes the value to health care professionals of truthful and non-misleading scientific or medical publications on unapproved new uses.”
But as everyone knows, medical journal articles are often biased because the authors or ghostwriters are paid by the company whose product is being studied. This should be very concerning to the doctors and patients alike.
Now more than ever, Informed consent is needed. Its a great opportunity for patients and/or their caregivers to have an intentional conversation with their doctor about their medications. Armed with ALL the information, including if the drug is being used off-label, patients are then able to make an educated and informed decision about their drugs.
Sure seems like we could all get behind this concept and demand informed consent for drugs being given off-label. It just makes common sense for everyone, patients and doctors, alike."
Thanks, Kim. This is a great suggestion that I would extend even further. Why not require doctors to get written informed consent from their patients for all use of medication. This would make for much better informed consumers and reduce careless over prescription of medication.
Off label prescribing is much better for drug company profits than for patient welfare. Using medicines for unapproved uses on balance probably does much more harm than good. The doctor has no reason to think the medicine will work, every reason to know it will have side effects. Prescribing for indicated uses is over done, prescribing for off label use is rarely justified.
It would be a great mistake for the FDA to loosen its already weak control over drug company salesmanship. Drug companies have in past sustained large fines for illegal off label marketing because the rewards are so great. FDA would be opening the gates to even more unscrupulous drug marketing. We need to restrict misleading marketing not promote it.
The argument that drug sales people are educating physicians doesn't pass the laughtest. Their compensation is based on how much product they can move, not on appropriateness of prescription. And no study funded by a drug company can ever be trusted.

Monday 8 June 2015

The Survival of Psychiatric Diagnosis - Prof. David Pilgrim -Professor of Mental Health Policy, University of Central Lancashire UK and Consultant Clinical Psychologist Lancashire Care NHS Trust.

The Survival of Psychiatric Diagnosis - Prof. David Pilgrim

At the inaugural Centre for Applied Psychology lecture series at the University of Canberra today, David Pilgram presented a valuable overview of the history of psychiatric diagnosis, highlighting the anti-psychiatric criticisms of the dominant addiction to biomedical model.

Personally, I've always been kind of puzzled by psychiatric and clinical psychological committment to categorisation. Perhaps this was revealed by the audience questions which seemed to struggle with Pilgrim's suggestion that we might try approaching clinical psychological work without such heavy reliance on the social constructs of psychiatric diagnosis.

With our recent talk in the social psychology unit about schemas, I could more readily see how schemas apply to, and explain both the convenience and potential consequences of psychiatric categorisation. Diagnosis seems to offer the illusion of cognitive control over the behaviour of others. Kingsley Tonkin (one of the new clinical psych. staff at UC) made the point, for example, that diagnosis was being used as a way of acting on fear and uncertainty about indigenous people's potential future actions in Queensland.

It is easy to talk about this from a philosophical view, but I thought it was great that in the audience were individuals with so-called psychiatric issues who responded to Pilgrim's provocative views. This gave the session an extra, challenging, realism.

As an undergraduate psychology student, I remember writing an article for the university newspaper about the rapid expansion in the diagnostic categories for mental illness which have occurred in the last 100 or so years. In comparison, our vocabulary and understanding about psychological well-being had progressed little. I suggested that it might be time invest more energy in exploring and mapping out the realms of psychological well-being such as, for example, the work Ken Wilber has been doing.

Interestingly, we don't tend to diagnose and categorise well-being, but do tend to with distress. We tend to allow for diverse forms of psychological well-being without imposing artificial labels but when threatened by bouts of so-called madness, Western psychological and psychiatric culture seems to default to labeling in order to achieve a sense of control and protection.

This is not to say Western psychology hasn't achieved much and many parts of it have clearly helped many people towards improved psychological well-being and effectiveness. But many seem to forget that psychology is a young science, with much of its psychological practice heavily embedded in political and cultural agendas. So, I found it refreshing to hear David Pilgrim's warning about the potentially blinkering, limiting, and even inhumane effects of our psychiatric and clinical psychological industries and professions currently being dominated in their weltanschauung by a culturally constructed set of debatable symptom categories.

Professor David Pilgrim
Professor of Mental Health Policy, University of Central Lancashire UK and Consultant Clinical Psychologist Lancashire Care NHS Trust.

Wednesday 3 June 2015

Atypical Antipsychotic Drugs Linked to Sudden Cardiac Death - Should they be being used regularly in the U.K. with children? - Courtesy of CNN Website

Antipsychotic Drugs Linked to Sudden Cardiac Death

  • Atypical antipsychotic drugs associated with higher risk of sudden cardiac death
  • Atypicals were thought to be safer than older, so-called "typical" antipsychotics
  • Three atypical antipsychotics are among the 10 top-selling drugs worldwide
  • About 325,000 people in the U.S. die of sudden cardiac death each year
  • Next Article in Health »
By Anne Harding
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Susan Craig's brother Roger died of a pulmonary embolism in 2007, at age 38. Diagnosed with bipolar disorder in high school, he had been on antipsychotic drugs for years. At the time of his death, he was carrying 280 pounds on his 6-foot-4-inch frame.
Antipsychotic Drugs Linked to Sudden Cardiac Death
Craig, a public relations specialist who works at Columbia University in New York City, knew that Roger's medications could cause weight gain. But she had never been told that the drugs he was taking might be harming his heart.
"We were never counseled by his psychiatrist or his primary care provider to watch for symptoms of heart disease or any risk of sudden death at all," Craig says. There's no evidence that Roger's medications caused his death, but his family might have been able to get him help sooner if they had known about the risks, Craig explains.
New research published Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicineshows that antipsychotic drugs are not risk free, and the study's authors are urging much more caution in their use. The drugs are associated with a risk of sudden cardiac death, particularly at higher doses. Health.com 10 best foods for your heart
Craig's brother was taking haloperidol, which belongs to an older class of drugs called typical antipsychotics, which have long been known to increase the risk of sudden death due to cardiac causes. He was also on risperidone, a member of a newer class of drugs called atypical antipsychotics, which had been considered safer.
Doctors prescribe these newer medications, originally developed to treat schizophrenia, for a wide variety of problems -- from conduct disorder in kids to aggressive behavior in Alzheimer's patients. In fact, they've become so popular that three of them -- olanzapine, risperidone, and quetiapine -- are among the 10 top-selling drugs worldwide, with $14.5 billion in sales in 2007.
The new study suggests that among patients taking high doses of atypical antipsychotics, there are about 3.3 cases of sudden cardiac death per 1,000 patients per year, which an editorial characterizes as a risk that's "between 'moderate' and 'low,' but not 'rare.'" Health.com: Heart drug may be a cancer fighter
About 325,000 people in the United States each year die of sudden cardiac death, which has an incidence of 0.1 to 0.2 percent per year in adults.
"[The drugs] have potentially very serious side effects," says Wayne A. Ray, Ph.D., the director of the division of pharmacoepidemiology at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, in Nashville. "So whenever a decision is made to use one, consideration of potential side effects needs to be made." Ray and his colleagues found that atypical antipsychotics doubled the risk of sudden death from heart-related causes, most likely by causing disturbances in heart rhythms.
First introduced in the mid-nineties, atypical antipsychotics were praised for having none of the troublesome side effects of their predecessors, including frequent, involuntary movements of the face and mouth that were in some cases irreversible.
But the new study shows that the increased risk of sudden cardiac death seen with the older drugs is nearly identical to that of the newer medications. There had been suspicions that the drugs were risky, especially when used in older patients, but the current study is the first to systematically investigate their association with sudden cardiac death.
Ray and his colleagues reviewed data on Tennessee Medicaid patients, comparing 44,218 people using older typical antipsychotics and 46,089 taking the newer atypical antipsychotics to 186,600 people who had never used the drugs. People with schizophrenia may have a higher rate of cardiac problems, due to smoking and other factors. To account for this, researchers also compared antipsychotic drug users without schizophrenia to non-drug users who had characteristics (in most cases, mood disorders) that made them likely candidates for the drugs.
Overall, people taking typical antipsychotics were at 1.99-times greater risk of sudden cardiac death, while the risk for those on atypical antipsychotics was increased 2.26 times. The increased risk was greater for people on higher doses of the drugs. People who had used the drugs in the past but stopped weren't at greater risk of sudden cardiac death.
"The drugs are still very effective for conditions that there's proven evidence for," says Jeffrey A. Lieberman, M.D., a professor and chair of psychiatry at Columbia University, in New York City, and the director of the New York State Psychiatric Institute, who was not involved with Ray's research. "They clearly need to still be able to be used. I think this [study] really underscores the need to be very judicious about how these medications are used and whom they're given to."
While atypical antipsychotics have been used to ease aggressive behavior for patients with Alzheimer's disease, for example, they are not approved for this purpose by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; in fact, in 2005, the FDA issued a warning that these drugs increased the risk of death among elderly people, extending the warning to all antipsychotic drugs last year, notes Sebastian Schneeweiss, M.D., Sc.D., an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, in Boston, who coauthored an editorial accompanying the current study. Health.com: How is depression in the elderly different from dementia?
Given the lack of better alternatives, these drugs are still widely used in patients with dementia despite the warnings, he adds. But while there's anecdotal evidence that they will "cool these patients down" and reduce their aggressive behaviors, there's no scientific evidence that they really help patients or their caregivers, Dr. Schneeweiss says.
In his editorial, Dr. Schneeweiss and coauthor Jerry Avorn, M.D., also of Harvard, call for patients to undergo an electrocardiogram before and shortly after being placed on atypical antipsychotics, to determine if the drugs are causing any heart rhythm disturbances.
For people who must be on these medications, Ray says, it's essential for their doctors to treat any other conditions, such as high blood pressure, that can harm the heart. "Sudden cardiac death usually occurs when multiple risk factors are present," he explains. "When you add one, it's kind of like the straw that broke the camel's back."
"Absolutely the lowest dose that works should be used, because we found a strong dose response," Ray says.
Jamaison Schuler, a spokesperson for Eli Lilly and Company, the maker of Zyprexa, says, "Although the study appears to have important limitations, it provides additional information for practicing physicians to consider as they decide how to treat very complex diseases such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder."
recommends that physicians first try safer alternatives, such as the mood stabilizer lithium. "That's a very serious illness, and it has important consequences for patients' quality of life and relationships," Ray notes. "If the mood stabilizer doesn't work, I think it's very reasonable to consider an antipsychotic, but...other drugs should be considered first."
Finally, he says, a patient should never stop taking any drug without consulting his or her physician. Nevertheless, anyone taking an atypical antipsychotic for a non-FDA-approved use should consult his physician. "I think off-label use should be undertaken very cautiously, and its frequency should be much less than it is currently," Ray says. Health.com: Superfoods that can save your health
For Susan Craig, the new research makes it clear that treating serious mental illness must go far beyond just prescribing pills. "We need to be supporting these people in a better, more systematic way," she says. "There's no magic pill. It's treating the whole person."