The Shaky Evolution of Mental Health Therapies
From trepanation (boring a hole in the head) to technology, a brief history of mental illness treatments
Before the Greeks: mental problems thought to be caused by "supernatural" demonic possession.
Primitive Therapies: The Ancients
- Bathing: Greeks used to cure depression
- Bloodletting: to cure psychosis
- Trepanation: drill a hole in the head to let the demons out
- Hysteria therapy: the wandering womb (Plato's cure-all for womenâ¦soothe the womb, solve the problem)
From 1450-1750: 40,000 to 100,000 executed as witches throughout Europe. Approximately 80% were women
Pre-Modern: Weird Therapies (Cruel and Unusual Punishment?)
- Insulin coma therapy: load em up with insulin, then wake them up
- Rotational therapy (spin out that illness)
- Hydrotherapy (submerge the patient)
- Mesmerism (magnetize the illness out of the body)
- Malaria therapy (a feverish cure)
- Chemically induced seizures
- Phrenology (bumps on the skull indicated what was wrong)
- Andâ¦of course the ever popularâ¦.ice pick lobotomy (quite popular into the mid 20th century)
- 50,000: number of lobotomies total in U.S., most between 1949-1952
- 2,500: of the 50,000 estimated number of ice pick lobotomies in U.S.
Mental Health: You think it's not your problem? Think again.
- 1 in 5: American adults experienced a mental health issue: that's 57.7 million Americans EVERY YEAR.
- 1 in 10: young people experienced a period of major depression
- 1 in 20 Americans lived with a serious mental illness, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or major depression
- 10th leading cause of death in U.S.: Suicide.
- 38,000: number of suicide deaths in U.S. annually. That is 2X deaths in U.S. by homicide.
Moving into the Modern Age:
- Psychoanalysis: Enter Sigmund Freudâ¦and "talking" therapy: Freud begat: [all broke from Freud, Carl Jung, Alfred Adler, Carl Rogers
- Medication: using drugs like lithium
- Electroconvulsive therapy. Shock treatment. First used, 1938.
What we know:
450 million people worldwide have mental problems. 1 in every 16 person on the planet.
50% of all mental problems begin before age 14; 75% before age 25.
20% of young adults have mental problems.
35% of teen girls (7 in 25) have eating disorders.
8 of 100 teens have serious depression issues. [That's 2 of every 25]
8% of all teens have anxiety disorders
5% have ADD [Attention Deficit Disorder]
3% have ODD [Oppositional Defiant Disorder]
But only 38% of teens get help
Spending on mental health, per person, per year:
- $1.63 globally
- 20 cents in low income countries
- $44.84 in high income countries
Butâ¦ does modern-day therapy work?: Yes..sometimesâ¦
- 80 % of the time: with bipolar disorders
- 70 %: panic disorder, depression, OCD
- 60%: schizophrenia
The Future: Where Technology meets therapy
Automated therapy: interfacing with a computer program
Data mining and machine learning
Automated emotion detection using video (using a webcam)
Virtual reality therapy: used to treat Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSD)
Interesting FACT: How therapists are using Google search data bases. Research showsâ¦ people (in the U.S.) feel better in the summer.
- Eating disorder searches are down 37 percent
- Schizophrenia searches decreased 37 percent
- Bipolar searches were down 16 percent
- ADHD searches decreased by 28 percent
- OCD searches were down 18 percent
- Bipolar searches decreased by 18 percent
- Searches for suicide declined 24 percent
- Anxiety searches had the smallest seasonal change – down 7 percent during U.S. summers.