Posted by Jasmineneroli on August 20, 2004, at 17:17:26
In reply to about the chemical imbalance concept, posted by RH on August 19, 2004, at 15:03:59
I'm not sure what you mean by "happy" pills, because none of the drugs I've ever taken for my Generalized Anxiety Disorder (with occasional depression) have ever made me "happy". Rather, they relieve the stress/anxiety/sadness/tiredness.I think that term, as a simplistic euphemism for very complex drugs, may be taken as a bit upsetting by some of the posters here.
As to the psycho-dynamic theory vs. bio-chemical theory of mental health disorders, I can't point you to any studies.However, from my own personal experience, and from my experience working with "At-Risk" adolescents, both can cause mental health issues.
My husband suffers from Dysthymia ( a chronic form of depression) and has all his life. There is nothing in his background to indicate an external cause and an SSRI med. has completely changed his life. Seems to me that he simply has Serotonin imbalances or low Serotonin, that is corrected by a drug. In a similar way to a diabetic with insulin insufficiency. I, on the other hand, have a driven, controlling type personality, and have been subject to a lot of stressful events and hormonal changes in the past 5 years. The combination of the two has definitely caused me to "live-on adrenalin", which itself has caused chemical imbalances in my brain. Many of the kids I worked with have backgrounds, or environments, that have primed their stress responses to react constantly and they've developed OCD, PTSD, depression or anxiety from resulting neurotransmitter changes.
For both myself, and these kids, drugs have been necessary to correct the chemical imbalances, and drug therapy maybe long or life time. Then the situation(s) that created these problems, need to be changed or addressed in some way too, to reduce/relieve the stressors. Therapy/counselling may be of assistance in certain cases. For me, as a GAD sufferer, my Pdoc believes therapy to be very unsuccessful, because it just gives us something else to worry about!!!
I hope that helps your quest for an answer. It's certainly an interesting debate.