Brain and Behavior

Science Explains How We Choose Political Leaders


Wherever you might live in the world, you know what it’s like when it’s election time. The airwaves and the billboards are taken over by the electoral candidates. Your mailbox is flooded with brochures and mailers every other day while the newspapers ignore most events other than those related to the elections and the candidates.

We, of course, gobble up every piece of information that is dished out to us. After all, we need to know about the candidates before we choose a leader. But how do you think we make up our minds?

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Anger

Are These 5 Myths about Emotions Holding You Back?

We are emotional beings. As complex patterns of internal reactions to external stimuli, emotions are what helped the human species survive. Emotions direct our actions and determine our well-being and health.

Whether we are aware of our emotions or not, whether we talk about emotions or not, and whether we recognize their vital importance or not, emotions are an integral part of our lives and have a powerful effect on us. What kind of effect? That all depends on how we manage any given emotion.
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Depression

15 Quotes to Inspire People with Chronic Illness

Being sick is no fun. We all know that. But being chronically ill while maintaining a pleasant disposition is a daunting task even for the Greek gods. Every biological response in your body wants to lean into the creeping despair you feel. But by doing that with regularity, you'll soon feel as if you’ve given up entirely on life. You no longer have the strength to try to tease apart threads of joy from the suffocating blanket of pain that covers you.

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College

5 Things You Must Take to College to Help Your Mental Health

College isn't always easy, whether you're a freshman going away for the first time or you're a senior looking forward to your last year. There are many challenges, especially if you're living on your own for the first time in your life, as most college students are.

Luckily, there are things you can take with you to college or university to help improve your mental health and keep yourself balanced. Here are a few...

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Addiction

Finding Pain Relief When There’s Potential for Addiction


I am a woman with a family history of addiction who is also in chronic pain. What if someday I need opioids to manage that pain?

First, two discs in my lower spine degenerated. Then, they herniated, both bulging out and impinging nerves, inciting an excruciating, sciatica-like pain that affected me around the clock. More than a year since my discs were damaged, pain has become my daily reality. I wake up stiff and sore as though I’ve just been hit by a car (having been hit by a car as a kid, I actually know what that feels like). The only thing I struggle with as much as the pain itself is finding the best way to treat it so that I can have a better quality of life.

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Anxiety and Panic

5 Tips for Helping Your Troubled Teen

It can be tough to tell when a teen needs help. Because adolescence is a time of transition -- and even turbulence. Your teen is likely irritable and moody. They question their identity. In fact, they try on different identities, which can lead to inconsistent behavior.

According to psychotherapist Sean Grover, LCSW, this is known as developmental depression, which is totally normal for teens. “[T]eenagers go through a dramatic transformational period driven by biological and psychological maturation, hormone imbalances and irregularities in brain development.” Which fuels their emotional instability, he said.
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Addiction

Early Sobriety: 4 Tips to Rebuild Family Relationships


Although achieving the first steps on the path of recovery from addiction is a personally powerful experience, coming face to face with the damage to family left behind and the amends that need to be made can be overwhelming. When my head cleared up in the first months of recovery and I became truly aware of how much I had hurt my family, I did not know if the ruins in my wake could be cleaned up. I did not know if those bridges could ever be repaired.

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Brain Blogger

How Vacations Really Boost Physical and Mental Health


Multiple new research studies indicate that there are many physical and mental health benefits to gain from taking a holiday, some reportedly remaining even two months after we have returned to the daily grind. However, research also shows that certain habits and attitudes can neutralize these benefits, and even leave you more tired, stressed out, unhealthy and overwhelmed than how you started out.

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Aging

Psychology Around the Net: August 13, 2016


The world is deep in the throes of the 2016 Summer Olympics, and while such competition has to bring a certain level of anxiety and stress to athletes, sports can help to improve both your body and your mind.

Of course, Olympic athletes face much more pressure than those of us who dabble in the occasional friendly tennis match, which is where professionals such as sports psychologists can help. Learn more about these mental health experts, as well as the latest on the mental health benefits of those who volunteer, how you can make performance anxiety work for you, a new non-medical approach to mental health care that's gaining ground but leaving some psychiatrists skeptical, and more.

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