Childhood abuse and adverse life events interact synergistically to produce a high risk for psychotic experiences

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This recent study concludes that childhood abuse creates an enduring vulnerability to psychosis that is realised in the event of exposure to further stressors and risk factors, such as separation, bereavement, or being involved in an accident or physical attack.

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Moving to better neighbourhoods: bad for boys, good for girls?

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The link between external influences such as family and neighbourhood experiences and young people’s mental health outcomes has been extensively commented on in the literature. While it is more common for studies to focus on the individual or family level, looking at things from a wider perspective is interesting especially from a public mental health [read the full story...]

Crisis, what crisis? EU-wide data shows negative impacts of the recession on people with mental health problems

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The effects of the global stock market crash of 2008 have not just been economic. The health and social consequences of the financial crisis are becoming clearer over time and were anticipated by public health academics early on. Based on a 30 year review of EU data on how economic changes affect mortality, in 2009 [read the full story...]

Illicit drug use: personality and poverty

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A considerable amount of research has attempted to shed light on the key antecedents of drug use. The role of personality traits, in particular, has been explored in great detail; indeed the idea of “the addictive personality” has often been discussed. Although we elves feel that the addictive personality is a simplification of a much [read the full story...]

Targeted mental health support can improve borderline-clinical behavioural problems in children

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The statistic that one in four adults in Britain will experience a mental health problem in any given year is well known (if still debated), but a recent report by the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition revealed a lack of such statistics for children. The report also highlighted that Office for National Statistics [read the full story...]

The cost of living? Early childhood interventions could reduce the impact of socio-economic inequalities on the mental health of children and young people

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In the current economic climate in many countries across the world, the impact of socio-economic inequalities on mental health has become an important topic, not only in terms of supporting people, but in terms of planning a public health response to a rising concern. Poverty and low economic status is known to affect various aspects [read the full story...]

Self-harm is associated with poor physical health, according to new Lancet cohort study

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Published yesterday in the Lancet, the Multicentre Study of Self-harm in England is a large (30,950 patients) cohort study of people presenting to hospital emergency departments in Oxford, Manchester and Derby, with self-poisoning or self-injury during 2000-2007. We know that people who self-harm have an increased risk of dying early, but this study tries to [read the full story...]

Psychotic symptoms are associated with poorer health: findings from WHO survey

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The WHO World Health Survey is a comprehensive international survey carried out across 70 countries, which uses face-to-face, telephone and online interviews to ask questions about the health of populations, public health risk factors, coverage and availability of health services and health care spending. The survey includes a number of questions relating to mental health [read the full story...]

New report on preventing homelessness from the Ministerial Working Group on Homelessness

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The Ministerial Working Group on Homelessness has published a new report on preventing and tackling homelessness, which builds on the plan that was announced back in July 2011. The new report aims to make sure that every contact local agencies make with vulnerable people and families really counts. It brings together government commitments to: Tackle troubled [read the full story...]

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Strong association between unemployment and suicide shown in new BMJ study

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How is the economic downturn affecting the health of the nation? It seems obvious to many of us that the mental wellbeing of people who are going through very tough personal and financial circumstances is likely to be seriously affected. Of course the ultimate price that people pay is with their lives and there has [read the full story...]