There are a large
population of people who are on it and shouldn’t be

Beyond blue are
focusing on people who should be on it and aren

But the effect of any
awareness campaign is to

For every person you
reach who should have it you’ll reach three or four people who shouldn’t

Just increasing the
number of people who are diagnosed and treated doesn’t necessarily improve the
general health of the population..

Now that we’re
increasingly worried about the dangers of prescribing antidepressents that’s
more of a concern

Among young people
there’s an increase in suicidal behaviour….There’s a lot of evidence that there
are significant withdrawal effects when you stop them

Also high levels of

So much so that pharmaceutical
companies are thinking of using them to treat premature ejaculation

Motor restlessness can
also be a horrible side effect, it’s a kind of restlessness, deep muscular,
physical sensation of restlessness…can’t get comfortable which is associated
with high levels of distress..

Beyond blue doesn’t
push drugs as first line treatment, the reality is that people with depression
come to

and most
are more likely to prescribe

You can afford to
support an illness awareness strategy that doesn’t support drugs as a first
line treatment but the people sittnig back int the exec offices of the drug
company know very well that the overall effect is going to be increased
prescribing and so they can score brownies points as good corporate citizens
when its essentially marketing

Beyond blue needs to
stop promotoing depression as an illness and promote healthy dealing with
emotions and that kind of stuff, they’ve got too much of an illness focus and
too much of a medical focus…

The vast majority of
people who are diagnosed with depression there’s no real evidence that going to
the medical profession is the best solution, not that it’s bad to go to a
doctor as long as they don’t reach for the prescribe pad…

Unhappiness is not
necessarily a physical sickness..

The kind of world view

If youre not feeling
good there must be something wrong with your body, you can feel good all year
round like living 22 degrees all year round

What you need to be
good at is feelings and that mean s being able to tolerate and deal with some
quite uncomfortable feelings

Medicilastion of
unhappiness, unrealistic expectations of how you’re going to feel all the

As soon as you label
your experience as an illness that goes out of control, that can be a good
thing and a bad thing as a loss of control over your life….

Numbing yourself out
of pain potentially erodes your autonimy…


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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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