The Chemical Imbalance Theory Cause For Anxiety Disorder And Depression Officially Laid To Rest
The Chemical Imbalance theory has finally been officially debunked.
Over the last number of years, study after study challenged the validity of the chemical imbalance theory as being a cause of anxiety disorder and depression. Finally, on July 11, 2011, Dr. Ronald Pies, the editor-in-chief emeritus of the Psychiatric Times, laid the theory to rest in the July 11, 2011, issue of the Times with his admission:
“In the past 30 years, I don’t believe I have ever heard a knowledgeable, well- trained psychiatrist make such a preposterous claim [about chemical imbalance in the brain], except perhaps to mock it.”
“And yes, the ‘chemical imbalance’ image has been vigorously promoted by some pharmaceutical companies, often to the detriment of our patients’ understanding.”
“In truth, the “chemical imbalance” notion was always a kind of urban legend - never a theory seriously propounded by well-informed psychiatrists.”
Shortly after, pharmaceutical companies said they used the chemical imbalance theory as a “metaphor” and that the theory wasn’t ever intended to be understood as an actual imbalance. It wasn’t long after that that the chemical imbalance notion was dropped from all of their marketing materials.
Anxiety is NOT caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. It never was.
For more detailed information about the demise of the Chemical Imbalance theory.
The combination of good self-help information and working with an experienced anxiety disorder coach, counselor, or therapist is the most effective way to address anxiety disorder and its many symptoms. Until the core causes of anxiety are addressed - the underlying factors that motivate apprehensive behavior - a struggle with anxiety disorder can return again and again. Identifying and successfully addressing anxiety's underlying factors is the best way to overcome problematic anxiety.
For more information about our Anxiety Counseling option; our Available Anxiety Therapists; to Book An Appointment with one of our anxiety therapists; common Anxiety Signs and Symptoms; common Anxiety Attack Symptoms; the symptoms of panic attack disorder; anxiety Recovery Support area; information about Anxiety; and our Anxiety 101 section; or click on the appropriate link or graphic below:
Return to Anxiety News.
Authors: Jim Folk, Marilyn Folk, BScN. Last updated November 20, 2018.