ARTICLES in English     as PDF or in French

Short OVERVIEW of THEMES touched on by ARTICLES and FILES available on MENS-SANA.BE

This website was created during year 2001 (which was dubbed "year for mental health worldwide") as an attempt to provide as many french speaking people as possible who are interested in mental illnesses with simple though critically-minded information about what is known (as well as about what is not known!) about some of the most serious chronic psychotic mental disorders, about means made available (or which should be available but are not!) in our country, in order to fight these diseases and to alleviate their numerous ill effects.

Articles and files on this website were written with the purpose of:

Most articles and files of MENS SANA always harp on about the physical, i.e. the biological nature of chronic mental disorders, being insistent on the fact that, necessarily, chronic mental disorders have to result from material alterations of the brain (of its structure, which entails disordered functioning). Other explanations belong to the realm of metaphysics. I am not against metaphysics. I am merely deeply convinced that metaphysics should never mix up with medicine.

Another recurring theme is that of the present state of our scientific knowledge about the brain. Although our knowledge and our means of investigation have made tremendous progress during the past sixty years, we don't know enough yet to enable psychiatry and psychiatrists to treat satisfactorily all instances of severe mental disorders, let alone to enable curing every case of schizophrenia, for example.

Therefore, it must be repeated again and again that quite a number of social measures also should be taken in order to compensate for the numerous deficiencies (impaired awareness of the disorder, loss of autonomy, etc.) which are the consequences of the disease, consequences which available treatments quite frequently cannot yet overcome completely.
Some people in this country then advocate "psychotherapies", whereas others, mainly our officials and our belgian "professionals" in charge of public health talk about "prevention of mental disorders" and "promoting mental health". This is just another easy way of letting out a lot of hot air to impress gullible persons. By doing so, they don't help the mentally ill of this country in any way but they rather delay finding and applying practical means for improving the living conditions and fate of these ill persons.
Exposing the ins and outs of the situation of our mentally ill in Belgium, in order to actually improve their treatments and to eventually change their fate, that's all what this website is about.

The articles to be found on this website were intended chiefly for belgian french speaking readers. Some of them were translated in english, however, in order to allow possibly interested persons from other countries to know what this website is about, and to show to all that the situation of mentally ill persons in Belgium is far from being as rosy as officials of this country usually claim it to be. We offer these readers our apologies for the poor quality of the english translations.


"In our highly civilized world, we acknowledge that an illness is a serious one by the fact that we don't dare talking directly about it. [...] But when silence or language tricks contribute maintaining an abuse which should be corrected or an affliction which can be relieved, no other solution remains but to speak clearly and to expose the obscenity hiding behind the mantle of words." Albert Camus


This belgian website endeavours telling to everybody who is interested ("everybody whom it may concern") what should be known today about some of the most severe chronic mental illnesses such as, for example, what psychiatrists call "schizophrenia".


In Belgium, our society boasts of a system of social welfare and health care about which it is frequently said that they could be held up as an example for other countries to follow. Yet, what does this system actually do for people who are victims of chronic mental illnesses?


The majority of our belgian french speaking psychiatrists don't seem to be interested in the structure (the architecture), in the mechanisms and in the workings of the brain.


Possibly catching part of their patients' features as a consequence of their trade, numerous among our psychiatrists are those who seem to loose some of their everyday common sense. For want of proven explanations for their patients' disorders, they think up explanatory cock and bull stories which are pure denials of good sense.


Does coining a new name bring a new thing into existence? Does deleting a name cause the thing it names to disappear?
If professionals actually wish to help patients afflicted with schizophrenia, they should try to live more side by side with them, they also should better control their own lively imagination and perhaps beware of it.

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