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The Better Behavior Show with Dr. Nicole Beurkens

Jan 11, 2023

My guest this week is Lynn Cunningham.

In this episode, Lynn and I discuss psychiatric medications and the information that doesn’t often get shared in either the doctor’s office or in mainstream media about the concerning impact of these drugs both temporarily and permanently on some children, teens, and adults. I want to be clear that this is not an anti-medication or anti-psychiatry show. If you follow my work, you know I take a very balanced approach, and believe that these medications can have their place in the treatment toolbox for a minority of people with mental health symptoms. However, it is my strong research-based opinion that these drugs are widely overprescribed and under researched, especially for children and teens. Those with side effects (even severe) are often told to stay on them or take more, this is unacceptable.  Let’s discuss some of these negative impacts, what true informed consent is, and tips (including weaning off) to help you navigate if medication your physician is prescribing is right for your child.

Lynn Cunningham is an award-winning filmmaker, co-director and producer of the documentary film Medicating Normal, and produced directed and edited films and TV for PBS and the History Channel in the 1980s and 90s. A personal experience with a family member diagnosed with a serious mental illness and medicated to the point of being unrecognizable led Lynn to research the world of mental health treatment, and how what we're told about psychiatric medication is far from the whole story. She's interviewed hundreds of psychiatric patients, and consulted with scores of experts across the country about their experiences in order to create Medicating Normal. This film is a stunning new perspective on the safety and efficacy of psychiatric drugs, and society's over reliance on them to relieve pain and suffering.

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Episode Takeaways

Episode Intro … 00:00:30

Introduction to Lynn Cunningham & Medication Documentary … 00:02:30

Rollercoaster of Medications & Worsening of Symptoms … 00:08:45

Lack of Education & What is Hyperbolic Tapering … 00:12:07

Regulators, Testers & Funders of Drug Trials Are the Same Who Profit … 00:15:40

Dark Side of Xanax and Stimulants … 00:18:00

Chemical Imbalance Myth … 00:24:00

Medications Causing Worsening Symptoms … 00:32:43

The Body Can Heal & Be Mentally Healthy … 00:40:15

Importance of Therapeutic, Developmentally-Focused Work … 00:43:00

Vetted Professional Experts … 00:46:25

Psychiatric Wellbeing & Taking Control … 00:49:45

Documentary, Community Panels, & Episode Wrap Up … 00:50:50






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