Dr. Drew Pinsky is facing allegations that he was bribed and had accepted $275,000 to talk up the antidepressant drug Wellbutrin SR during his radio and television show “Loveline.” While hosting the shows “Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew” and “Sober House,” Pinksy made sure to discuss the benefits of taking Wellbutrin SR, including its ability to “increase libido,” but never presented himself as a representative of the drug company that makes it, GlaxoSmithKline. Keep reading »
We tend to think of the concept of “pain” as something physical—something that involves blood, bruises or casts. But people with mental illnesses struggle with this entirely other debilitating concept of pain, one that literally saps the life out of them. I have struggled with depression, or unipolar depression. The National Institute of Health says major depression is when a person has five or more symptoms for at least two weeks. Symptoms include: fatigue or lack of energy; feelings of hopelessness or helplessness; feelings of worthlessness, self-hate or guilt; inactivity or withdrawal from activities that used to be pleasurable; trouble sleeping or sleeping too much; loss of appetite or dramatic gain in appetite; agitation; difficulty concentrating; and thoughts of death or suicide.
For me, depression has manifested itself in all these ways. Sometimes I can sleep for 12 hours straight and still want to spend the rest of the day in bed. Other times, I can’t sleep and seem to be living on my own anxiety-fueled adrenaline. The only common thread is feeling like a human being with all the joyful parts of humanity leeched out of her. Keep reading »
Last week a study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association claimed that people with mild to moderate depression are wasting their time with happy pills because the most commonly prescribed antidepressants are about as effective as placebos. But before you throw away your bottle, you should know this study wasn’t perfect—a New York Times article and many doctors say it doesn’t stand up to the mountain of evidence claiming that happy pills are, in fact, effective. Keep reading »
If you’re on antidepressants, chances are, the person you’re dating will find out. (If they don’t, then you’re really good about keeping a secret, and maybe they should be worrying about something else.) Maybe it’s not a big deal, and maybe your partner is even on medication. But for some women, this discovery can become a pivotal point in the relationship. As someone who has been on antidepressants for more than half of my life, I’ve dealt with this confrontation on several occasions. Some of the men I’ve dated have appeared to not care, or just didn’t feel like delving into the emotional side of why (that’s fine—not like I enjoy explaining these things). Others have suddenly looked at me differently, as if the confident, charismatic woman I am didn’t come from within, but from a pill. Keep reading »
Looks like, as a country, we’re feeling the blues. A new study shows that, since 1996, the number of people taking antidepressants has doubled. These days, about one out of every ten people in the U.S. is poppin’ depression meds. Oddly enough, during the same period, the number of people seeing psychiatrists has decreased by over ten percent. So, what’s up with this seemingly contradictory trend? Keep reading »
While Viagra is an invention that has helped grandpas around the country get it back up for their spouses, nurses, and right hands, it now may be able to help women too! A recent eight-week experiment, funded by pharmaceutical company Pfizer, followed 98 women who were having trouble orgasming due to antidepressant medication. They were given Viagra and asked to have sex once a week with the pill’s aide. Seventy-two percent of the girls gave the erectile dysfunction drug the thumbs up! Although it didn’t increase their libido, the ladies reported that it did help them climax. But the findings certainly have some critics — 27% of the women in the control group who were given a placebo pill also reported satisfaction. However, despite shelling out cash for the study, Pfizer says it will not seek FDA approval for females to use Viagra, since it concluded in 2004 that there were no explicit benefits. If you’re still searching for a pick-me-up that’ll work with your antidepressant, there’s a clitoral therapy device approved by the FDA already, and libido-enhancing LibiGel is currently being tested. It looks like women will have plenty of options without having to pop pills like Bob Dole. [Orlando Sentinel] Keep reading »