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OfflineMolokoMilkPlus
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Registered: 06/11/05
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Psychiatry
    #4346096 - 06/28/05 07:37 AM (12 years, 19 hours ago)

The culture of psychiatry itself is often under a traditional critique, ranging from slight dissidents in certain practices to all out rejection of the profession. It has also been described as inquisitional, with preconceptions about mental illness that persist irrespective of the individual. The fact that psychiatry (and psychology at that) is constantly revised in meta-analysis is also a cited example that it is a pseudo-science at best. While some critics such as scientologists probably have little credibility, I am reminded of the philosophies of Michel Foucault, the theorist whose contempt for psychiatry was hardly an agenda but something that came from articulated philosophies of his own. Foucault believed psychiatry was faulty because in its broadness and doctrine, it only makes conclusions on previous samples and does not assess the individual. Foucault believed that since science cannot logically assess every individual, any attempt to do so would merely be a pseudo-science. An example of this would be two people diagnosed with the same mental illness. Foucault's theories on individuality would imply that each mental illness is unique to that individual, and it cannot be compared to the mental illness of previous samples. As such, treating a particular individual's mental illness under the guidelines of someone else's mental illness was faulty. Furthermore, what constitutes a mental illness is often under debate. Foucault and others influenced by him were fairly critical of the APA's stance on homosexuality and other sexualities/transgendered identities as a "mental illess". The conclusion of his: no illness is alike, while they may be similiar. Many who agree with Foucault here believe psychiatry to be absolutist.

Discuss


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Edited by MolokoMilkPlus (06/28/05 07:49 AM)


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Invisibleniteowl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: MolokoMilkPlus]
    #4346253 - 06/28/05 10:50 AM (12 years, 16 hours ago)

I have come to the conclusion that psychiatry, is B.S. They are just drug pushers that are trying different combinations of drugs on people, until they find a combination that the patient likes.

Get them doped up enuf and some people will go for it.

Legal drugs....hell yea!!!!! Write me out a Rx Doc!!!!

I have yet to meet someone who was helped by a psychiatrist.

Strung out maybe........but they were not any better for going to see a psychiatrist.


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OfflineWanderingStudent
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: MolokoMilkPlus]
    #4346262 - 06/28/05 10:57 AM (12 years, 16 hours ago)

My school of learning is from the psychology stance, but since it's being lumped together with psychiatry, I feel the need to comment.

The idea that other planets revolve around the earth is a false one. On the other hand, it's at least recognition that planets shift and rotate in a pattern. The human brain (or mind)is the most complicated and poorly understood part of human physiology. That said, any science based on the brain would be more difficult to quantify than simpler parts of our anatomy.

The sociological aspect is the explanation of the perceived lack of individuality. Along with being adjusted enough to function personally, we (general assumption) want to be able to function socially as well. Society as a whole is ever-changing. Humanity's understanding of the brain is ever-changing.

That said, it would seem that any science involving the brain that DIDN'T constantly adjust itself would be in the wrong. As far as I'm concerned, it is imperfect, but it's a very good start. Sexual and transgendered identities are no longer in the DSM as mental illnesses, which I'm sure you're aware of.


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OfflineMolokoMilkPlus
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: WanderingStudent]
    #4346330 - 06/28/05 11:37 AM (12 years, 15 hours ago)

Yes, homosexuality and transgendered was removed from the Diagnostic and Statistcal Manuel, but one has to ask how they even got there in the first. At one time masturbation was called "self-abuse", long ago. If psychiatry and to another degree psychology are evolving outward from historical constructs of moral rectitude masquerading as science, its absolutism ought to be questioned; at all times, because the abyss keeps chanting "wrong again".


--------------------
Got Milk?


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OfflineWanderingStudent
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: MolokoMilkPlus]
    #4346337 - 06/28/05 11:42 AM (12 years, 15 hours ago)

Gonna go with the simple cop-out option and point out the unbalanced ratio between quantifiable and observable data.


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OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: MolokoMilkPlus]
    #4346347 - 06/28/05 11:49 AM (12 years, 15 hours ago)

Psychology is something different. Psychology is a science that researches people, and like any other research science is open to ideas because it is seaching for them all the time.

Psychiatry is pretty much a group of people that think they know all about humans.

A psychologist is a last person that is going to tell you that you are insane. The common man will tell you that quite often. A psychiatrist will act like the common man, but he will also have it on paper and give you drugs.


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I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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InvisibleLe_Canard
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: MolokoMilkPlus]
    #4346367 - 06/28/05 12:00 PM (12 years, 14 hours ago)

To be sure, psychiatry is sort of a "hit-or-miss" deal. Unlike, say chemistry or mathematics, A + B does not always equal C. It's still an inexact science, mainly because we know so very little about how the brain and the mind works. But for some, it really DOES help. We shouldn't just dismiss it outright....


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Invisibleniteowl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: WanderingStudent]
    #4346384 - 06/28/05 12:13 PM (12 years, 14 hours ago)

A psychiatrist believes in a persistent state of "chemical balance" (which is a myth IMO) that needs to be treated with another "balancing chemical" (drug)

States of "chemical imbalance" do occur but are temporary and normally have a trigger that starts the imbalance.

A psychologist understands this and doesn't try to cover the problem up w/drugs. He tries to talk the person thru the crisis, and get them to understand how/why they got imbalanced.


Someone in an emotional crisis (depression, PTSD, OCD, psychotic...any emotional disorder) is like a person thrown over board in rough seas.

A psychiatrist will throw them a life jacket (drug) and say that they are doing much better, they aren't in any dire distress. They can be kept alive forever with just this life preserver we gave them.

A psychologist will trow a rope to them and drag them back on board with the rest of the crew. Show them how to stay on board and not fall off.


--------------------
Live for the moment you are in now
Don't be bogged down by your past
Don't be afraid of what lies in your future


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OfflineTwirling
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: MolokoMilkPlus]
    #4346426 - 06/28/05 12:37 PM (12 years, 14 hours ago)

Quote:

MolokoMilkPlus said:
Foucault believed psychiatry was faulty because in its broadness and doctrine, it only makes conclusions on previous samples and does not assess the individual. Foucault believed that since science cannot logically assess every individual, any attempt to do so would merely be a pseudo-science.





It's tough to dispute what Foucault is saying here, mainly because I can't tell if he is claiming that all psychiatrist/psychologist have this mentality, or whether this is a critique of some of the prevalent theories on mental illness.

In other words, what Foucault is saying is inaccurate as to what the majority of psychiatrists actually do in their practice, but would in fact agree with his philosophy. There is a distinction which needs to be made here - mental illness is an extremely wide ranging category of "diagnosis?s", and "abnormal" psych is far different than, say, "personality diagnosis". In other words, it's important to understand that things like schizophrenia and bi-polar illness are far different than the very misunderstood personality characteristics. Bi-polar illness is a illness which can be understood scientifically, and the treatment methods are validated by proven results.

The personality characteristics, such as "avoidant", "histrionic" and so forth, aren't meant to be taken as literal diagnosis, but rather as a language for doctors to be able to talk to each other with. That is part of the danger of internet resources which list these as diagnosis (and they are listed as such in the DSM-IV); people than diagnosis themselves and believe this is who they are, which becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. This is largely the critique Foucault is probably talking about; the idea that psychiatrists label people and view them as categories. While there are always going to be doctors who aren't completely competent, as with any field, the majority consensus is that the goal in psychotherapy is to allow a patient to make the connections and self-awareness themselves. It is not supposed to be a dogmatic practice in which the therapist tells the patient what is wrong with them, but rather a process of self-discovery. Read the book ?The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat?, and you?ll get an idea of how psychology actually works.

As far as it being a pseudo-science, again, the field itself is so diverse that it?s hard to know where to begin. Anyone who thinks the field is a pseudo-science probably hasn?t taken many psychology-oriented courses. It?s laughable really, because the amount of detail which goes into the research, and the independent recreation of a theory by other scientists demonstrates that psychology is indeed scientific.

Quote:

MolokoMilkPlus said:
An example of this would be two people diagnosed with the same mental illness. Foucault's theories on individuality would imply that each mental illness is unique to that individual, and it cannot be compared to the mental illness of previous samples. As such, treating a particular individual's mental illness under the guidelines of someone else's mental illness was faulty. Furthermore, what constitutes a mental illness is often under debate.




Certainly a valid point, but he either shows a misunderstanding of what psychiatry actually does, or was written in reaction to what some psychiatrists were doing at the time. A mental illness diagnosis is not used to tell the individual ?this is what is wrong with you, and you need to follow exactly what I say?. Most of the time, the psychiatrist won?t even tell the person that they are diagnosed with X, as it tends to impose that on a person, making it harder for them to overcome and recover. They are mostly just meant as guidelines for doctors to use between themselves.

The exception to that would be, as I mentioned above, things such as bi-polar illness. Those types of illness often require medication and a more structured treatment plan. Despite that, the psychiatrist still recognizes the individual and should not view the person with the mental illness as being a mental illness.

Quote:

MolokoMilkPlus said:
Foucault and others influenced by him were fairly critical of the APA's stance on homosexuality and other sexualities/transgendered identities as a "mental illess". The conclusion of his: no illness is alike, while they may be similiar. Many who agree with Foucault here believe psychiatry to be absolutist.




Yeah, that?s very outdated, and shows more of the cultural mentality of the time.

Again, I can see why someone would think psychiatry to be absolutist. Having worked with many, many psychologists & psychiatrists, having a mom who managed a mental health unit, family members who live with mental illness (one bi-polar, others general depression), I have a lot of experience with many, many sides of psychology/psychiatry. There are people in the profession who use psychology in an absolutist fashion, however this speaks more of the individual ?professional? than it does of the field itself. It would be like judging the field of neurosurgery because there are a few doctors who routinely fuck up.

As you can see, this is a very complex field, and most arguments against psychiatry make global labels on the entire profession. Many of the critiques of psychiatry are often valid ideas, such as what Foucault is saying, but are inaccurate of what psychiatry actually does.

I have known plenty of people who have made great progress while working with a psychiatrist/psychologist. I have also seen people who had made progress in treating serious mental illness such as bi-polar illness, lose everything because they stopped taking their medication.

For the many people who critize psychiatry, I offer a question. What would you do with the people who are currently suffering from what we call mental illness? If psychiatry is supposed to be evil, than surely there must be an alternative to treating these individuals. What solution would you offer to people who believe there are cameras in television sets, watching their every move so they can broadcast them? How do you help a person who hasn't left their house in 10 years because they are afraid of public spaces and people? What do you tell someone who believes God speaks to them, and are planning on spending all their money simply because he has promised to give them millions in the future?


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The very nature of experience is ineffable; it transcends cognitive thought and intellectualized analysis. To be without experience is to be without an emotional knowledge of what the experience translates into. The desire for the understanding of what life is made of is the motivation that drives us all. Without it, in fear of the experiences what life can hold is among the greatest contradictions; to live in fear of death while not being alive.



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OfflineTwirling
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: niteowl]
    #4346447 - 06/28/05 12:51 PM (12 years, 14 hours ago)

Quote:

niteowl said:
A psychiatrist believes in a persistent state of "chemical balance" (which is a myth IMO) that needs to be treated with another "balancing chemical" (drug)

States of "chemical imbalance" do occur but are temporary and normally have a trigger that starts the imbalance.

A psychologist understands this and doesn't try to cover the problem up w/drugs. He tries to talk the person thru the crisis, and get them to understand how/why they got imbalanced.


Someone in an emotional crisis (depression, PTSD, OCD, psychotic...any emotional disorder) is like a person thrown over board in rough seas.

A psychiatrist will throw them a life jacket (drug) and say that they are doing much better, they aren't in any dire distress. They can be kept alive forever with just this life preserver we gave them.

A psychologist will trow a rope to them and drag them back on board with the rest of the crew. Show them how to stay on board and not fall off.




None of this is true except for, perhaps a few psychiatrists who are too self-unaware to believe that. A psychiatrist doesn't believe that people are in a persitant state of chemical imbalance - the term "chemical imbalance" is used to describe an extremely complex set of neurological conditions which, dependant on the individual condition, can respond to a variety of methods. Psychiatrists blend traditional talk therapy with medications which have a track record of success, and follow it up with cognitive-behavorial recommendations for their client to work on if they feel it is appropriate.

In other conditions, such as bi-polar illness or schizophrenia, the "chemical imbalance" is strong enough that the individual does not respond to any kind of rational talk therapy. Various medications are used to bring the individual down from their current state so that the psychiatrist can actually work with the person.

In the case of emotional distress, I have never known a psychiatrist to tell someone that they are fine because they are on medication. There are times when a psychiatrist does not get a chance to work in talk therapy with an individual and can only manage their medications, however this is a situation of circumstance, usually decided by either insurance or that a psychologist will handle that aspect.

A psychiatrist isn't someone who just prescribes medication. A psychiatrist is a medical doctor who has also focus their training on psychology. They do everything a psychologist does and more.


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Invisibleredgreenvines
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Twirling]
    #4346963 - 06/28/05 03:54 PM (12 years, 11 hours ago)

some do do everything a psychologist does and more
some just assign drugs to conditions


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InvisibleHuehuecoyotl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: niteowl]
    #4346978 - 06/28/05 03:56 PM (12 years, 11 hours ago)

For treating diorders that involve chemical imbalence...drugs are the only sure way. I have a brother who is schizophrenic, and medication is the only way he can function as a normal person.


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"A warrior is a hunter. He calculates everything. That's control. Once his calculations are over, he acts. He lets go. That's abandon. A warrior is not a leaf at the mercy of the wind. No one can push him; no one can make him do things against himself or against his better judgment. A warrior is tuned to survive, and he survives in the best of all possible fashions." ― Carlos Castaneda


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Huehuecoyotl]
    #4347028 - 06/28/05 04:09 PM (12 years, 10 hours ago)

I have a brother who is schizophrenic...

We all know that you have no brother. Forgot your meds again?  :grin:


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The proof is in the pudding.


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InvisibleHuehuecoyotl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Swami]
    #4347059 - 06/28/05 04:19 PM (12 years, 10 hours ago)

I have two brothers actually...


--------------------
"A warrior is a hunter. He calculates everything. That's control. Once his calculations are over, he acts. He lets go. That's abandon. A warrior is not a leaf at the mercy of the wind. No one can push him; no one can make him do things against himself or against his better judgment. A warrior is tuned to survive, and he survives in the best of all possible fashions." ― Carlos Castaneda


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InvisibleSwami
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Huehuecoyotl]
    #4347066 - 06/28/05 04:21 PM (12 years, 10 hours ago)

How many sub-personalities do you have?


--------------------



The proof is in the pudding.


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InvisibleHuehuecoyotl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Swami]
    #4347092 - 06/28/05 04:31 PM (12 years, 10 hours ago)

Schizophrenia is a psychoses, and it does not include multiple personalities...that is multiple personality disorder, which is only a personality disorder and is not considered insanity.


--------------------
"A warrior is a hunter. He calculates everything. That's control. Once his calculations are over, he acts. He lets go. That's abandon. A warrior is not a leaf at the mercy of the wind. No one can push him; no one can make him do things against himself or against his better judgment. A warrior is tuned to survive, and he survives in the best of all possible fashions." ― Carlos Castaneda


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InvisibleVeritas
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Huehuecoyotl]
    #4347291 - 06/28/05 05:46 PM (12 years, 9 hours ago)

Insanity is a legal term, not a psychological one.

MPD is now called Dissociative Identity Disorder, and is believed to be caused by dissociation during traumatic childhood events. The theory is that the psyche protects us emotionally by distancing from the traumatic experience. This creates the sense that separate personalities exist. MPD (or DID) in the dramatic form we often see in movies is extremely rare, and suspected by many to be induced by suggestive therapists!


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InvisibleHuehuecoyotl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Huehuecoyotl]
    #4347318 - 06/28/05 05:58 PM (12 years, 8 hours ago)

"insanity is a legal term, not a psychological one"
I was using simple terms to differentiate psychoses from disorder.


Edited by Huehuecoyotl (06/28/05 07:03 PM)


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InvisibleVeritas
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Huehuecoyotl]
    #4347327 - 06/28/05 06:02 PM (12 years, 8 hours ago)

OK, I was just clarifying the fact that both are considered mental illness, whether they are classified differently or not.

Insanity has to do with the legal ability to distinguish right from wrong in reference to a crime committed.

Also (on topic) someone with DID would probably see a counselor, and work on the original trauma(s) they experienced, while a patient with schizophrenia would require psychiatric care.


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Invisibleniteowl
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Re: Psychiatry [Re: Huehuecoyotl]
    #4347377 - 06/28/05 06:15 PM (12 years, 8 hours ago)

Quote:

Huehuecoyotl said:
For treating disorders that involve chemical imbalance...drugs are the only sure way.




Are you sure that there isn't a plant that could help your brother?
I'm of the belief that nature has the cure for ALL our problems.


Quote:

I have a brother who is schizophrenic,




I have a friend who is schizophrenic.
Sometimes he is a normal guy.
Most of the time he is in his own little world. He wont talk, only to himself. Sits alone carrying on conversations with himself and laughing.

Quote:

and medication is the only way he can function as a normal person.




I have seen high levels of marijuana turn my friend in to a normal guy. I used to work with him. On the days when he was "confused", a fat joint brought him back. He could carry on a conversation w/you and knew what he needed to do for the rest of the day.

He did real good till the company started giving random drug tests and he stopped smoking pot. He lost his job shortly after. His quality and productivity went to shit & they fired him.


I'm not saying that there aren't people who have mental problems, just that pumping them full of synthetic poisons isn't the best way to treat them.

I don't see how any plant or medication can help with emotional problems.
These (IMO) are just a faulty way of thinking that can be "re-programed" thru "talk therapy".
Drug therapy just makes the problem worse.


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