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Alcohol & ADHD

A couple new studies on alcohol dependence and ADHD were reported on by the CBC. Essentially, the new research links parental alcohol use and family stress to child ADHD and alcohol problems.
"We found that parental alcoholism predicted heavy problem drinking among the teenagers, that the association was partly explained by higher rates of stress in these families, and these connections were stronger when the adolescent had ADHD in childhood. So, the bottom line is that when the child has ADHD and the parent...
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Healthy Love Notes

Here's something to consider when updating your personal blog. Affectionate Writing Can Lower Cholesterol is a post in PsyBlog summarizing some recent psychology research on expressing affection. Seems that writing about your positive feelings toward a loved one (in first person, not third) for 20 minutes at a time over a few weeks can significantly reduce your cholesterol level, even controlling for other factors.

One of the strengths of this study was that it specifically examined the benefits of expressing affection. Other studies...
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I’m Not Just a Biochemical or Gene, I’m a Human Being

I disagree with GNIF Brain Blogger Shaheen's assertion that the only way to understand mental health issues is through the medicalization and organic markers for mental disorders and tests derived from such markers. Psychology and psychiatry have established a very deep, rich knowledgebase of mental disorders and it's pretty well-established at this point that these disorders are not pure brain or biochemical issues.

Human beings are complex tapestries of human development, personality, social influences, environmental influences, and more. To suggest it will all...
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Antidepressants and Bipolar Disorder

Many people with bipolar disorder are prescribed a mood stabalizer and an antidepressant as their medication treatment. However, a new study has shown some evidence that the antidepressant does not have much benefit in the mix.
"In this study, we do not show a benefit nor a problem due to antidepressants," Sachs said. "We didn't show anything to gain. We also didn't show any harm, and there may well be individual patients who might respond to antidepressants and individual antidepressants that actually work better."As...
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Reader Hank Roberts left some terrific comments on my earlier post about light and dark and how they affect sleep and bipolar cycles. Light is used as treatment [free reg req'd], and Hank and his wife recovered from insomnia and Seasonal Affective Disorder after changing indoor lighting to amber LEDs and low-blue compact flourescents instead of the glaring blue high UV CFLs commonly sold. He shared lots of links to lighting sources and . Many comply with Florida environmental conservation...
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How To Stay Stressed

A few tongue-in-cheek pointers on How To Stay Stressed:

Are you worried now about how to stay stressed? You'll have no trouble if you practice the following clinically proven methods:

NEVER EXERCISE. Exercise wastes a lot of time that could be spent worrying.

TAKE PLENTY OF STIMULANTS. The old standards of caffeine, nicotine, sugar, [energy drinks] and cola will continue to do the job just fine.

GET RID OF YOUR SOCIAL SUPPORT SYSTEM. Let the few friends who are willing to tolerate you know...
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Is it okay to treat mental health patients like unruly cows?

Apparently aversive conditioning techniques are still used in some states, including Illinois, where a couple uses a cattle prod device to handle the violent outbursts of their 48-year-old Autistic son. In an article posted on , titled “Shock Treatment Sought for Autistic Man”, the man’s mother says the shock is no more painful then that of a bee sting and she uses it to stop her son from hurting himself. Apparently, the group home which housed the autistic man was...
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A Live Webcam Suicide

On March 23 2007, a father of two in the UK went into a live chat room online (one where insults are traded for fun), and setup a live webcam and proceeded to hang himself with dozens of people watching. The man died.

I find stories like this a tragedy for so many different reasons, but Digg posted this story two days ago and I feel like it needs some sort of comment. A warning though, if you follow that link, the discussion there...
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Telephone Therapy & Depression

There have been a handful of studies examining the effects of other therapy delivery mechanisms besides traditional face-to-face work. Telephone based therapy has been one of the primary focuses, and a new study has shown that it can be effective at reducing depression.
At 18 months after the first session, 77 percent of the patients who received phone-based therapy reported that their depression was "much" or "very much" improved, compared with 63 percent of patients who received regular care.I think that brief phone...
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