‘Inappropriate prescribing of psychiatric drugs harming patients’

Srinagar: Doctors Association Kashmir (DAK) on Tuesday said that inappropriate prescribing of psychiatric drugs for mental health problems are causing serious harm to patients.

 Raising concern, President DAK Dr Nisar ul Hassan in a statement said that unnecessary use of psychiatric medications are putting patients at risk of serious adverse effects.

You go to a doctor with a sleeping issue or unhappiness; you will walk away with a prescription for psychiatric drugs.

While most of the mental health issues can be effectively treated by “psychotherapy”, doctors in Kashmir continue to dole out psychotropic drugs.

This is because most of the primary care doctors and non-psychiatrists are not aware of this non-drug treatment path.

Even the psychiatrists, more often than not, rely solely on prescribing drugs to patients.

Pharma industry has been very successful in pushing drugs to clinicians and public.

There is a huge financial incentive for doctors to prescribe drugs instead of doing psychotherapy.

Even the clinical trials that are funded by pharma industry are biased.

According to a study, published in NEJM, 2008, most clinical trials with negative results were not published or were published in a way that conveyed a positive outcome.

A growing body of research has found that patients with depression and anxiety disorders are not likely to benefit from drugs.

Not only these drugs fail to treat, but they have potentially dangerous side-effects that can range from metabolic changes to sexual disturbances, heart attacks, strokes and even death.

These drugs have addictive potential which is responsible for the menace of drug abuse in Kashmir that has reached to unprecedented levels.

Prescribing drugs can have negative effects on the person’s ability to self-regulate and self-help.

Medications do not provide the same benefits and coping skills as psychotherapy.

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