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Dealing with media triggers: Anxiety and the news

anxiety and the news Depressing thoughts stemming from everyday anxieties can be difficult to deal with. Coping with these thoughts, especially when stressed or anxious, can feel like a full-time job. Watching the news and other forms of media can trigger further depression. Plane crashes, disease and murders can fill top-of-the-hour television spots or make the front page of social media sites. These stories can be difficult to avoid and depressing to witness. While depressing, newscasts can provide some benefits. Keeping on top of current events can ensure awareness of the world’s events. However, too much information can make an individual feel bogged down.…

What a drag: Understanding the burdens of chronic fatigue syndrome

understanding the burdens of chronic fatigue syndrome Imagine constantly dragging throughout the day, every day, no matter how much sleep and relaxation an individual gets. There are multiple reasons a person might feel this way. One class of diseases known for causing constant exhaustion is chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). This condition affects one million Americans and is more common in women than men. One important distinction between CFS and normal tired feelings is the cluster of symptoms present that simply will not go away. No matter how well an individual sleeps, eats, exercises or otherwise, the symptoms continue. The fatigue must significantly impact quality of life for…

Recent study finds CBT improves cases of schizophrenia

recent study finds cbt improves cases of schizophrenia Schizophrenia is a complex and difficult mental illness to live with and treat. A recent study performed by researchers from the Universities of Oxford, Southampton and Manchester found cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to be an effective means of treating those with schizophrenia. The team studied 150 people with schizophrenia or a related mental health disorder. All subjects had severe paranoia that did not go away with medication. These subjects were given six sessions of cognitive behavioral therapy focused on reducing anxiety and worry. This successfully reduced the severity of the persecutory delusions. “We know that worry brings implausible ideas to…

The link between socializing and living longer

link between socializing and living longer Humans are fairly social creatures, but the level of human interaction truly varies between individuals. Some people are introverts, others extroverts and still others are something in between, a personality type often known as an ambivert. These are normal aspects of living, but there are extremes. A new study focuses on the potential problems of antisocial behaviors and the damage they can do. Researchers from the Department of Counseling Psychology at Brigham Young University looked at health records for over three million people over seven years while controlling for variables such as socioeconomic status, age, gender and pre-existing health conditions.…

Learn what OCD really means

April 14, 2015 Mental Health

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ocd really means Sometimes, especially during stressful events, a person may obsess over the finer details of life. Focusing heavily on stressors can be a natural coping mechanism that allows an individual to feel more in control. Such behavior is common enough to be labeled obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) as a harmless joke. For some, OCD is a very real condition that can be constant occurrence — so much so that the person suffers a decreased quality of life. Often OCD centers around different themes, such as cleanliness and orderliness. For example, a person with OCD may wash their hands quite often to the…

Movie star Glenn Close and family fight for bipolar awareness

April 14, 2015 Mental Health

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glenn close and family fight for bipolar awareness Sometimes, the mentally ill can’t speak for themselves. Those with the voice, public image and resources must stand with them and help destroy the stigma often attached to mental illness. One such advocate, Glenn Close, has a sister with bipolar disorder. Her nephew also has schizoaffective disorder. Glenn’s sister talked about what this stigma meant for her life. “The illness is self-stigmatizing,” said Jessie Close, “If mothers found out I was living with bipolar disorder, I was afraid they wouldn’t let their daughters play with my daughter.” Because of such fears, Glenn and Jessie started BringChange2Mind, an organization created to…

The importance of work and routine during recovery

While in the throes of a substance abuse disorder, many manage to wreak havoc on their lives.  Loss is punctuated throughout the addiction timeline—loss of friends, jobs, financial well-being, dignity, loss of just about everything that once held value to the addict. In the recovery process, as the newly sober begin to rebuild their broken lives, opportunities exist for bringing stability and purpose back to their world, but only by making a concerted effort one day at a time. By returning back to the workplace and thereby establishing a daily routine, a recovering addict can begin to carve out a…

The burden of taking things personally

No matter how emotional or stoic the individual, he or she will most likely be personally attacked at some time. Something deeply important and vulnerable will be victimized. This is a problem that can plague both depression and drug addiction patients alike. Depression can influence a person to act abnormally or avoid usually pleasurable experiences. Someone can make controversial choices, such as skip family engagements or distance themselves from friends for a lengthy period of time. They can also start using antidepressants or antianxiety medications. There is no shame in doing these things. Many depression patients need medical assistance. Anxiety…

Gastrointestinal issues in children might also indicate autism

Autism is a disorder involved with impaired social interactions, verbal and non-verbal interaction as well as restricted and repetitive habits. The signs typically show themselves in the first few years, but some children will reach normal development and regress over time. One fascinating correlation from a recent study may add another sign of autism to the list. The research, reported by the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, found children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) were two-and-a-half times more likely to have consistent gastrointestinal (GI) problems as infants and toddlers than children without ASD. The study was conducted on…

10 tips for achieving mental wellness in an unwell world

Thriving in a world with so much stress and so many challenges can seem like an impossible dream. Yet some people seem to navigate these waters without much effort. They seem to cope with the stress and plow through the challenges, while people recovering from a mental health condition or substance abuse disorder might be more vulnerable to life’s stressors. With a little tweaking of one’s thoughts, some tending to the soul and a few proactive steps to care for the body, mental wellness can be achieved. Here are 10 tips for achieving sound mental wellness, regardless of life’s daily…
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