Psychiatrists under fire in mental health battle

There is no scientific evidence that psychiatric diagnoses such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder are valid or useful, according to the leading body representing Britain’s clinical psychologists.

In a groundbreaking move that has already prompted a fierce backlash from psychiatrists, the British Psychological Society’s division of clinical psychology (DCP) will on Monday issue a statement declaring that, given the lack of evidence, it is time for a “paradigm shift” in how the issues of mental health are understood. The statement effectively casts doubt on psychiatry’s predominantly biomedical model of mental distress – the idea that people are suffering from illnesses that are treatable by doctors using drugs. The DCP said its decision to speak out “reflects fundamental concerns about the development, personal impact and core assumptions of the (diagnosis) systems”, used by psychiatry.

Dr Lucy Johnstone, a consultant clinical psychologist who helped draw up the DCP’s statement, said it was unhelpful to see mental health issues as illnesses with biological causes.

“On the contrary, there is now overwhelming evidence that people break down as a result of a complex mix of social and psychological circumstances – bereavement and loss, poverty and discrimination, trauma and abuse,” Johnstone said. The provocative statement by the DCP has been timed to come out shortly before the release of DSM-5, the fifth edition of the American Psychiatry Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

The manual has been attacked for expanding the range of mental health issues that are classified as disorders. For example, the fifth edition of the book, the first for two decades, will classify manifestations of grief, temper tantrums and worrying about physical ill-health as the mental illnesses of major depressive disorder, disruptive mood dysregulation disorder and somatic symptom disorder, respectively.

Some of the manual’s omissions are just as controversial as the manual’s inclusions. The term “Asperger’s disorder” will not appear in the new manual, and instead its symptoms will come under the newly added “autism spectrum disorder”.

The DSM is used in a number of countries to varying degrees. Britain uses an alternative manual, the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) published by the World Health Organisation, but the DSM is still hugely influential – and controversial.

The writer Oliver James, who trained as a clinical psychologist, welcomed the DCP’s decision to speak out against psychiatric diagnosis and stressed the need to move away from a biomedical model of mental distress to one that examined societal and personal factors.

Writing in today’s Observer, James declares: “We need fundamental changes in how our society is organised to give parents the best chance of meeting the needs of children and to prevent the amount of adult adversity.”

But Professor Sir Simon Wessely, a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and chair of psychological medicine at King’s College London, said it was wrong to suggest psychiatry was focused only on the biological causes of mental distress. And in an accompanying Observer article he defends the need to create classification systems for mental disorder.

“A classification system is like a map,” Wessely explains. “And just as any map is only provisional, ready to be changed as the landscape changes, so does classification.”

How To Stop Smoking
Hypnosis To Quit Smoking

Mental Workout

Mental workout We are next going to do some exercises involving your body and mind, some of these are derived from brain gym exercises, and some of them are what we call mental floss
This next series of steps are a most simple physical procedure, but they are very stimulating for your mind
Lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles with it. Now, while doing this, draw the number “6″ in the air with your right hand.
Drawing the figure 8 in the air with the right hand, then left hand then both hands then draw it from your left eye to your right
Do double doodles, both hands in the air using index finger trace circles
Write your name in the air, first with each hand then both hands and then with the left and then right eyes.
Patting the head with one hand and rubbing the stomach with the other and then swapping hands and swapping movements
Touching the centre of your forehead, something you have probably done many times, helps with the thinking process and relieves stress and tension.
Pressing your tongue against the roof of your mouth helps to move energy to the higher functioning area of the brain.
Doing energy yawns helps to relax the muscles in the back of the neck and the jaws and increases sensory perception. Pretend to yawn. Put you fingertips against any tight spots you feel on you jaws. Make a deep, relaxed, yawning sound, gently stroking away the tension.
Folding yourself into a pretzel with legs crossed, arms twined & eyes closed & tongue pressed against the roof of your mouth, to help concentration.
To connect the right & left sides of the brain put your left elbow to your right knee & vice versa, while learning.
Visualise the alphabet one letter at a time in one eye and simultaneously the number in the other eye; so A1, B2, C3 etc, when you get to 9 you can just reverse it.

Lets try it shall we.
This time I want you to draw a BIG figure infinity symbol or number eight on its side and as you are drawing it this time put the letter on the left and the number on the right, try that once and then reverse it.
If you don’t get it right you can just start back at the beginning or stop and take a break.
Mental Workout

Mental workout We are next going to do some exercises involving your body and mind, some of these are derived from brain gym exercises, and some of them are what we call mental floss
This next series of steps are a most simple physical procedure, but they are very stimulating for your mind
Lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles with it. Now, while doing this, draw the number “6″ in the air with your right hand.
Drawing the figure 8 in the air with the right hand, then left hand then both hands then draw it from your left eye to your right
Do double doodles, both hands in the air using index finger trace circles
Write your name in the air, first with each hand then both hands and then with the left and then right eyes.
Patting the head with one hand and rubbing the stomach with the other and then swapping hands and swapping movements
Touching the centre of your forehead, something you have probably done many times, helps with the thinking process and relieves stress and tension.
Pressing your tongue against the roof of your mouth helps to move energy to the higher functioning area of the brain.
Doing energy yawns helps to relax the muscles in the back of the neck and the jaws and increases sensory perception. Pretend to yawn. Put you fingertips against any tight spots you feel on you jaws. Make a deep, relaxed, yawning sound, gently stroking away the tension.
Folding yourself into a pretzel with legs crossed, arms twined & eyes closed & tongue pressed against the roof of your mouth, to help concentration.
To connect the right & left sides of the brain put your left elbow to your right knee & vice versa, while learning.
Visualise the alphabet one letter at a time in one eye and simultaneously the number in the other eye; so A1, B2, C3 etc, when you get to 9 you can just reverse it.
Lets try it shall we.
This time I want you to draw a BIG figure infinity symbol or number eight on its side and as you are drawing it this time put the letter on the left and the number on the right, try that once and then reverse it.
If you don’t get it right you can just start back at the beginning or stop and take a break.
Quit Smoking Hypnotherapy

Read and Reflect

Prejudice of any kind implies that you are identified with the thinking mind. It means you don’t see the other human being anymore, but only your own concept of that human being. To reduce the aliveness of another human being to a concept is already a form of violence.
Thinking that is not rooted in awareness becomes self-serving and dysfunctional. Cleverness devoid of wisdom is extremely dangerous and destructive. That is the current state of most of humanity. The amplification of thought as science and technology, although intrinsically neither good nor bad, has also become destructive because so often the thinking out of which it comes has no roots in awareness.

The next step in human evolution is to transcend thought. This is now our urgent task. It doesn’t mean not to think anymore, but simply not to be completely identified with thought, possessed by thought.
Feel the energy of your inner body. Immediately mental noise slows down or ceases. Feel it in your hands, your feet, your abdomen, your chest. Feel the life that you are, the life that animates the body.
The body then becomes a doorway, so to speak, into a deeper sense of aliveness underneath the fluctuating emotions and underneath your thinking.

There is aliveness in you that you can feel with your entire being, not just in the head. Every cell is alive in that presence in which you don’t need to think. Yet, in that state, if thought is required for some practical purpose, it is there. The mind can still operate, and it operates beautifully when the greater intelligence that you are uses it and expresses itself through it.

You may have overlooked that brief periods in which you are “conscious without thought” are already occurring naturally and spontaneously in your life. You may be engaged in some manual activity, or walking across the room, or waiting at the airline counter, and be so completely present that the usual mental static of thought subsides and is replaced by an aware presence. Or you may find yourself looking at the sky or listening to someone without any inner mental commentary. Your perceptions become crystal clear, unclouded by thought.
To the mind, all this is not significant, because it has “more important” things to think about. It is also not memorable, and that’s why you may have overlooked that it is already happening.
The truth is that it is the most significant thing that can happen to you. It is the beginning of a shift from thinking to aware presence.
Hypnosis to Quit smoking

Hypnosis, No Anesthetic, For Man’s Surgery

A British man who hypnotized himself before hand surgery last week so he could skip the anesthetic says he was fully awake and pain-free during the 83-minute procedure.

Professional hypno-therapist and psychotherapist Alex Lenkei, 61, put himself into a deep trance so he wouldn’t feel the pain — he says it took him only 30 seconds to put himself under.

During the surgery, some bone at the base of his thumb was removed, and some joints were fused in an attempt to improve his arthritis.

Lenkei says anesthetic has gotten him nauseous before, and he just feels avoiding it is healthier than using it, in part because it takes awhile to get it out of your system.

Doctors “were using a chisel, hammer to basically break a sort of walnut-sized bone in the hand to take it out. They also used small medical saw to attach tendon to the thumb,” he told Early Show co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez Tuesday.

“I didn’t feel anything at all,” Lenkei says. “There was no pain, just very deep relaxation. I was aware of everything that was going on in the (surgical) theater. I was aware of the consultant tugging and pulling during the operation. But there was no pain.

“And at the same time, the anesthetist had my vital signs monitored all the time. They were fully in control of everything. They hooked me up with reference to anesthetic if I needed it, but it was not necessary.”

This wasn’t the first time Lenkei went that route, he says: “In 1996, I had a hernia operation with no anesthetic. But at that time, I had a colleague with me to stand by with hypnosis. And, being a professional, I know how to go into what they call deep hypnosis. And the local hospital was kind enough to actually allow me to use hypnosis for the operation.”

Lenkei says there’s a lesson to be learned here for the medical profession, “basically, that hypnosis can be actually used post- and pre-operation to actually help the patient (relax) for a much better successful operation. And I feel that doctors ought to investigate this in a lot more detail and actually use it for the benefit of the patient.”

Lenkei says people can heal more quickly if hypnosis is used, and patients are more relaxed.

A doctor was in the operating room says only a small percentage of people would be able to put themselves into such a deep trance, so it wouldn’t work for large numbers of people.

However, it’s interesting to note that hypnosis was used quite widely before anesthetic was developed.

Magnetic Brain Stimulation Removes Craving For Cigarettes

Scientists at Medical University of South Carolina temporarily blunted cigarette cravings among smokers by magnetically stimulating nerve cells in their brains. The procedure, called transcranial magnetic stimulation, is already approved by the FDA to treat depression, though its efficacy is controversial (it’s also been prescribed to stop people from lying and treat adult ADHD.)

In the experiment, researchers randomly assigned 16 smokers to either a 15-minute session of high-frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation (in which coils placed over the forehead send magnetic pulses into the prefrontal cortex), or 15 minutes of sham treatment. The magnetic stimulation isn’t painful and doesn’t require sedation or anesthesia. The scientists told the volunteers not to smoke for two hours prior to the experiment.

309953 174647826032011 846479480 n Magnetic Brain Stimulation Removes Craving For Cigarettes

Before the treatment, the researchers showed the smokers both neutral images (such as mountain scenes) and images intended to provoke nicotine cravings (such as a person lightning a cigarette.) Then they asked the volunteers to rate how they felt about statements like “I would do almost anything for a cigarette now” and “I am going to smoke as soon as possible.” After the magnetic stimulation, the participants saw similar images and again rated how much they craved a cigarette.

The researchers found that the participants who got the real magnet treatment expressed significantly less desire to smoke at the end of the experiment compared with those who got the fake treatment. In fact, the craving reduction was positively correlated with how nicotine-dependent the volunteer was, meaning that those who smoked the most saw the greatest decrease in cigarette craving after the magnetic stimulation.

The authors of the study note that people trying to quit smoking would need several sessions of transcranial magnetic stimulation per day in order to see longer-lasting reductions in cravings. The paper appears in Biological Psychiatry.
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