Overmedication or progressive medical treatment?

Londoner Louis Theroux makes some very entertaining docos. This documentary aired on Monday night on ABC television and concerns the potentially excessive prescription of anti-depressant medication for behavioural disorders. Such disorders include Attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Aspergers Syndrome and Bipolar disorder.

According to the synopsis of this episode:

…Louis tries to fathom how much of the current trend for psychiatric treatment is a function of genuine disorder… He asks whether we have become so addicted to prescriptions that we are now treating with drugs, behaviour that would once have been considered normal.

OCD fountain © 2008 Chrisdonia

Louis finds no easy answers on this controversial topic, pondering a range of questions. Should the onus be on the individual to progressively change anti-social or inappropriate behaviour, under supervision of health professional such as psychologists? Should parents trust psychiatrists experimenting with a range and dosage of medication on their kids? Why is the reliance on prescription drugs increasing? Are doctors too keen to ‘diagnose’ behavioural disorders? For example, whatever happened to the ‘eccentric’ person, is there no limit to our collective need to ‘classify’ personality differences? Are there more suitable avenues than anti-depressants to improve undesirable behaviour?

Watch on-line or wait for the repeat airing on Sunday.

One Response to Overmedication or progressive medical treatment?

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