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Mental Health News Archive

» Mental Health Library » Mental Health News Archive
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How adolescents used drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic: Alcohol use declined, but use of nicotine and misuse of prescription drugs rose
The advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, which began in earnest in the United States in early 2020, affected different demographic groups in different ways. According to a new study, among adolescents ages 10 to 14 in the United State, the overall rate of drug use remained relatively stable in the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, one change was a decreased use of alcohol, but an increased use of nicotine and misuse of prescription drugs. The findings, publishing in ...
University of California - San Diego - 8/24/2021

Stressed teens benefit from coping online, but a little goes a long way
New research published in the journal Clinical Psychological Science reveals that teenagers (ages 13–17) in low socioeconomic settings who spend a moderate amount of time online after a stressful experience deal with adversity far better than those who spend many hours online or avoid digital technology altogether. “Adolescents are smart, and they make use of technology to their own advantage. Because adolescents in disadvantaged settings tend to have fewer local supports, the ...
Association for Psychological Science - 8/24/2021

Histamine could be a key player in depression, according to study in mice
The findings, from researchers at Imperial College London and University of South Carolina, add to mounting evidence that inflammation, and the accompanying release of the molecule histamine, affects a key molecule responsible for mood in the brain – serotonin. If replicated in humans, the findings – which identify histamine as a ‘new molecule of interest’ in depression – could open new avenues for treating depression, which is the most common mental health problem worldwide.
Imperial College London - 8/17/2021

Survivors of trauma struggle to move on from the loss of loved ones: Treating post-traumatic stress symptoms early could prevent persistent grief later, study finds
Among individuals who survive a trauma that resulted in the loss of a close friend or loved one, symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder can predict complicated grief—a sense of persistent sadness and an inability to cope—years after the trauma, according to research published by the American Psychological Association. “Grief is a normal response to the loss of someone close, but traumatic losses may severely harm survivors for years,” said Kristin Alve Glad, PhD, a researcher at ...
American Psychological Association - 8/16/2021

Less passive screen time, more structure better for kids' mental health during pandemic
There are a number of simple, practical steps that families can take -- including reducing passive screen time and news consumption, having a structured daily schedule and getting enough sleep -- that can promote resilience against mental health problems in youth during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new study.
PLOS - 8/16/2021

Just 10% of kids with ADHD outgrow it, study finds: Researchers said that attention deficit hyperactive disorder waxes and wanes over a lifetime
Most children diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) don’t outgrow the disorder, as widely thought. It manifests itself in adulthood in different ways and waxes and wanes over a lifetime, according to a study published Aug.13 in the American Journal of Psychiatry. “It's important for people diagnosed with ADHD to understand that it's normal to have times in your life where things maybe more unmanageable and other times when things feel more under control,” said ...
University of Washington School of Medicine/UW Medicine - 8/13/2021

New findings on how ketamine acts against depression
The discovery that the anaesthetic ketamine can help people with severe depression has raised hopes of finding new treatment options for the disease. Researchers at Karolinska Institutet have now identified novel mechanistic insights of how the drug exerts its antidepressant effect. The findings have been published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.
Karolinska Institutet - 8/11/2021

Depression and anxiety symptoms have doubled, help needed, warn clinical psychologists: Meta-analysis of studies involving more than 80,000 youth globally finds an alarming percentage of children and adolescents face a mental health crisis
An alarming percentage of children and adolescents living through the COVID-19 pandemic are experiencing a global-wide mental health crisis, according to a new University of Calgary study published in the medical journal JAMA Pediatrics. The UCalgary study is a meta-analysis, pooling together data from 29 separate studies from around the world, including 80,879 youth globally. The new findings show that depression and anxiety symptoms have doubled in children and adolescents ...
University of Calgary - 8/9/2021

Trial tests new technique to manage mood swings within bipolar disorder
Researchers have conducted a new trial to identify how an existing psychological therapy can be adapted to help people cope with and manage frequent Bipolar mood swings. A subgroup of those with Bipolar Spectrum Disorders experience ongoing mood fluctuations outside of full episodes. These shifts in mood can sometimes make it difficult to live life to the full, and can be a source of difficulties in relationships with others. There are currently few therapy options available for people ...
University of Exeter - 8/5/2021

Physical activity jolts brain into action in the event of depression
The dual beneficial effect of physical activity in depression is confirmed by a study at the University Clinic for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB) at the Ostwestfalen-Lippe campus: physical activity not only reduces depressive symptoms. It also increases the brain’s ability to change, which is necessary for adaptation and learning processes. “The results show how important seemingly simple things like physical activity are in treating and preventing ...
Ruhr-University Bochum - 8/4/2021

Restoring a Sense of Belonging: The Unsung Importance of Casual Relationships for Older Adults
In May, Vincent Keenan traveled from Chicago to Charlottesville, Virginia, for a wedding — his first trip out of town since the start of the pandemic. “Hi there!” he called out to customers at a gas station where he’d stopped on his way to the airport. “How’s your day going?” he said he asked the Transportation Security Administration agent who checked his ID. “Isn’t this wonderful?” he exclaimed to guests at the wedding, most of whom were strangers. “I was striking up conversations ...
Kaiser Health News - 8/2/2021

Chronic health issues for third in late 40s: About one in three has problems such as high blood pressure and mental ill health, a study suggests.
The 1970 British Cohort Study has been periodically tracking the lives of about 17,000 people born in England, Scotland and Wales in a single week. Nearly 8,000 of them were surveyed for the University College London work, published in journal BMC Public Health. And 34% had two or more chronic health problems, such as high blood pressure and mental ill-health, at age 46-48.
BBC - 7/27/2021

Anxiety, depression, burnout rising as college students prepare to return to campus: Experts at Ohio State create checklist to promote and protect student mental health
A new "return to campus" survey led by The Ohio State University's Office of the Chief Wellness Officer finds rising rates of anxiety, depression, burnout and the use of unhealthy coping mechanisms among students navigating through a year affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, similar to other data on college students throughout the U.S. Ohio State conducted surveys in August 2020 and April 2021 of randomly-selected students to assess changes in mental health, coping strategies, ...
Ohio State University's Office of the Chief Wellness Officer - 7/26/2021

65+ and lonely? Don't talk to your doctor about another prescription
Lonely, older adults are nearly twice as likely to use opioids to ease pain and two-and-a-half times more likely to use sedatives and anti-anxiety medications, putting themselves at risk for drug dependency, impaired attention, falls and other accidents, and further cognitive impairment, according to a study by researchers at UC San Francisco. The study found that just over half of 6,000 respondents in a nationally representative survey of seniors living independently were not lonely, while ...
University of California - San Francisco - 7/26/2021

Which students are at most risk of mental health problems during COVID-19 lockdowns?
A new study published in JCPP Advances has compared the wellbeing of UK students who remained at home for schooling during the first lockdown period of the COVID-19 pandemic with those who accessed school in person. In the study, which included 11,765 students in grades 8-13 (aged 12-21 years), females, students who had experienced food poverty, and those who had previously accessed mental health support were at greatest risk of depression, anxiety, and a deterioration in ...
Wiley - 7/21/2021

75% of sexual assault survivors have PTSD one month later: Researchers' meta-analysis yields timeline showing symptoms frequently diminish within three months, offering hope to survivors
Researchers want sexual assault survivors to know that it's normal to feel awful right after the assault, but that many will feel better within three months. In a meta-analysis published in Trauma, Violence & Abuse, researchers found that 81% of sexual assault survivors had significant symptoms of post-traumatic stress (PTSD) one week after the assault. One month afterward - the first point in time that PTSD can be diagnosed - 75% of sexual assault survivors met criteria for the disorder.
University of Washington School of Medicine/UW Medicine - 7/20/2021

Living near woodlands is good for children and young people's mental health
Analysis of children and young people's proximity to woodlands has shown links with better cognitive development and a lower risk of emotional and behavioural problems, in research led by UCL and Imperial College London scientists that could influence planning decisions in urban areas. In what is believed to be one of the largest studies of its kind, researchers used longitudinal data relating to 3,568 children and teenagers, aged nine to 15 years, from 31 schools across London.
University College London - 7/19/2021

Taking the brain out for a walk: A recent study shows that spending time outdoors has a positive effect on our brains
If you're regularly out in the fresh air, you're doing something good for both your brain and your well-being. This is the conclusion reached by researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and the Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE). The longitudinal study recently appeared in The World Journal of Biological Psychiatry. During the Corona pandemic, walks became a popular and regular pastime. A neuroscientific study suggests that this habit has a good ...
Max Planck Institute for Human Development - 7/15/2021

Medication or exercise? What works best for seniors with mild to moderate depression? Effectiveness of physical exercise in older adults with mild to moderate depression
Depression is the most frequently diagnosed psychiatric disorder among older adults, with 8% to 16% of older patients presenting with clinically significant depressive symptoms. Researchers in Spain conducted a randomized clinical trial of 347 older adults with mild to moderate depression, comparing the effectiveness of physical exercise and antidepressants as treatment methods. Study participants were assigned to either a group engaged in supervised physical exercise or a group that ...
American Academy of Family Physicians - 7/14/2021

A third of teens, young adults reported worsening mental health during pandemic: Disrupted social connections a factor, study finds
As typical social and academic interaction screeched to a halt last year, many young people began experiencing declines in mental health, a problem that appeared to be worse for those whose connections to family and friends weren't as tight, a new study has found. In June 2020, researchers invited participants in an ongoing study of teenage boys and young men in urban and Appalachian Ohio to complete a survey examining changes to mood, anxiety, closeness to family and friends, and ...
Ohio State University - 7/12/2021

New study uncovers how a series of sleep loss impacts mental and physical wellbeing
All it takes is three consecutive nights of sleep loss to cause your mental and physical well-being to greatly deteriorate. A new study published in Annals of Behavioral Medicine looked at the consequences of sleeping fewer than six hours for eight consecutive nights - the minimum duration of sleep that experts say is necessary to support optimal health in average adults. Lead author Soomi Lee, assistant professor in the School of Aging Studies at the University of South Florida, found ...
University of South Florida (USF Innovation) - 7/7/2021

One in four adults with depression or anxiety lack mental health support during pandemic: Women twice as likely as men to report an unmet need for mental health counseling
A new national study published in Psychiatric Services finds that over a quarter of US adults with depression or anxiety symptoms reported needing mental health counseling but were not able to access it during the COVID-19 pandemic. Researchers analyzed data from nearly 70,000 adults surveyed in the US Census Household Pulse Survey in December 2020. "Social isolation, COVID-related anxiety, disruptions in normal routines, job loss, and food insecurity have led to a surge in mental illness ...
University of Toronto - 7/6/2021

"All the lonely people": The impact of loneliness in old age on life and health expectancy
In 1966, The Beatles cemented the plight of lonely older people in the popular imagination with the iconic 'Eleanor Rigby', a song that turned pop music on its head when it stayed at number one on the British charts for four weeks. Today, the impact of loneliness in old age on life and health expectancy has been categorically quantified for the first time in a study by scientists at Duke-NUS Medical School (Singapore), Nihon University (Tokyo, Japan) and their collaborators, published in the ...
Duke-NUS Medical School - 7/6/2021

College students experience significant grief reactions during global pandemic
A new study shows that colleges students are experiencing significant grief reactions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The paper, "College Student Experiences of Grief and Loss Amid the COVID-19 Global Pandemic," was recently published in OMEGA - Journal of Death and Dying. "This study aimed to identify the most common non-death losses and grief reactions experienced by undergraduate and graduate college students amid the pandemic," said author Erica H. Sirrine, Ph.D., ...
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital - 6/29/2021

Evidence-based patient-psychotherapist matching improves mental health care: UMass Amherst researcher: 'Who the therapist is matters'
In first-of-its kind research led by a University of Massachusetts Amherst psychotherapy researcher, mental health care patients matched with therapists who had a strong track record of treating the patients' primary concerns had better results than patients who were not so matched. In addition, this "match effect" was even more beneficial and pronounced for patients with more severe problems and for those who identified as racial or ethnic minorities.
University of Massachusetts Amherst - 6/26/2021

Parents of children with complex medical conditions more likely to have mental health issues: More support is recommended from healthcare systems and federal and state policy
Parents of children with the most complex medical conditions are more likely to report poor or fair mental health and struggle to find community help, according to a study completed by researchers at University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) and Golisano Children's Hospital. The study was published in Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). The study, "A National Mental Health Profile of Parents of Children with Medical Complexity," examined parent-reported ...
University of Rochester Medical Center - 6/24/2021

Toxic workplaces increase risk of depression by 300%
A year-long Australian population study has found that full time workers employed by organisations that fail to prioritise their employees' mental health have a threefold increased risk of being diagnosed with depression. And while working long hours is a risk factor for dying from cardiovascular disease or having a stroke, poor management practices pose a greater risk for depression, the researchers found. The University of South Australia study, published in the British Medical Journal ...
University of South Australia - 6/23/2021

Anxiety during pregnancy does not pass from mother to baby, finds new King's study
Mothers who experience anxiety during pregnancy do not pass on similar emotional problems to their children, according to a review of existing research by King's College London's Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, & Neuroscience (IoPPN). The research, which appeared online first prior to final publication in the July 1, 2021 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, has however suggested that exposure to an anxious parent after birth might have an ...
King's College London - 6/22/2021

More than 6% of Europeans suffer from depression
6.4% of the European population suffers from depression, according to a study published in The Lancet Public Health. The work was led by researchers from King's College London, the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM), the Parc de Recerca Sant Joan de Déu-Institut de Recerca Sant Joan de Déu, the Institute of Biomedicine at the University of León (IBIOMED), and the CIBER on Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP). This figure is higher than that estimated by ...
IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute) - 6/22/2021

Blaming the pandemic for stress leaves couples happier
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit during the winter of 2020, locking down entire countries and leaving people isolated in their homes without outside contact for weeks at a time, many relationship experts wondered what that kind of stress would do to romantic couples. What they found was that when couples blamed the pandemic for their stress, they were happier in their relationships. The findings are outlined in a paper out today in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science.
University of Texas at Austin - 6/21/2021

During COVID-19 pandemic, increased screen time correlates with mental distress
Washington, D.C. - June 20, 2021 - Increased screen time among young adults during the COVID-19 pandemic correlated with a rise in pandemic-related distress, according to research led by investigators at the Saint James School of Medicine on the Caribbean island nation, Saint Vincent. The increase in time spent viewing entertainment on a screen both prior to and during the pandemic was associated with a boost in anxiety scores. Students scored higher than non-students in ...
American Society for Microbiology - 6/20/2021

Postpartum mental health visits 30% higher during COVID-19 pandemic
Mental health visits for new mothers were 30% higher during the COVID-19 pandemic than before the pandemic, particularly in the first 3 months after giving birth, found new research in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal). "Increased visit rates began in March 2020, although the state of emergency was declared only midway through the month, suggesting that distress related to the pandemic translated into an increased need for care very quickly," writes Dr. Simone Vigod, ...
Canadian Medical Association Journal - 6/7/2021

COVID-19 pandemic has had significant impact on the mental health of adolescents: While substance use declined, social isolation has especially affected the mental health of girls
A study of over 59,000 Icelandic adolescents by a team of Icelandic and North American behavioral and social scientists found that COVID-19 has had a significant, detrimental impact on adolescent mental health, especially in girls. The study is the first to investigate and document age- and gender-specific changes in adolescent mental health problems and substance use during the COVID-19 pandemic, while accounting for upward trends that were appearing before the pandemic.
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health - 6/6/2021

Study sheds new light on link between COVID pressures and suicidal thoughts: New research has revealed more about the impact COVID-19 and lockdown has had on the mental health and wellbeing of people in Wales
There has been concern at how the pandemic has not only hit physical health and the economy but has also impacted our mental health with the possibility of increased rates of suicide. Now a new study - a collaboration between Swansea University, Cardiff University, and the NHS in Wales - has investigated exactly which Covid-related stressors are most likely to trigger suicidal thoughts and behaviours. The researchers also discovered the important role that hope for the future can play ...
Taylor & Francis Group - 6/3/2021

Waking just one hour earlier cuts depression risk by double digits
Waking up just one hour earlier could reduce a person's risk of major depression by 23%, suggests a sweeping new genetic study published May 26 in the journal JAMA Psychiatry. The study of 840,000 people, by researchers at University of Colorado Boulder and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, represents some of the strongest evidence yet that chronotype--a person's propensity to sleep at a certain time --influences depression risk. It's also among the first studies to quantify ...
University of Colorado at Boulder - 5/28/2021

Why is it so hard to withdraw from some antidepressants?
Researchers at the University of Illinois Chicago are a step closer to discovering why it is so difficult for people to withdraw from some antidepressant medications. The paper "Antidepressants produce persistent Gαs associated signaling changes in lipid rafts following drug withdrawal," published in the journal Molecular Pharmacology, addresses the molecular and cellular mechanisms that cause antidepressant withdrawal syndrome.
University of Illinois at Chicago - 5/27/2021

Roots of major depression revealed in all its genetic complexity
A massive genome-wide association study (GWAS) of genetic and health records of 1.2 million people from four separate data banks has identified 178 gene variants linked to major depression, a disorder that will affect one of every five people during their lifetimes. The results of the study, led by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (V.A.) researchers at Yale University School of Medicine and University of California-San Diego (UCSD), may one day help identify people most at risk of ...
Yale University - 5/27/2021

Parents abused as children may pass on emotional issues: Study suggests boys more vulnerable when parents have poor coping mechanisms
Childhood abuse and trauma are linked to many health issues in adulthood. New research from the University of Georgia suggests that a history of childhood mistreatment could have negative ramifications for the children of people who experienced abuse or neglect in childhood. Teaching your children how to manage their emotions is an integral part of parenting. For people who experienced childhood abuse, that can become a difficult task. People who were frequently mistreated as ...
University of Georgia - 5/25/2021

Worrying about your heart increases risk for mental health disorders: Heart-focused anxiety a significant predictor of depression
or coffee drinkers, a common scenario might involve drinking an extra cup only to end up with a racing heart and a subtle reminder to themselves to cut down the caffeine. But for those who have a different thinking pattern, one that includes heart-focused anxiety, the racing heart might conclude with the fear of a heart attack and a trip to the emergency room. It turns out young Latinx adults who experience heart-focused anxiety could be at greater risk for mental health disorders.
University of Houston - 5/20/2021

Study finds evidence emotional support animals benefit those with chronic mental illness: Researchers documented lower anxiety, depression and loneliness, as well as changes in key stress and bonding biomarkers, in a first-of-its-kind pilot study
A team led by a social work researcher at The University of Toledo has published the first empirical evidence that emotional support animals can provide quantifiable benefits to individuals with serious mental illness who are experiencing depression, anxiety and loneliness. The research brings credence to the many anecdotal reports of emotional support animals having positive impacts on chronic mental health issues. "This is the first peer-reviewed, published scientific ...
University of Toledo - 5/20/2021

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