What Is Psychopharmacology?

The use of drugs to alleviate the symptoms of mental disorders makes psychoactive agents—especially antipsychotics and antidepressants—among the most widely prescribed pharmaceuticals today. Much debate surrounds the use of stimulants to treat attention-deficit problems and the side effects of antidepressants, especially for children. The general effectiveness of antidepressants when measured against a placebo remains controversial, although the treatments that prove most effective combine drugs with psychotherapy.

Recent Posts on Psychopharmacology

Helping Veterans with PTSD Using Yoga

Not only should the VA continue with pilot studies of holistic therapies, but evidence should be taken from related fields, such as addiction treatment, where these therapies have been used for years with great success.

You Don’t Want to Miss: “Prescription Thugs” at Tribeca

This weekend is the start of the Tribeca Film Festival. At the festival, the documentary film, “Prescription Thugs,” will be screened. I am honored to be featured in this film and to help educate the public about the grave danger that is posed by the abuse of prescription medications.

Ever Fly? Protect Yourself from Travel-Associated Risks

By Peter Edelstein M.D. on April 17, 2015 in Patient Power
Whether you're a frequent flier or only occasionally travel by air, here are a few tips to protect your health from both annoying and dangerous travel-associated conditions.

Coachella, King Kong,Tom Hardy's Bare Private Parts & PTSD

By Anneli Rufus on April 17, 2015 in Stuck
He's photographed Brad Pitt, Naomi Watts and other superstars, but his early work as a war-zone photojournalist left Greg Williams with PTSD.

Alpha Brain Waves Boost Creativity and Reduce Depression

Neuroscientists have discovered that increasing alpha brain waves through electrical stimulation or mindfulness can boost creativity and minimize depression.

Body Punishment

By The Book Brigade on April 16, 2015 in The Author Speaks
Obsessive-compulsive disorder takes many forms, but all of them involve repetitive behaviors that often create vicious cycles of anxiety and shame. Maggie Lamond Simone punished herself to maintain a public face—until the same disorder was diagnosed in her child. Only then did the healing begin.

What's Your Worst Nightmare?

By E E Smith on April 16, 2015 in Not Born Yesterday
They are the grim subject of several centuries-old paintings, in which a black horse (or "night mare") hovers near a sleeping figure. They have been the terrifying theme of movies, past and present––from "I Wake Up Screaming" (1941), to the latest "Nightmare on Elm Street" flick. So, what exactly is a nightmare?

Wired for Perfect Health

Your unconscious mind knows exactly what you need to be healthy. So why aren’t you?

Finding Home with Jesse Malin

By Michael Friedman Ph.D. on April 15, 2015 in Brick by Brick
Jesse Malin shares how he has used music and creativity to create community.

Great Apps for ADHD

Six apps to help manage your adult ADHD!

Tired of Being 'Stuck' in Your Relationship?

There is an art to creating and embracing change so you can reinvigorate your relationship.

How Much Should Parents Protect Their Children?

A legitimate question about how much risk parents should allow their children to take, and how protective of their children parents should be has been all but drowned out by extreme emotion.

Why Some People Let Us Down When We Need Them

If someone has experienced a particular event, they’ll sympathize with those going through the same experience. But those who have gotten through difficult situations tend to be the harshest judges of those who fail under similar circumstances.

Time to Tidy Up Your Head

By Susan B. Winston LMFT on April 13, 2015 in Shift Happens
When a book about tidying up your home hits the top of the best seller's list, there's got to be something worth reading in it. Or maybe this is just a wake up call for all of us to look at the kind of cleaning up we really need to do. The author asks that you completely empty your drawers and closets. I ask that you completely empty out your head.

Breaking Good

By Adi Jaffe Ph.D. on April 13, 2015 in All About Addiction
Coming face to face with your own shame and emotion about the past can be hard. This is me trying to do it in public.

Working Moms Have Healthier, More Successful Kids

Though we spend more time with our kids these days than decades ago, it may not be improving their developmental outcomes. A study of family time diaries shows that family income is a better predictor of children's academic and psychological outcomes than the amount of individual attention they receive from their parents between the ages of 3 and 11.

Mental Illness On Reality TV: Helpful Or Harmful?

By Seth Meyers Psy.D. on April 12, 2015 in Insight Is 20/20
A new TV show begs a very basic question: Does showing the intensely emotional moments of untreated mentally ill individuals help or harm the overall cause?

7 Secrets to Hitting Your Reset Button

Dr. Michael Roizen, co-author with Dr. Oz on the best-selling YOU series, has just published a new book, “This is Your Do-Over.” The book provides 7 secrets to better physical health. Fortunately, these same secrets are the pathway to positive mental health, happiness, and well-being.

Can We Exercise Too Much?

By Pirkko Markula Ph.D. on April 12, 2015 in Fit Femininity
Physical activity has been proven to improve physical and psychological health. However, is any amount of exercise good? Too much exercise can prevent psychological well-being. When excessive exercise develops into exercise dependence, it becomes compulsive behaviour that controls the exerciser's life.

Faulty Reporting on ADHD

By Christopher Lane Ph.D. on April 11, 2015 in Side Effects
Newspaper of record criticized for its tardy response to overmedicalization.

Should Elective Surgery Be Delayed for Very Young Children?

Accumulating evidence supports the possibility that general anesthetics have adverse effects on brain development in very young children. A recent New England Journal of Medicine editorial suggests that parents and doctors consider the risks and benefits of delaying elective surgery until children are 3 years old or older.

Do Sleep Issues in Teens Predict Drug and Alcohol Problems?

By Michael J Breus Ph.D. on April 09, 2015 in Sleep Newzzz
Despite their seemingly boundless energy—and propensity to stay up late at night—teens need more sleep than adults.

John Joseph Shows Us Why Healthy Living Is Pure Hardcore

By Michael Friedman Ph.D. on April 08, 2015 in Brick by Brick
The Cro-Mags' John Joseph shows us that coping with difficult situations can be hard, but healthy living is the ultimate strategy.

Vitamania! 15 Vital Facts About the Vitamins We Love

By Meg Selig on April 07, 2015 in Changepower
Are you a "vitamaniac?" 15 vital facts about vitamins and supplements, plus 5 questions to ask yourself before you take a vitamin or other supplement.

Everything Ends Up as Pornography

By Steve Albrecht DBA on April 07, 2015 in The Act of Violence
Internet access to pornography is negatively reshaping dating relationships Millennials have with each other.

Should We Blame Depression for the Germanwings Crash?

By David B. Feldman Ph.D. on April 06, 2015 in Supersurvivors
In the aftermath of the Germanwings Flight 9525 tragedy, the media quickly pointed to the co-pilot's "severe depression" as a possible cause of the crash. Was this really the cause? Or does this tell us more about our society's continued stigmatization of mental illness than of what really happened?

When Is Suicide Acceptable?

By Joe Pierre M.D. on April 06, 2015 in Psych Unseen
Although suicide is taboo in the U.S., euthanasia is gaining increasing acceptance. A look at other forms of culturally sanctioned suicide reveals the moral relativism of taking one's life and suggest clues for suicide prevention.

Getting Enlightened About Prostitution

This year marked the 25th anniversary of the movie “Pretty Woman” starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. It was a movie I loved at the time because I really knew so little about prostitution—"the life" that Roberts' character was a part of. Then, I had no opinion about prostitution.

Is Your Adult Child Having A Mental Health Crisis?

By Melissa Deuter M.D. on April 06, 2015 in The In-Between
Many young adults with stress induced mental health symptoms can benefit from learning simple coping skills, like time management or self-soothing. The presence of mental health symptoms does not have to mean disability.

Finding Renewal in Springtime

By James Ullrich on April 06, 2015 in The Modern Time Crunch
The great lesson of springtime: Even after the harshest winter, renewal is always possible. But a lingering depression left over from winter must be addressed seriously. There are some easy, cost-free ways to begin recovery right now.