The 3 Most Commonly Diagnosed Mental Disorders

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The medical community certainly spends a lot of time and money researching treatments for cardiovascular disease and cancer. It's not hard to understand why, as these two diseases were the two leading causes of death in the U.S. in 2010. However, researchers and science advocates are cutting themselves short if they don't realize another serious threat exists in the U.S.: mental disorders.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, or NIMH, an estimated 26.2% of adults aged 18 and older, nearly 63 million people, will suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in any given year. These diseases range from more moderate mental illnesses -- those that lifestyle changes and medicine can help relieve -- to the more severe mental illnesses that affect 6% of the population.

Today, I propose to look at the three most commonly diagnosed mental disorders courtesy of Discovery and see what, if any, medications are being used to counteract or lessen the effects of these disorders. Ultimately, 63 million people represents a huge patient subset, leaving plenty of opportunity for big pharmaceutical and biotech companies to make a meaningful quality-of-life impact.

1. Mood disorders
The most commonly diagnosed of all mental disorders is mood disorder, which affects about 21 million adults in the United States. Included in mood disorders is major depressive disorder, dysthymic disorder, and bipolar disorder.

Major depressive disorder is by far the most common, affecting nearly 15 million people, and is the leading causing of disability for people aged 15-44 according, to the NIMH. It's also more prevalent in women than in men. You will find nothing short of a couple of dozen possible treatments that can be used to help fight clinical depression, with none standing out more than Eli Lilly's (NYSE: LLY  ) Cymbalta, which was a $5 billion drug for Eli Lilly in 2012 and accounted for 22% of its total product sales. However, its patent on the drug is set to run out in the fourth quarter of this year and will almost certainly open up the door for a slew of branded and generic competition.

Also known as dysthymia, dysthymic disorder is a state of prolonged chronic depression that often has symptoms that are less severe than major depressive disorder. It affects a tad more than 3 million people in the United States. The most common treatment for dysthymia is a combination of antidepressants -- usually a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor such as the now generic Lexapro, developed by Forest Laboratories -- and psychotherapy. This is actually great news for patients, because nearly all SSRIs are now off patent (Lexapro lost its exclusivity last year), making them incredibly cost effective.

Bipolar disorder is the final mood disorder characterized by major shifts in mood, energy, and ability to function, and it affects roughly 6 million people in the United States. Similar to dysthymia, medication and counseling are the two most common therapies used to keep this long-term disease in check. Perhaps one of the best-known treatments is Johnson & Johnson's Risperdal, which has long since gone to a generic form and is now manufactured by Teva Pharmaceutical (NYSE: TEVA  ) . 

If you take away anything from mood disorders, it should be that generic drugs rule the roost. Mood disorders are in desperate need of newer treatment options, but most big pharmaceutical companies lose any incentive to enter the fray when large generic competitors such as Teva offer treatments for a fraction of the branded drugs' cost. Vanda Pharmaceuticals was the latest to try its luck with major depressive disorder but failed in phase 2b/3 trials, when tasimelteon didn't hit its primary endpoint. Until further notice, generic-drug makers such as Teva are your best investment bet when it comes to mood disorders.

2. Personality disorders
Approximately 9% of the population exhibits some form of personality disorder, which, like mood disorders, comes in three common diagnoses: antisocial personality disorder, avoidant personality disorder, and borderline personality disorder.

Antisocial personality disorder is diagnosed in about 1% of the population and is characterized by a person's unwillingness to follow social rules and cultural norms. Most people with this disorder are unable to differentiate between right and wrong and show little remorse for their actions. Antisocial personality disorder is incredibly difficult to treat, because there isn't a drug specifically designed to deal with it, nor do all people who have it recognize they have a problem that needs treating. Commonly, a combination of counseling and medication, which can range from antipsychotics to antidepressants, is used.

Avoidant personality disorder is a lifelong health condition that affects more than 5% of the population and is characterized by a person's feeling of being shy, inadequate, and sensitive to what others have to say about them. The most commonly prescribed medication here would be generic forms of Eli Lilly's Prozac. Like many mood disorders, antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications work well to counter the social phobias often exhibited by people with this disorder, but few new medications have been developed. Again, that's a big win for generic-drug makers and the consumers, but also a disappointment in that no new meds are hitting the market.

The third common personality disorder is borderline personality disorder, or BPD, which affects about 1.6% of the U.S. population. People with this disease are often emotionally unstable and impulsive in nature. They also tend to have trouble carrying on interpersonal relationships with others. While BPD is often inherent at birth, patients can undergo a mixture of talk therapy and drugs to help alleviate symptoms. In the drug department, this could include any combination of anti-psychotics, antidepressants, anti-anxiety drugs, and mood stabilizers. One of the most effective anti-psychotics in this space has been Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY  ) and Otsuka Holdings' Abilify, which is used to treat bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. U.S. net sales of the drug topped $4.2 billion last year, and net sales in the first quarter added 10% compared with the year-ago period.

3. Eating disorders
The third most-commonly diagnosed mental disorder is eating disorders, which (not to sound like a broken record) fall into three primary categories: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge-eating disorder. Women are three times as likely as men to develop anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa in their lifetime and 75% more likely to be diagnosed with binge-eating disorder than men, according to the NIMH.

Of the mental disorders we've discussed here, perhaps none benefits the least from a medication perspective than anorexia nervosa, a condition characterized by being chronically underweight and malnourished. Because of the serious effects being malnourished can have on the body, hospitalization may be required to stabilize normal body functions, but long-term treatment involving individual, group, and family therapy is often the remedy. If any drugs do tend to be prescribed, it tends to be an antidepressant such as Prozac. 

In bulimia nervosa, better known simply as bulimia, patients tend to eat, or in some cases binge-eat, and then purge the food from their bodies before they've had a chance to absorb the proper amount of nutrients. Others may choose a non-purging method such as fasting to ensure no weight gain. Either method tends to leave bulimic patients as anorexic and malnourished, which can lead to life-threatening health issues. Here again, medication is rarely as helpful as talk therapy in treating the disease. The only FDA-approved therapy to treat bulimia nervosa is Eli Lilly's antidepressant Prozac, but even that won't have much effect without a heavy dose of individual, group, and family support.

Source: Sylvar, Flickr.

The third eating disorder is binge-eating disorder, which is characterized by regularly consuming large quantities of food, which often results in excessive weight gain. Even the people who recognize these urges are wrong can't stop themselves from overeating. As with the other eating disorders, talk therapy is an important aspect of treatment, but medication can also play a crucial role. Antidepressants are a commonly prescribed tool used to improve a patient's mind-set, but I could see chronic weight-management drugs such as Arena Pharmaceuticals' (NASDAQ: ARNA  ) Belviq and VIVUS' (NASDAQ: VVUS  ) Qsymia potentially playing a role in treating binge-eating disorders in the future.

With binge-eating patients often not in the best mental state, Belviq and Qsymia in combination with an antidepressant could help shed some initial weight for patients who are clinically considered obese. Simply losing a few percentage points of body weight could be enough to completely change that person's state of mind and turn his or her life around. With Belviq presenting the better safety profile in trials and Qsymia boasting the more sizable weight loss, both drugs could have an honest shot at being weight-control blockbusters.

Foolish roundup
Although they often fly under the radar, mental disorders affect a big enough subset of our population that researchers should be spending more time coming up with treatments to treat these diseases. Until such time as we see research in this area spike, the aforementioned companies have relatively unopposed revenue streams and, as such, could make for an intriguing investment opportunity.

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Read/Post Comments (37) | Recommend This Article (20)

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  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 3:42 PM, thefoodmercenary wrote:

    Left of the list is the most widespread, debilitating disorder that effects way too many people of all nations, ages and both genders. I'm referring to the idiot gene. If science could isolate this one malady how much better off we would be.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 4:19 PM, Schizoaffective wrote:

    Will you folks be finishing the article any time soon? You seem to have missed the major disorders, such as Schizophrenia, Schizoaffective and DID. You can't honestly adress these issues without including the major, life shattering illnesses. Unless, of course, you're just making for some light reading. If so, that article was certainly offensive at best.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 4:27 PM, NealEngelking wrote:

    There is no single reason that mental illnesses develop. However, there is speculation that genetics may have a role in mental illness.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 4:33 PM, jonny665 wrote:

    One big Pharmaceutical advertisement, thanks Motley.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 5:06 PM, Dq1Ai2013 wrote:

    Bipolar was the real big one theyd diagnose everyone with after the Prozac, Paxil, and other SSRIs induced mania.


    Tom Cruise is right-

    Its a big racket and a pseudoscience with a Hegelian Dialectic base like everything else designed to push agendas for the very rich and powerful.. CHA CHING $$$$$$$$$$ lol...The dollar $ign even looks like the medical serpent crawling up a staff.

    Im worried if you do not have a mental disorder in today's time....Might mean you don't have a soul.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 5:07 PM, alipie56 wrote:

    Risperdal is an anti-psychotic and you truly do not know what you are talking about if you believe it is the drug of choice for bipolar disorder. Your article has some valuable information but are you truly qualified to state that one drug is effective for a disorder? I am disturbed how this article could impact someone who is either gullible or naive or uninformed. There are far better sources of information on mental illness such as NAMI, NIMH and others and I would urge anyone suffering with mental illness to get more information. Don't ask your doctor for a drug because you saw it on television or read about it here. Seek appropriate mental health professionals to treat a mental disorder rather than having a family doctor with less training regarding these drugs prescribe them.

    Anti-depressants and anti-psychotics are powerful drugs and often prescribed inappropriately with sometimes disastrous consequences. There is no shame or stigma in having a mental disorder and perhaps the value of this article is pointing out that they are widespread. Don't mislead people about these drugs!

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 5:57 PM, stockwatcher0153 wrote:

    Article should be seen at best as a starting point (one heavily slanted towards a pharmaceutical perspective at that).

    New psychotherapeutic techniques (among them CBT or cognitive-behavioral therapy) have shown a great deal of efficacy even with formerly "untreatable" disorders such as schizophrenia.

    Also the operative hypothesis behind the SSRIs ("catocholamines") hasn't been taken seriously by the research community in over a decade (they don't tell you this of course, until they come up with treatment[s] based on the new paradigm of targeting neural pathways directly [rather than the neurotransmitters which feed into them]).

    The general message is correct, however; mental disorders are the most important and neglected issue facing our society today (and not just because of things like periodic school shootings).

    To address them fully requires enlightened political leadership, hard policy decisions, and honest dialogues about priorities (as well as taking on the giant pharmaceutical lobby, which is a Sisyphean task); nor is this something which can be fixed by simply throwing money at it (although redirecting funds to community-based drop-in centers with job counseling, support groups and housing assistance would help tremendously).

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 6:15 PM, shineridge wrote:

    America has become a "walking drugstore". 70% of Americans are on some kind of prescription drug. And Big Pharma is making is making out "like a bandit". The majority of these mental "disorders" are INVENTIONS by the SHRINKS. Often, these "disorders" are simply the result of poor diet (ie, TOO much sugar), etc. Drugs like Prozac, Ritalin, etc., are way, way, WAY over prescribed. Little Johny or Sally fidgets or gets bored in class, so the school shrink puts the kid on Ritalin. It's INSANE !!! These psyh drugs are powerful, MIND ALTERING drugs and their use is a National EPIDEMIC. And it's DESTROYING a generation of Americans. If Big Pharma had their way, we'd probably ALL be taking one or more of these dangerous, INSIDIOUS drugs.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 6:23 PM, hoghunter1 wrote:

    Throw addicts into te mix and we have what my 150 mil?

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 6:42 PM, cymaiorca wrote:

    What about autism? Recent studies have said as many as 1 in 4 boys are being diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders .

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 6:54 PM, bfgjklww wrote:

    Hi, there are many missing facts in this article. Each category has errors. I'll point out one biggie: there are far more than 3 personality disorders. You forgot narcissistic personality disorder, histrionic personality disorder.. to name a couple.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 8:16 PM, fingerlakes54 wrote:

    If your are an American----does it surprise you that there are so many depressed people?

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 8:25 PM, VegasSmitty wrote:

    The worst mental disorder I can see are those people who write for the Motley Fool and Yahoo!

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 8:30 PM, VintageV12 wrote:

    1 out of 9 people with major depression kill themselves.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 8:33 PM, girliegirl2012 wrote:

    Mental illness is a very serious medical condition. Many comments have been made that it is only diagnosed to sell pharmaceuticals. Well, I beg to differ. Most mental illnesses are inherited and some patients do find help with medication and therapy; however, there are many patients that end up committing suicide as their only relief. There is nothing worse than being a prisoner in your own mind. In the USA today, there should be more facilities available for the mentally ill. We have "no kill shelters" for animals...what about human life?? Instead of sending money to foreign countries for aid, our legislators need to do more for the mentally challenged right here in our own country! The stigma needs to go away from having mental issues. Depression can lead to suicide. I would take it serious. Someone in your family could be next.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 9:08 PM, ChMacQueen wrote:

    Any1 else feel that we have way to many disorders these days? It seems almost everyone has some disorder of some kind by these reports. Maybe its time we start defining what a disorder really should be and stop making crap up because someone is overweight or doesn't like their job. Time to get the pharmaceutical companies out of the doctor's offices and stop allowing them to do medical studies that just result in 100's of new disorders for stupid crap.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 9:26 PM, sydneygottlieb wrote:

    Two of the world's greatest humanitarian, omnipotent healers have collaborated to create the most effective therapy technique! Dr. Phil and Dr. Drew have worked together to create this new therapy called PHEW. It can literally change your life for you! All I can say is phew; thank goodness these two great healers of mankind have created this all-encompassing therapy. But for those that PHEW cannot help their alternative method they call DRIL. This is a takeoff of that great healer from days gone by, Dr. Walter Freeman. Only now the ice pick is replaced with a small drill mounted on a Dremel Moto Tool. They can get to more folks that way; their arm doesn’t get tired like Dr. Freeman’s did. Did I fail to mention that they collaborated with Dr. Lynne Fenton and Dr. Matthew Israel on this last technique? This is truly Xmas in July and thank our lucky stars, including Oprah, for these great and omnipotent healers of mankind!!!

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 10:18 PM, marlenekay4 wrote:

    My son was 8-9 when he was wrongly diagnosed as having adhd. The doc put him on concerta and he had massive hallucinations. Then he saw a psychiatrist who said he was bipoler, anxiety and adhd. Was put onto abilify, sertraline and strattera. He started pooping his pants at school, having a tic disorder, tourettes like behaviors and tardive dyskinesia. He became angry, abusive, emotional and downright scary. After a year of this, I removed him from the meds and researched them. I found that two of the meds together causes mania in people who do have bipoler disorder. We had him retested and found out he has high functioning autism. See

    I also read an article a year or so ago telling how more and more young kids with bipoler disorder are being put into hospitals because of violent behaviors. But the doctors and parents don't stop to understand it is the medications that are causing the issue.

    My son is now 14 and medication free and doing great.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 10:22 PM, marlenekay4 wrote:

    There are some good movies on youtube

    "Marketing of Madness"

    The Drugging of our Children

    Another aspect of this tragedy is that foster children are being used as guinea pigs. The majority of foster kids are put onto psychotropic drugs for no reason at all.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 10:28 PM, marlenekay4 wrote:

    I wrote earlier about my son who was wrongly diagnosed.

    When he was diagnosed with the high functioning autism after his ordeal with the meds....the doctors said he also had a tic disorder that was caused by the meds. I has learned to control the disorder, but on occasion when he gets too upset or stressed, it returns. Tardive dyskinesia can be permanent, thankfully his wasn't.

    The psychiatric industry is a farce. Making a killing The Untold Story of Psychotropic Drugging More U.S. kids in hospital for mental illness

    Peter R. Breggin, MD, has been called "The Conscience of Psychiatry" for his efforts to reform the mental health field. He has created a new organization to bring together professionals and laypersons concerned with a critical analysis of biopsychiatry and with more effective empathic approaches in mental health and education.

    • What you may need to know about:

    • New Video Series: "Simple Truths About Psychiatry"

    • Jury Awards $1.5 million for suicide involving antidepressants based on Dr. Breggin's testimony

    • Judge Concludes Prozac Caused Teen to Murder, Confirming Dr. Breggin's Testimony.

    • Dr. Breggin testifies before Congress in 2010 on antidepressant drugs causing increased suicide, violence & mania in the military. See the video here.

    • Medical Expert in Legal Cases: criminal, malpractice and product liability suits involving antidepressants, tranquilizers, antipsychotic drugs, mood stabilizers, stimulants, children and ADHD, electroshock (ECT), and psychosurgery

    • Important New Article on Drug-Induced Chronic Brain Impairment (PDF)

    • Read Dr. Breggin's New "Guidelines for Empathic Therapy"

    • Psychiatric drug adverse reactions (side effects) and medication spellbinding

    • Violence and suicide caused by antidepressants

    • Mental dysfunction and addiction caused by benzodiazepines

    • Tardive dyskinesia (TD) caused by antipsychotic drugs

    • Children, ADHD and stimulant drugs

    • The hazards of electroshock and psychosurgery

    • Psychiatric drug dependence (addiction) and withdrawal

    • FDA actions and shortcomings

    • See Dr. Breggin's astonishing speech on Totalitarian Psychiatry & the Nazi Holocaust.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 10:54 PM, Shadowhawkling wrote:

    I'm now 36. I've been diagnosed as bipolar since I was six, PTSD since about the same time, as well as developing Avoidant personality disorder as well as DID. I've tried virtually everything on the market, but there's nothing that has worked for me, so I just put up with it.

    I know that different things work for different people, but what do you do when the therapist you're seeing refuses to change you off of a medication that isn't working and his superior attitude is harming the sessions? You quit. Just drop everything and stop.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 10:59 PM, boddhitree wrote:

    The photo that corresponds to bipolar disorder is insulting and insensitive. If you want to be respected as a serious writer and/or editor then I would expect the content (both written and pictorial) to not reinforce the stigma associated with mental disorders.

  • Report this Comment On July 14, 2013, at 11:43 PM, EgasMoniz wrote:

    As a 21-year mental health professional, I think a few things need to be cleared up here. First, Peter Breggin is not someone you want to quote if you want any credibility to your argument. His "research" consists of anecdotal accounts, such as newspaper articles, TV interviews, individual stories, etc. Second, medication is not the initial treatment of choice in personality disorders. It is used only when additional symptoms are present that complicate the disorder. Third, the fellow up there who tried to say that all mental illnesses are phoney and a ruse for doctors to make money ought to spend 48 hours in a psychiatric hospital. He would change his mind very quickly. Fourth, my heart goes out to the parent of the kid who got dosed up with so many medications. Don't assume that all pharmacological treatments are bad simply because your child was given such a hefty cocktail. Find a psychiatrist who uses medications wisely and as a treatment of last choice. Finally, antipsychotics are used for bipolar disorder, and there is a growing trend to use them as treatments of first choice, rather than the old standards, lithium carbonate and valproic acid. It seems that the sedative quality of Risperdal, Seroquel and related medications can help. Oh, and as a postscript, I should say that the "disorders" listed in the article are actually categories of disorders; that is, "mood disorders" includes depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, etc., there are several distinct personality disorders, and there are a number of eating disorders. Someone mentioned that Schizophrenia was left out. This comes under the heading of a "Thought Disorder." The same person mentioned DID, which is dissociative identity disorder, the most severe of the dissociative disorders. It was formerly called "multiple personality disorder." Many mental health professionals don't believe this disorder even exists, and at best it is a symptom of a personality disorder. If it really does exist, it is so very rare that many professionals don't ever encounter it in an entire career, so it hardly qualifies as a major diagnosis that was missed by the author of this article.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 12:24 AM, milosmom13 wrote:

    My counselor told me that psych diagnoses exist only to satisfy the insurance and drug companies. I read and audit psych charts for a living and i can say beyond any doubt that mood disorders are number one. Followed by chemical dependency and then the schizophrenias. Many doctors refuse to diagnose personality disorders, but when they do, borderline personality disorder is the most common. It's also the number one cause of suicide. Major depressives kill themselves a lot, but not as much as borderlines.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 12:28 AM, milosmom13 wrote:

    DID is not uncommon. I have met many people with the diagnosis, and I lived with someone who had it for 10 years. It is a major disorder and one that is commonly mistaken for schizophrenia, since both cause patients to hear voices. However, people with DID hear voices inside their own heads, and schizophrenics say the voices are coming from other places.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 12:47 AM, EgasMoniz wrote:

    The diagnosis of DID is not uncommon, but the incidence of the disorder is. Auditory hallucinations, a symptom of schizophrenia and other disorders, are indeed voices "heard from outside of your head." Intrusive thoughts, which is what I am assuming the person posting above is referring to when she talks about "hearing voices inside [their] head," is a symptom that stands alone from a dissociative disorder. Dissociative Identity Disorder presumes that an individual has two or more separate "personalities" living inside his/her brain, and each separate personality does not have any idea that any other personality exists. It is presumed that the etiology of a dissociative disorder comes from childhood abuse (sexual or physical) that is so terrible that the individual "dissociates" or "checks out" if you will, going to another place in their brain that feels safe. In DID, the dissociation is so severe that another, separate and individual personality is created for the individual to use as a safe haven. I am not so sure that it is as common as the poster above thinks. But I certainly don't doubt that it exists. The only known treatment is psychotherapy that looks to integrate all of the personalities into one, a process that if successful could take years.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 4:27 AM, joanofarc13 wrote:

    Head fractures are conducive to mood disorders. Neurology and psychological mental illness are two broad based seperate spectrums. Case in point the Iraq war newscaster on Abc and NFL concussion injuries.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 4:29 AM, fukcyhouintheass wrote:

    reading anything on The Motley Fool and factually thinking it was interesting or informative, or even worth a damn, makes you a retard. By far the biggest mental disorder plaguing the U.S. today.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 4:41 AM, shanmarq wrote:

    The most common reason for mental illness is we live in a cold, competitive society. 1% of the population controls two thirds of the wealth, the greatest concentration of wealth in any developed nation. We fight senseless wars to control oil and give trillions to bailout corrupt, incompetent banks. Change the society and you will feel less depressed. The drugs only assure your oppression.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 7:18 AM, JR88 wrote:

    Yes I was thinking the most common are the Mood and Personality Disorder's but the more Major Disorders like in the Schizo/ DID realm are always left in the dark and pharmaceutical medication's for majority of all these disorder's are very ineffective and just cause more problems, If it was up to me and it was Legal...Therapy sessions with Marijuana and maybe very mild/moderate stimulant/hallucinogen usage has proven to dramatically increase well being of these individuals far more so than any pharmaceutical ever has and Yes I'm speaking from experience. The pharmaceutical industry is a big damn joke plain and simple.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 7:24 AM, JR88 wrote:

    Yes the Anti-depressant medications are just plain awful and can aggravate multiple already existing symptoms not too mention the god awful side-effects. Very well know medication's that cause extreme extended suicidal ideologies/thinking etc

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 7:30 AM, csymonds wrote:

    I see you have found 3 of Obama's problems. You are still missing 2 of them. That's all right it's a start.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 1:15 PM, sillywabbit94 wrote:

    This just in: researches are telling us that if you wipe with your left hand, you have a disorder that needs medical and therapeutic intervention.

    This article fails to mention that 20% of people diagnosed with mental disorders, don't really have reasonable cause for medical intervention. Mental disorders are SO easy to fake, because you don't need objective signs and symptoms. You just need to "act" the part. So many people do this just for an excuse not to work and to receive disability. Instead of working through the problems, they pop a pill and say everything is going to be okay. While the pharmacy laughs behind your back because everyone wins. You win not having to work, and having an excuse for your behaviors, and they win because they get $$$.

    Yes, there are people that really do need the medication. But a study was preformed some years ago, one group of people with "mental disorders" were given a placebo, and the other group was given an actual pharmaceutical drug. The placebo group showed signs of "improvement", more so than the group given an actual drug.

    It's all in your head. We choose our own attitudes, emotions, and how are days are going to be, people who claim to have a disorder, have not discovered the divine art of self control, and self manipulation.

    Yes, I know some people really do have a disorder, and it needs medical intervention. But MOST mental problems can be fixed without medicine.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 1:42 PM, cansada wrote:

    This article could use a lot more research. I have bipolar disorder and did the multi-med dance for over a decade before a doctor who knew a knee from an elbow finally realized what was actually wrong with me...then I went on a researching spree. I have never heard of using Risperdal as a primary mood stabilizer. Lithium is the gold standard, though it can have some nasty side effects. I was lucky. I've been on it for 14 years and it's no exaggeration to say it saved my life. Yes, it packed on the pounds and my beautiful teeth are no longer beautiful, but I consider that a small price to pay for having a life again. Once a patient is stabilized on lithium or another mood stabilizer (there are a few) you can add adjuncts (like Risperdal) to tweak things and work out various kinks. It's all about finding the right cocktail. Periodic blood tests ascertain that the meds aren't knocking bodily systems out of whack, and you weigh the various side effects against benefits to see if you feel the meds are working for you. It's a process. There are over 100 meds used to treat psych issues--more than that if you count those that are used off-label, so there is a cocktail out there for everyone. It's just a matter of finding it. Anyone who is having trouble with finding the correct meds through his/her psych can make an appt. with a psychopharmacologist--they are trained to do nothing but evaluate patients and their reactions to psych meds and find the correct combo. Not trying to sound like a know-it-all; I've just read everything about bipolar that I can get my hands on for the last 14 years. Hopefully this helps someone.

  • Report this Comment On July 15, 2013, at 8:37 PM, biogemfinder wrote:

    I think the most common mental disorder that has occurred but not yet diagnosed by the medical community is whatever is wrong with people who have shorted arena shares. Its beyond any reason, that so many would be inflicted by that kind of disorder and yet pretend to be normal and keep coming back arena YMB and spam it wit FUD.

    But there is hope. While the severity of condition and the total number of people coming down with that disorder went up, partly due to incompetence of the DEA and them taking way too long, Belviq has finally launched and with each passing week and increasing script data, hopefully the shorts will finally be relieved of this dreadful condition and their money.

  • Report this Comment On July 16, 2013, at 2:19 AM, captainprome wrote:

    I'm concerned that a mental health diagnosis is called a mental "disorder". Are they all really disordered thoughts or disordered moods? Maladjusted maybe? To me it means that people that insist on calling something a "disorder" when it's not...really do have a disorder.

  • Report this Comment On July 19, 2013, at 12:25 PM, momwithbpd wrote:

    It is a surprise to see that personality disorders are ranked second most diagnosed mental illness. I do have BPD tendencies, but I remember my doctor writing "major depressive disorder" on my medical record and I think she did that so that my insurance company will cover the treatment options.

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