Adolescents & Risk-Taking Behavior

Several areas of research have converged over the past several years to give people a better understanding of adolescent risk-taking behavior. For many teens, taking risks and making mistakes (sometimes life-changing) is part of what adolescence is. Fortunately, a more complete understanding of peer...
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Therapy After Domestic Violence

Domestic violence and its effects on kids as well as the adults involved is often under-reported and can be forgotten about. Fortunately, a recent report via Reuters covers new research on therapy for victims of domestic violence. Essentially, group therapy has been shown to be beneficial for kids after domestic incidents, but the effects become even more positive if mothers (assuming the mother is not the abuser) get treatment of their own.
In a study of 181 children between the ages of 6 and...
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Psychological Medication Use Increase

It's no secret that the amount of prescriptions filled for psychotropic medication has been increasing at a rapid pace. However, most people don't really just how many people are taking these drugs and how much money is generated by their sale. The PsychCentral Newsroom had a great report on this topic, here is the thumbnail sketch:

"...spending on prescription drugs to treat depression, anxiety, pain, schizophrenia and other conditions climbed from $ billion in 1997 to $20 billion in 2004."

"During the same time period,...
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Praise Your Spouse 5x More or Else

In an article in last Friday's edition of the Wall Street Journal, there appeared an article from Jeffrey Zaslow entitled, "The Most-Praised Generation Goes to Work." (You'll have to take my word for it, as the WSJ is one of the old-media companies that still believes there's little value to making its articles available to others online.) It observes the interesting phenomenon of "praise inflation," where young adults are entering the workplace expecting kudos for doing not much more than showing up to...
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Sometimes My Mommy Gets Angry

Bebe Moore Campbell, writer and mental health advocate, suffered with a bipolar disorder and died of brain cancer last winter. In 2003 she wrote the award-winning children's book Sometimes My Mommy Gets Angry. Narrated by a young girl, it shows how to understand a mother with mental illness and in particular, passionate bipolar mood swings.

It's always sad when someone's life is cut short, but at least Bebe was a writer and left us words to continue to grow. The book is available...
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Violent Thoughts & Cho

As the cultural obsession with Cho continues, it reveals a deep human need to understand, explain, and feel in control of this type of situation. We think that if we can predict every warning sign and every maladaptive personality trait we can avoid these...
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Psychotherapy & OCD

There has been a reasonable amount of evidence accumulating that talk therapy is an effective approach to treating obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). A new study covered by United Press International found that certain cognitive-behavioral therapies are shown to be effective for significantly reducing symptoms of the disorder. Ideally, after symptoms are under control for people receiving treatment for OCD, they can also discover some of the core issues related to why the disorder manifested itself as a way to prevent future difficulties....
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NeuroTalk Communities Mentioned in Neurology Now

I was pleased to see that our NeuroTalk Communities was mentioned in Dr. Orly Avitzur's article about the benefits of joining an online neurology community in Neurology Now. What a great article touting the benefits of online support groups! I wish there was more positive reporting like this describing the benefits of the Internet's ability to help people connect with one another in meaningful ways. People connecting with others, sharing information and support about life-changing diseases and disorders -- that's the real power...
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Sensationalizing Murder and Mental Health

As predicted, the media is now making some very generalized and meaningless connections between Cho's hospitalization 16 months ago in 2005, and his actions on Monday. The Los Angeles Times leads the charge,

Weary with grief and struggling to explain their failure to monitor Seung-hui Cho upon his release from a mental hospital 16 months ago, the leaders of Virginia Tech sought Thursday to begin the healing process for their shattered university.

"Failure to monitor?" Since when is it a university's responsibility to...
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Healthy Brain Upkeep

Many of us think about how to keep out hearts and muscles healthy, but few of us think about how to keep our brains healthy. Fortunately, some folks from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution have a guide for you to do this. Basically, our brains need upkeep just like other parts of our bodies. Many of us do this without thinking about it, but as we get older it may require more conscious effort. THe article has a great list of things to help including:

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