Cosmetic psychopharmacology

Kamer(47> has described how a selective serotonin uptake inhibitor used for the treatment of depression and for other psychiatric alterations can remove personality traits in some people. He has considerered traits previously considered as an expression of human misery or, in some cases, as the consequence of negative childhood experiences. Kamer even questions whether there could be a 'pandemic' of cosmetic psychopharmacologies which would lead to the disappearance of phenomena such as anguish which are essential for personal realization in the arts, religion, and creativity. In the light of present knowledge, it can be deduced that the characteristics of personality disorders do not have to be present in the traits of a normal personality. The disappearance of clinical symptoms as a result of pharmacological treatment directed at potentiating the serotonergic metabolism of, for example, a violent or obsessive patient is not the same as modifying personality traits which contribute to determining that an ambitious, artistically oriented, and aggressive young male becomes a bullfighter.

Cosmetic psychopharmacology does not exist. What does exist is the treatment of personality disorders, which are real illnesses characterized by symptoms and by a biological substrate. These disorders are amenable to treatment, although further research on many aspects is still required. In the past, these disorders would have been considered as a form of moral degeneration.

Breaking Bulimia

Breaking Bulimia

We have all been there: turning to the refrigerator if feeling lonely or bored or indulging in seconds or thirds if strained. But if you suffer from bulimia, the from time to time urge to overeat is more like an obsession.

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