Psychiatric drugs are over-prescribed. It reflects a growing reliance on prescription medications to manage common emotional problems, particularly of seniors and women. While psychiatric drug prescriptions have increased, mental health is declining. Suicide rates are at a 30-year high and mental disorders are now the second most common cause of disability. There is a substantive link between increased psychiatric drug use, especially by younger Americans, and the rash of school shootings.
According to a report by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), the rate of antidepressant use in the USA among teens and adults (people ages 12 and older) increased by almost 400% between 1988–1994 and 2005–2008. By December 2016, as reported by the Scientific American, fully one-in-six Americans were taking a psych drug.
Based on government survey data (2013) from more than 37,400 Americans:
Other research shows that anti-anxiety benzodiazepine drugs accounted for nearly one-third of the 23,000 prescription overdoses in 2013.