Psychology & Mental Health News

Updated every weekday by the Psych Central News Staff.


F E A T U R E D    A R T I C L E
Strong Vocabulary Protects Against Cognitive Decline

Strong Vocabulary Protects Against Cognitive Decline

October 22nd, 2014
New research suggests a robust vocabulary may reduce mild cognitive impairment and lead to a lower risk of developing dementia. Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or incipient dementia is a condition that some people develop as they age. Many experts believe it ...

Some OTC Meds May Help Reduce Depression Symptoms

Some OTC Meds May Help Reduce Depression Symptoms

October 22nd, 2014
A review of studies of more than 6,000 patients suggests ordinary over-the-counter painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs may aid in the treatment of depression, when taken in combination with antidepressants. The meta-analysis, recently published in JAMA Psychiatry, is the work of researchers from ...
Depressed People Believe in Better Life Ahead

Depressed People Believe in Better Life Ahead

October 22nd, 2014
A new study finds that even depressed people are optimistic about the future. However, researchers also discovered the positive outlook may not lead to better outcomes. Canadian researchers found that middle-aged adults with a history of depression typically evaluated their past and ...
Mental Rest and Reflection Aid Learning

Mental Rest and Reflection Aid Learning

October 22nd, 2014
A new study suggests learning may be improved by the use of strategies that "prime" the brain to learn new content and allow time for the brain to rest and reflect. University of Texas at Austin researchers used brain imaging technology ...
Positive Subliminal Messages Boost Elders' Physical Performance

Positive Subliminal Messages Boost Elders’ Physical Performance

October 21st, 2014
A new study discovers positive subliminal messages that flip negative stereotypes of aging can improve physical functioning among the elderly. Yale School of Public Health researchers say the novel intervention method was designed to examine whether exposure to positive age stereotypes ...
Some Anti-Inflammatory Drugs May Aid Schizophrenia Treatment

Some Anti-Inflammatory Drugs May Aid Schizophrenia Treatment

October 21st, 2014
Emerging research suggests that some anti-inflammatory medicines can improve the efficacy of existing schizophrenia treatments. A group of researchers at the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands discovered anti-inflammatory medicines such as aspirin, estrogen, and fluimucil can help improve schizophrenia symptoms. This ...
Grief Brings Infection Risk for Elderly

Grief Brings Infection Risk for Elderly

October 21st, 2014
Bereavement affects a person's immune system, and the impact varies as we grow older, say researchers. "During the difficult weeks and months after loss we can suffer from reduced neutrophil function," said Dr. Anna Phillips of Birmingham University, U.K. "Neutrophils are the ...
Panic Attacks Linked to Fear of Bright Light

Panic Attacks Linked to Fear of Bright Light

October 21st, 2014
A new European study suggests that panic attacks may be associated with an aversion to bright light. Although the finding does not imply a cause-and-effect relationship, the discovery of an association may lead to development of new therapies for panic disorder. Panic ...
Social Media Can Connect Those with Severe Mental Illness

Social Media Can Connect Those with Severe Mental Illness

October 20th, 2014
People with severe mental health issues are willing to go online and share stories to provide support for others with similar conditions. Researchers found people with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or bipolar disorder are comfortable using a social media website like YouTube ...
Action Videogames Improve Sensorimotor Skills

Action Video Games Improve Sensorimotor Skills

October 20th, 2014
A new study discovered people who play action video games such as "Call of Duty" or "Assassin's Creed" were able to learn a new sensorimotor skill quicker than non-gamers. University of Toronto researchers believe the study shows that action video games ...
Changes Suggested for Drug-Naming Conventions

Changes Suggested for Drug-Naming Conventions

October 20th, 2014
European psychiatrists and other health experts are calling for a change in the way mental health drugs are named. The reason for the switch is that the name of the drug you are prescribed may significantly influence the way you respond ...
Birth Season May Be Tied to Temperament

Birth Season May Be Tied to Temperament

October 20th, 2014
A new European study suggests that the season you are born has a significant impact on your risk of developing mood disorders. Researchers from Budapest, Hungary, believe their findings show that people born at certain times of year may have a ...
Women More Likely to Develop Anxiety and Depression After Heart Attack

Women More Likely to Develop Anxiety, Depression After Heart Attack

October 19th, 2014
Women are more likely to develop anxiety and depression after a heart attack than men, according to new research. "The World Health Organization predicts that by 2020 depression will be the second leading cause of disability and mortality in the world, ...
Pathological Gambling Linked to Altered Opioid System in the Brain

Pathological Gambling Linked to Brain’s Altered Opioid System

October 19th, 2014
New research shows that the natural opioid system in the brains of pathological gamblers responds differently, which may help explain why gambling can become an addiction. A group of UK researchers note that gambling is widespread, with about 70 percent of ...
Attending Live Theater Boosts Empathy, Tolerance in Students

Attending Live Theater Boosts Empathy, Tolerance in Students

October 19th, 2014
Student field trips to live theater productions can lead to greater tolerance and empathy as well as increased vocabulary and enhanced knowledge of the plot, according to new research by the University of Arkansas Department of Education Reform. The study, published ...
Toddlers with Low Empathy at Risk for Future Behavior Problems

Toddlers with Low Empathy at Risk for Future Behavior Problems

October 19th, 2014
Toddlers who don’t feel guilty after bad behavior or who are less affectionate or less responsive to affection may be at risk for greater behavior problems by the time they enter first grade, according to a new study by the University ...
Early Intervention Focuses on Sibs of Autistic Kids

Early Intervention Focuses on Sibs of Autistic Kids

October 18th, 2014
Approximately 20 percent of younger siblings of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) will develop the disorder by age three. Of these, 57 percent may show symptoms at 18 months, according to a new study by the Yale School of Medicine. “While the ...
Focusing on Target Ahead Makes Exercise Seem Easier

Focusing on Target Ahead Makes Exercise Seem Easier

October 18th, 2014
During your next walk, try focusing on a specific target ahead -- that can make the distance appear shorter and help you get there faster, according to psychology researchers at New York University. Their study, which compares the "target-focusing" technique to ...
Breakfast Boosts Dopamine, Helps Regulate Overeating and Cravings

Breakfast Boosts Dopamine, Helps Regulate Overeating and Cravings

October 18th, 2014
A new study has found that eating breakfast, especially foods rich in protein, increases the levels of a brain chemical associated with feelings of reward, which can help reduce food cravings and overeating later in the day. “Our research showed that ...
Walk This Way, And Change Your Mood

Walk This Way, And Change Your Mood

October 18th, 2014
It’s no surprise that our mood is often reflected in how we walk. Happy? Then we’re bouncing along, head up. Sad? Then we walk much slower with slumped shoulders. New research shows that the opposite is true as well. Imitating a happy ...