Depression

Connecting Childhood Abuse and Adult Depression

Connecting Childhood Abuse and Adult Depression

Posted on April 3rd, 2014

Research has shown lasting effects from childhood trauma, including substance use, mood disorders and risky sex. A new study shows that victims of childhood abuse are more likely to experience delayed remission from depression. The same impact occurs among adults that had addict parents.

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Drinking and Depression in Pregnant Women

Drinking and Depression in Pregnant Women

Posted on February 6th, 2014

While most expectant mothers in the U.S. are aware of the risks drinking and drug use pose for their unborn babies, drinking during pregnancy continues—and not always light drinking. What causes expectant mothers to consume alcohol and even binge drink during pregnancy? What motivates the behavior and what can be done to help women abstain from using and abusing alcohol during pregnancy?

Unfortunately the problem goes much deeper than the simple, unthinking craving for a drink or the desire for a little chemical relaxation. The issue? Depression, anxiety and other negative emotions, also referred to as “negative affectivity.”

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Do You Suffer from ‘Adult Child Of’ Syndrome? You Can Dig Yourself Out

Do You Suffer from ‘Adult Child Of’ Syndrome? You Can Dig Yourself Out

Posted on November 23rd, 2013

My dad, then barely at the cusp between teenage years and expected-to-be adult ones, had a problem. He was charismatic and intelligent and wry but he’d been hurt—badly. At the age of 5, his mother had dressed him in knee socks and a little bow tie and asked him and his brothers, “Do you want to go somewhere where you can ride horses every day?” Yes. “Do you want to go somewhere where you can play tennis and go swimming every day?” Naturally. And so she packed them into the car and dropped them off at the nearest boy’s home. She never came back.

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Facebook Use Undermines Happiness, Study Finds

Posted on September 5th, 2013

Facebook Use Undermines Happiness, Study FindsSocial media is an integral part of the modern world, and anybody versed in human nature knows that we are often described as “social animals.” It would follow from this assumption that since websites like Facebook allow us to interact with our friends at times when we would otherwise be alone, and open our interactions up to vastly larger numbers of people, that using social media would make us feel better. However, recent research on the topic at the University of Michigan has revealed the opposite, meaning that people who use Facebook more regularly will be in a lesser mood that those who use it more infrequently. Finding out more about the research helps one understand how the relationship was identified and what it could imply for how we use social media.

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Surgical Anesthesia Appears to Treat Drug-Resistant Depression

Posted on August 21st, 2013

Surgical Anesthesia Appears to Treat Drug-Resistant DepressionTreatment-resistant depression is a form of major depression marked by a poor response to the treatment options typically used to address depression symptoms.

When depressed people fail to respond to standard medications called antidepressants, doctors frequently rely on a form of controlled brain stimulation called electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). However, for a number of reasons, some of the people who could benefit from ECT decline use of this treatment. According to the results of a new study published in July 2013 in the journal PLOS ONE, these individuals may gain relief from monitored doses of a widely used surgical anesthetic called isoflurane.

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Herbicides Tied to Depression in Farmers

Posted on August 14th, 2013

Herbicides Tied to Depression in FarmersHerbicides are plant poisons used in farming, and sometimes in backyard gardening, to kill weeds and other plants that are unwanted. If you use herbicides in your yard or to clean out the cracks in your driveway and walkway, your exposure is probably minimal. What if you were a farmer using herbicides on a large scale? Would you be concerned about your health?

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Infections Can Trigger Mental Disorders, Researchers Say

Posted on August 8th, 2013

Infections Can Trigger Mental Disorders, Researchers SayInfection is the general term used to describe the unwanted presence of microorganisms such as viruses, bacteria, parasites, or fungi in the human body. Some infections pose only minor threats to a person’s health and well-being, while others can easily cause severe illness or death. According to the results of a large-scale study published in June 2013 in JAMA Psychiatry, the presence of a significant infection also apparently increases a person’s chances of eventually developing any one of a range of mental health conditions known collectively as mood disorders.

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Depressed People Develop Hyperactive Brain, UCLA Researchers Say

Posted on August 6th, 2013

Depressed People Develop Hyperactive Brain, UCLA Researchers SayMajor depression (major depressive disorder) is a severe condition that centers on an inability to properly regulate mood and emotion. For a long time, doctors and scientists have believed that the condition produces its effects by altering the normal function of several areas of the brain. However, according to the results of a study published in 2012 in the journal PLOS ONE, the problem is not simply altered activity in separate brain regions. Instead, depressed people apparently lose the ability to control the rate of communication between different regions and essentially develop “hyperactive” brains.

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Bullies and Their Victims Can Suffer for a Lifetime

Posted on July 22nd, 2013

Bullies and Their Victims Can Suffer for a LifetimeBullying has long been believed to be a normal part of childhood, a rite of passage between kids. Its miseries are documented for entertainment in movies like “A Christmas Story,” and it is the central theme in the young readers’ novel “Blubber” by Judy Blume. Bullying is often passed down, with young kids who receive harassment from their elders turning on kids younger than them to repeat the offenses.

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Gay, Lesbian Teens at Higher Risk for Depression

Posted on July 13th, 2013

From creating an identity to managing relationships with friends, adolescence is a time of turmoil for many people. However, it can be especially challenging for teenagers who identify themselves as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender (GLBT). In some youth, the stress and anxiety that can result from living in a world that is not always accepting can trigger serious symptoms of depression.

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Five Major Mental Disorders Share Genetic Roots, Study Finds

Posted on June 26th, 2013

Five Major Mental Disorders Share Genetic Roots, Study FindsMental health professionals have known for some time that certain mental disorders tend to appear together with unusual frequency in single individuals. Previously identified examples of paired disorders include bipolar disorder and major depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, and schizophrenia and autism. A new study, published in 2013 in the journal The Lancet, helps explain some of the genetic underpinnings that connect mental illnesses. According to the findings presented in this study, bipolar disorder, major depression, schizophrenia, autism and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) all stem from one overlapping group of genetic alterations that sometimes appears within human DNA.

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Fish Oil as a Potential Treatment for Mental Illness

Posted on May 7th, 2013

Fish oil is the common name used for a liquid derived from the bodies of several different coldwater ocean fish species, including tuna, salmon, bluefish, mackerel, and sturgeon. This oil contains substances called omega-3 fatty acids, which the body needs to support certain essential aspects of everyday health. According to the results of a number of modern studies, fish oil supplements can potentially help improve the symptoms of serious mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression. Use of these supplements may also help lower the risks for the onset of mental illness.

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New Electric Current Brain Stimulation Alleviates Depression

Posted on April 28th, 2013

Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a brain-stimulating technique that uses very low levels of electrical current to change the amount of activity taking place in the brain’s main nerve cells, called neurons. This technique differs from another similarly named form of brain stimulation called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Current evidence indicates that tDCS can help relieve the symptoms of major depression, even in people who have not responded well to other forms of depression treatment. Use of the technique may also help improve brain function in several other ways.

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