Some patients' families weren't even aware of the associated risks with antipsychotics
While reaching out to the families of patients, researchers found that many of these family members did not know the dangers of this type of treatment because it wasn't explained to them. Others were aware, but felt that they didn't have a choice, and that the drugs needed to be administered to their loved ones in order to continue their residency.
When the elderly patients in the nursing homes were taken off of the antipsychotic drugs, both the patients and the family members saw major improvements. One woman, whose 90-year-old mother had been incorrectly treated with antipsychotic medication, had been under the impression that her mother’s deteriorating health was irreversible. Understandably, she was taken by complete surprise when she saw her mother come back to life for the first time in the two years since she was prescribed antipsychotics.
“Lo and behold, she can talk again. She can read again… It’s not just that she can walk now… it’s her personality,” the patient’s daughter explained. “She had been sleeping all the time. She was totally incoherent. She had no memory at all. She recognized no one. On the meds, she couldn’t remember if you were there while you were there.”