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The reflectively anxious and depressed: psychotropics and lives worth living 

The reflectively anxious and depressed: psychotropics and lives worth living
Chapter:
The reflectively anxious and depressed: psychotropics and lives worth living
Source:
Philosophical Perspectives on Technology and Psychiatry
Author(s):

Mark P. Jenkins

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199207428.003.0020

This paper explores a philosophical worry involving psychiatry and psychotropic technology. Put most bluntly, the worry is that familiar and widely prescribed antianxiety and antidepressant medications may actually prevent lives worth living. Fully articulating this worry requires unpacking three assumptions. First, that Socrates was right that the unexamined life is not worth living. Second, that there exists both a class of anxious and depressed people and a class of drugs that can effectively treat them. And third, that some not insignificant subset of the first class, call them the reflectively anxious and depressed, finds their anxiety and depression so exacerbated by the very prospect of treatment by some subset of the second class, call them SSRIs, that they refuse any course of therapy that includes psychotropic drugs.

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