People have mixed feelings about medication for mental illnesses. The personal accounts of people suffering from mental disorders are compelling, but personal experiences don’t change the bottom line evidence. Studies have consistently shown that certain medications cause more harm than good. The “save lives” theme does not appear in the data, as the mortality rate for serious mental illnesses has increased relative to the general population over the past 40 years. Therefore, it is not a good idea to blame the person taking medication for their mental illnesses, but to understand their perspective on mental health.
The bottom line: medications should not cause you to become addicted. The main benefit of taking medication for a mental illness is its ability to reduce symptoms. It is important to follow the prescribed dosage and do not stop taking it without talking to your doctor first. It is also important to discuss possible drug interactions with your doctor. Never mix prescription drugs with alcohol, as this could cause dangerous interactions. The side effects of the medications can be debilitating, so the most important thing is to stay committed to the treatment regimen.
There are many alternative treatments for mental illnesses. Brain-stimulation therapies are sometimes used, but they are reserved for severe cases when medications have failed. They may include repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, vagus nerve stimulation, and deep brain stimulation. Some people with severe mental illness may need to go to a mental health hospital. A 24-hour environment may be necessary for their recovery, while intensive outpatient treatment can be a good option for short-term relief.