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Heart Valve Repair Surgery May Ease Mental Health Symptoms, Too

Posted 2 days 10 hours ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 2, 2015 – People with a serious heart valve defect have less depression and anxiety after they undergo surgery to repair the problem, a new study finds. The research included people with severe mitral regurgitation, which occurs when the heart's mitral valve doesn't close tightly and blood flows backward into the heart. Past research has shown that one-quarter of patients with this defect have elevated levels of anxiety and depression, according to the researchers. The study looked at 131 patients who had surgery to correct the problem and compared them to 62 patients who didn't have surgery. They also compared the findings to a control group of 36 people with healthy hearts. Six months after surgery, patients' levels of anxiety and depression and quality-of-life scores improved to the levels of people in the control group. There was no such improvement among those who ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression, Mitral Insufficiency

Mental Health Disorders May Shorten Life Span: Study

Posted 11 Feb 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 11, 2015 – People with mental health conditions such as depression, chronic anxiety and schizophrenia tend to die at younger ages than their peers without psychiatric disorders, a new research review says. In fact, the researchers estimated that mental health disorders typically rob people of nearly a decade of life, and account for 8 million deaths worldwide each year. The findings, published online Feb. 11 in JAMA Psychiatry, come from an analysis of over 200 international studies spanning several decades. Researchers said the studies help put the global toll of mental health disorders into perspective. Although the study found an association between mental health conditions and earlier death, it wasn't designed to prove that the disorders were a direct cause of the early deaths. When people think of lives lost to mental illness, they might automatically focus on one ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression, Schizophrenia, Psychiatric Disorders

Depression, Anxiety Can Precede Memory Loss in Alzheimer's, Study Finds

Posted 14 Jan 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 14, 2015 – Depression, sleep problems and behavioral changes can show up before signs of memory loss in people who go on to develop Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests. "I wouldn't worry at this point if you're feeling anxious, depressed or tired that you have underlying Alzheimer's, because in most cases it has nothing to do with an underlying Alzheimer's process," said study author Catherine Roe, an assistant professor of neurology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. "We're just trying to get a better idea of what Alzheimer's looks like before people are even diagnosed with dementia," Roe added. "We're becoming more interested in symptoms occurring with Alzheimer's, but not what people typically think of." Tracking more than 2,400 middle-aged people for up to seven years, the researchers found that those who developed dementia were more ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression, Alzheimer's Disease

Health Tip: Anxiety Can Affect Your Health

Posted 22 Oct 2014 by Drugs.com

-- A person with generalized anxiety disorder describes someone who worries excessively, often making it difficult to get through the day. The Womenshealth.gov website says physical symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder include: Significant and unexplained fatigue. Aches, pains and tension in the muscles. Headaches. Twitching or trembling. Irritability. Difficulty swallowing. Sweating excessively. Hot flashes. Nausea, lightheadedness or shortness of breath. Going to the bathroom more frequently. Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress

The Parenting Trap: Coddling Anxious Kids

Posted 12 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 12, 2014 – Some parents may make things worse for their anxious kids by falling into what researchers call the "protection trap" – reassuring them, lavishing them with attention or making the threat go away, according to the results of a small study. The finding indicates that certain coddling behaviors may actually boost anxiety, although the study doesn't prove a cause-and-effect relationship. "We found evidence that when parents try to help their anxious children they do a lot of things," said study co-author Armando Pina, an associate professor of child developmental psychology at Arizona State University. "Some of them are good, like promoting courage with warmth and kindness. Others are less helpful, like promoting avoidance by overprotecting, which many times leads to more anxiety." That can lead to other problems, one expert noted. "Left untreated, anxiety ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety

Anxiety Medications May Be Tied to Alzheimer's Risk

Posted 9 Sep 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 9, 2014 – Older adults who habitually use sedatives for anxiety or insomnia may have a heightened risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests. The drugs in question are benzodiazepines, a widely prescribed group of sedatives that include lorazepam (Ativan), diazepam (Valium) and alprazolam (Xanax). Older adults commonly take the drugs for anxiety or insomnia, often long-term, according to background information in the study. That's despite the fact that guidelines call for only short-term use of the drugs, at most. In 2012, the American Geriatrics Society (AGS) put benzodiazepines on its list of drugs considered "potentially inappropriate" for seniors, because of risks like confusion, dizziness and falls. The current study isn't the first to link benzodiazepines to Alzheimer's risk, but it adds to evidence that longer-term use of the drugs – beyond ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Xanax, Anxiety and Stress, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Alprazolam, Lorazepam, Diazepam, Temazepam, Alzheimer's Disease, Restoril, Xanax XR, Librium, Oxazepam, Halcion, Serax, Midazolam, Triazolam

Anxiety May Affect Kids' Brains

Posted 17 Jun 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 17, 2014 – Children with anxiety problems actually have a bigger "fear center" in their brain, researchers report. The study included 76 children aged 7 to 9, which is when anxiety-related traits and symptoms can first be reliably detected, according to the Stanford University School of Medicine researchers. The parents provided information about their youngsters' anxiety levels, and the children also underwent MRI scans of their brain structure and function. The investigators focused on an area of the brain called the amygdala, which is a person's "fear center," and found that kids with high anxiety levels had a larger amygdala compared to children with low anxiety levels. This part of the brain, the researchers noted, had more connections to other brain regions involved in attention, emotion perception and regulation. The researchers also developed a way to predict ... Read more

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Treatment Often Inadequate for Children With Anxiety Disorders, Study Finds

Posted 29 Jan 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 29, 2014 – Less than half of children and young adults who undergo treatment for anxiety get long-term relief from their symptoms, a new study finds. The study "suggests the need for more intensive or continued treatment for a sizable proportion of youth with anxiety disorders," said Dr. Victor Fornari, director of the division of child/adolescent psychiatry at North Shore-LIJ Health System in New Hyde Park, N.Y. He was not connected to the study. The research was led by psychologist Golda Ginsburg of the Johns Hopkins Children's Center in Baltimore. Her team tracked 288 patients, aged 11 to 26, who were diagnosed with anxiety and underwent treatment for three months. Treatment included drugs, cognitive behavioral therapy or a combination of the two. After treatment, the patients were followed for an average of six years. Only 47 percent of the patients were ... Read more

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Could Ecstasy Help People With Anxiety, PTSD?

Posted 17 Jan 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Jan. 17, 2014 – Researchers say they've discovered how the club drug Ecstasy acts on the brain, and their findings suggest the drug might be useful in treating anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. The study included 25 volunteers who underwent two functional MRI brain scans – one after taking Ecstasy (MDMA) and one after taking a placebo. Both times, the participants did not know which substance they had been given. Ecstasy decreased activity in the brain's limbic system, which is involved in emotional responses. The drug also reduced communication between the brain's medial temporal lobe and medial prefrontal cortex, which is involved in emotional control, according to the study, which was published online Jan. 13 in the journal Biological Psychiatry. These effects are the opposite of brain patterns that occur in people with anxiety, said the researchers, from Imperial ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Meditation May Reduce Mild Depression, Anxiety

Posted 6 Jan 2014 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 6 – Daily meditation might help some people relieve anxiety, depression and pain, Johns Hopkins University researchers report. Many people meditate in an attempt to reduce stress and stress-related health problems. But whether this centuries-old approach to greater self-awareness has actual medical benefits isn't really known. For this study, published online Jan. 6 in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers reviewed 47 prior studies that looked at meditation's effect on various conditions that included substance abuse, eating habits, sleep, pain and weight in addition to depression and anxiety. "The maximum strength of evidence we found was moderate for anxiety, depression and pain; low for some others and insufficient for the bulk of outcomes we evaluated," said lead researcher Dr. Madhav Goyal, an assistant professor of medicine. He noted, however, that few trials included ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression

Anxiety Tied to Stroke Risk in Study

Posted 19 Dec 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 19, 2013 – Could anxiety boost the risk for stroke? A new long-term study suggests just that – the greater the anxiety, the greater the risk for stroke. Study participants who suffered the most anxiety had a 33 percent higher risk for stroke compared to those with the lowest anxiety levels, the researchers found. This is thought to be one of the first studies to show an association between anxiety and stroke. But not everyone is convinced the connection is real. "I am a little skeptical about the results," said Dr. Aviva Lubin, associate stroke director at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, who had no part in the study. The researchers pointed out that anxiety can be related to smoking and increased pulse and blood pressure, which are known risk factors for stroke. However, Lubin still has her doubts. "It still seems a little hard to fully buy into the fact that ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Ischemic Stroke, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis

Childhood Tummy Aches May Be Tied to Adult Anxiety, Depression

Posted 12 Aug 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 12 – Stomach pain is a common childhood complaint, and now a new study suggests it may place some kids at higher risk for anxiety disorders or depression as adults. The researchers compared 332 young adults, aged around 20, who had abdominal pain as children to 147 participants who did not. Of those who had suffered from stomach pain, 51 percent had an anxiety disorder during their lifetime, and 30 percent had one currently. By contrast, only 20 percent of adults without stomach pain as children had an anxiety disorder. "A decade later, individuals who had stomach pain continued to have high rates of anxiety disorders, even if they no longer had stomach pain," said study author Lynn Walker, a professor of pediatrics at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn. Moreover, 40 percent of young men and women who had abdominal pain as children had depression during their ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression

Two-Pronged Anxiety Treatment Aids Older Adults

Posted 27 Jun 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 27 – A combination of antidepressant therapy and counseling is an effective way to treat anxiety in older adults, a new study finds. Together, these treatments keep seniors anxiety-free for a longer time than either medication or counseling alone, according to the researchers. The investigators studied 73 people, aged 60 and older, with generalized anxiety disorder, a problem that affects about 5 percent of seniors. All the patients began the study by taking the antidepressant escitalopram (Lexapro) for three months. After that time, the patients were randomly assigned to one of two groups. The first group simply continued taking the antidepressant for another 16 weeks, while the second group continued taking the drug but also received 16 weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy. During cognitive behavioral therapy, patients learned about the nature of anxiety, worked on ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Lexapro, Escitalopram

Sibling Bullying Can Lead to Depression, Anxiety in Victims

Posted 17 Jun 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 17 – Being picked on by your brother or sister may seem like a normal part of growing up, but for some kids the bullying may be a source of depression and anxiety, a new study suggests. Researchers found that among 3,600 kids in a U.S. survey, those who were pushed around by a sibling – physically or verbally – had higher scores on a measure of depression and anxiety symptoms. "Historically, sibling aggression has been dismissed as normal," said lead researcher Corinna Jenkins Tucker, an associate professor of family studies at the University of New Hampshire. "It's been seen as benign, or even good for kids because it teaches them something about dealing with the world." In general, parents and other adults tend to be more tolerant when siblings smack or taunt each other – even if they would never condone it among peers. But Tucker said her findings suggest that ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Depression

Anxiety Often Plagues Cancer Survivors and Their Loved Ones

Posted 5 Jun 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 4 – Cancer survivors and their partners have an increased long-term risk of anxiety but not depression, researchers have found. For the new study, investigators analyzed data from 27 publications that reported on a total of 43 comparison studies and found that levels of depression were similar among adults without cancer and adult cancer survivors two or more years after diagnosis, 10.2 percent and 11.6 percent, respectively. However, cancer survivors were 27 percent more likely to report anxiety two or more years after their diagnosis and 50 percent more likely to experience anxiety 10 or more years after diagnosis, the findings indicated. The researchers also found that cancer survivors' partners were even more likely than survivors to experience anxiety over the long term (40 percent versus 28 percent). Depression rates were similar among cancer survivors and their ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Cancer

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