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Settling the Back-to-School Jitters

Posted 2 days 13 hours ago by

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2015 – Starting or returning to school can trigger anxiety in some children, but parents can help ease worried young minds, a mental health expert says. "Anxiety is one of the most common mental health challenges for children. Uncertainty fuels the fears, especially during times of transition, like starting a new school year," Dr. Theodote Pontikes, a pediatric psychiatrist at Loyola University Health System in Chicago, said in a university news release. One way to limit anxiety is to establish a routine before the first day of school that's similar to the one that will be used during the school year. This includes consistent sleep and wake times, no daytime naps, and scheduled meals and snacks. It's important to encourage a pattern of physical activity, which helps children release excess energy and sleep better at night, she said. It's also a good idea to have ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Performance Anxiety

How Parents Add to Math Anxiety

Posted 2 days 13 hours ago by

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2015 – Parents can spur math anxiety and poor math performance in children, a new study suggests. "We often don't think about how important parents' own attitudes are in determining their children's academic achievement. But our work suggests that if a parent is walking around saying 'Oh, I don't like math' or 'This stuff makes me nervous,' kids pick up on this messaging and it affects their success," study co-leader Sian Beilock said in a news release from the Association for Psychological Science. Beilock is a professor of psychology at the University of Chicago. For the study, researchers assessed math achievement and math anxiety among 438 first- and second-grade students. They also asked the children's parents about their levels of math anxiety and how often they helped their kids with math homework. The results showed that children of math-anxious parents learned ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Performance Anxiety

Women Soldiers No More Likely to Develop PTSD, Study Finds

Posted 2 days 13 hours ago by

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2015 – Women in the U.S. military are no more likely than men to develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a government study shows. "This is the first study to prospectively investigate the development of PTSD in male and female service members who were matched on multiple important characteristics that could explain some of the differences in PTSD, including military sexual trauma," study co-author Dr. Shira Maguen, a staff psychologist at the San Francisco VA Medical Center, said in a Veterans Affairs news release. The study included more than 2,300 pairs of women and men who were matched on similarities – including combat experience – and followed for an average of seven years. No one had PTSD at the start of the study, and all served in Iraq or Afghanistan at least once. By the end of the study, 6.7 percent of women and 6.1 percent of men had developed ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

'Goth' Teens Report More Depression, Self-Harm

Posted 2 days 13 hours ago by

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2015 – The dark look associated with Goths may not be all show: Teens in this subculture appear more prone to depression and self-harm than their peers, researchers report. Fifteen-year-olds who strongly identified as Goth – recognized by their distinctive black clothes, white and black makeup and black hair – were three times more likely to be depressed at 18 compared with teens who did not identify as Goth, the British researchers found. And they were five times more likely to report self-harming behaviors such as cutting or taking an overdose of pills as non-Goth teens, according to the study published Aug. 27 in The Lancet Psychiatry. "Our study does not suggest that being a Goth causes depression or self-harm, but rather that some individuals within this subculture may be particularly vulnerable," said lead researcher Lucy Bowes, an associate professor of ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety and Stress, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia

False-Positive Mammogram Result Traumatic for Most Women: Study

Posted 5 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 26, 2015 – In a finding that won't surprise many who've been through this ordeal, researchers say emotional turmoil is common for women whose mammogram falsely suggests they have breast cancer. The Swedish study of nearly 400 such cases found that 88 percent of the women said they felt a sense of dejection, such as being uneasy, sad or unable to cope; 83 percent reported anxiety; 67 percent said they had behavioral changes, such as trouble dealing with spare time or work; and 53 percent suffered sleeping problems. One expert in the United States wasn't surprised. "It is well known that false-positive results on a mammogram or ultrasound can cause anxiety and distress," said Dr. Stephanie Bernik, chief of surgical oncology at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. Unfortunately, she added, women are in a tough spot because "at the current time, these tests are the best ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety and Stress, Breast Cancer, Ultrasound, Dysthymia, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Diagnosis and Investigation, Body Imaging

Health Tip: Home Remedies to Ease Dandruff

Posted 5 days ago by

-- Dandruff is an embarrassing problem, but there are home remedies available to help ease flakiness and itching. The Mayo Clinic advises: Keep stress under control, as stress can worsen flaking. Shampoo every day, especially if your scalp is oily. Limit use of styling products, such as hair spray, gel and wax. These can build up and make the scalp oilier. Eat a nutrient-rich diet that includes plenty of zinc and B vitamins. Allow your scalp a bit of safe exposure to sunlight, but take care not to burn. Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Fluconazole, Diflucan, Ketoconazole, Clotrimazole, Miconazole, Dandruff, Itraconazole, Nizoral, Sporanox, Voriconazole, Zinc Gluconate, Clotrimazole Troche, Vfend, Mycelex Troche, Noxafil, Oravig, Onmel, Cresemba, Sporanox PulsePak

Single and Happy? Your View on Relationships May Be Key

Posted 10 days ago by

FRIDAY, Aug. 21, 2015 – Single people can be just as happy as those in romantic relationships – but it may depend on their temperament, a new study suggests. Over the years, research has found that single people tend to be less satisfied with their lives, compared to those with a significant other. But that reflects only the average experience; and some studies have found that the single life can bring some advantages – like closer relationships with friends and family. The new study adds another layer: Single people can, in fact, be just as fulfilled as couples – but it may partly depend on how they approach relationships in general. The key, researchers found, is whether a person prefers to avoid conflict and drama in relationships. In that case, the single life appears just as satisfying as being coupled, on average. In contrast, people who are unfazed by relationship ups and ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety and Stress

When Your Spouse Has a Stroke, Your Health May Suffer, Too

Posted 10 days ago by

THURSDAY, Aug. 20, 2015 – Caring for a spouse who has had a stroke can hurt your mental and physical health, researchers report. Swedish researchers evaluated nearly 250 caregiving partners of stroke survivors and found they scored lower on tests of mental and physical well-being than people with healthy spouses. Their vitality and social life also suffered, not only in the first years after stroke, but over many years. "It is important for the society to provide support to the spouses to prevent or reduce the burden of stress and strain," said lead researcher Josefine Persson of the Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, at Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg. The caregiver's quality of life declined alongside the stroke victim's level of physical disability, mental impairment and depression, Persson said. The more care the stroke patient needed, the greater the ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety and Stress, Ischemic Stroke, Major Depressive Disorder, Transient Ischemic Attack

Workaholics May Face Higher Stroke Risk: Study

Posted 11 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 19, 2015 – Millions of workers who put in lots of overtime may be upping their odds for a stroke, a new study contends. "Working long hours is associated with a significantly increased risk of stroke, and perhaps also coronary heart disease," study author Mika Kivimaki, a professor of epidemiology at University College London, said in a news release from The Lancet. The journal published the findings Aug. 19. The study couldn't prove cause and effect, but one expert said today's harried workers should seek ways to curb the risk. "The take-home message for all the workers burning the midnight oil: Make time for physical activity, ensure a proper diet, watch your alcohol consumption and ensure good sleeping habits," said Dr. Paul Wright, chair of neurology at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, N.Y. "If you are not feeling well or if something does not feel ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Ischemic Stroke, Transient Ischemic Attack, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Intracranial Hemorrhage

Vocabulary at 2 May Help Predict Kindergarten Success

Posted 13 days ago by

TUESDAY, Aug. 18, 2015 – Children with a larger speaking vocabulary at age 2 are better prepared for kindergarten, a new study shows. And prior research has shown that kids who function better in kindergarten have greater social and educational opportunities as they grow up, according to background notes in the study. The analysis of data from more than 8,600 children in the United States showed that 2-year-olds with larger speaking vocabularies did better academically and had fewer behavioral problems when they later entered kindergarten. Children with larger vocabularies at age 2 tended to be from higher-income families, girls, and those who had higher-quality parenting, the study found. Children who had a very low birth weight or whose mothers had health problems had smaller speaking vocabularies. The study was published Aug. 18 in the journal Child Development. "Our findings ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress

Family Struggles May Affect Boys' Brain Development

Posted 14 days ago by

MONDAY, Aug. 17, 2015 – Family problems early in life might raise boys' risk of depression and anxiety, which is also tied to altered brain structure in their late teens and early 20s, a new study suggests. But the findings have a bright side, one researcher said. "Early life experiences have an effect on the brain," said Dr. Jeffrey Borenstein, president of The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation in New York City. But "what is most interesting and exciting about this study is that just as trauma can have a negative effect on the brain, positive experiences – including therapy and other interventions – can have a positive effect on the young brain and ultimately affect the level of functioning of the individual," he said. Borenstein was not involved in the new research. The British study was led by Edward Barker, of King's College London, and included nearly 500 males, ages 18 to ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia

How Parents Can Ease Transition to First Grade

Posted 14 days ago by

MONDAY, Aug. 17, 2015 – Parents can smooth a child's transition from kindergarten to the new demands of first grade, an expert says. "The sudden introduction of new skills and responsibilities of first grade can be an exciting yet stressful experience for both the child and their parents," said Beth Pendergraft, an early childhood coordinator in the department of teacher education at Georgia Regents University. "However, if parents can remain positive and patient with their child along with keeping open communication with the teacher, it will help everyone get a good grip on this new journey," she said in a university news release. You can talk to your child's teacher to find out what skills will be taught during the school year and incorporate those skills into daily family routines, she suggested. Also, try to give your child an idea of what to expect in class, including activities, ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder

Kids' Risky Behaviors a Concern in Some Military Families

Posted 14 days ago by

MONDAY, Aug. 17, 2015 – Children in U.S. military families are more likely to engage in risky behaviors and to be bullied than those in civilian families, a new study finds. Researchers surveyed about 688,000 middle and high school students in California in 2013, including more than 54,000 who lived in a military family. Compared to those in civilian families, children in military families were more likely to report alcohol use (45 percent vs. 39 percent); physical bullying such as being punched, kicked, or slapped (36 percent vs. 27 percent); and non-physical bullying such as being the target of jokes, rumors or online harassment (66 percent vs. 59 percent). The study, published Aug. 17 in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, also found that kids in military families were more likely to take a gun or knife to school. Fights and fear of being beaten up were more common among military-related ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Alcohol Dependence

Doctor Offers Back-to-School Health Tips

Posted 14 days ago by

SUNDAY, Aug. 16, 2015 – With the arrival of the new school year, parents need to remember the importance of keeping their children healthy, a pediatrician advises. "As we approach the beginning of each school year, we must consider the ongoing health of our children. Ages differ, and therefore needs and concerns differ, but principles remain the same. Healthier children are happier children," Dr. Peter Richel, a pediatrician at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco, N.Y., said in a hospital news release. He outlined a number of ways to help children stay healthy during the school year. One important consideration is making sure they get enough sleep. "We often allow later bedtimes during summer months, usually compensating with later sleeping each morning, but adequate rest cannot be overemphasized once school begins. Bedtime routines are very important, especially with earlier ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Anxiety, Back Pain, Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Anxiety and Stress, Fatigue, Muscle Pain, Neck Pain, Nightmares, Vaccination and Prophlaxis

How to Mend a Broken Heart? Your Gender May Matter

Posted 16 days ago by

FRIDAY, Aug. 14, 2015 – The pain of a romantic breakup may hit women harder at first, but they recover far more quickly from the loss than men do, new research suggests. "At some point, clearly, women get over a breakup," said study author Craig Morris, a research associate at Binghamton University in New York. "They will discuss in great detail the pain, the suffering, the misery, but they are talking about it in the past." Women often "return to the dating scene in many ways better than they were before," he said, having learned from and processed their mistakes. Conversely, men may not feel the same sharp jab of pain initially, yet they may never recover fully emotionally, Morris found. "When you talk to a man about a breakup," Morris said, "you can see he is still there. The anger. The disappointment. There was never any end to this for him. Most men never use the phrase, 'I got ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Social Anxiety Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder, Neurotic Depression, Depressive Psychosis

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