Chelsea Green Publishing

Chelsea Green Blog

Sharp Rise in U. S. Military Psychiatric Drug Use and Suicides

The overdrugging of America has spilled over into our troops currently deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, reports Bruce E. Levine. And as bad as it is for us regular civilians to feel punchy and sluggish and to experience increased rates of suicidal thoughts and behaviors, just imagine how much worse it is for them.

From CounterPunch.org:

Investigators found that antipsychotic and antiepileptic drugs, approved for bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, are now commonly used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms such as nightmares, nervousness, and anger outbursts. The use of antipsychotic drugs for non-psychotic conditions such as PTSD is called “off-label” prescribing. The general public is also subject to off-label prescribing, which is considered legal.

In February 2010, Brig. Gen. Loree Sutton, the Army’s highest-ranking psychiatrist, reported to Congress that 17 percent of the active-duty force and as much as 6 percent of deployed troops are on antidepressants.
Just how insane is it to prescribe psychiatric drugs to deployed troops? The Navy Times piece tells us about Spc. Mike Kern who enlisted in 2006 and spent a year deployed in 2008 with the 4th Infantry Division as an armor crewman, running patrols out of southwest Baghdad. Suffering from nervousness, sleep problems and depression, Kern was given the antidepressant Paxil. A few days later, while patrolling the streets in the gunner’s turret of a Humvee, Kern said he began having serious thoughts of suicide for the first time in his life. Kern said:

I had three weapons: a pistol, my rifle and a machine gun. I started to think, ‘I could just do this and then it’s over.’ That’s where my brain was: ‘I can just put this gun right here and pull the trigger and I’m done. All my problems will be gone.’

Read the whole article here.

 
Related Articles:


10 Books to Curl Up With This Winter

William Wordsworth was right when he said, “Nature never did betray the heart that loved her.” Nevertheless, the cold, dark days of winter can still get the best of even Nature’s most tenderhearted admirer. What’s one to do? We here at Chelsea Green have concocted the perfect cabin fever remedy with our suggested winter reading […] Read More..

Top 8 Chelsea Green Books the Self-Styled Oregon Militia Should Read

The ongoing armed militia occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon is showing no signs of ending — so, rather than send them snacks, or sex toys, we had an idea: Send them a book! Better yet, send them several Chelsea Green books. Don’t worry, we’ve picked five key titles that we think […] Read More..

Author David Stroh: First Steps to Becoming a Systems Thinker

Systems thinking is often seen as something relegated to scientific and business analysis – economics, resource depletion, and climate. However, Systems Thinking for Social Change focuses on how to use systems thinking to make breakthrough progress on intransigent social problems. We asked author David Stroh how this approach can make an impact, and how readers […] Read More..

Use Systems Thinking to Make Lasting Social Change

What can be done when our best intentions create unintended problems—such as temporary shelters increasing homelessness or food aid accelerating starvation?After decades of helping change-makers in the nonprofit, public, and private sectors address tough social problems, systems-thinking expert David Stroh shares the pioneering framework that both demystifies systems thinking and shows how it can lead […] Read More..

Let’s Make Bernie Sanders a Bestseller!

As the presidential campaign of Bernie Sanders continues to climb in the polls, crushing online fundraising records and frustrating party insiders and pundits along the way, we’re looking to put Bernie’s message on bestseller lists everywhere in time for the national debates this fall!With the second Democratic debate to be held on November 14th in Des Moines, it’s […] Read More..
Follow us
Get every new post delivered to your inbox
Join millions of other followers
Powered By WPFruits.com