According to an analysis of prescription data from 2010 by Medco Health Solutions Inc., more that 20 percent of American adults and more than one in four women, particularly those aged 45 and older, are taking at least one prescribed medication for disorders such as depression and anxiety .
The statistics were taken from a database held by Medco and was based on the prescriptions of 2.5 million patients who were taking the medications for a continuous period of 24 months.
It was reported that there was an increase of 22 percent in the use of medications for behavioural and emotional disorders in the 10 years between 2001 and 2010.
Adults aged between 20 and 44 are now taking antipsychotic drugs for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) three times more than a decade ago. Additionally the use of anti-anxiety drugs including Valium, Xanax and Ativan has increased by 30 percent in the same period.
The analysis reported that there was a gender difference in the use of prescribed drugs; women were more likely to be taking anti-psychotic drugs including Risperdal, Zyprexa and Abilify in order to treat psychological disorders such as Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder .
Overall it was reported that the use atypical anti-psychotic drugs by patients between the ages of 20 to 64 increased by at least 350 percent in the last ten years.
These astounding figures indicate the sheer numbers of adults that are reliant on prescription medications costing millions of dollars a year.
The role of therapies that not only treat the symptoms but also empower the patient to take responsibility for their own physical and emotional wellbeing such as mindfulness meditation, yoga, tai chi and ayurveda is surely the better option.