‘Benzo Crisis’ Keeps Not Happening

The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry has found that the misuse and abuse of benzodiazepine is relatively rare, even though the drug is sometimes hyped as the next overdose crisis in healthcare.
Benzodiazepines – often called “benzos” — are a class of sedative that includes Valium and Xanax. The medications are usually prescribed to treat anxiety and insomnia.

Data on over 100,000 adults in the 2015-16 National Surveys on Drug Use and Health was analyzed by researchers, who found that benzodiazepines were used by 12.5% of American adults. Of those, about 17% “misused” the drug at least once, but only 2% had what was diagnosed as a benzodiazepine use disorder.

The study found several risk factors for benzo misuse, including younger age, male gender, lower levels of education, lack of health insurance or employment, and lower income levels — factors often associated with other substance use disorders.  more

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How ‘Pill Shaming’ Hurts Those Who Take Medications for Mental Health

Earlier this month, musician Kanye West ranted about politics and slavery following the season premiere of NBC’s Saturday Night Live.

Among other elements of his speech, he told audience members that this was the “real” Kanye speaking and he was off his medication, a nod to his earlier revelation that he had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

“Public figures talking about their mental health issues can help bring awareness and combat stigma surrounding these common conditions,” said Dr. David Hu, medical director at Behavioral Health of the Palm Beaches in Florida.

“Some people with mental illness never seek treatment because they feel shame. Knowing that they are not alone, that someone they admire has mental illness too, can be a powerful motivator to seek the help they need,” he said.  more

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I’m a Veteran With PTSD. The Medication I Take Makes Dating Difficult.

She was a cat lover with cotton-candy-colored hair and obnoxious tastes in music but similar politics to mine. While texting on Tinder, she suggested I might get to play with her kitty. We agreed that we would take her cat out to the park some time but that we would start with dinner and a drink. There were no other hints to me that anything thrilling might happen beyond my riding my motorcycle from Denver to Boulder for the meeting.

Sitting together at an Italian restaurant, we got past the cat conversation and progressed to politics and music, jokes and laughter. We were communicating freely and enjoying each other’s company — pretty much everything I wanted out of a first date.

As the waitress picked up the check, my date invited me back to her place. I went. I still didn’t think anything was going to happen until we were going to settle in to watch a movie and she changed her clothes right in front of me.

She asked to see my tattoos — I’ve got a lot of ink, even for a Marine — so that happened too. But not everything happened, and probably not as much as she expected. I explained about the injuries, the PTSD, the medication. She was nice about it. We eagerly agreed on a second date. “We should do this again, and finish what we started,” she said. “If we don’t, it’ll bug me. Like I’m not hot enough for you, or something.” I told her she was gorgeous and that next time would be better.  more

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Weird dreams on seroquel

Anyone else get this? Every night now I have such lifelike dreams. And so many of them too. A very weird thing is often in these dreams I am sedated, like my asleep self is very aware of the fact that I am being kept asleep by medication. A couple times even in dreams I looked over to see a pill bottle in my hand or was trying to spit pills out of mouth so it’s even further symbolism there. I couldn’t even go on 100 mg because the dreams became too insane and I was trapped in them, I couldn’t claw my way out. (They’re not all nightmares but when they are nightmares it’s horrible)  more

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