Psychedelic Medicine and the Future of Mental Health Care Looks Promising
NEW YORK, June 4, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- After decades of having a bad rep, psychedelics are making their way back into the medical world and are being touted for their ability to treat various mental illnesses. For years, Big Pharma companies Pfizer (NYSE:PFE), Takeda Pharmaceutical Company (NYSE:TAK), Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (NYSE:TEVA) and AbbVie Inc. (NYSE:ABBV) have had a stronghold on the antidepressant and anxiety medication market. However, the continued abuse of prescription drugs like Xanax has created an even bigger problem with addiction and it's only getting worse during the global pandemic. Lockdown stress is turning more and more consumers to antidepressants and causing concern among doctors, creating a growing need for companies like Mind Medicine (MindMed) Inc. (NEO:MMED) (OTCQB:MMEDF) and its lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) treatment for anxiety disorders.
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States. An estimated 40 million American adults or 18.% of the U.S. population have anxiety disorders...
Prescriptions for anti-anxiety meds went up 10.2% in the US to 9.7 million in March 2020, according to health-research firm IQVIA. Meanwhile, antidepressant prescriptions increased by 9.2% to 29.7 million in March 2020 compared to the previous year. The problem is that people can develop a tolerance quickly, sometimes in as little as two weeks. These medications can also be difficult to stop and often come with withdrawal symptoms like spurts of anxiety, tremors and even seizures.
The pandemic-fueled demand for popular antidepressants like Pfizer's Zoloft and Eli Lilly's Prozac has created a supply shortage, as drugmakers struggle to keep up. Add to that the addiction risk that comes with these pharmaceuticals and the side effects that come with medications like Takeda Pharmaceutical's (NYSE:TAK) Trintellix (vortioxetine) antidepressant and it's evident why alternatives are needed.
Takeda Pharmaceutical's antidepressant Trintellix comes with a warning for suicidal thoughts and actions, as does Zoloft and Xanax. These prescription medications also come equipped with a laundry list of side effects including dizziness, drowsiness, vomiting and insomnia, among others.
Psychedelics Move Into Mainstream Medicine
Before Richard Nixon waged his war on drugs in 1970, LSD and other psychedelics were being researched extensively for their potential to treat mental illness, alcoholism, and pain relief. In recent years, there has been a renewed interest in the use of psychedelics in psychiatric research and practices. In fact, the FDA has granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to a handful of companies developing treatments that are aimed at combating major depression disorder (MDD).
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