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Mental Health News Archive

» Mental Health Library » Mental Health News Archive
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Fearlessness can be learned: The absence of a certain serotonin receptor supports the reduction of previously learned fear responses
The neurotransmitter serotonin plays a key role in both the onset and in the unlearning of fear and anxiety. A research team has been investigating the underlying mechanisms. The researchers showed that mice lacking a specific serotonin receptor unlearn fear much faster than the wild type. The results of the study provide a viable explanation how drugs that are typically used for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) alter our brain activity. The ability to unlearn fear is ...
Ruhr-University Bochum - 12/5/2022

Immune system irregularities found in women with postpartum mood disorders: New study suggests inflammation may play a key role in maternal mental health
Women with prolonged mental health problems up to three years after childbirth may be suffering from irregular immune system responses, according to new research by Cedars-Sinai investigators. The findings are published in the American Journal of Reproductive Immunology. "We found that women who had clinically elevated symptoms of depression, anxiety, and/or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) two to three years after delivery had genetic evidence of a higher prevalence of ...
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center - 12/5/2022

Studies ID ways to help young adults avoid health impacts of stress
It's well established that experiencing stress can hurt our physical health. Now two new studies find that younger adults who take preemptive steps to respond to stress are better able to avoid those negative health outcomes. "The fact that we have two studies with the same results highlights the importance of proactive coping for younger adults when it comes to handling stress," says Shevaun Neupert, corresponding author of a paper on the two studies and a professor of psychology at ...
North Carolina State University - 12/5/2022

Playing the piano boosts brain processing power and helps lift the blues
A new study published by researchers at the University of Bath demonstrates the positive impact learning to play a musical instrument has on the brain's ability to process sights and sounds, and shows how it can also help to lift a blue mood. Publishing their findings in the academic journal Nature Scientific Reports, the team behind the study shows how beginners who undertook piano lessons for just one hour a week over 11 weeks reported significant improvements in recognising ...
University of Bath - 12/2/2022

Being comfortable with aging can benefit sex life: MU study shows positive perceptions of aging can benefit sexual satisfaction among older adults
Researchers have long known that having a positive outlook can benefit a person's health. Now, a new study by the University of Missouri has found older adults who feel positively about aging have a healthier sex life — a finding that didn’t surprise the researcher, who’s been studying the benefits of the positive perceptions of aging. “There’s really robust and quickly growing literature about perceptions of aging,” said Hanamori Skoblow, the lead author of the study. “We know positive ...
University of Missouri-Columbia - 11/28/2022

1 in 8 older adults experienced depression for the first time during the COVID-19 pandemic
A new, large-scale study of more than 20,000 older adults in Canada found that approximately 1 in 8 older adults developed depression for the first time during the pandemic. For those who had experienced depression in the past, the numbers were even worse. By the autumn of 2020 almost half (45%) of this group reported being depressed. Published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, the research analysed responses from the Canadian ...
University of Toronto - 11/24/2022

Low to moderate stress is good for you: Mild levels of stress force your body to optimize brain cognition, body function
The holidays are a stressful time for many, but that may not be a bad thing when it comes to your brain functioning, according to new research from the Youth Development Institute at the University of Georgia. The study found that low to moderate levels of stress improve working memory, the short-term information people use to complete everyday tasks like remembering someone’s phone number or recalling directions on how to get to a specific location. There is, however, a caveat, ...
University of Georgia - 11/22/2022

Transgender youth, teens more likely to have sleep disorders: A study finds those who had gender-affirming therapies were less likely to have sleep disorders, suggesting a possible protective effect
Teens and young adults who are transgender are four times more likely to have a sleep disorder compared to cisgender youth, a Michigan Medicine-led study finds. Researchers analyzed claims data from more than 1.2 million young people aged 12 to 25, of which 2,603 identified as transgender or gender-nonconforming. Results published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine reveal that transgender youth are 5.4 times more likely to have insomnia and three times more likely to have ...
Michigan Medicine - University of Michigan - 11/21/2022

Deprivation in childhood linked to impulsive behavior in adulthood: Researchers found a link between childhood deprivation, impulsive behavior and addictions later in life
Children who have experienced deprivation are more likely to make more impulsive choices than those who don't and can lead to addictions in later life -- research has shown. 'Trait impulsivity', the preference for immediate gratification, has been linked to spending more on food, especially unhealthy, highly calorific food. Studies have shown that children who experience poverty and food insecurity tend to have a higher body-mass index as adults than those who do not.
Aston University - 11/17/2022

NIH researchers unlock pattern of gene activity for ADHD
Researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have successfully identified differences in gene activity in the brains of people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The study, led by scientists at the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), part of the NIH, found that individuals diagnosed with ADHD had differences in genes that code for known chemicals that brain cells use to communicate. The results of the findings, published in Molecular Psychiatry ...
NIH/National Human Genome Research Institute - 11/16/2022

Corporal punishment affects brain activity, anxiety, and depression
Don't spank your kids. That's the conventional wisdom that has emerged from decades of research linking corporal punishment to a decline in adolescent health and negative effects on behavior, including an increased risk for anxiety and depression. Now, a new study explores how corporal punishment might impact neural systems to produce those adverse effects. Corporal punishment can be simply defined as the "intentional infliction of physical pain by any means for the purpose of ...
Elsevier - 11/16/2022

People with attachment anxiety more likely to create false memories when they can see the person talking
Adults who frequently worry about being rejected or abandoned by those closest to them are more prone to having false memories when they can see who is conveying the information, a new study suggests. The authors, SMU's Nathan Hudson and Michigan State University's William J. Chopik, found that adults with attachment anxiety tend to remember details incorrectly more often than people with other personality types, like neuroticism or attachment avoidance.
Southern Methodist University - 11/15/2022

Feeling lonely? What we want from our relationships can change with age: Older people in particular may have certain relationship expectations that have gone overlooked in efforts to measure and fight loneliness
Not everyone’s holiday plans resemble a Hallmark card. If the “most wonderful time of the year” isn’t your reality, you’re not alone. You might have an idea of a festive picture-perfect holiday season, but what actually transpires doesn’t always measure up. And that’s where loneliness comes from, says King’s College London graduate student Samia Akhter-Khan, first author of a new study on the subject. “Loneliness results from a discrepancy between expected and actual social relationships,” ...
Duke University - 11/14/2022

Mindfulness-based stress reduction is as effective as an antidepressant drug for treating anxiety disorders, study finds
A guided mindfulness-based stress reduction program was as effective as use of the gold-standard drug -- the common antidepressant drug escitalopram -- for patients with anxiety disorders, according to results of a first-of-its-kind, randomized clinical trial led by researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center. The findings appear in JAMA Psychiatry on November 9, 2022, and follow the October 11, 2022, announcement by the United States Preventive Services Task Force ...
Georgetown University Medical Center - 11/9/2022

Was I happy then? Our current feelings can interfere with memories of past well-being
Many of us spend our lives chasing "happiness," a state of contentment that is more difficult for some to achieve than others. Research in Psychological Science suggests that one reason happiness can seem so elusive is that our current feelings can interfere with memories of our past well-being. "Happy people tend to overstate the improvement of their life satisfaction over time, whereas unhappy ones tend to overstate the deterioration of their level of happiness. This indicates a certain ...
Association for Psychological Science - 11/9/2022

Motivation is affected by oxidative stress, nutrition can help
In life, motivation can be the difference between success and failure, goal-setting and aimlessness, well-being and unhappiness. And yet, becoming and staying motivated is often the hardest step, a problem which has prompted much research. A very small part of that research has looked into the question of metabolism. "Do differences in metabolites in the brain affect our capacity for motivation?" asks Professor Carmen Sandi at EPFL's School of Life Sciences. "If that is the case, could ...
Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne - 11/7/2022

Prenatal acetaminophen use linked to sleep, attention problems in preschoolers
Acetaminophen use during pregnancy is associated with sleep and behavior problems consistent with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a study by Penn State College of Medicine researchers. Acetaminophen is a common drug used to treat a variety of issues, including fever, infection, muscle pain, headache, migraine, colds and allergies. Traditionally, the medication has been considered by medical professionals to be safe for use during pregnancy.
Penn State - 11/4/2022

Having suffered trauma during childhood triples the risk of suffering a serious mental disorder in adulthood, study finds
Suffering psychological trauma during childhood significantly increases the risk of developing a mental disorder in adulthood. Specifically, as much as three times, according to a recent study led by researchers at the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute, published in the journal European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience. The study analyses the fourteen reviews and meta-analyses published to date in specialised journals on this issue, and is the first to take into ...
IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute) - 11/3/2022

Parental discord may be an indicator of children's genetic risk for future alcohol misuse: Genetic risk for alcohol problems may be transmitted across generations through exposure to parental discord or divorce, research finds
Parents can transmit a genetic risk for alcohol problems to their children not only directly, but also indirectly via genetically influenced aspects of the home environment, such as marital discord or divorce, according to a Rutgers researcher. The study, published in Molecular Psychiatry, found that children's exposure to parents' relationship discord or divorce is associated with the potential for alcohol use disorder as adults. "Previous research has shown that genes that predispose ...
Rutgers University - 11/3/2022

Teens with COVID-19 knowledge reported better well-being
A pandemic survey found that adolescents who answered more COVID-19 test questions correctly also reported lower stress, anxiety and depression as well as lower loneliness and fear of missing out, also known as FOMO. For the study, published in the Journal of Child and Family Studies, Washington State University researchers surveyed 215 teens ages 14-17 across the U.S. in July 2020 during the early months of the pandemic. "Knowledge was a good thing. The teens who did better ...
Washington State University - 11/2/2022

Problem drinking linked to increased risk of suicide and self-harm
Problematic alcohol use is associated with increased odds of suicide or self-harm, according to a new study led by UCL researchers. The study, published in BJPsych Open, did not identify a clear association with levels of alcohol consumption and risk of suicide or self-harm, other than among those with ‘probable dependence’ (the highest consumption level); rather, they identified signs of alcohol negatively impacting people’s lives as risk factors.
University College London - 11/2/2022

Morning blue light treatment improves sleep in patients with PTSD
People with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) experienced better sleep, a reduction in the severity of PTSD symptoms and more effective treatments after exposure to blue light therapy, according to a new study conducted by researchers in the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson’s Department of Psychiatry and recently published in Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience. Sleep is crucial for maintaining physical and mental health, and inadequate sleep over ...
University of Arizona Health Sciences - 11/1/2022

Mass school shootings are not caused by mental illness, study finds: Data from Columbia Mass Murder Database reveal psychosis and other serious psychiatric illness absent in the majority of perpetrators
A research team at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and the New York State Psychiatric Institute (NYSPI) examining 82 mass murders that occurred at least partially in academic settings throughout the world, found that most mass murderers and mass shooters did not have severe mental illness. The study, led by Ragy R. Girgis, MD, and Gary Brucato, PhD, associate research scientist, also found that most mass murderers used firearms, and semi- or fully-automatic firearms ...
Columbia University Irving Medical Center - 10/31/2022

Feeling chirpy: Being around birds is linked to lasting mental health benefits
New research from King's College London has found that seeing or hearing birds is associated with an improvement in mental wellbeing that can last up to eight hours. This improvement was also evident in people with a diagnosis of depression -- the most common mental illness worldwide -- indicating the potential role of birdlife in helping those with mental health conditions. Published in Scientific Reports, the study used smartphone application Urban Mind to collect people's real-time ...
King's College London - 10/27/2022

The major chord that cures nightmares
Oppressive, frightening, nerve-wracking: nightmares are particularly disturbing dreams. They are considered pathological when they occur frequently (>1 episode per week) and cause daytime fatigue, mood alteration and anxiety. Although Imagery Rehearsal Therapy (IRT) has shown some effectiveness, some patients do not respond to this treatment. A team from the UNIGE and the HUG has developed a promising new technique combining this classic therapy with the Targeted ...
Université de Genève - 10/27/2022

Outpatient visits are critical to success of treating opioid-use disorder, researchers find: Patients who participate in multiple outpatient visits early in treatment are more likely to continue care
People with opioid-use disorder who enter treatment are at risk for relapse, overdose or death if they engage in less than two outpatient visits in their first month of care, according to a study coauthored by Rutgers researchers. The study, published in The American Journal of Psychiatry, examined the likelihood of patients continuing treatment for opioid-use disorder during their first month in care based on how often they engaged in outpatient visits or other professional services.
Rutgers University - 10/26/2022

Study: How Early Fears Play Role in Future Anxiety, Depression
A recent imaging study led by a scientist at The University of Texas at Dallas has identified early risk factors linked to children’s temperament and a neural process that could foretell whether an individual might develop depression and anxiety in adolescence and early adulthood. The study, published Oct. 26 in JAMA Psychiatry, tracked a cohort of 165 individuals from 4 months old, between 1989 and 1993, through age 26. Dr. Alva Tang, assistant professor of psychology in the School of ...
University of Texas at Dallas - 10/26/2022

Tracking mental health over the COVID-19 pandemic
When the world shut down in March of 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, people the world over experienced profound psychological stress to varying degrees. Now, a new study takes advantage of the unique situation and longitudinally studied the demographic, neurobiological, and psychological factors that contributed to individuals' risk or resilience to mental health disruptions related to the stress.
Elsevier - 10/26/2022

Most people feel socially connected as Covid-19 precautions ease, but many still need support, survey finds
For nearly two decades, Kristin Friberg has been a librarian with the Princeton Public Library in New Jersey, where one of her many roles is to lead local book groups. When the Covid-19 pandemic hit, she worried about the book club participants who had become friends over the years and the library regulars who would often stop in just to talk. “It was sad for all of us thinking, like, ‘What’s everybody doing?’ and ‘Hope everybody’s OK,’ ” she said. The library “feels to me like a very ...
CNN - 10/25/2022

Video gaming may be associated with better cognitive performance in children, study suggests: Additional research necessary to parse potential benefits and harms of video games on the developing brain
A study of nearly 2,000 children found that those who reported playing video games for three hours per day or more performed better on cognitive skills tests involving impulse control and working memory compared to children who had never played video games. Published today in JAMA Network Open, this study analyzed data from the ongoing Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) Study, which is supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and other ...
NIH/National Institute on Drug Abuse - 10/24/2022

Anxiety disorders had no effect on vaccine hesitancy
Individuals who deal with anxiety are no less hesitant to get the COVID-19 vaccine compared to those without anxiety, according to new research. The new study led by the University of Waterloo aimed to investigate the relationship between vaccine hesitancy, psychological factors associated with anxiety, and individuals’ reasoning for and against getting the COVID-19 vaccine. To conduct the study, the researchers surveyed 148 participants with and without anxiety disorders.
University of Waterloo - 10/24/2022

Study finds caregiver-child relationships improved after seven-session intervention: Challenging behaviors improved, communication increased after PC-CARE
Only about 25 percent of children with challenging behaviors receive mental health treatment, and dropout rates are high for those who do. This makes brief and effective intervention programs to improve relationships between children and their caregivers needed. A growing number of open trials (clinical trials in which both the researchers and participants know which treatment is being administered) and comparison studies have supported the use of Parent-Child Care (PC-CARE), a ...
University of California - Davis Health - 10/19/2022

Timely interventions for depression might lower the future risk of dementia: Depression, treatment, and risk of dementia explored in a new study
Depression has long been associated with an increased risk of dementia, and now a new study provides evidence that timely treatment of depression could lower the risk of dementia in specific groups of patients. Over 55 million people worldwide live with dementia, a disabling neurocognitive condition that mainly affects older adults. No effective treatment for dementia exists but identifying ways to help minimize or prevent dementia would help to lessen the burden of the disease.
Elsevier - 10/17/2022

Talk therapy could improve mental health of people with dementia
People living with dementia may benefit from talking therapies available on the NHS, if they suffer from anxiety or depression, finds a new study led by UCL researchers. Mental health problems such as depression and anxiety are very common in people with dementia, and previous studies estimate that 38% of people with mild dementia are affected by the conditions. However, the new study, published in eClinicalMedicine, is the first to assess whether talking therapies that are routinely ...
University College London - 10/14/2022

New study finds distinct brain networks associated with risk and resilience in depression
A new study that links the location of brain injury to levels of depression in patients following the injury has identified two distinct brain networks; one associated with increased depression symptoms and one associated with decreased depression symptoms. The large-scale study led by researchers with University of Iowa Health Care expands on previous findings and suggests that these brain networks might be potential targets for neuromodulation therapies to treat depression.
University of Iowa Health Care - 10/13/2022

Clinical psychologists and their patients need new ways to understand and confront the fear of losing control, says Concordia researcher
Control is an important construct in the fields of psychology and psychopathology, particularly as it relates to anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD). Losing control, however, is a fear clinical psychologists observe in many patients but one that remains understudied and little understood. A new paper published in the Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry presents a new perspective on this fear, with rich implications for future treatment and research.
Concordia University - 10/11/2022

Positive childhood experiences of blue spaces linked to better adult well-being
New research based on data from 18 countries concludes that adults with better mental health are more likely to report having spent time playing in and around coastal and inland waters, such as rivers and lakes (also known collectively as blue spaces) as children. The finding was replicated in each of the countries studied. Mounting evidence shows that spending time in and around green spaces such as parks and woodlands in adulthood is associated with stress reduction and better ...
University of Exeter - 10/10/2022

New survey: 91% of parents say their family is less stressed when they eat together
Chronic, constant stress can increase lifetime risk of heart disease and stroke, but a new survey from the American Heart Association, a global force for longer, healthier lives for all, reveals regular mealtime with others could be a simple solution to help manage stress. Of the 1,000 U.S. adults nationwide surveyed in September 2022 for the American Heart Association's Healthy for GoodTM movement by Wakefield Research, the vast majority (84%) say they wish they could share a meal ...
American Heart Association - 10/10/2022

How the mother's mood influences her baby's ability to speak
Communicating with babies in infant-directed-speech is considered an essential prerequisite for successful language development of the little ones. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences have now investigated how the mood of mothers in the postpartum period affects their child's development. They found that even children whose mothers suffer from mild depressive mood that do not yet require medical treatment show early signs of delayed ...
Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences - 10/7/2022

Parenting practices in teen years set the stage for closeness, warmth later on
High-quality parenting practices in adolescence lay the foundation for close parent-child relationships when the children become young adults, according to new research from Penn State. The study is one of the first to examine how changes in parental involvement, parental warmth, and effective discipline during adolescence predict the quality of the relationships between parents and their young adult children, said Greg Fosco, professor of human development and family studies and ...
Penn State - 10/4/2022

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