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Articles    H3'ed 7/12/12

Health Care Costs and Schizophrenia

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Eleanor described how positive it was that her mother never gave up on her.   Psychiatry made her feel helpless and hopeless.   Eleanor talked about how frightening some of her voices were.   She said, "we can listen to the voices and console them or lock them in a side room in hope that they calm down. "   She described the importance of honoring the voices for the role they played in her survival.   She told how a transformation occurred when she began to listen to voices who were initially, extremely negative.   As she listened, they calmed and became more positive.


Eleanor described how 13% of so-called normal people hear voices, but only 1% of people are diagnosed with schizophrenia.   Only distressed voice hearers come to clinical attention.   Non-distressed voice hearers are more likely to engage with their voices to develop coherent and meaningful explanations for them.   She published this in a scientific paper with A. Madill and M.G. Waterman called Dissociation Trauma and the Role of Lived Experience: Toward a New Conceptualization of Voice Hearing.   She told how our current model circles from relapse to crisis to denial to insight to maintenance.   In her recovery model, crisis leads to acknowledgement to inight to recovery and to growth.     She spoke about the three stages of recovery being (1) establishing safety, (2) mourning for what has been lost, and (3) reconnecting with community and society to create a positive future.   Survivors need to be the authors of their own recovery process


How much money could we save if we took Eleanor's recommendations?   That's what we need to explore further!

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Lewis Mehl-Madrona graduated from Stanford University School of Medicine and completed residencies in family medicine and in psychiatry at the University of Vermont. He is the author of Coyote Medicine, Coyote Healing, Coyote Wisdom, and (more...)
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