Mental Health Therapy Choices for Filipinos

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Experts have been studying depression and anxiety for decades now and there were many positive discoveries. The big problem is, most modern doctors and psychiatrists are bounded by certain policies favoring corporate profit instead of people’s health. Seems from the beginning, the psychiatric institutions have been taken over by heartless pharmaceutical profiteers and authoritarian therapists. With the help of corrupt politicians, many of these doctors and experts are taking advantage of the rotten healthcare system. The psychiatric establishments, together with big pharmaceutical companies, have never been so considerate to patients and people in general. Typically, their outright answer to these psychological and neurological problems is, according to the current medical praxis by the mainstream conventional healthcare system, endless psychiatric or psychotropic medication. This is the standard treatment.

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What’s wrong with this?

Although psychiatric medications help many, it is now an accepted fact globally that these drugs are very toxic to the body. Aside from being so expensive, they are also highly addictive, and in some cases, they cause homicidal and suicidal ideations to the user. Aside from few other lethal prescription medicines, psychotropic drugs are now considered as one of the main causes of death to many thousands of youth in western countries. These forms of institutional abuse and ruthless financial exploitation on behalf of the patient’s family have been plaguing America and Europe for decades now. With the growing international concern about how the current industry of psychiatry is turning out, it is definitely time for Filipinos to know about the current state of the mainstream mental institution called psychiatry.



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According to one article by Dr. Edward F. Group posted in the Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) website (a non-profit, non-political, non-religious mental health industry watchdog), “The Psychiatric Industry is a $330 Billion Industry. That’s a huge number and many forces are at work to preserve and grow it. While most physicians are not mercenary in their approach to prescribing medications, there is an argument to be made for the possibility of a conflict of interest when it comes to the rise of psychiatric prescriptions”. He added, “Worldwide, over 100 million people take psychiatric drugs”.

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Meanwhile, according to an article by Dr. Peter R. Breggin M.D., a Harvard-trained psychiatrist and former Consultant at National Institute of Mental Health, “We are facing a tragedy of enormous proportions!Psychiatric drugs of every kind are exposing people to long-term risks of a declining quality of life, apathy, chronic disability, and even shrinkage of the brain.  When they try to withdraw from the drugs, they are likely to find themselves afflicted with new symptoms of drug-induced harm that the medications were suppressing. Then they may find it physically and emotionally painful, and even dangerously unsafe, to withdraw from these psychoactive medications”.

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So what are the alternative treatments to Filipino’s depression and other mental health problems?

There are many different approaches around the world right now on how to naturally manage depression, anxiety, and other kinds of issues caused by stress. For example, it has been scientifically proven years ago that physical exercises (PE) help our body system deal with stress and fight depression. People who are physically active are rarely affected by anxiety and depression compared to people who have sedentary lifestyle or job. Researchers discovered that consistent exercise also improve our breathing, sleep, blood flow, and could elevate our mood, decrease tensions, and in overall, boost self-esteem as it improves our brain function. So once you exercise just for 5 minutes, it can start to stimulate positive energy charge and effects on the body that has anti-anxiety nature. So PE is very vital for individual’s fitness.

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Other positive effects of exercise in the body are alertness and mindfulness. It also enhances cognitive function, helps on your concentration, reduces mental stress and fatigue, and releases endorphins. Endorphin is a natural painkiller chemical in our brain. It can also boost our emotions. Lastly, PE helps improve our sleeping ability, which is our important protective factor from stress. Stress depletes our energy and distracts the mind from its focus. Therefore, it is, of course, affecting our body and our emotions. The body and the mind is one or connected; our brain process these stress and produce impacts to the rest of our body, including our internal organs. Having positive mental attitude or psychology and doing physical exercises produces healthy body. It is essential for maintaining the balance of our well-being.

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The good news is that, there are other alternative treatments to depression Filipinos can try today. These days, the time for conventional therapy was already getting replaced by more humanistic and compassionate approach, as opposed to just mostly conversational and drugging therapy. Typically, this is called Complementary and Alternative Medicine or CAM. But first, Filipinos need to educated themselves and read about various mental health articles in the internet. As much as possible, they must have extensive knowledge about this issue. But even if they don’t, they can still find many online literatures teaching how to handle depression and other mental health problems naturally and how to help others with metal health problems.

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CAM can also be used with traditional medicine. Some examples to these available approaches are yoga and relaxation techniques, biofeedback, acupuncture, nature therapy, sound healing, aromatherapy, therapeutic art, dancing, mindfulness meditation, music and singing, optimal rest or sleep, combined with nutritional and herbal therapy. However, individuals must be smart in choosing their own method and they must remember that some of these methods cannot be mixed together. This is where the power of knowledge comes to play. These days, many youth are becoming more aware and involved in the country’s mental health issue. We just hope it would grow more and become better in watching and guiding the country’s policy on mental health for the real interest of the people and not of the big psychiatric and pharmaceutical companies.




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Alter Picar

Alter Picar is a writer, translator, self-published author, songwriter / musician, community worker, non-profit organization manager (volunteer), mental health advocate / educator, librarian, and organic gardener.



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