Aging

Grieving the Loss of Time

Sometimes starting a new life can bring up grief and regret for the old life. While I am happy to have new experiences without the pain and anxiety of the past, it makes me wish there had been more of it.

Time is such a tricky aspect of the human experience. We can’t control it. We can’t make more of it. We can’t get back what we think we have wasted. As the song says, it is like an hourglass glued to the table.

And while we can figure out how to control so many aspects of our lives (which is not always a good thing), we can’t control time. It will keep on going, with or without us.
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Aging

Psychology Around the Net: August 9, 2014


This week's Psychology Around the Net is all about older adults and sleep, depressed children, and -- thank goodness -- tips for happiness!

How Sleep Changes as You Age, and Why You'll Need Even More of It: As we get older, we don't sleep as much as when we were younger; however, as our bodies change, we need that sleep. Learn more about this Catch-22.

Pope Francis Issues Top 10 Tips for Happiness: Our favorites? Could be a tie between "live and let live" and have a "healthy sense of leisure."

StubHub Increases Sales By Playing To A Simple Game Of Psychology With "All In Pricing": Find out how the major ticket re-seller's "All In Pricing" method has increased sales and, as Chief Marketing Officer Michael Lattig puts it, works to offer the "best experience possible."

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Aging

New Study Suggests Audio Hypnosis Could Help With Deep Sleep


A new study suggests that listening to audio hypnosis just before bed may help some people reach a state of deep sleep and remain there for a longer period of time. The research, published in the journal Sleep, is the first to observe the connection between hypnosis and sleep through the measurement of brain wave activity.

Deep sleep, or slow-wave sleep, is the most restorative state of rest. When you enter into a deep sleep, your brain is able to process the day’s experiences and help you recover. As people begin to age, however, deep sleep is harder to obtain, and many older adults say they feel less rested or refreshed in the morning.

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Aging

Research Suggests Holistic Exercise Can Help Dementia Patients


Do you know someone who suffers from dementia? Witnessing a loved one slowly lose their memory and reasoning skills can be a very painful experience.

Dementia is a persistent syndrome that tends to get worse over time -- affecting memory, thinking, and behavior. It is distinct from Alzheimer’s in that Alzheimer’s is a specific disease, but general dementia can stem from a variety of unrelated brain illnesses.

Natural and holistic remedies are gaining in popularity as they continue to prove themselves capable of offering relief to sufferers of mental ailments. The knowledge that the body is a whole system (not just a group of unrelated parts) is growing in popularity, and people are noticing that when one part of the body becomes ill, it affects all the rest. And when the whole body is strong, the parts don’t break down as easily or as often.
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Aging

How Throwback Thursday Benefits Our Psychological Well-Being

So take the photographs and still frames in your mind. Hang it on a shelf in good health and good time. ~ Green Day

If you frequent any social media site, you probably have noticed the trend to post old pictures of yourself every Thursday. The trend of Throwback Thursday (or #TBT if you are so inclined) has certainly grown in popularity. It has become a time to visit times gone by and share memories with friends, old and new. We enjoy referencing the past, and we can have a good laugh at our clothes and hair back then.

Throwback Thursday is great for a laugh or a clever profile picture, but can it actually foster our psychological well-being?

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Aging

Why the U.S. Should Place Broader Attention on Wellness

Recently, the New York Times reported on a disturbing uptick in suicide rates among middle-aged Americans. Suicide among those ages 35-64 rose nearly 30 percent from 1999 to 2010, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Times points out that previously, suicide was largely thought to be most prevalent among youth and elderly populations; the CDC findings come as a surprise to many. Moreover, it was found that middle-aged men commit suicide at much higher rates than women in the same category. The suicide rate for middle-aged women was 8.1 deaths per 100,000, while for men it more than tripled to 27.3 deaths per 100,000.
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Aging

10 Lies Singles Tell Themselves About Love After 40


Single and sick of it? Find out what you can do to change your behavior.

If you are a single woman over 40, you have a love history. You've been in relationships before and you may want one now, but for whatever reason you haven't found the right person yet.

Maybe you're divorced and frustrated with dating or haven't ventured back out to the dating pool. You could be a widow and unsure of ever finding another man like your husband. Perhaps you were in a live-in or long-term relationship that ended, so you're single again.
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Aging

Hallucinations of Loss, Visions of Grief

When I was a boy and there was a death in the family, the mirrors in our house would be covered with a sheet, as Jewish tradition dictated.

The “official” explanation of this custom, according to our rabbi, was that gazing at one’s reflection in a mirror is an act of vanity — and there is no place for vanity in a period of mourning. But my family had a different understanding of the practice: the mirrors were covered so that we would not see the face of the deceased instead of our own reflections.

As a psychiatrist, I think this bit of folk wisdom may see more deeply into the human soul than the theological teaching.

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Aging

5 Simple Ways to Recharge Your Relationship


The turning of a year seems to beg us to reevaluate, revitalize, and recommit. We resolve to do better and to be better in almost every area of our lives. The only problem is that when it comes to breathing new life into an old relationship, most of us are not sure how to do it.

But we used to know how! Try reinstating some behaviors that came naturally at the beginning of the relationship.

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Aging

Facing Down a Quarter-Life Crisis

College graduation day: You’ve made it! It's a priceless feeling that you will never forget.

That diploma is still radiating through your fingers, as though it is some sort of golden passport. Before you even look down, to check to see if your name is spelled correctly, you have already booked your flight to the future and are well on your way. You hear the comforting voice of your flight attendant say “We will be taking off momentarily, please stow away any and all college books, research articles, writing assignments, forget about group projects, studying for exams and forget about rushing around campus to make it to class on time. Just sit back, relax and enjoy the flight, we will take care of the rest.”

You are now a college graduate. Congratulations! All of your hard work has paid off.

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Addiction

Will the New DSM-5 Over-Diagnose?

Positive psychology emphasizes individuals’ strengths, and focuses on obtaining optimal mental development (as opposed to just diminishing negative symptoms), which is why I’m drawn to the field. For instance, positive psychologists not only seek to lift depression, but they encourage clients to explore their sense of happiness and resilience as well.

While not a student of abnormal psychology, I’m obviously aware that there are those who suffer from very serious illnesses. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fifth edition (DSM-5) is published by the American Psychiatric Association to provide a standard classification and common language for mental illness. It’s used by clinicians and researchers of various orientations and backgrounds.

And with the advent of the latest edition, diagnoses run rampant, encouraging us to pose the infamous question: are mental health professionals a bit too ready to diagnose disorders?

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