Anxiety and Panic

Will Work for Food and Health Care

Health insurance: only when you don’t need it.

Confused? Let me explain.

In our illogical model, our society provides health insurance to the gainfully employed. But, ironically, it is the gainfully unemployed who most need mental health coverage.

In the United States, our employer-based health care model is predicated on -- surprise surprise -- employment. For the standard nine to five set, employer-based health insurance is a satisfactory option. Generally, employers subsidize out-of-pocket health care costs -- including mental health coverage--for their employees.
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Bipolar

How to Let Go of the Thoughts that Cause Depression

Depression is different from other illnesses in that, in addition to the physiological symptoms (loss of appetite, nervousness, sleeplessness, fatigue), there are the accompanying thoughts that can be so incredibly painful. For example, when my Raynaud’s flares up, the numbness in my fingers can be uncomfortable, but it doesn’t tell me that I am worthless, pathetic, and that things will never ever get better. During severe depressive episodes, however, these thoughts can be
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Health-related

Do Most Breast Cancer Patients Develop PTSD?

I'm grateful to Traci Pedersen for her March 3, 2016 article “Study Finds Most Breast Cancer Patients Develop PTSD Symptoms,” and to Dr. Grohol for all his efforts to help people heal from trauma.

I'd say 99% of breast cancer patients develop PTSD, even though symptoms may be repressed. It would require a remarkable childhood not to do so.
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Addiction

7 Tips to Manage Your Weight When Taking Psychiatric Medication

Weight gain is one of the main reasons that people diagnosed with depression and other mood disorders stop taking their medication. Some people gain as much as seven percent of their body weight -- or more -- from psychiatric meds. In a study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health that was published in July 2006 in the Archives of General Psychiatry, researchers reported that nearly one in four cases of obesity is associated with a mood or anxiety disorder.

But following a strict treatment plan that involves meds doesn’t have to mean shopping for a larger pants size. There are effective ways to manage your weight on psychiatric meds.
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Aging

Peeling Off the Pericardium

On June 12, 2014, my life changed immeasurably with an unexpected cardiac event. It had been brewing for a while and reached a boiling point with a fully occluded artery sending me careening into a new way of living and loving. A few hours after the initial symptoms, I had a new body part (a stent) keeping it open and the blood flowing.

How many beats per minute? How much love can the heart hold? How do we keep the blood pumping that sustains our lives? How do we become works of he(art)? Each of these is a practical and philosophical question I ponder.
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Bipolar

Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder, & the Microbiome

You've probably heard about the rising importance of the microbiome -- otherwise known as your gut bacteria. Researchers have started to find interesting links between the naturally occurring bacteria that live in our guts, and things we've traditionally attributed to the brain. Things like our mood, feelings, and even thoughts. We now know, for instance, that gut bacteria can influence brain function.

What has the research found linking the microbiome to serious mental illness such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder?

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Anorexia

Body-Positive Women Do These 10 Things Every Day!

We have all been there: ten minutes before a party, throwing every dress on the floor trying to find the magical one that doesn’t make our backside too large or our stomach too prominent. Yeah, so we bought a dress for this occasion just last week, but suddenly, it doesn’t fit right.

And it’s not because our bodies have changed! Rather, it’s because our mindset has changed.
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Aging

Caregivers: Remember to Care for Yourself

According to the Alzheimer's Association, more than 5 million Americans currently have dementia, with Alzheimer’s dementia being the most common. Over 5 million caregivers are unpaid and devote countless hours to caregiving every year. All this while working and taking care of their own families. In fact, many caregivers are forced to take on a second job in order to help cover their loved ones expenses incurred by their illness of dementia. As one can imagine, over time, the stress of caregiving begins to take a toll, both financially and emotionally, and caregivers’ health begins to suffer.
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Brain and Behavior

5 Ways Taking a Dance Class Can Fight Depression

If you’ve struggled with depression, you’ve probably heard the statistics. Depression affects more than 350 million people worldwide, and women are 2-3 times more likely to be diagnosed than men. It can be triggered by a major life event, or can arrive without warning. More than just “the blues,” it can take the joy out of everyday life, leaving you feeling empty and unmotivated. 

For some people, psychotherapy or prescription medication can help alleviate the symptoms. But have you considered dancing?
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