The United States has once again been rocked by senseless violence and loss of life, with the tragic shooting that occurred at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last week. The attack claimed 17 lives, victims that the country mourns today as we begin to question the policies, beliefs, and laws that run the country.
The world of social media is alive with debate, centered around the current gun laws, the demand for gun control, and demands targeted at those in positions of political power, calling for change. At the same time, there are articles, posts, and videos pointing to mental health struggles, struggling to find an explanation, any explanation, for what this country has once again endured.
One controversial connection that has been established between a number of the country’s mass murderers is that they were taking prescription drugs that are designed to alter the state of mind of those who are taking them, seen as a solution for common mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety. A number of these medications are known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), or antidepressants.
Prescribed to alleviate the ‘down’ or ‘hopeless’ feeling often experienced by those who suffer from depression, these medications have also been associated with a number of extreme side effects. Those who rely on these medications may experience inconveniences like constipation, insomnia, dry mouth or blurred vision, side effects associated with many other medications. However, a number of other side effects including irritability, anxiety, and agitation have been found in some cases to escalate to extreme violence. In fact, experts report that 31 commonly-prescribed drugs have been associated with disproportionately high cases of violent acts. Of these, 5 of the top 10 are antidepressants.
This isn’t the first time that experts have noticed this connection. Peter Tyrer, a professor, and psychiatrist at Imperial College London has dedicated a significant amount of time to studying and understanding SSRIs and the impact that they have on the human population. He explained, “You can never be quite certain with a rare side-effect whether it’s linked to a drug or not because it could be related to other things. But it’s happened just too frequently with this class of drug to make it random. It’s obviously related to the drug, but we don’t know exactly why.”
Researchers from 11 different countries including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia, have now issued a total of 151 warnings in relation to the use of antidepressants and the harmful side effects that they may cause. These include 13 warnings that antidepressants cause hostility or aggression, 12 warnings they cause agitation, 6 warnings they cause hallucinations, 6 warnings they cause mania or psychosis, and 3 warnings they cause violence.
With so many concerns, why have we not already heard about it? Could big pharma be working to conceal this truth from the general population? A recent event on Fox News may leave you wondering. Fox News’ Sean Hannity was interviewing radio talk show host Gian Loudon when she had the audacity to bring up the connection between the shooter, Nikolas Cruz, and antidepressants. She stated, “I think we have to take a hard look at one thing we’re not talking about yet too, Sean, and that is psychotropic drugs. My guess is, we’ll find out like most of these shooters…” at which point Loudon was cut off, interrupted and silenced, moving the conversation to the doctor standing next to her.
Here’s a clip of Sean Hannity’s interview. See for yourself:
Image via Activist Post