washingtonpost.com
Paperbacks discuss antidepressants and technology's role in marriage

Monday, March 7, 2011; 6:52 PM

Pharmacology
How to treat depression "The Emperor's New Drugs" (Basic Books, $15.99)

In "The Emperor's New Drugs: Exploding the Antidepressant Myth," just released in paperback, psychology professor Irving Kirsch argues that antidepressant drugs are not effective and that the idea of depression as a chemical imbalance in the brain is pure myth. Kirsch provides what he says is evidence that antidepressants are no better than placebo pills. So should millions of Americans flush their pills down the toilet? It's a dangerous thought, but, if Kirsch is right, so is the idea of people needlessly taking expensive medications with potentially serious side effects. Kirsch's "black-box warning" that patients should not discontinue taking antidepressants without first consulting with a doctor is, unfortunately, tucked away on Page 152.

Relationships
Your iPhone or your spouse "Married to Distraction" (Ballantine Books, $16)

"Speed, overload and anxiety have created an elephant in the room," according to the timely paperback "Married to Distraction." That elephant's name is iPhone or BlackBerry or Facebook - or whatever modern technology is standing between a couple. Psychiatrist and ADHD expert Edward M. Hallowell and his wife, social worker Sue George Hallowell, write that "the more attention shatters, the more relationships suffer." Their book suggests how to deal with what they call "the new world of affairs" - the historically unparalleled availability of sex outside marriage made possible by the Internet - and gives 40 ways to make your marriage great. (No. 1: Pay attention.) The book suggests a 30-minute, 30-day program of communication for troubled couples.

- Rachel Saslow

Post a Comment


Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.

© 2011 The Washington Post Company