Mental Health Library

Welcome to Psych Central's mental health library. This is our primary repository for all of our articles on mental health, relationships, parenting, children, human behavior and psychology.

We also have an extensive collection of mental health and psychology book reviews.


Book Review: Say What You Mean

This brilliant book opens with a perfect analogy: “Communicating is a bit like learning an instrument. Playing scales is essential, but the aim is to make music.” I smiled and entered the book with an eagerness that’s often lacking when I read other books...

Book Reviews

Book Review: Finding Hope in a Crisis

"When clients come to therapy to 'free themselves so they can be themselves,' in a hermeneutic sense, they do change by becoming who they really are,” writes Maura A. Matarese.

In her new book, Finding Hope in a Crisis: A Therapist’s Perspective on Love, Loss,...


Book Review: The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober

“The first time I got drunk, I’d felt like I finally unzipped my wrong skin and slipped into a slinky new one, “writes Catherine Gray.

In her new book, The Unexpected Joy Of Being Sober, Gray describes her journey from fake friends, hungover mornings, and...

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Rubber Brain

Everybody experiences disappointment with their circumstances at some point in life. In school, we might do poorly on an exam, or on the job market, we might mess up an interview. These failures can weigh us down, making it tougher to move on, but...

Book Reviews

Book Review: Love, Inc.

When a book about romantic love is called “Love, Inc.,” the reader is forewarned: This is not your typical love story. Author and Middlebury College professor Laurie Essig calls herself a romantic. On the first page of “Love, Inc.,” she says, “I fervently believe...


Factors Linked to Psychological Distress

Psychological distress, a widely-used indicator of the mental health of a population, nevertheless remains vaguely understood. In numerous studies, psychological distress is “largely” defined as “a state of emotional suffering characterized by symptoms of depression and anxiety.” But how do you know if what you’re experiencing is psychological distress or a diagnosable psychological disorder, such as anxiety or depression? If you’ve had a bad day, does that mean you’re suffering psychological distress? If you lose your job and feel anxious and short-tempered, is...


A Pep Talk for People Pleasers for Setting Boundaries

Saying no to someone makes you very uncomfortable. So you don’t.

You’re always available to everyone. In fact, you tend to put others’ needs above your own. Without hesitation.

You rarely express a differing opinion (even when you clearly disagree).

You apologize. A lot.

You hate when...


The Connection Between Physical and Mental Health

Many of us seriously underrate how strongly our body affects our state-of-mind. We don’t realize how strongly poor diet, lack of sleep, and too little exercise can affect our emotional and mental health.

Better Nutrition Can Alleviate Depression and Anxiety

Over the...


Do Men and Women Experience Bipolar Disorder Differently?

Bipolar disorder affects men and women in equal numbers, and the symptoms are essentially identical. But some key differences do exist—differences that might be due to biological factors, and social ones, too.

For starters, research has consistently shown that women have higher rates of bipolar...


How to Be a Supportive Listener by Asking One Important Question

Humans are hard wired for compassion and caring. We need each other to survive and thrive. According to University of California, Berkeley psychologist Dacher Keltner, our brains are hardwired to feel compassion. “We’re wired to care. If you feel pain, a part of your brain lights up, and if you see someone have physical pain that same part of your brain lights up,” he says.

Mirror neurons play a part as well....


Anger, the Misunderstood Emotion

Looking at a range of issues facing society these days, including family conflicts, bullying, domestic violence, road rage, and online behavior. Anger can be seen to be a central component of much dysfunction. While anger is a normal emotion, its nature tends...