Adults on the autism spectrum prescribed mental health drugs without diagnoses

Adults on the autism spectrum are being prescribed mental health drugs in instances where there is limited supporting evidence to do so.

This was one of the findings of a UNSW-led study that looked at the use of psychotropic medication – or medication for  – by adults on the .

The research, which used data collected by The Cooperative Research Centre for Living with Autism (Autism CRC)’s Australian Longitudinal Study of Adults with Autism (ALSAA), found that 14 per cent of mental health medications were being taken by adults on the   without a relevant diagnosis.  more

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Why was this Philly coffee shop OK normalizing mental health conditions and drug misuse?

A pink neon sign reading “Up All Night on Adderall” hung on the brick wall of Common Grounds, a coffee shop that opened in September on 16th Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue.

The lighted fixture is decorated with either a quarter moon or sun, begging to be Instagrammed. On the coffee shop’s Instagram account, the sign shares a feed with an image of a quote attributed to Coco Chanel.

After facing critics, including myself, a Temple University 2017 alumna who looks to increase awareness for mental health, substance use disorders, and the intersecting factors, Common Grounds plans to take down the sign and change the phrase as of Oct. 23. However, for every “like” the sign desires to collect while it hangs, it represents the misconstrued, insensitive, and contradictory narratives many have about mental health and substance misuse.  more

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Common Prescription Drugs Trigger Depression

When Richard Farina wrote “Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up to Me” in 1966, he knew the Beat and Hippie subcultures from the inside out, and felt the world was so topsy-turvy that feeling down was a kind of new normal — fueled in part by drugs.

Depression is a new normal because of common drugs they take is something an astounding 37 percent of American adults can relate to, according to a study published in JAMA.

Researchers looked at the medication use of more than 26,000 adults from 2005 to 2014. It turns out that 203 often-used prescription drugs — some of which are also available over-the-counter — have depression and/or suicide listed as side effects.  more

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Teen Xanax abuse is surging

Teen drug use during the summer often goes unnoticed. It’s when school starts and students nod off in class, exchange pills in the hallways and fail tests that the truth becomes apparent.

This school year, addiction specialists say they’re expecting an onslaught of teens addicted to Xanax and other sedatives in a class of anti-anxiety drugs known as benzodiazepines, or “benzos.” Many teens view Xanax as a safer and more plentiful alternative to prescription opioids and heroin — with similar euphoric effects.

But addiction experts warn that the pills kids are taking, often found in their parents’ or grandparents’ medicine cabinets, can be just as deadly as opioids, especially when taken in combination with other drugs or alcohol. And it’s much harder to kick the habit.  more

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‘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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Korn’s Jonathan Davis On Xanax Addiction: ‘Benzos Are The Devil’

Just a fee months ago, Jonathan Davis released his debut full-length solo album, Black Labyrinth. Since the nineties, Davis has fronted Korn, a band whose raw aggression popularized heavy music as the world broke into the new millennium. 

The work draws influence and imagery from the Ganzfeld Experiment, a parapsychology phenomenon that Davis is quite fond of. Fundamentally, it’s a simple form of sensory deprivation.The participant enters isolation in a room with red light, covers his or her eyes, and listens to white-noise

Davis has battled his demons in many ways. After giving up recreational drugs and alcohol almost 20 years ago, he’s continued to struggle with chronic and debilitating anxiety and depression — and consequently a reliance on prescription drugs.

I’ve dealt with anxiety for a long-ass time. I got prescribed Xanax, benzodiazepine, a long time ago. Benzos are the f***ing devil. They’re horrible drugs. They feel good at the moment and are a quick fix to get you out of a panic attack, but they’re not designed to be taken long-term — especially Xanax. I started taking it for anxiety. I’d take a piece in the morning and a piece at night, then go to bed. You start to build up a resistance. Two years later and I was trying to kick it. The song is about me dealing with common regrets, that I need this pill to be happy or stay sane. Anxiety is debilitating. I don’t wish it on my worst enemy. You can’t even function. After I did that song was the first time I kicked it. It was my first of three times. It was very intense.  more

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