• Tara Vaughan

Testing For Mental Ill Health

There is no way to test if you have a mental health problem. No way to accurately diagnose you. There is no objective testing in psychiatry. There is no blood test. There is no urine test. There is no biopsy. There’s nothing that objectively proves that there’s anything physiologically or biochemically wrong that’s creating your symptoms. With cancer you can do a screening and it’s there or not. You can look at the cells and you can tell if it’s there. With different diseases you can see it in an MRI, or you can see it in a CAT scan. With mental health, you can’t see it. You can’t be diagnosed in a medical procedure. It is all subjective.

When I was first taken to the doctor for my depression, he asked me to fill out a form. That’s how I was diagnosed. I ticked yes and no boxes and that gave him the information to diagnose me with severe depression. That was it. I was then prescribed the anti-depressants and told to come back in three months time for a check-up. I was recommended a therapist, who I did not like. I cried for the whole session. I felt ashamed, weak and guilt swallowed me up. It was horrible. I didn’t go back.

I have often wondered if I was on a placebo anti-depressant. The pain never really went away, it was just masked. I often thought it was a placebo that when you researched the drug it would even say that it was a real anti-depressant. Now in my recent months of researching I have realised that this is not the case. I have come to understand that all anti-depressants are pretty much the same. The pharmaceutical companies are able to re-brand medications if it doesn’t work as one thing and re-brand it and sell it as another.

"And we have made of ourselves living cesspools,

and driven doctors to invent names for our diseases."  Plato

In my recent months of researching I have come to understand that doctors don’t actually know that much about mental health. They listen to the pharmaceutical companies because they believe and trust that they know what’s best – after all they make the drugs.

Doctors are happy to recommend us to therapists. Why don’t doctors recommend us to naturopaths? Why don’t they take our blood and see what our body is low on, vitamins, minerals, good bacteria, etc. There is more and more research coming out that depression can be caused by a lack of vitamins. People are now taking high doses of vitamin B3, for example, and are having huge turn arounds. Their depression has almost gone. This is surely a much healthy way then giving a synthetic drug to block or mimic the body's chemical nerve messengers (neurotransmitters), especially as it is possible to nutritionally encourage the body to make its own natural serotonin.

If it can be this simple, why aren’t doctors taking blood tests and prescribing us with vitamins? The answer is simply because the pharmaceutical companies do not want them to. A pharmaceutical company is a business. And if they’re not selling the drugs then they’re not making any money. Vitamins are a natural source. Vitamins will not make pharmaceutical companies millions if not billons of pounds. Here are two quotes in evidence:

"Pay careful attention to what is happening with dietary supplements in the legislative arena. . . If these efforts are successful, there could be created a class of products to compete with approved drugs. The establishment of a separate regulatory category for supplements could undercut exclusivity rights enjoyed by the holders of approved drug applications."

(FDA Deputy Commissioner for Policy David Adams, at the Drug Information Association Annual Meeting)

"The task force considered many issues in its deliberations including to ensure that the existence of dietary supplements on the market does not act as a disincentive for drug development."

(FDA Dietary Task Force Report)

Interesting isn’t it? Certainly makes me believe that doctors don’t know that much about mental health and that pharmaceutical companies are only in it to make money, not to actually help you. I will continue with my research and let you know what I find.

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