Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Many Ways To Die From Psychiatric Drugs

There are many ways to die from legal psychiatric drugs: through overdose, through illness occasioned by the devastating effects of the drug upon the body's organs, through suicide and loss of impulse control (many psychiatric medications list such among their many adverse reactions) or simply through accidents that result from loss of judgment and reaction time on the part of persons driving vehicles or handling machinery whilst "high" on such medications.

The dangers of driving, handling machinery or flying an aircraft, for example, while under the influence of even small amounts of one particular drug – alcohol – are well known. The same can probably be said for most street drugs: Nobody would want to be the passenger in a car or aircraft where the driver or pilot is high on marijuana and no airline – I hope – would employ a pilot found to have cocaine in his system.

Why? For the obvious reason that these drugs impair judgment and reaction time and distort perception.

But what about psychiatric medication? So far as I know, it is not illegal for someone to drive a motor vehicle while off his or her face on any one of a vast slew of mind altering psychiatric medications, yet if anyone cared to test these I guarantee they will find they have a debilitating effect on the user very much in the same league as alcohol, heroin, LSD or Extacy.

Come to think of it, street drugs such as Extacy and LSD (popularized forty years ago by a psychiatrist – the infamous Timothy Leary) were originally psychiatric drugs before becoming street drugs and many psychiatric drugs such as Temazepam are used by addicts!

The incidence of road traffic accidents resulting from alcohol intoxication is well documented. But nobody is studying or keeping statistics on injury and death resulting from intoxication by psychotropic medication. Why? Do the pharmaceutical giants have more influence over government by any chance than the breweries and Columbian cartels?

In my view a great deal more death and injury could be avoided if the rules applying to alcohol and street drugs were extended to psychiatric drugs.

This would at least reduce the capacity of the psychiatric industry to kill and maim the general public – not enough but a step, at least, in the right direction

by: kieron mcfadden