The war on grief

by Robert D. Stolorow
The DSM5, the most recent version of psychiatry’s diagnostic bible, makes it possible to classify grieving that endures beyond a rather brief span of time as a mental illness. … [click on title to read and view more]

DSM‘s Somatoform Disorders: millions more might be diagnosed

On Dr. David Healy’s website from yesterday there is an article about the very problematic Somatic Symptom Disorder category in the DSM 5. I’ve written about this before because it’s of particular interest to many folks who’ve suffered iatrogenic damage from psychiatric drugs. Psychiatric drug withdrawal syndromes are sometimes devastating physically crippling illnesses that can last months and years. We have all faced being told our issues are psychiatric. We have routinely suffered from little or no care from our health care providers. We have had to take care of each other completely out of the system. Remaining in the care of doctors has often been dangerous. Somatic Symptom Disorder category further institutionalizes this dangerous trend. … [click on title to read the rest]

Psychiatric labels and the bigotry/prejudice attached to them

I get really tired of the stickiness of psychiatric labels. In spite of the fact that they are used inappropriately all the time, once people are labeled it’s very hard to lose the label and the bigotry and prejudice that accompanies the label. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

Make me normal

…MAKE ME NORMAL, explores the rise in diagnosis of mental disorders and the boom of psychiatric prescription drugs, all set against the release of the new controversial psychiatric guidelines of the DSM (nick-named the “Psychiatry Bible”). With 1 in 3 Americans diagnosed with a mental disorder and 20% (and rising) on prescription drugs, the film asks, what happened to normal? Or, even, what is normal? … [click on title for the rest of the post]

Mental illness: five hard questions

The questions are: Is there an ‘epidemic’ of mental disorder? Does the path to understanding mental disorder lie through the brain? What is the role of diagnosis and of diagnostic manuals? Should we seek early identification of those at risk of future mental pathology? What is the place of patients, users, survivors, consumers in the mental health system? … [click on title for the rest of the post]

Mental Health Europe makes important statement about DSM and bio-psychiatry (PRESS RELEASE)

Western psychiatry is in crisis. The direction taken by the new Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM 5), due to be published later this week, has received ample criticism. Moreover, in disagreement with the American Psychiatric Association, the United States National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the world’s largest research institute, has announced they will no longer fund projects based exclusively on DSM categories. Unfortunately, while Mental Health Europe considers the NIMH decision to be the right one, by focusing almost entirely on neuroscience and on so-called disorders of the brain, the NIMH is missing out on the critical importance of user experiences to psychiatric research and to the practice of psychiatry. … [click on title for the rest of the post]

NIMH is abandoning the DSM!

Another big WOW piece of news. I’ll let it stand alone. Thank you for alerting us Mind Hacks.

It’s not like Insel is generally an enlightened sort, but this remains fascinating!

UPDATE: I read the NIMH announcement. (when I first posted this I had just woken up) As I said above, Insel is hardly an enlightened sort. This probably isn’t as positive as it sounds. Although acknowledging the limitations of DSM is good, what will eventually replace it is likely to be even more reductive, i.e. the criteria for diagnosis will likely become all biological based on genetics, scans and other kinds of testing without reference to anything involved outside the patient’s body.

That’s not to diminish the value of discarding conceptual categories. It’s not that long ago that mental illness was mostly classified as hysteria. … [click on title for the rest of the post]