Who’s on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown?

anxiety woman illustration

Does it feel like our nation is on the verge of a nervous breakdown?

Is there anyone who’s nerves aren’t frayed?

Between mass shootings and stalled gun laws, Britain falling and markets plunging, xenophobia spreading as fast as the Zika virus, is it any wonder our collective nerves are overwrought?

And that’s not even counting extreme floods and wildfires, tainted water and tainted politicians,  terrorist threats and climate deniers, and those old stand byes racism, sexism and homophobia.

Time to break out that old bottle of Dr Miles Nervine.

 Vintage ad Dr Miles Nervine 1939

Vintage ad Dr Miles Nervine 1939

A once upon a time popular nerve tonic that sold through the late 1960s, it was a money back  guaranteed  treatment for anxiety, nervous exhaustion, restlessness, hysteria, headache and sleeplessness.

For frazzled folks during the great depression, Nervine  was a life saver. Just ask Mrs. White whose testimonial is presented in this 1930’s ad.

For today’s retro Republicans who long to go back to the good old days, this tonic might seem quite appealing. After all no segment of the population seems more on the brink of mental collapse than those  disenfranchised, patriarchal loving, nativist, white Americans who  seems in a state of extreme distress.

Just like Mrs. White.

anxiety SWScan00117

Though Nervine is no longer sold, these anxious, nervous nellies have sought relief  through another dubious tonic – Donald Trump.

Wanting to make America great again, Trump has swooped in to save Americans from nervous collapse. Under the illusion that Trump will be the elixir for what ails this country, it turns out Trump’s solutions are as bogus and ultimately toxic as Dr. Miles Nervine.

The amazing, scientific  ingredient in Nervine was Bromide. Sure they state, “Dr Miles Nervine is the formula of a well-known nerve specialist,” and the tonic  claimed to be “…among the safest of effective medications to calm the nerves.”

Of course that was not the whole truth.

Vintage ad Dr Miles Nervine husband and wife

Dr Miles Nervine Tablets Vintage ad 1939

Despite being “compounded under the supervision  of competent chemists in one of the most modern and completely equipped laboratories in the world” the truth is that excess consumption of bromide can lead to bromism, which is a condition that leads to various psychiatric, neurological, and gastrointestinal problems.

It was removed from all over the counter sedatives in 1975 but Bromine and/or forms of bromine (e.g., bromides) are currently used in pesticides, disinfectants, flame retardants, as a gasoline additive, and for swimming pool maintenance.

Where the miracle ingredient in Nervine was bromide which would act as a sedative, Trump’s own boastful bromides are filled with self-serving inaccuracies, laced with xenophobia and racism  and enough misinformation to make a fact checkers head spin.

Trump’s prescription for Americas recovery only proves once again that the treatment is as toxic as the problem itself

If Trump wins, we will all need something a lot stronger to sedate us than Dr Miles Nervine.


(©) 20016 Sally Edelstein All Rights Reserved




  1. I have been a wreck with nerves and I’ve started to feel like I’m crazy or one of those “bunker down” type of folks. I’ve been thinking, geez…have I totally lost it? Anyways, it’s nice to hear that although painful as it may be, that there are indeed plenty of folks out there that feel as overwhelmed by all the crazy. I also appreciate the historical connections you’ve made to current day politics. Indeed we will need more than Nervine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rest assured, you are not alone, in fact I think there is a global meltdown as well. I’m not sure of the solution, but you are right we will need a lot more than bogus nerve tonics. Hang in there!


  2. Ralph Dratman

    Dear Sally,

    You had me at “Dr. Miles Nervine.” Can I get it on the internet? Does it tweet?

    The news is not distracting me in the usual way. I can no longer even become cathartically infuriated by Republicans. They used to be able to repeat any party line, no matter how brutal or nonsensical, but now their leader contradicts himself every day. The result is that they have nothing to follow and hence nothing to say.

    I think I was actually disappointed to learn that arch-villain Dick Cheney and the Igor-like Rumsfeld have endorsed DT. What good are these monsters if they cannot strike out on their own unique path of evil?

    I am desperate. Please send lots of Nervine.


  3. Thanks for your effective Bromides against the madness of our times, Sally!


  4. Pierre Lagacé

    I don’t need it Sally. Your posts are comforting enough with such political savvy.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Me, I prefer a bottle of whiskey. That will cure anything.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I recall it as a purple-pink table to a glass bottle that was called Nervine and it was an OTC sedative sold in the 1960’s and 70’s. Teenagers often mixed it with alcohol…as ir produced a fast and deep high. It contained Bromides that were later found to be harmful and sometime in the mid 80’s it was taken off shelves and the product discontinued.

    Liked by 1 person

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