Archive for 2014

Eating Disorders: Mentally And Physically Unhealthy

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Anorexia nervosa, bulimia and binge eating disorder are categorized as mental illnesses. People with eating disorders not only have unhealthy relationships with food, but also typically struggle with body image issues and a disruption in their normal activities. In addition, they can be affected by physical symptoms such as lowered immune systems and weakened hearts. Now Finnish researchers have found that people with eating disorders are at an increased risk of developing autoimmune disorders as well.

In the study, published in ...

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Autistic Children Have Extra Brain Synapses

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Scientists and doctors are continuously studying autism in order to improve the quality of autism and Asperger’s treatment. Columbia University Medical Center recently reported that children and teens with autism have a surplus of synapses in their brains, and the excess is due to a slowing of a normal brain “pruning” process during development. Synapses are the points where neurons connect and communicate with each other, the extra synapses likely have a profound effect on how the brain functions.

A ...

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Depressed? It’s Time For Therapy And Antidepressants

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Many people try to handle their depression on their own. But if you’re like most people and you’ve struggled with moderate to severe depression, you should be engaging in two simultaneous treatments: therapy and antidepressant medication. Many people opt for one or the other or do nothing at all. In making that choice, they can short-change their chances at a faster recovery.

If you’ve been struggling with depression, look into behavioral health services in your area. Be honest about your ...

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What Anxiety Disorders Really Look Like

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To someone who does not suffer from anxiety, anxiety disorders probably seem very strange. The popular opinion seems to be that people should just “think mind over matter” and simply “get over it.” Unfortunately anxiety disorders are much more complicated than that. They can be severely debilitating. While seeking appropriate behavioral health services will help, living with an anxiety disorder means constantly struggling with the strange thoughts and behaviors that threaten an otherwise healthy life.

Types of Anxiety Disorders

To fully ...

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Why Children With ADHD Sometimes Make Poor Choices

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Children with ADHD certainly aren’t bad children. Still, students with ADHD often make poorer decisions than their classmates. Recent research shows that different learning and decision-making mechanisms are responsible for these behaviors—in other words, it’s simply how their brains are wired. ADHD children who receive behavioral therapy from a child psychiatrist often have the advantage due to learning coping skills.

Everyone makes hundreds of different choices every day, many of them with minimal impact. But for someone with ADHD, it ...

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Depression Can Be Contagious For College Roommates

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If you know anyone heading off to college, take note: studies have shown that depression can be contagious among college roommates. Negative thinking styles that make people vulnerable to depression can “spread” from one student to another. Help the college student in your life keep from “catching” the cognitive vulnerability with these tips.

1. Spend time around positive people. The influence of cognitive vulnerability can go both ways, and hanging out with optimistic people can help counteract the effects of a ...

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Ten Mental Health Myths

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Despite making huge advances in the way our society views mental health, mental illness does still carry a stigma. The recent suicide of Robin Williams has paved the way for discussions about depression, addiction and bipolar disorder, but we still have a long way to go before mental illness is as widely accepted and understood as fighting physical illnesses.

No one should ever be ashamed to seek help from behavioral health services available to them. There are many misconceptions surrounding ...

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Five Simple Ways To Be A Better Parent

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Parenting is a tough job, and many parents are very hard on themselves as they try to be the best they can be for their children. A recent study showed that parents, especially mothers, often feel stress and anxiety after the birth of a child out of fear of not being perfect. Having a child with a mental health issue can be especially ...

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Autistic Children Are More Likely To Suffer From GI Problems

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The characteristics of autism are mostly behavioral: resistance to being touched, little to no eye contact, issues with social skills and minimal acknowledgement of others. But a new study has confirmed what most parents of autistic children already know: children on the autism spectrum disorder are four times more likely to suffer from gastrointestinal issues than children who are not on the spectrum. The study was done to increase awareness among medical providers and to further the development of Continue Reading →

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Help Your Children Maximize Their Mental Health For The School Year

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As summer vacations across the country come to a close, it’s time for families to prepare for another school year. This typically involves getting school supplies and buying new clothes, but adjustments to their schedules are also in order. In addition to the optimism and excitement your kids will express, they may also feel stress, anxiety and irritation.

Luckily, there are some things you can do to improve the mental health of your children as they prepare for a new school ...

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Scientific Studies Increasingly Back Behavioral Therapy For Autism

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Recent years have shown a dramatic increase in scientific evidence backing the effectiveness of behavioral therapy for children affected by autism, according to the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality. The sooner autistic children begin autism and Asperger’s treatment, the better their odds are for achieving independence later in life.

Amy Weitlauf, a clinical psychologist with the Vanderbilt University Kennedy Center, said there is increasing evidence that early intensive behavioral interventions can be very effective for young children on ...

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Overactive Immune System Linked to Mental Illness Risk

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According to some new research, our immune systems may play a vital role in the development of mental illness. The study, published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry, showed that children with high levels of protein released in the blood during infection face a greater risk of developing psychosis. The immune system acts like a thermostat—and when there is infection in the body, the thermostat gets cranked up. In some people, that thermostat is always set slightly higher.

4,500 individuals’ blood samples ...

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