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Mental Health News for October 2007

Depression News, Polls and Quotes

As part of the main Information Centre, this section of the website is intended to provide month-by-month news about depression, anxiety and other related health concerns. Archives from previous months are available, and all polls from previous months remain active if you should wish to vote.

If you would like to help us to produce next month's news, polls and quotes, please click on the links by each applicable section and fill out the accompanying form.

While struggling with depression, who would you be comfortable talking with?

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Quotes and Philosophical Thoughts for October 2007:

> "We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King

> "Remember sadness is always temporary. This, too, shall pass." - Chuck T. Falcon

> "Just as despair can come to one only from other human beings, hope, too, can be given to one only by other human beings." - Elie Weisel

> "Trials give you strength, sorrows give understanding and wisdom." - Chuck T. Falcon

> "Hope is grief’s best music." - Anonymous

> "Fall seven times, stand up eight." - Japanese proverb

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Depression More Damaging than Some Chronic Illnesses

Depression is more damaging to everyday health than chronic diseases such as angina, arthritis, asthma and diabetes, researchers said on Friday. And if people are ill with other conditions, depression makes them worse, the researchers found. "We report the largest population-based worldwide study to our knowledge that explores the effect of depression in comparison with four other chronic diseases on health state," the researchers wrote in the Lancet medical journal. Somnath Chatterji of the World Health Organisation, who led the study, said researchers calculated the impact of different conditions by asking people questions about their capacities to function in everyday situations -- such as moving around, seeing things at a distance and remembering information...  Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Housecleaning and Depression

Depression is a tricky thing. For some people, it can hit them all at once, like a paralyzing wave. But for most it just sneaks up on you. If you’re like me, you have lots of external reasons to be depressed – raising a challenging child, coming to terms with that child’s disabilities and what the future might hold, financial strain due to the need to quit my job to care for my child, the emotional and financial burden of a lawsuit with the school system…just to name a few. So, I’ve got lots of reasons to be depressed. But my goofy thought patterns tell me that I can just will myself to be fine. “I’m coping,” I kept telling myself. And I was coping…in a near survival mode…and a nearly numb emotional state. The one thing that was bugging me the most was my inability to concentrate or to multi-task and accomplish all the things I used to be able to accomplish in a day. It was as if I was going in slow motion. And the more I worried about this, the worse it got... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article 

Chinese Colleges to Track Students' Mental Health

China has ordered universities to keep individual psychological health records for each incoming new student amid rising concern over campus suicides, state media reported on Wednesday.  "This is part of a crisis prevention system designed to detect signs of psychological problems and prevent them from escalating into crises," Vice-Minister of Education Zhu Shanlu was quoted by the official Xinhua news agency as saying. Nearly 685 people commit suicide every day in China and at least 2 million try to kill themselves every year, the report said, citing a World Health Organisation expert... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Smaller Light Device Useful for Winter Blues

Treatment with a light-emitting diode (LED) device is effective for seasonal affective disorder, according to a report in an August 7th online release from BMC Psychiatry... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Placebo Effect May Influence Depression Treatment

It cannot be assumed that an antidepressant has lost its effectiveness if a patient relapses while continuing on the medication, because the medication may never have been effective in the first place, according to study findings reported in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. In the study, the majority of relapses occurred in patients who had never been true responders, Dr. Mark Zimmerman, director of outpatient psychiatry at Rhode Island Hospital, told Reuters Health. Some patients with major depressive disorder, similar to other medical disorders, respond to placebo, Zimmerman explained. In clinical practice, everyone is given an active drug, so it's not clear if a patient who responds has improve because of the drug or because of "nonspecific" effects, such as the placebo effect.. Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Back to School – Time for Depression?

I know that the idea in itself is depressing. After all, isn’t back to school time for fresh starts and new pencils and all that jazz? If you’re wondering what happened to the past summer’s happy kid and are concerned that your child, or a child you know is depressed, here’s my perspective. I grew up with undiagnosed depression. It seems to have begun when my family moved to a town where a child’s social life and self-worth revolved around playing sports. I, as a bespectacled, uncoordinated bookworm, definitely did not fit in. I was the target of teasing and some physical bullying. In addition, I had undiagnosed ADD, which made certain aspects of schoolwork very difficult as well as causing me to lose focus pretty frequently. A few teachers appreciated my love of reading, but let’s face it – most teachers don’t like the geeky misfits any more than the kids do. .. Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Damp, Moldy Homes May Cause Depression

People who live in damp, moldy homes may be prone to depression, a new study suggests. The possible link was uncovered in an analysis of mold and health conditions in several cities in eastern and western Europe. And it could one day lead to the addition of emotional problems to the list of health woes caused by mold, the study authors said. But, the researchers cautioned, it's still too soon to tell if exposure to mold is directly related to depression, or whether an already depressed person might simply relinquish control of their surroundings to the degree that mold may develop... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Pregnant Smokers May Suffer Depression

More than one in 10 pregnant women smoke, and new research suggests many of them also may suffer from depression, making kicking the habit even harder. The emerging science suggests that decades-old "quit for your baby" messages are too simplistic an approach for many women — and that perhaps prenatal checkups should include screening pregnant smokers for mental health disorders that themselves require care. "These ladies all know, I promise you, about the health risks. That's not what it is," says Dr. Jan Blalock of the University of Texas M.D Anderson Cancer Center, which has begun a first-of-a-kind study, Project Baby Steps, to test whether non-drug depression therapy helps pregnant smokers quit... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Fending Off Depression with Exercise: Five Ways to Stay Motivated

It's one of the best things you can do for your mind and body. Here's how to break a sweat when it's the last thing you want to do. Whether you're in the midst of a difficult time or feeling good and wanting to stay that way, exercise is an important piece of the puzzle. But how to make yourself exercise when you have no energy, no motivation to leave your house, and certainly no desire to break a sweat? Here are five tips that will keep you moving... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

What You Need to Know Before Joining an Online Support Group

I believe that online support groups can be a real boon to someone with depression who is seeking peer support. They, by their very nature, overcome some of the barriers that keep people from seeking peer support offline, in the real world. However, there are still some barriers to overcome and caveats to keep in mind when using online support forums. - Privacy Issues - We have an expectation of privacy in a face-to-face support group. This is generally justified, and it isn’t easy for someone outside the group, like your employer for instance, to find out if you attended a group at any point, and there are rarely, if ever, any public transcripts of groups. However, this is not necessarily the case online... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Teen Antidepressant Warning had Ripple Effect

Following the US Food and Drug Administration's warning about the possible risk of suicide among teens when they're treated with antidepressant drugs known as SSRIs, the rates of diagnosis and treatment of depression among adults have declined significantly, according to a new report. "While some degree of decline in antidepressant prescribing was not unexpected after the black box warning was issued, few if any had predicted diagnosing to decline, or that other modes of treatment (psychotherapy or other medications) would remain relatively unchanged," Dr. Robert J. Valuck told Reuters Health. "It was thought that the latter two may increase to compensate for fewer antidepressant prescriptions being written." Valuck, from the University of Colorado at Denver, and colleagues examined data relating to depression among 400,000 adult patients enrolled in managed care plans... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article

Are Mentally Ill Celebrities Obligated to Share?

I always have a weird reaction to hearing about a celebrity who is struggling with mental illness. I feel pity and empathy, but I also feel something akin to satisfaction. As I said, it's weird, at least on the surface. The satisfaction is partly due, I think, to the knowledge that I'm not alone in my fight with depression. Not that I thought I was, but since we all feel that we "know" celebrities to some extent through media coverage, it's more like finding out a friend or acquaintance is dealing with it rather than just seeing impersonal statistics of how many people have depression or another mental illness. When I read about actor Owen Wilson's apparent suicide attempt over the weekend, my reaction quickly became pity for the poor guy, unmitigated by any hint of satisfaction. Because of his popularity, I assume, as well as the fact that he had seemed to be very stable, the media has jumped all over the story like nothing I've seen in a long time... Read More   |   Discuss   |   Suggest An Article


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