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How Is America’s Suicide Crisis Linked with Substance Abuse and Mental Health?

From California to Connecticut, suicide is on the rise in the United States. This is according to the Centers for Disease Control, which reported a 24 percent overall increase between 1999 and 2014.1 Looking at the data in the report, a few variables stand out from among the rest. One is the year 2006. That...

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Filmmaker Explores Happy Ending for Sister Who Overdosed

William Dickerson wanted to write a happy ending for the life story of his sister, Briana, who died of a drug overdose after years of feeling completely misunderstood. What Dickerson, a novelist and filmmaker, couldn’t understand was that people did like his sister. No doubt, she was one of a kind. But people developed a...

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Why Is It So Difficult to Diagnose Bipolar Disorder?

On the surface, bipolar disorder may sound fairly straightforward. It’s a mental illness characterized by abrupt and seemingly unprovoked changes in mood, from extreme highs to extreme lows. Therefore, a person might assume that bipolar disorder is as easy to diagnose through behavioral observation as it is to define conceptually, but that’s not always the...

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ADD and ADHD: Not Just a Boy Thing

I was almost 30 when I was diagnosed with ADHD, and even then the diagnosis was almost accidental–a stowaway in my search for answers for my chronic fatigue. My reaction was skepticism. ADHD, I thought, was psychology’s way of attaching a pathology to kids who couldn’t sit still all day. Sure, I figured, maybe there...

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‘Off the Rails’ Highlights Legal System’s Mistreatment of the Mentally Ill

Darius McCollum once described his obsession with New York City’s subway trains like “biting into a York peppermint patty.” “You can feel the sensation,” he said. Unfortunately for McCollum, that obsession with trains has landed him in jail more than 30 times over the course of 30 years. Yet someone like McCollum—happy, likable to most,...

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Walgreens Now Offers Video Therapy on New Mental Health Platform

These are fascinating times in which we live. The technologies at our disposal have allowed us to shed light on the mysteries of yesteryear, providing us with more knowledge than we might ever have hoped to have. At the same time, we’re confronted with our limitations at every turn. Even with our advanced technologies and...

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How to Make the Most of Mental Health Treatment

Mental health treatment is an active process, meaning that the more effort you put into your treatment program, the more you will benefit from it. Although mental health practitioners can give you tools and medication to deal with these issues, patients do best when they engage thoroughly with their programs, regularly take time for self-reflection,...

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7 Mistakes Families Make During Their Loved One’s Mental Health Treatment

1. Not Giving Your Loved One Enough “Recovery Space” Families must find the right balance between ensuring their loved one adheres to their mental health treatment plan (e.g. taking their medication or attending counseling sessions) while also giving them enough room to recover and sufficient trust to grow. A casual but caring approach and tone...

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It’s Time to Kill This Harmful Myth About Mental Health

Depression, anxiety—these are all caused by chemical imbalances in the brain, right? Wrong, says neurobiologist David Anderson. Deep in his labs at California Institute of Technology, Anderson and his team are finding increasing evidence that what so much human suffering really comes down to is the presence of hiccups in the circuitry of the brain...

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Helping Young Adult Children Cope with Depression

As the mother of a high school senior who has struggled with depression for nearly 10 years, I’m anxious about how I can help her adjust to life on her own without smothering her or somehow enabling failure. Knowing exactly how supportive to be, while still being somewhat hands-off, can be tricky. How involved should...

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How a Bipolar Addict Who Thought He Was Jesus Found God, Sanity and Sobriety

Even though he grew up having everything he ever wanted and needed, something still deeply disturbed Chris Cole. Chris was raised in a religious home. Believing God was good, he could not understand why so many people still suffered. For example, why did some children come from families with little money, while his had an...

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Tips for Teens with Depression Who Are Transitioning to Young Adulthood

Teens with depression have already overcome a number of obstacles that others don’t experience. The process of transitioning to young adulthood presents new challenges, but knowing what they are can help someone set appropriate expectations. What can young people with depression and parents do to help make the transition to young adulthood go as smoothly...

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New Studies Prove Marijuana Is a Dangerous Gateway: Why Today’s Pot May Be Priming Young Brains for Harder Drugs

Karen Perry and Gary Mendell both buried their sons after problems they say began when their boys started casually smoking marijuana. Perry, who lives in Florida, says her son began smoking pot on the golf course during practice rounds after golf camp, smoking with the other boys from camp during his sophomore year of high...

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Drug Addiction During Pregnancy

A healthy pregnancy gives a woman her best chance to have a healthy baby. When she is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the baby can suffer along with her. Learn more how drug addiction affects the mother and child, the basics of drug treatment, and how you or a woman you care about can get...

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Dental Health and Mental Health: Is There a Connection?

Bleeding gums, tooth loss – these and other dental problems may be connected to lesser cognitive function and decreased mental health, according to a study published in The Journal of the American Dental Association. Gary Slade is co-author of the study and a dental ecology professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill....

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Cocaine vs. Oreos: Which Is More Addictive?

Could it be that a seemingly innocent bag of Oreo cookies are actually more addictive than cocaine and heroin? According to Forbes, that may very well be the case – sort of. A study done on rat subjects demonstrated effectively that Oreo cookies were as addictive as heroin or cocaine; all substances elicited similar responses...

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Military Contractors Struggle with PTSD, Don’t Get Treatment

It’s not just military personnel who are spending time in war zones; civilian contractors often take up employment in conflict areas as well. Unfortunately, whether or not the person wears a uniform has little to do with their need for mental health treatment, and the fact is that many civilian contractors don’t get even the...

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Combating the Effects of Brain Aging and Dementia

It’s a problem that faces all of us as we age: An estimated 10 percent of people over the age of 65 and about half of adults over the age of 85 struggle with some degree of dementia, according to Psychiatric Times. Though there is a steady stream of research dedicated to learning more about...

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Mental Health Symptoms You Shouldn’t Ignore in Your Loved One

From time to time, everyone struggles with mental health symptoms. Feelings of extreme sadness, anger, or frustration can mount and manifest in an acute episode or over a period of days. However, when these manifestations occur cyclically or chronically, they can be signs of a mental health disorder that can benefit from effective treatment. How...

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The Affordable Care Act, Mental Health Care and Young Americans: A New Study

One of the goals of the Affordable Care Act is to ensure that all who need mental health treatment have access to it. USA Today reports that insurance companies are required to offer as much provision for mental health treatment services as they do for medical care for physical issues, making up for a woeful...

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Most Commonly Diagnosed Mental Health Disorders in the United States

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) releases an annual report detailing the issues facing the United States in terms of mental health disorders and symptoms. Called Behavioral Health, United States, the latest report for 2012 was recently released, announcing, among other things, the rates of certain mental health disorders in different age...

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Ritalin Effective Treatment for ADHD Patients Fighting Drug Abuse, Says Study

Despite the fact that Ritalin can be a drug of abuse for some, it has been deemed an effective treatment medication for adults who struggle with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) when substance abuse is also an issue that they are attempting to overcome, according to MedicalXpress. The Facts About ADHD and Substance Abuse Patients...

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Dual Diagnosis: Treating Addiction and Trauma Among Health Care Professionals

Drug abuse and mental health issues – or a Dual Diagnosis – can be problematic in any career, but for those employed in the health care profession, it can be especially difficult to get effective care that allows them to be effective in their jobs after treatment. Unfortunately, issues of trauma and related substance abuse...

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Cocaine Dependence and Psychosis: Dual Diagnosis?

When someone is heavily addicted to crack or cocaine, they often exhibit significant symptoms of psychosis. But did the psychosis come first, followed by cocaine addiction, creating a Dual Diagnosis in the patient? Or did the mental health symptoms develop due to a long-term cocaine habit, and if so, will they go away with treatment?...

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