The chemical imbalance theory challenged

UPI—Media presents depression theory as fact
Published: March 4, 2008 at 11:43 PM

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., March 4 (UPI) — The theory depression is caused by a chemical imbalance is often repeated in the media, but there is little evidence this is true, a U.S. study said.

Jeffrey Lacasse, a doctoral candidate at Florida State University in Tallahassee, and Jonathan Leo of Lincoln Memorial University in Tennessee asked members of the media and others to provide documentation that supported the chemical imbalance theory, but none could.

“The media’s presentation of the theory as fact is troublesome because it misrepresents the current status of the theory,” Lacasse said in a statement.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, used by psychiatrists to diagnose patients, states that the cause of depression and anxiety is unknown, the researchers said.

A review of a full set of trial data published in the journal PLoS Medicine last month concluded that much of the perceived efficacy of several of the most common antidepressants prescribed, called Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, was due to the placebo effect, Lacasse said. Other studies indicate that for every 10 people who take those drugs, only one to two people are truly receiving benefit from the medication, Lacasse and Leo said.

The findings are published in the journal Society.

Hat tip and for some of Marissa’s analysis read: depression introspection

4 thoughts on “The chemical imbalance theory challenged

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  1. I believe that the root cause is different for each person –
    Psychiatry uses a DSM that is said to be too large……

    I say, it’s not large enough –
    Its length is not the problem – the problem with the DSM –
    It’s being used to label – to de-humanize

    It needs to be larger –
    To help – encourage – heal…..

    These ‘illnesses’ have as many causes as the people who have them – from a variety of sources –

    Thyroid issues
    Absorption difficulties
    Yeast problems
    Sleep disturbances
    Lyme Disease

    Just because the symptoms may be similar for some, does not mean the root causes are the same – and similar symptoms do not a ‘disease’ make….

    They may have some biological component – but, they are not simple – and they are not cured by telling people there is no cure –

    And those who suffer from symptoms are not made whole by telling them they are largely defective and abnormal –

    Inside each of us is a whole person waiting to come out –
    Medicine and therapy that does not incorporate this core belief is not worthy of practice.

    Any doctor of therapist who cannot see this whole person, and help bring them out is not worthy of being in business.

    Wholeness – mind/body/spirit – if we focus on it, and if we seek it, we can find it.


  2. My pet idea for depression is that it is a thinking disease. Through our experiences, especially when young we learned to think in ways that cause us to get depressed. I learned that I had to be perfect and that I had to have everyone like and agree with me. That was a heavy load for a person with a speech defect, learning problems, and ADHD. Every time I opened my mouth, I made a big mistake. Also, some of us are born super sensitive. We feel hurt more than others. This same trait can cause us to be creative, but under certain conditions it can feed into our thinking disease.

    I have tried to train myself into patting myself on the back for every positive effort I do. I wanted people to praise me, but people are often too busy to notice me. By giving myself praise, I have risen above depression.
    Jim S

  3. emotional, psychological, spiritual and nutritional challenges just for starters!!

    I feel in my bones that my emotional fragility is a result of abuse. Many people are abused in not so overt fashion and don’t even realize that they have psychic scarring.

    My two cents!

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