• Wallows
    8.7k
    There seems to be a divide between psychology and psychiatry, which is becoming more and more apparent with methods of treatment for serious ailments like bipolar, schizophrenia, and major depression. One highly effective example was just recently posted here about Open Dialogue between the patient and therapist, where the therapist frames the issue in terms of a relational therapy between the patient and their immediate surroundings or past events, which can be found here. Then there's CBT, which seems to be somewhat less effective; but, effective enough for cases of remission without pharmaceutical drugs to take place.

    Typically, the psychiatrist is someone who prescribes medication for various ailments. But, if such ailments can be ameliorated or even quelled by talk therapy that one engages in with a therapist or psychologist, then what use does psychiatry have any more?
  • Rich
    3.2k
    Working out problems takes lots of patience, lots of skill (it is detective work), a willingness to change and an ability to effect the change. Such an approach requires real dedication on everyone's part but it does make fundamental changes which can become permanent without using toxic drugs.

    The other approach is to slam the body with very toxic, suppressive, mind deadening drugs (legal or illegal) and get immediate results. People seem to prefer easy, quick results without concern for the potential consequences. The consequences though are unpredictable since the body is being treated in a very dramatic manner. Addiction is almost a certainty.

    It is like a garden. You can take care of weeds by a slow, meticulous process with resorting to chemicals and build a very healthy environment our you can slam it with chemicals and certainly kill the weeds but everything else with it.

    Another huge issue is that the drug industry has insurance (particularly government insurance) in a hammer lock and so lots of non-drug treatments aren't covered. It's either taking toxic drugs or figuring out how to pay for it yourself.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.2k
    There is also a legal reason why psychologists and psychiatrists operate differently: their licenses are different. Physicians (psychiatrists, for instance) can write prescriptions, psychologists can not. At least in the US. Doctors can admit patients to hospitals, psychologists can not.

    It's either taking toxic drugs or figuring out how to pay for it yourself.Rich

    Even assuming the drugs are not toxic, the patient desiring high quality psychotherapy (50 minute sessions, various types of talk therapy, long duration (many months) will have a hard time paying for the care. Ideally, patients would receive high quality psychiatry and high quality psychotherapy together. Fat chance they'll get either one.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    Even assuming the drugs are not toxicBitter Crank

    What do you mean assuming? Just read the inserts, or better yet the actual studies.

    https://www.aarp.org/health/drugs-supplements/info-08-2010/toxic-drugs-when-medicine-makes-you-sick.html
  • fishfry
    789
    Critics of psychiatry point out that if a patient has a physical brain condition, they need a neurologist. And if they don't, they need a psychologist. It's not clear what psychiatrists even do. Except that these days they're just pill pushers. You're not the first person to make these observations.

    I'm afraid our time is up. That'll be a hundred bucks please.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.2k
    What do you mean assuming? Just read the inserts, or better yet the actual studies.Rich

    I am aware of the toxicity of these drugs -- where the therapeutic dose is close to the toxic dose -- like with lithium. A bit too much and one gets quite sick. Not quite enough and one destabilizes. And yes, over time some of these drugs take a toll on the patient that adds to their difficulties -- like tardive dyskinesia.

    None the less, lithium, the major tranqs like Thorazine, and so on are better than untreated psychotic hypermania, which is an extremely harsh and dreadful experience. I took antidepressants and benzodiazepines for many years. Yes, they have definite downsides. But flying off in a rage to do god-knows-what isn't a great option either. BTW, I was able to wean myself off the benzodiazepines without any difficulty. I'm down to a low maintenance dose of Effexor. I would put up with an unpleasant withdrawal if I was sure on the other side I would still feel good.
  • Wayfarer
    8.3k
    You study psychiatry through the medical faculty, psychology through arts or health sciences. Psychiatry is part of medicine, psychology more allied with the humanities.
  • Bitter Crank
    8.2k
    That's right.

    If your functional disorders need a thorough profiling, it will be a psychologist who does that. If there seems to be something wrong with your brain or CNS, you'll see a neurologist. If it's behavior that is the problem, and it is severe -- then you need a psychiatrist. Or, if you need to have a long, long talk with somebody, psychologists are the best bet.

    People with ordinary levels of unhappiness, anxiety, angst, chronic bad attitude, existential confusion, apostasy, run-of-the-mill wickedness, and so forth are best served by good friends and philosophy forums.
  • Baden
    8.4k
    If your functional disorders need a thorough profiling, it will be a psychologist who does that. If there seems to be something wrong with your brain or CNS, you'll see a neurologist. If it's behavior that is the problem, and it is severe -- then you need a psychiatrist. Or, if you need to have a long, long talk with somebody, psychologists are the best bet.Bitter Crank

    Well put. I think there is definitely an issue of psychiatric overreach, but it's unfair to demonize the entire profession for that. Rapid cycling bipolar disorder, for example, is something that probably requires a psychiatrist; regular depression, probably not, in my view.
  • Rich
    3.2k
    I am aware of the toxicity of these drugs -- where the therapeutic dose is close to the toxic dose -- like with lithium.Bitter Crank

    They are all toxic is all forms. The gradual accumulation of these foreign and harmful substances in the body erodes the body's ability to protect and heal itself. It is slow and corrosive which is why the U.S. had the worse life expectancy of all 35 developed nations and people spend more time being sick then they did 20 years ago. We've become a drugged out culture - but people can enjoy their pharmaceutical and medical stocks going up from their hospital beds.

    As for alternatives, there are many but insurance only covers toxic drugs.
  • Hanover
    4.9k
    If a parent dies and that results in depression, a number of conversations might relieve those symptoms. If you insist you're Jesus, you're not getting talked out of that.
  • Harry Hindu
    2.2k
    How does a conversation have any causal influence on behavior, or on one's self image?
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