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  • Currently known as: Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences Title history
    Epidemiologia e Psichiatria Sociale, Volume 17, Issue 3
  • September 2008, pp. 177-181

What's in it for me? The utility of psychiatric treatments from the perspective of the person in recovery

Abstract
Abstract

The aim of this contribution is to explore how different treatments are experienced from the perspective of individu-als with mental illnesses. We used data drawn from qualitative, narrative interviews. When asked to discuss their lives, people rarely discuss their psychiatric treatment. When asked about treatment, they describe hospitalization and medication but not out-patient care. What is described as most helpful are relationships with others, especially in 24-hour centers, clubhouses, and user-run organizations; places where they report feeling that they are accepted, understood, and cared about. Also important are experiences of “giving back” to others and employment as ways of increasing participants’ sense of self-worth and value. Participants also indicated the importance of med-ication, but described protracted processes of having to find the right prescriber, the right medication, at the right dosage, and taking the medication long enough to derive its benefits. For others, symptoms were described as being an integral part of who they were and not something they wanted to eliminate. Traditional treatments (e.g., medication), if given by a practitioner who understands the person and is willing to try to find the right medication and dosage, may serve as a foundation for instrumental experiences of being accepted, understood, valued, and being able to give back to others.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
Dr. L. Davidson, Program for Recovery and Community Health, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, Erector Square, Building 1, 319 Peck Street, New Haven, CT 06513 (USA). Fax: (203) 764-7595 E-mail: Larry.Davidson@Yale.edu
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This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

D.R. Becker & R.E. Drake (1994). Individual placement and sup-port: A community mental health center approach to vocational reha-bilitation. Community Mental Health Journal 30, 193206.

L. Davidson , D.A. Stayner , C. Nickou , T.H. Styron , M. Rowe & M.L. Chinman (2001). “Simply to be let in”: Inclusion as a basis for recovery. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal 24, 375388.

P.E. Deegan & R.E. Drake (2006). Shared decision making and medication management in the recovery process. Psychiatric Services 57(11), 16361639.

R.E. Drake , D.R. Becker , R.E. Clark & K.T. Mueser (1999). Research on the individual placement and support model of supported employment. Psychiatric Quarterly 70, 289301.

J.H. Jenkins & E. Carpenter-Song (2006). The new paradigm of recovery from schizophrenia: Cultural conundrums of improvement without cure. Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry 29, 379413.

J.H. Jenkins , M.E. Strauss , E.A. Carpenter , D. Miller J. Floersch & M. Sajatovic. (2005). Subjective experience of recovery from schizo-phrenia- related disorders and atypical antipsychotics. International Journal of Social Psychiatry 51(3), 211227.

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Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences
  • ISSN: 2045-7960
  • EISSN: 2045-7979
  • URL: /core/journals/epidemiology-and-psychiatric-sciences
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