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Most Smokers With Mental Illness Want to Kick the Habit

Posted 16 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 16, 2017 – Nearly six in 10 Americans with severe mental illness smoke, and a new study suggests that many of them want to quit. The problem is that many of these patients don't get help from their psychiatrists and caseworkers, researchers report. "Patients with serious mental illness die an average of 25 years younger than people who don't have these problems, and smoking is a big factor," said study author Dr. Li-Shiun Chen. She's an assistant professor of psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. "Smoking is a common and serious problem for our patients, and although smoking rates have been decreasing in the general population, the rates remain very high in this vulnerable population," Chen said in a university news release. In the past, psychiatric wards allowed patients to smoke so they could focus on treatment for their mental conditions, ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Anxiety and Stress, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Smoking, Schizophrenia, Paranoid Disorder, Schizoaffective Disorder, Smoking Cessation, Psychosis, Psychiatric Disorders, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Drug Psychosis

For People With Mental Health Woes, Pets Can Be Invaluable

Posted 9 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Dec. 9, 2016 – Cats, dogs, birds and other pets can help people manage their mental disorders, a new study says. Researchers from the United Kingdom asked more than 50 adults with long-term mental conditions about the role pets play in their social networks. Sixty percent placed pets in the central and most important circle – above family, friends and hobbies. Another 20 percent placed pets in the second circle. Many said the constant presence and close proximity of their pets provide an immediate source of calm. For some, a pet helps distract them from symptoms and upsetting experiences such as hearing voices or suicidal thoughts. "You just want to sink into a pit... the cats force me to sort of still be involved with the world," one patient said. Another patient said: "I'm not thinking of the voices, I'm just thinking of the birds singing." The findings were published Dec. 8 ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, Panic Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Major Depressive Disorder, Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Schizophrenia, Mania, Paranoid Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Schizoaffective Disorder, Postpartum Depression, Autism, Eating Disorder, Psychosis

Nearly 10 Million U.S. Adults Considered Suicide Last Year

Posted 15 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 15, 2016 – Almost 10 million U.S. adults seriously thought about committing suicide last year, federal health officials reported Thursday. Rates of suicide are at historically high levels, having jumped 27 percent since 2000, according to a report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Nearly three million adults made a plan to take their own life. And 1.4 million adults attempted suicide but weren't successful, according to the report. Overall, the percentage of adults contemplating suicide has remained stable over the past eight years. But, growing numbers of young adults are considering taking their own lives. The latest SAMHSA report revealed an increase in suicidal thoughts among 18 to 25 year olds – from 7.5 percent in 2014 to 8.3 percent in 2015. An increasing number of young women have made failed suicide attempts – up ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder

Know the Warning Signs of Suicidal Thoughts

Posted 12 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 12, 2016 – Family, friends and acquaintances can play a key role in suicide prevention by being alert for signs and taking action to help someone who may be struggling, a mental health expert says. Nearly 43,000 Americans commit suicide each year, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. For the past two decades, suicide rates have been rising in the United States, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. The sharpest rises in suicide rates have occurred among men aged 45 to 64 and girls aged 10 to 14, according to the CDC. "There remains a lot of stigma associated with people who seek help for mental health, which prevents them from getting the assistance they need. We need to pay more attention to suicide prevention," said William Zimmermann. He's a clinician supervisor of New Jersey Hopeline, a suicide prevention hotline operated ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder

Gay, Lesbian Teens More Likely to Suffer Rapes, Attacks: CDC

Posted 12 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 12, 2016 – Lesbian, gay, and bisexual high school students are much more likely to be victims of physical and sexual violence and bullying, and more needs to be done to protect them, a new U.S. government study says. "These tragic disparities call for accelerated action by public health and education agencies, communities, and families to protect the lives of lesbian, gay and bisexual youth," said Dr. Jonathan Mermin. He is director of the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Getting a better assessment of the extent of the problem, "is critical to protect the health and well-being of more than one million lesbian, gay and bisexual high school students," he added in an agency news release. The CDC report found that lesbian and gay students were much more likely than heterosexual ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Neurotic Depression, Depressive Psychosis

Serious Infections Tied to Suicide Risk

Posted 10 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 10, 2016 – People hospitalized for serious infections may face an increased risk of dying by suicide, and researchers suspect there's a biological reason for it. In a study of over 7 million people, Danish researchers found that those who'd been hospitalized for infections were 42 percent more likely to die of suicide compared to people with no history of serious infection. People hospitalized for HIV/AIDS or the liver infection hepatitis showed the highest risk – more than twice that of people without those diseases, the study found. Although the study couldn't prove a cause-and-effect link, the study authors and at least one other brain health expert think the increased risk of suicide after infection might not simply reflect the psychological impact of serious illness. Instead, infections might directly contribute to suicide risk by causing inflammation in the ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Hepatitis C, HIV Infection, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Hepatitis B, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Hepatitis A, Neurotic Depression, Depressive Psychosis, Chronic Active Hepatitis, Infectious Hepatitis

Depression Can Stalk Families Through Generations

Posted 10 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 10, 2016 – People whose parents and grandparents suffered from depression are at much higher risk of developing the illness, a new study suggests. The research found that if a person's grandparent and parent each had depression, their own odds for the disorder tripled. "In this study, biological offspring with two previous generations affected with major depression were at highest risk for major depression," concluded a team led by Myrna Weissman of Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute, in New York City. One expert in brain health stressed, however, that depression is never inevitable, even for members of families with a history of the disease. "While family history increases the risk factor for depression, it does not mean that someone will definitely become depressed," said Dr. Jeffrey Borenstein, president of the Brain & Behavior Research ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Neurotic Depression, Depressive Psychosis

Could New 'Talk Therapy' Cut Cost of Treating Depression?

Posted 23 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 22, 2016 – A simpler and less expensive form of talk therapy is as effective as the gold-standard treatment – cognitive behavioral therapy – for treating depression in adults, a new study suggests. The researchers found that so-called behavioral activation therapy treats depression just as well as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). But behavioral activation can be provided by mental health workers with minimal training and is significantly cheaper, the study authors contended. Cognitive behavioral therapy is provided by highly trained and highly paid specialists. In many countries, CBT is available only to patients who can afford it or who have health insurance, and waiting lists can be long. For example, in the United States, only about one-fourth of people with depression have received any form of psychological therapy in the last 12 months, the researchers said. The ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Lexapro, Zoloft, Cymbalta, Effexor, Prozac, Celexa, Major Depressive Disorder, Citalopram, Paxil, Sertraline, Pristiq, Amitriptyline, Venlafaxine, Fluoxetine, Effexor XR, Mirtazapine, Savella, Escitalopram, Remeron

Hovering Parents May Harm Kids

Posted 27 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

SATURDAY, June 25, 2016 – Children with "intrusive" parents who push too hard for good grades may be more prone to become highly self-critical or anxious and depressed, a new study suggests. "When parents become intrusive in their children's lives, it may signal to the children that what they do is never good enough," said study leader Ryan Hong, an assistant professor in the department of psychology at the National University of Singapore. The five-year study of primary school students in Singapore found that those whose parents acted intrusively, had high expectations of academic performance or overreacted when the child made a mistake were at increased risk of being overly critical of themselves. The researchers also found that children who were highly self-critical had higher levels of anxiety or depression symptoms, although the study did not prove that parental pressure caused ... Read more

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

Job Hunting? Maybe a Therapist Can Help

Posted 20 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 20, 2016 – The unemployed may find help for their job search in an unexpected place – a therapist's office. A type of counseling called cognitive behavioral therapy teaches skills that might help people who are unemployed get a job, a new study suggests. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can be used to help people with depression. This type of therapy teaches people to identify negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones. "Searching for a job is difficult in any circumstance, but it may be even more difficult for people who are depressed," said study co-author Daniel Strunk, an associate professor of psychology at Ohio State University. "But we found that there are specific skills that can help not only manage the symptoms of depression but also make it more likely that a person will receive a job offer," Strunk said in a university news release. The study ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Neurotic Depression, Depressive Psychosis

Depression Plagues Many With COPD

Posted 17 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 17, 2016 – Struggling with chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD) may raise the risk of depression among patients with the incurable respiratory illness, two new studies suggest. One report, from scientists at Manchester Metropolitan University in England, found one in four patients with COPD suffered persistent depressive symptoms over the three years of the study. If untreated, depression can have a negative effect on the patients' overall health and the effectiveness of their treatment, the researchers noted. A second study from the University of Texas analyzed data from a random sample of 5 percent of Medicare beneficiaries diagnosed with COPD between 2001 and 2011. The researchers found that 22 percent of those patients had one or more psychological disorders. The study also showed that the odds of 30-day readmission to the hospital were higher in patients with ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Fluticasone, Dysthymia, Ribavirin, Qvar, Budesonide, Flovent, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Entocort, Tobramycin, Mometasone, Entocort EC, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Acetylcysteine, Beclomethasone, Mucomyst, Pulmicort Flexhaler

Among U.S. Military, Army Members Face Highest Suicide Risk

Posted 6 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 6, 2016 – Suicide rates have been increasing among all active U.S. Navy, Air Force and Army personnel, but those in the Army appear to be most at risk, new research indicates. An analysis of all U.S. military suicides between 2005 and 2011 revealed that the suicide rate among Army members was roughly double that seen among the second highest risk group, the Marines. The investigation further revealed that guns are the principal cause of most military suicides. Firearms were implicated in more than 62 percent of all suicide cases that have a definitive cause of death, the study found. "The trends in suicide are similar to what others have found," said study lead author Andrew Anglemyer, from California State University, Monterey Bay. "The differences in those rates between services are striking, though. Not only are most suicides in the active duty military among the Army ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Neurotic Depression, Depressive Psychosis

Health Tip: Get Enough Sleep

Posted 4 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

-- Not getting enough sleep can worsen depression, experts say. What can you do to improve both? The National Sleep Foundation suggests: Don't ignore symptoms of depression. See a doctor for treatment, which may mean medication, psychological therapy or both. Go to bed at the same time each night, and wake up at the same time each morning. Exercise daily, and practice relaxation techniques such as meditation or deep breathing. Don't use nicotine, alcohol or caffeine, especially in the evening. Don't watch TV or use a computer in the bedroom. Use a white noise machine or earplugs to block out noise. Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Major Depressive Disorder, Fatigue, Postpartum Depression, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Depressive Psychosis

Antidepressants Not Just for Depression Any More

Posted 24 May 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 24, 2016 – Doctors prescribe antidepressants for a wide range of medical problems other than depression, apparently fueling the boom in sales of these medications, researchers report. Depression accounts for only a little more than half the antidepressant prescriptions issued by Quebec physicians during the past decade, the Canadian study found. Doctors also issued antidepressants to treat anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain, panic disorders, fibromyalgia, migraine, obsessive-compulsive disorders, and a host of other "off-label" conditions for which the drugs are not approved, according to the report. Two out of every three non-depression prescriptions for antidepressants were handed out under an off-label purpose, the findings showed. "The thing that's of concern here is that when prescribing for conditions other than depression, often these are for indications such as ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Depression, Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Headache, Panic Disorder, Anxiety and Stress, Lexapro, Zoloft, Fibromyalgia, Sleep Disorders, Wellbutrin, Cymbalta, Migraine, Insomnia, Effexor, Prozac, Celexa, Major Depressive Disorder, Citalopram

Family Rejection Triples Risk for Suicide Attempts by Transgender People: Study

Posted 20 May 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 19, 2016 – Transgender people can face big difficulties, but a new study shows their journey is made much harder when family members reject them. The researchers found that risks for attempting suicide more than tripled for transgender adults who experienced a "high level" of familial rejection. The risk for alcohol or drug abuse also rose much higher in these situations, the research found. Why is the potential rejection of parents, spouses and children so devastating? As researchers from the City University of New York explained, when transgender individuals face societal stigma, families can provide crucial support. However, when their families shut them out, this may deprive transgender people of a much-needed emotional "buffer" against that discrimination, wrote co-authors Augustus Klein and Sarit Golub. One expert agreed that the support of loved ones is key. "This ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Major Depressive Disorder, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Neurotic Depression, Gender Dysphoria, Depressive Psychosis

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