A recent study, published in the medical journal Lancet, points out that antipsychotic medications can help reduce violent crime in persons who have mental health conditions that would tend toward violent behaviors.
The study, titled “Antipsychotics, mood stabilizers, and risk of violent crime”, acknowledged that the effect of these drugs on patients’ symptoms is well-established. What they were seeking to outline was the relationship between those aids and “the rate of violent crime committed by patients with psychiatric disorders”.
In other words, we know these medicines help people feel better, but are we seeing a real-world reduction in crime committed by psychiatric patients, thanks to these medications?
For the answer, they turned to Sweden.
They Swedish national registers to study over 80,000 patients who were prescribed antipsychotics or mood stabilizers. They then compared the rate of violent offenses during the time those patients were prescribed antipsychotics or mood stabilizer medications versus the rate for the same patients while they were not receiving the drugs.
The findings indicate that these patients had reductions in convictions for violent crimes by anywhere from 24-48%
This news is seen as being relevant to an ongoing issue here in the United States: gun violence at the hands of people with know mental and emotional issues.
Regardless of where one stands on Second Amendment issues, this study does indicate that it would be well worth it for the United States to invest in means to help get people with mental and emotional issues the help they need, including antipsychotic medications. If they are helping to reduce the rates of violent crime in those people afflicted by that much, it would certainly be a good first step that almost anyone can agree on.
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