The recent alarm over the possible over use of prescription medications to treat mental health disorders has become a central topic among mental health specialists. According to Professor Sir Simon Wessely, the president of Britain’s Royal College of Psychiatrists, the blame for this issue should not be placed on the psychiatrists, but rather the public. He attributed the problem to parents, teachers, advocacy groups, and improperly run government health services. Wessely told The Times that
“Medicalisation is not often done by doctors. In areas that are more accessible to public debate it’s almost the other way around. Now we see a huge rise in support groups, we see pressure brought to bear to bring in labels.”
Wessely seems to think that those who are potentially mentally ill, especially children, are being “diagnosed” by teachers, parents, etc before they even reach a psychiatrist’s office.
What are everyone’s thoughts? Does this just go back to the core issue that mental illnesses are still painfully misunderstood in this country? Or does it fall into what others might label as an obsession for a “quick fix”?