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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Financial incentives don’t increase depression screening for patients with chronic illness

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The lines between physical health and mental health are blurred in lots of ways, and one example is the fact that people with chronic physical conditions are also more likely to suffer from depression. As well as adding to their burden of illness, there’s also some evidence that those patients with comorbid depression have worse [read the full story...]

The links between passive smoking and dementia: findings from a new cross-sectional study

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Over 1 billion people on Earth smoke tobacco. WHO figures tell us that 80% of the smoking population live in low-middle income countries, most of which are not protected by any kind of smoke-free public health legislation. China is a particular black-spot in this regard. It has the largest tobacco smoking population in the world [read the full story...]

Adolescent girls are less satisfied with their bodies compared to boys, according to Finnish cohort study

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It’s hardly surprising that teenage girls and boys express dissatisfaction with their bodies. The vast majority of TV, magazine, billboard and Internet images of the human body present a wholly unrealistic and unattainable version of the male and female physique. Young people cannot help but compare themselves to these standards and feel that they come [read the full story...]

Depression, discrimination, stigma: new cross-sectional survey in The Lancet

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A new cross-sectional survey published in The Lancet has revealed some unsurprising but nonetheless sobering facts about how people with depression are stigmatised. The research team, funded by money from the European Commission, interviewed 1,082 people with depression from 35 countries across the world. They used the discrimination and stigma scale (version 12; DISC-12) 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...]

Over 40% of US teenagers experience a mental health disorder in any 12 month period

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This new cross sectional study from researchers at Harvard Medical School looks at the prevalence of DSM-IV disorders in over 10,000 teenagers living in the community. The study looked at a representative sample of young people. Homeless adolescents, school drop-outs and non-English speakers were excluded from the research, even though those who speak a different [read the full story...]

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Find out which mental health services have the biggest impact on reducing suicide rates

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Every year in England and Wales, a suicide occurs in roughly one patient for every thousand in mental health treatment. These numbers make it hard to research what mental health service providers can do to prevent further suicides, so it’s encouraging to see a new cross-sectional observational study published in the Lancet with funding from [read the full story...]

Childhood adversity and early-onset mental disorders are independently associated with adult onset chronic physical conditions

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Read this important new research if you work in mental health or public health and have an interest in the relationship between mental disorders and adversity in childhood and chronic physical conditions in later adult life. The cross sectional study was conducted by researchers in New Zealand who set out to investigate whether childhood adversities [read the full story...]

How do personality traits affect our need for mental health treatment?

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This cross-sectional study conducted by researchers from VU University in Amsterdam investigated whether specific personality traits (such as neuroticism, conscientiousness and being open to experiences) are associated with an increased use of mental health services. The background to this study is the fact that there are now many safe and effective treatments available for depression [read the full story...]