Medication

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Ways To Make The Weekend Yours Again

Making time for the most important person in your life -- you -- is essential for overall health and well-being. But sometimes life gets in the way: work piles up, the kids need a drive to practice, and the household chore list gets unbelievably long. We list five effective ways to take back your life.
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I Want My Patients To Love Their Drugs

The trouble is, there is no recipe book for prescribing psychiatric medications. Every individual is unique, so with the guidance of their doctor, patients must find the treatment that's right for them. If a drug makes them feel worse, it's not the right drug, but that doesn't mean there are no other options. The right treatment must be found and sometimes that takes time, effort and creativity. Feeling like a zombie is never an acceptable outcome.
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30 Years A Hostage To My Migraines

My migraines never reduced in frequency or intensity. I took over-the-counter and prescription drugs. It was not usual for me to take 8 muscle relaxants a day plus small amounts of prescription painkillers. My lifestyle was otherwise healthy. I did pilates 5 days a week, ate well and slept 8 hours a night. But 6 out of 7 days was a struggle. A struggle to be positive focused and upbeat at work many days when I just felt like banging my head down on my desk.
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Why We Need To Increase Insurance Coverage For Private Psychological Care

Increasing insurance benefits increases access to private care, which has become a necessity in Canada. Those wanting psychological treatments must either choose between public care (ex: psychologist in a hospital) or private care (ex: psychologist in private practice). Unfortunately, there tend to be unreasonable wait lists for access to public care (typically one year or longer).
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Why Canada's Mental Health Commission Is Useless To Canada's Mentally Ill

I know what a mental illness is but I'm not really sure what a mental health problem is. Is it a problem for the worried well? Toronto Maple Leaf hockey fans have been depressed for years because their team misses the playoffs and has not won the Stanley Cup since 1967. Young Susie can't sleep at nights and is distraught because no one has asked her to the prom yet and her parents refuse to buy her the new dress she so desperately wants.
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Why CETA is Little More Than a Corporate Bill of Rights

Under CETA Canada will lengthen the time drugs remain under patent, which is expected to drive up already high Canadian pharmaceutical drug costs by more than $850 million a year. Instead of extending Canadian patent laws to more closely reflect Europe's rules, why not harmonize daycare programs to reflect the best of the trading area?
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Who Paid for Your Doctor's Opinion?

There are academic pharmaceutical researchers still publishing independent, peer-reviewed articles, just as there are still farmers who have small farms with the kinds of smiling animals one sees in children's books. But more and more pharmaceutical research is done factory farm-style, with organized precision and efficiency, all paid for by drug companies. Welcome to new science.

Part 2: Paying Less for Prescription Drugs? Bad Idea

Paying less for drugs sounds like a good idea, right? Well, as with everything else, one needs to look at the whole picture and see what he gets in return. With regards to bulk purchasing, although there might be some savings initially, it is clear that the long-term disadvantages of such a policy outweigh its short-term benefits.
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Today, I Reclaim My Boobs

Two summers ago I developed the rash of all rashes. There was only one medication the doctors told me would make it go away: prednisone. A steroid that crosses into breast milk. Breastfeeding was too important to me, so, I declined. That is -- until today. After almost 30 consecutive months of breastfeeding, I reclaimed my boobs.
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The Nasty Side Effects of a National Drug Plan

A conference was held a few weeks ago in Ottawa to discuss yet again the adoption of a pan-Canadian government-run drug insurance plan that would cover prescription drug costs for the entire population. Such a program would instead risk increasing the burden currently weighing down public finances. Such a plan would not only entail extra costs for taxpayers, but would do nothing to change governments' current propensity to restrict and delay access to new drugs. Foreign experience can teach us much about the dangers of adopting a monopolistic drug insurance system in Canada.
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My Freudian Slip into Psychoanalysis

I have had the opportunity to experience many types of therapy for my mental illness. I had an image of a psychoanalyst in my head. Probably similar to yours. Patient lying on couch, him with the ubiquitous pipe between his teeth. Go into this therapy with an open mind, with a positive attitude.
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New Prescription Drugs Are Worth the Cost

We cannot deny the fact that the costs of prescription drugs have been increasing at a considerable rate over the last few decades. While total healthcare spending per capita has almost tripled during this period, per capita expenditures on prescription drugs have increased six-fold. But should this trend be a source of concern?
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Are ADHD Meds Safe?

A series of investigative articles in the Toronto Star this week bring forward concerns about serious side effects to ADHD medications, in my opinion, the article sensationalizes the risks, and provide no balance by pointing out the hundreds of thousands of kids, teens and adults who have been helped by these medications.

When the Mental Health System Doesn't Work

A mentally ill young woman, who thrived on medication and crumbled without, lobbied to be removed from mandatory treatment -- she didn't like being medicated. Her parents were very surprised when they learned that, after a year of stability, her community mental health team had decided, without consulting them, to release their daughter from mandatory treatment.