Emotional Freedom Technique

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The more I look the more I find.  In reliable sources.  More ways that my beloved veterans are getting screwed over that nobody knows about. I know what I am doing and I collect facts–of science and of history — and I find myself too often in crying mode. Not that the controversies are necessarily new ones.  Sigmund Freud said a long time ago that a lot of psychiatry seemed to be the neurology you did not yet know. I have been treating Post Traumatic Stress Disorder for a long time.  I was incredulous, shocked to my limits, when I first tried to take care of these wonderful, brave, and once fearless men, who would have crying meltdowns and end up in my arms. The best thing I did was to learn Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and to decide I was professional enough to do it “my way,” not according to verbatim directions, but adapting it to folks’ needs. Using EFT has put me on the spot plenty of times; with the VA, even prisons, where I have been told more than once that it robs people of “free will,” which is of course, complete and total rubbish.  Patients are awake, alert, and voluntarily tap on their own acupuncture meridians.  I have heard at least one hypnotherapist tell me it is “kind of like a light trance,” but patients could not, in my estimation, be more awake and alert. Read more on Another way veterans are getting screwed — crying time again….

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Every honest and complete psychiatric evaluation includes screening for delusions. A delusion is a strongly held belief that is totally without basis in the factual reality that we all use to live our daily lives. I have taken care of several people, institutionalized and not, who have had such beliefs.  Medications known as “antipsychotics” can be very effective on the hallucinations — the hearing voices and seeing things and such — that are the hallmark of a lack of mental “normalcy” as is generally expected and accepted in the community. The same medications may be less effective on these delusions, these beliefs.  Sometimes, in a particular kind of delusion, a kind that hits folks somewhere between 18 and 90 (average age 40) where there are no hallucinations, just beliefs.  They are less frequent.  They are also hard to treat, with antipsychotic medicines working maybe about half the time — in those who can actually be convinced to take them. Read more on Screening For Delusions…

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The current rate of suicide among soldiers should make us angry, maybe enough to destroy our computers or, heaven forbid, write to congress or even try to stop war.

I checked out this institution¸ the National Center for Veterans Studies, the best I could.  I am not sure why the Department of Defense and the Department of the Air Force seem to have a love affair with this division of the University of Utah.

Of their current projects, some of the proposed studies are randomized clinical trials of various therapies as suicide preventives. I am a great believer in research.  But there is one question I am asked frequently, still, although I evaluate research but am not currently engaged in it.  People ask me if I am a doctor first or a researcher first.  There is absolutely no contest.  I am a doctor first.  I want lives saved, first. Read more on Why Soldiers Commit Suicide These Days…

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I accidentally watched Dr. Drew Pinsky’s “Life Changers” and it put me in a state of utter stupefaction.

That was fortunate, as I found myself unable to destroy the television.  Doubly fortunate, in that this was a hotel-room TV and the bill would have been padded for replacing the set.

Okay, so I was in a hotel flipping channels during the day.  I do this once in a while to see what is being communicated to the TV-watching public, especially about health.

Dr. Oz has a show.  His guest was Rachel Ray showing how to fix things you might screw up in the kitchen.  Common sense fixes with repartee.  I did not see this as a health problem and I did not make it to the end of the show. Read more on Dr. Drew Pinsky’s “Life Changers”…

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Many people are proud of the state from which they came. But I value the state they (we, all of us) can go to.

It’s called a “Resource State.”

Don’t bother looking on a map – unless it is a map of the cerebral cortex.  Yet, it isn’t clearly defined as a location in the brain either.

I know it sounds mysterious, but it is easy to access and the benefits once you get there are astronomical.  I think I need to give you some illustrations to make my point.

Once when I was in prison (that always gets attention – but actually I was employed as a prison psychiatrist and not serving time for criminal activities) I treated a young man of 28 who was doing time for armed robbery.  His problem was depression with occasional suicidal ideation. Read more on The Resource State — Your Magic Ticket To Happiness…

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One of my Frequently Asked Questions is “why do you hate prescription drugs so much?”

And the answer is, I DON’T.  Not at all.  I have used, and will continue to use, prescription drugs whenever they are the best treatment for an individual.

What I DO hate is the way they are mis-used, and the way some companies push their drugs for inappropriate purposes, or in dosages that are harmful when they could be helpful in (usually lower) doses. Read more on A Remarkable Medicine And Its Champion…

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I was commissioned a captain in the United States Army in a northern Midwest city.  The physician who examined me before I took the oath was senior and experienced and as avuncular as they come.

He said the most interesting people (and far and away the smartest) he got to meet in his life were commissioned women.  The one he had seen before me was a woman who had been a professional musician, a clarinetist I think, and was going straight to Wahington, D.C. to play in a dance band at the White House.  He told me about women rocket scientists and others. Me, I figured I was only a doctor, a half-trained neurosurgeon.  As a generalist he felt somehow he needed to show me enough respect. He really didn’t want to do a physical, so he did a cursory and discrete one, and I asked him about being a civilian physician attached to the military.  In particular, I asked him about neurological and psychiatric screening. Although he told me he knew how to do a pretty detailed neurological examination, he said he never had to do one.  Anyone with that kind of illness would, he thought, be likely to be screened out long before. After all, these were generally healthy young men.  Basically, the most important part of the examination was checking them for hernias. Read more on Military Mental Health — A Contradiction?…

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Here are some phrases that you might not expect to hear sweet, friendly Dr. G use very often:

“No, there is no way in hell I am going to renew that prescription as written.”

“Read my lips.  No more oxycodone.  We gotta get you into a rehab, sweetie.”

“Sure, you can see another doctor.  I don’t know how long it will take to get an appointment.  If I am your doctor, you go on a tapering schedule.  Today.”

“If I did what you want, I could kiss my license goodbye.  I am not prescribing outside my specialty and certainly not this crap.  Yes it is crap.  I am sorry you don’t like how I talk, but it is crap.  I can start getting you off it.”

These are all things I have actually said.  Usually loud, yelling over the patient. Read more on Pill Mills Are Death Traps — Marginally Legal…

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Mostly everyone who knows me knows I love performance of “funny” things, had a brief run as a stand-up comic, all of that.  But once when I told one of the nurses who I had been working with that I wanted to learn more about “clowning” — meaning classic clowning, costume, makeup, like at the circus — it was plain from her facial reaction that I had struck terror into her. She stammered, “I hope you are not going to do any of that stuff here. I am really scared of clowns.  I ran away from one when I was little and clowns still make me really uncomfortable.” Of course I told her I would not do anything that could scare her. I have to admit this affliction was unknown to me in the world of psychiatry.  I guess it just isn’t anything anybody would come in and request treatment for, at least not yet.  I suppose they would just avoid circuses.

They call it coulrophobia, and it is allegedly ranked among the top ten most common specific phobias by somebody, although I certainly could not find it in any such list.  I have never seen a patient who came in with this one as the chief complaint, which means people probably see some kind of non-medication prescribing health professional if they see anyone at all.  I mean you can find people on the street or among your friends who are uncomfortable around something — fear of spiders or fear of open spaces. Those are far more likely to be in the top ten.
Read more on Fear of Clowns…

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Of all the trials and tribulations we can suffer in life, none is so devastating as the loss of a loved one.

Unfortunately, we will all eventually suffer such a great loss and the grief that it brings.

Believe it or not, a properly trained professional can help minimize the grief and help those sufferers to cope. Much of this horrible experience can be truncated, if not removed, by people who know what they are doing.

But it seems that most people don’t believe this, and some people will never learn. Read more on No Need To Suffer Through Grief — Get Help!…

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