Depression

Medications in America has become so ubiquitous, as well as other countries that an average person will have been prescribed 14,000 pills in their lifetime. In America alone, we take medications to relief pain, infections, and promote good health (Medicalization). We also take medications to enhance performances, eg. steroids (Biomedicalization). This shows that culturally, we value health, and strongly emphasize on excelling in our physical and mental capacities. In this weeks material, an article by Conrad and Potter, contains this statement,  “the American public’s tolerance for mild symptoms and benign problems has decreased, which may be leading to a further medicalization of ills”. We are hearing newer terms of illnesses that aren’t around before, ADHD, PMS, etc.. We categorize and legitimize illnesses that are slight anomalies, and develop drugs to reduce our symptoms, and unexpectedly, these drugs benefit us in other ways, like the situation of the  ADHD kid and the Cambridge student in the film Pill Poppers.

In the Cymbalta commercial for depression, there are various advertising strategies; I see it in the instrumental background music, the texts, the activities of the actors, and even the voice of the narrator. Her tone changes as she goes from one stage to another. It is low and soft when the video focuses on people with depression/anxiety, and turns into a louder, franker, more assuring tone when she proclaims, “Cymbalta can help.”

The cultural values and ideology emphasize are family interactions/ activities, and enjoyment of life. There are warnings, suggestions on Cymbalta drug facts, like, talk to your doctor if your condition worsens, or have suicidal thoughts, how it is not suitable for teens, and how Cymbalta should not be taken with other drugs. In this commercial, there is no patient-doctor interaction. I think this commercial is very affective because it portrays the importance of family/friends, and the enjoyment of one’s usual activity, which are our values. It displays how Cymbalta is the solution to depression, by showcasing how happy people are in the end.

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