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Are We Over-medicated? Or Good Self Care?

Updated: Apr 18, 2020

By: Dr. Jeff Brockman - New Leaf Counseling Group, LLC - Charlotte, NC

Jeff Brockman, Ph.D., is a Licensed Professional Counselor Associate. He has worked with adolescents and adults for over a quarter of a century as a Minister, Teacher, and Counselor. He now practices with New Leaf Counseling Group in Charlotte, NC.

There has long been a debate about the role of medication in society. Some societies seem to get along without Western medicine. There are other healing modalities like Reiki, yoga,

chiropractic, and sound therapy.

Many people in our society believe that we have too many children and adults on medication for depression, anxiety, and ADHD. Yet many people, including myself, also have or have had a strong resistance to taking any medication and I've heard Parents over the last 30 years repeatedly say, “I do not want my kids walking around like a zombie on medication! I don't”

I would suggest that most of us have a love-hate relationship with medication, with the current climate leaving many of us wondering, "Are we over-medicated?"

In my own life, I started taking an anti-depressant for Depression about twenty years ago and, along with counseling, my symptoms were relieved. Yet years later, my therapist once again noticed that much of what we were discussing were the symptoms of Depression, such as less enjoyment out of my favorite activities, sleeping issues, and overwhelmingly negative thoughts.

She suggested that maybe I see my psychiatrist and ask her about an additional medication. My response? W-T-H? Two medications? There was no way I was going to take two antidepressants! What would this say about ME?!? I initially persisted in my

aversion to a second medication as I had the first medication, decades ago.

When I finally did go see my psychiatrist, she in fact did prescribe a second medication and much like the first one after I gave it a chance, it worked.

Different medications effect different neurotransmitters in the brain. The second medication worked on a different neurotransmitter than the first one and within weeks, I felt more enjoyment and even felt more social (as an introvert!). I was talking to strangers, enjoying my job more, and being more productive. It was great! Then it dawned on me. OMG! My resistance to medication may have cost me increased happiness—for many years!

I am not trying to convince anyone to take medication. No one can make you take it and who is to say that talk therapy on it's own cannot provide you with the relief you are looking for. I can only tell you my story; the story of a guy who resisted medication at

the cost of his happiness. Is your resistance costing you or your child? Considering this

question does not mean you have to take it! We’re just talking....

So, is your aversion to medication hurting you or holding you back? Would you want to be less happy than you could be? That is all up to you, but I've been supporting Community Members through making some of those very difficult decisions successfully for over 30 years and have room for you to do so as well. Consider booking an appointment with Dr. Jeff here



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