Wenzdae Wendling

Prescription drugs aren’t a miracle cure

September 13, 2022

I don’t have feelings anymore.

I can’t remember the last time I truly felt happy, the last time I truly felt sad, the last time I truly felt bothered by something. 

My life now is just an unending straight line with no ebbs and flows, my mind a ceaseless ocean of television static.

A little over a year ago, I started taking prescription medication for various mental health issues. 

My doctor told me about other options to try first, like mindfulness, yoga and therapy, but I wanted my pain to be over so badly that I chose the option I thought would work the fastest: prescription drugs.

Immediately after starting my prescription I felt some relief, but still not everything was fixed. I went back to my doctor again and again, and before I knew it I was on high doses of five separate medications. 

My problems were dealt with for the moment, but the relief came at the cost of being able to function properly. 

Now that I’ve been on my medication for about a year, I find difficulty in trying to remember things from mere minutes before, have few to no emotions and struggle to perform in social situations.

I regret not looking into non-drug options before immediately diving into the rabbit hole of prescription meds, and I know I’m not alone.

Almost 20% of college students in the United States were on antidepressant medication in 2021, according to a Mar. 3 study by Statista.

There is no doubt that prescription meds, specifically antidepressants, have benefits. They can suppress out-of-control anxiety and level out moods, but some very unpleasant side effects often come with them.

Loss of sex drive, insomnia and dizziness are just a few standard side effects of common antidepressant medications, according to a Nov. 4, 2021 article by the National Health Service in the UK

It may be hard for many of us who have already gone down the prescription drug path, but both for those in our shoes as well as those who are just starting their mental healing journeys, there are many additional valuable resources to seek out other than—or in addition to—prescription medication.

None of this is intended to demonize the use of prescription medication. Many have good experiences with it, and for some, it is the only thing that truly works. However, solely relying on medication before exploring other treatment options can be detrimental.

Medication is not a miracle cure, an end-all be-all that will bring you peace. There are many sacrifices to be made, sacrifices that should not be taken lightly.

Alternative options like mindfulness, yoga and therapy should be sought out first before going down the prescription route. I believe drugs should be the absolute last resort.

Yoga specifically can help sharpen your brain and has the potential to reduce depression and anxiety, according to a June 12, 2021 Harvard Medical School article.

Even if you are already on prescription medications like I am, these methods can still be helpful to supplement your treatment, and help you reach your mental health goals faster and more naturally. 

I know that many of us are suffering with our mental health and want nothing more than for our pain to be over, but sometimes the quickest fix comes at the highest price. 

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