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Mental disorders and happiness

In his book Saving Normality Allen Frances gives an educated plea against diagnostic inflation. The majority of people who are currently diagnosed as having a mental disorder are not ill, but experience normal distress. The consequence may be that they are better off without medication.

Happy despite of a mental disorder

My own work on this subject, seems to be relevant for the discussion. I investigated the happiness of people with mental disorders, and found that the majority of them are quite happy.

Download the paper  Most people with mental disorders are happy.

Validity of the happiness measure

I can imagine that you question if people with mental disorders can be trusted to have enough self insight if they claim to be happy. So I analysed the validity of a simple happiness measure in this group.

Download the paper Do they know what they are talking about. 

A livable society

The epidemic of mental disorders in modern, democratic societies has given rise to serious pessimism about the possibility of progress. I however think that it may be to simple to view people with mental disorders as victims of modern society.

Download the paper The happiness of people with mental disorders in modern society.

Happy life years

The fact that most people with mental disorders are happy should not be mistaken to mean that mental health care is unimportant. On the contrary. Unhappiness is almost concentrated in a minority of people with mental disorders and their distress should be treated with priority.

Download the paper  Happy life expectancy associated with various mental disorders.

Other paper by Ad Bergsma about happiness

Mental disorder