If you liked Extreme Makeover, you'll love Extreme Psychiatry, the hot new "reality" show premiering Thursday night at 8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (7 Central and Mountain). Join our contestants as they begin their voyage of self-transformation with the aid of psychotherapy, involuntary confinement and heavy psychoactive medication.
"Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball." When Jacques Barzun made this famous diagnosis of American life in 1954, Wallace Laboratories was preparing to introduce the nation to a new drug called Miltown. Marketed as a "tranquilizer," Miltown was the first prescription drug developed specifically for the anxiety of ordinary life. Within two years of its introduction, Miltown had become the most popular prescription drug in America. It would remain popular into the 1960s, when it gradually ceded its place as America's favorite to Valium, another tranquilizer. By the early 1990s, another psychopharmacology boom had begun: American consumers, mostly children, were ingesting 90 percent of the world's supply of Ritalin.