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Posts tagged ‘mental’


Noopept and its Benefits 

Noopept and its Benefits

“Noopept is the brand name for N-phenylacetyl-L-prolylglycine ethyl ester, a Nootropic molecule similar to Piracetam. Noopept may alleviate cognitive decline.”

“Noopept is the brand name for N-phenylacetyl-L-prolylglycine ethyl ester , a synthetic nootropic molecule.”

“Noopept has a similar effect to piracetam, in that it provides a mild cognitive boost after supplementation. Noopept also provides a subtle psychostimulatory effect.”

The other week, my husband bought the Noopept you see above, and told me that I should start taking it to help with my memory. He told me how it can help reverse memory loss and help with cognition. So far, I’ve been taking it for about 10 days and I can already sense that something has happened, or is happening to my memory. I have been able to recall certain memories with a much clearer view, so to say. It’s very hard to explain. I feel like I can reach certain memories in my head, but not all of them like the way I can, now that I’ve been using Noopept. I certainly recommend it for anyone at any age. Don’t wait till it’s too late to reverse damage. Help your brain today. 

“Noopept is one of the strongest nootropics available on the market today. It provides a boost to overall cognition and has a slight psychostimulatory effect. Contrary to most nootropics, Noopept’s effects start within mere minutes of ingestion making it an excellent choice right before mentally demanding tasks.”

“Noopept is a nootropic supplement that’s been getting a lot of attention lately. It has close ties to the popular racetam family of nootropics that are known for their benefits on cognitive ability as well their neuroprotective properties. What makes Noopept a unique nootropic in your toolbox is that its effects are felt almost immediately after ingestion.”

“Many nootropics can take days, weeks, or even months, for their full effects to kick in but Noopept is another story. Another nootropic that compares to Noopept’s immediate effects is phenylpiracetam.”

“Currently, Noopept is being prescribed and distributed in Russia and its surrounding countries for its nootropic properties. Its popularity has drastically increased and is now distributed worldwide.”

“Noopept as a nootropic is commonly compared to piracetam and aniracetam. It works via a similar mechanism as piracetam but is estimated to be 1,000 to 5,000 times more potent. This doesn’t imply that its effect is more profound, it just attunes itself better to the brain’s receptors. As a result, Noopept can be taken in relatively smaller doses to produce similar effects as that of Piracetam.”

What are benefits of taking Noopept? 

•Memory and Learning

“Noopept’s most emphasized benefit is how it can enhance memory and improve the learning process. Noopept, like Piracetam, assists with memory formation, but with additional benefits not present in the latter, which are memory consolidation and memory retrieval. Noopept facilitates the proper management of all forms of stimuli as they are processed by the brain, which allows for better memory retrieval. In other words, signals being processed by our senses are more streamlined as they are transported into our brains in the form of memory.”

“Through the continued use of Noopept, you will notice that you can digest more information and process it more readily for use in your daily activities. You might even recall names, places, maybe a word spoken in a chance encounter, a song title that you thought you had forgotten before, and so on. Memory lapses will be a thing of the past, or at least kept to a minimum.”

•Neuroprotective Properties

“Studies show that Noopept has high neuroprotective properties. The stimulation of the neurons caused by the health supplement prevents oxidative damage and apoptosis in the human brain. Many patients dealing with cognitive impairment regularly can benefit from a regular dosage of Noopept to prevent further dissociative cognitive functions.”

•Increased levels of NGF

“NGF (Nerve Growth Factor) is a unique protein in the body that is involved in the growth, maintenance, and survival of nerve cells, including brain cells. NGF is also considered to be a key player in neurogenesis, your body’s ability to create new cells.”

“By increasing NGF levels in the brain, we support the mechanisms involved in neurogenesis which improves the performance of neural networks within the brain, allowing for new neural connections. The result means potentially improved mental abilities in virtually all areas of cognition.”

•Increased levels of BDNF

“BDNF (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor) is another protein in the body that has a similar role to the NGF mentioned above. BDNF is considered one of the most important molecules involved in memory, playing a vital role in both short-term and long-term memory formation.”

•Improves Associations between Brain Hemispheres

“Both the right and left hemispheres of the brain have their own localized functions. Through the use of Noopept, each of these functions can be enhanced through the synthesis of various memories, ideas, and stimuli. There are nuances among these functions that enhance the way we think. That is why a lot of people have claimed that their quality of life had a significant improvement when taking Noopept in regular doses.”

If you want to read more about how Noopept works, its dosaging, and stacking; read the whole article. 


Source: Noopept


Kids of Bipolar or Schizophrenic Parents More Likely to Face Early Mental Health Issues

Kids of Bipolar or Schizophrenic Parents More Likely to Face Early Mental Health Issues

This is a wonderful article I found and had to share it with you, my readers. It deals with something I always think about, passing the bipolar gene to your child. It’s not something I’m willing to do, but for those who do decide to have kids, good for you and good luck, with all sincerity. I cannot imagine seeing someone that I made hurt so deeply because of this disease, so that is why my husband and I have choosen to stay child-free. But to each their own. I’m going to highlight the article’s main points, but be sure to read the whole article to really understand. 

“New research shows that children born to one or both parents with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder are more likely to suffer mental health problems by the age of seven.”

“Presented at the International Early Psychosis Association (IEPA) meeting in Milan, Italy, in October 2016, the Danish High Risk and Resilience Study — VIA 7 — included 522 children who were seven at the start of the study.”

“Of the children, 202 were born to at least one person diagnosed with schizophrenia (located using Danish registries), while 120 of them were born to least one parent diagnosed with bipolar disorder. The remaining 200 children were born to parents without any of these diagnoses.”

“The results show children born to parents with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder score higher than the other children using a tool called the child behavior checklist (CBCL). This is a widely used questionnaire with more than 100 questions given to parents and teachers that describes behavioral problems or signs of possible illness, the researchers said, explaining a higher score represents more problems.”

Sample CBCL: 

“Mean scores for children in the schizophrenia group were 27.2, the bipolar group 23.5, and control group 17.1.”

“There were also marked differences between the three groups concerning psychopathology, neurocognition, motor functioning and their home environment, according to the study’s findings.”

“Children born to parents with schizophrenia, and to a minor extent also bipolar disorder, were found to have increased risk for problems such as anxiety, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and stress/adjustment disorder, and were also more likely to display neurocognitive problems or delays. They also were more likely to grow up in families with a lower social status and a higher risk of adverse life events, according to the researchers.”

“She noted the researchers plan to follow the children until age 11, conducting a new assessment before puberty.”

““We do not know if the impaired children will catch up in neurocognitive areas or if their mental problems will be in remission, but since social aspects and environmental factors contribute significantly to child development — and they were quite marked already at age seven years — we are expecting similar or even worse results could be seen at age 11 years,” she said.”



ADHD Foods – The Good and the Bad

ADHD Foods – The Good and the Bad

I have ADHD, so trying to focus and be alert is quite a chore for me. I do take medication, which helps me tremendously, but I also like to learn about all-natural ways to heal, so I don’t have to 100% rely on my medicine. Having ADHD is a real struggle sometimes. I also teach dance to children, and also Ballroom to adults. So, when I am teaching a class, my brain must be completely focused and on stay on track with what I teach. I normally do not have problems with my ADHD during work, but there are definitely days when the kids are full of energy and it becomes hard to grab their attention. Those days, I definitely can struggle with my concentration (what was I last teaching?) and sometimes have to take a mental break for a moment to get it together. So, for those reasons, you can see why some extra nutrition is a good call. Her is a quote I found to be moving. I hope you enjoy. 

“What does the food you eat have to do with how your brain functions? Turns out an awful lot. While we’ve always known that what we eat affects our bodies and how we look, scientists are also learning more and more that what we eat takes a toll on our brains. Yes, brain foods matter (especially for our gray matter).”

“Plus, brain foods rich in antioxidants, good fats, vitamins and minerals provide energy and aid in protecting against brain diseases. So when we focus on giving our bodies whole, nutritious foods benefiting both the gut and the brain, we’re actually benefiting our minds and bodies while keeping them both in tip-top shape.”

Source: Foods to Boost Focus and Memory

“A well-rounded diet can have a powerful, positive effect on your cognition, mood, memory, and behavior. The wrong diet can aggrevate ADHD symptoms. Here’s what you should (and absolutely should not) be eating to help your brain and body.”

  • Following an ADHD diet rich in protein and vitamins can help control symptoms of attention deficit. But only if you avoid sugar, artifical flavors, and common allergens as well.

“For years, doctors have speculated that certain foods may have something to do with ADHD. Although much research has been done on the subject, it’s still not believed that food actually causes ADHD. What some foods do seem to do, however, is worsen ADHD symptoms or affect behavior that mimics the signs of ADHD in children. “Excessive caffeine and excessive use of fast foods and other foods of poor nutritional value can cause kids to display behavior that might be confused with ADHD,” said Frank Barnhill, MD, an expert on ADHD and the author of “Mistaken for ADHD.” Read on for a list of foods that have been linked with ADHD symptoms.”

“Candy is loaded with sugar and artificial colors, which is a bad combination when it comes to children with ADHD who often need to follow an ADHD diet. Both of these common ingredients have been shown to promote ADHD symptoms — namely hyperactivity — in studies.”

“If you have ADHD, consider eliminating soda. (And even if you don’t have ADHD, saying no to soda is a good idea anyway.) These sweet drinks often have many of the same sugars and sweeteners that make candy a bad idea for kids on the ADHD diet. Soda also has other ingredients that worsen ADHD symptoms, such as high-fructose corn syrup and caffeine. “Excessive sugar and caffeine intake both cause symptoms of hyperactivity and easy distractibility,” said Dr. Barnhill. One 2013 study also found that 5-year-old children who drank sodas were more likely to show aggression and social withdrawal.”

“Eating fish and other seafood with trace amounts of mercury can exacerbate ADHD symptoms in the long term. Some of the worst culprits are shark, king mackerel, swordfish, and tilefish. “Mercury, like cellulose, is extremely hard to digest and can accumulate in the brain over time,” explained Ali. “This can lead to hyperactivity.” Talk to your doctor or ADHD nutritionist about the best types of fish to include in your ADHD diet.”

“Energy drinks are becoming increasingly popular among kids, especially teens. Unfortunately, they also have a veritable treasure trove of ingredients that can worsen ADHD symptoms: sugar, artificial sweeteners, artificial colors, caffeine, and other stimulants. “Energy drinks are high on the list of things that cause teens to display behaviors mimicking ADHD,” said Barnhill. They have no place in a healthy ADHD diet.”

Source: Terrible Foods For ADHD


Money and Mental Illness

Money and Mental Illness

I have always thought that money and mental health were linked. After reading up on the topic, it’s clear that there is most certainly a connection. Poor mental health can make managing money more difficult than should be, and the guilt and worrying about money can make your mental health worse.

“For individuals who are affected by or who are vulnerable to mental illness, it’s especially important for them to have a home and regular income.”

“For individuals directly affected by severe mental illness or other mental health difficulties, often it will be difficult to secure or retain full-time paid employment leading to a need to call on the state for some form of financial support in the form of state benefits.”

“Sometime, for certain individuals, mental illness can also impact on ability to manage debts, in situations where this is the case, free advice on managing debt should be sought as soon as difficulties arise by contacting an agency such as Citizens Advice Bureau. The sooner a debt issue is addressed the more successfully (and less stressfully) it can be managed.”

Source: Money & Mental Illness
These are examples of just how money and mental illness are correlated: 

  • “If you can’t work or have to take time off work, your income may be affected.”

  • “If you feel very ‘high’ during a period of mania or hypomania, this can lead to impulsive decisions about money that make sense at the time but leave you in lots of debt.”

  • “You may spend money to make yourself feel better. Spending can give you a temporary high.”

  • “You might feel anxious about doing things like talking on the phone, going to the bank or opening envelopes.”

  • “You may feel forced to do a job you don’t like in order to pay the bills or pay off your debt.”

  • “You may lose the motivation to keep control of your finances.”

  • “You might find that spending any money at all or being in debt can make you feel very anxious – even if you actually have enough money.”

  • “Dealing with the benefits system or being in debt may make you feel stressed, anxious and worried about the future.”

  • “You may not have enough money to spend on essentials or things to keep you well like housing, food, heating or medication.”

  • “Money problems can affect relationships and your social life, which can have a knock-on effect on your mental health.”

Source: Money & Mental Health

Money Problems can manifest into an even bigger deal. Look at what can happen. So manage your stress if you want to stay healthy. 




I was diagnosed Bipolar around 24, but my husband as well as my mother, both think I developed it early on, I think it developed in my 20’s. The following article articulates why most adults who get diagnosed later in life, may have already had it and it didn’t manifest until later. Enjoy! 

“There’s a reason the image of the floundering, scared, shaky post-teen struggling to enter adulthood is a cliché. Between moving out of your parent’s home, going to college and getting a job, lack of sleep, drugs, and unrestricted access to alcohol, becoming an adult is fucking hard. So it’s no wonder that this period is popularly associated with having a mental breakdown. But is there any truth behind the pop culture trope? What about kids from wealthy families who don’t have the stresses the rest of us do in early adulthood, or people whose most trying times come in their 30s or 40s? Is the appearance of mental illness in young people a matter of environment or biology?”

“To better understand these questions, I phoned Johanna Jarcho, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the National Institute of Mental Health whose work studies differences in brain development in healthy people versus those who have mental health problems, with a focus on anxiety. She explained how our brains interact with social conditions to influence our mental health, and why the best way to deal with a problem is to get it diagnosed early.”

“I’ve often heard it repeated that mental illnesses frequently begin in a person’s late adolescence or early 20s. Anecdotally that seems consistent with what I’ve seen, but is there any scientific basis to this claim?”

“Dr. Johanna Jarcho: Yeah, the vast majority of mental health disorders do emerge during one’s adolescence or early 20s. If you’re going to have an anxiety disorder as an adult, there’s a 90% chance that you’ll have had it as an adolescent. Basically, you’re not going to develop an anxiety disorder as an adult. You’re going to develop it as a kid and then it’ll carry through to adulthood. Emerging research suggests that this is because adolescence is a time when the brain is changing to a great degree. We once thought that the brain didn’t change that much after earlier childhood, but what we’ve seen is that the brain continues to undergo really profound changes up until your early 20s. It’s still quite malleable, so being exposed to different influences in your social environment can really have a profound impact on the way that your brain continues to develop.”

“You said that much has to do with brain development. At the same time, young adulthood seems to be a time where people are going through major upheavals, both socially and economically—things like college, entering the workforce, or living away from your parents. Is there a way to quantify the effect of environment versus biology?”

“Some types of mental health disorders are much more genetically based than others. Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder have a much higher rate of inheritance. If you have a first degree relative like a parent or sibling who has one of those disorders, you’re at a much greater risk for developing it yourself, and there are things in the environment that can potentiate that. For other disorders like depression or anxiety, it’s less heritable. Whether or not you develop one of those disorders is a lot more contingent on your environment. Young adults go through all these different social changes, but we evolved to be able to make this big transition from being with parents to forging adulthood. What happens during this transition can definitely have a profound effect on whether you grow to be “healthy” or to have these types of disorders.”

“We’re still finding out more about how much of this is biologically based and how much is environmental. We’ve learned from genetics that it’s not just the genes and it’s not just the environment, it’s an interaction between the two.”

“So a mental illness is not just an inevitable thing that people either will or won’t have?”

No. A lot of us tend to focus on the negative, but it’s really important to focus on the fact that there’s a lot that can be done to protect against developing mental health disorders, even if you are at risk. The social environment could tip you over into becoming sick, but in a good social environment you can actually thrive.”

“What kind of things should people be aware of?”

“It’s important to know what you’re at risk for. Let’s say you had a parent with psychopathology; that certainly is a risk factor. If you’ve had a difficult time engaging in your social world as a kid, that’s another risk factor. If your parents sheltered you instead of giving you some exposure to difficult things and showing you how to cope, that’s another risk factor. The type of parenting that you had as a child can really affect the way you cope with the new challenges as you launch into adulthood.”

“Let’s say a person is starting to experience symptoms of a mental health disorder. What can they do to mitigate harm?”

“The most important thing that you can do to mitigate the effects that any kind of psychopathology might have is to get treatment earlier and when you’re younger. It’s like how habits are formed: they get strengthened over time and once they’re established they become biological, in a way. It’s much more difficult to break them and they stick around for a long time. If you think there’s something that may be wrong, you should try to get help before things become a crisis, before you feel like it’s having profound effects on your life.”

“Health care is so expensive and opaque that I think a lot people have a feeling that, “Maybe I’m depressed, maybe I have anxiety, but I’m probably fine.” They don’t want to potentially spend thousands of dollars seeing a doctor, so they wait until it’s absolutely necessary.”

“If you wait on getting treatment, your symptoms can become much more intractable. You save money in the short term, but your long term spending is much higher. We do preventative care for physical illness, but as a society we aren’t quite there with mental health.”

“What do you make of self-diagnosis forums, WebMD, and other online health tools?”

“I think that because health care has not been readily available in the past, and because there is still a stigma against going to see a mental health professional, people have relied on the internet to understand what’s going on with them. That can be a good first step, and certainly it can underscore the fact that you’re not alone in the types of symptoms that you’re having. But that doesn’t necessarily get you to treatment. It’s important to be able to go to a professional and say, “I think I need help with this.” Certainly the more resources the better, especially for people who haven’t had a lot of exposure to receiving mental health care. It can be scary. The internet can be useful but it doesn’t get you a diagnosis and it doesn’t necessarily get you treatment. But more information is always better.”

To read the rest:


OCD Awareness Week

OCD Awareness Week- October 9-15, 2016

Ok, so I found out about OCD Awareness Week, a little late. But I still feel like I needed to share it with everyone. I am OCD myself, so I am an advocate for all those who suffer from this disorder. Mine is not bad, I just clean a lot, and keep an immaculately clean house. But I am totally under control with my OCD, thank goodness. 

“Did you know that 1 in 100 adults likely have OCD? And up to 1 in 200 children? That’s a half a million children in the US alone. OCD can be a debilitating disorder, but there is treatment that can help. Unfortunately, it can take up to 14–17 years from the first onset of symptoms for people to get access to effective treatment, due to obstacles such as stigma and a lack of awareness about mental health, and OCD in particular. Learn more about OCD here.”

“OCD Awareness Week is an international effort to raise awareness and understanding about obsessive compulsive disorder and related disorders, with the goal of helping more people to get timely access to appropriate and effective treatment. Launched in 2009 by the IOCDF, OCD Awareness Week is now celebrated by a number of organizations across the US and around the world, with events such as OCD screening days, lectures, conferences, fundraisers, online Q&As, and more.”

Source: ocdweek


The Mental Health Consequences of Natural Disasters

The Mental Health Consequences of Natural Disasters

“When we see a natural disaster in the news, we might see pictures of houses destroyed and estimates of how many people are dead or injured. For survivors, though, there’s a less tangible kind of damage natural disasters inflict that isn’t talked about as much: damage to people’s mental health. The mental health effects of a natural disaster are felt for years after the event itself.”

“To learn more about how the mental health consequences of natural disasters, researchers from Sichuan University surveyed 435 children and adolescents who had survived two major earthquakes in remote mountainous regions of China.”

“The researchers followed up with participants 12 months and 30 months after the earthquakes. At 12 months, they found that 43.9 percent of the people surveyed had PTSD, 20.9 percent had depression, and 18.9 percent had both PTSD and depression. At 30 months, 15.7 percent of the participants had PTSD while 21.6 still had depression.”

“Several factors predicted which people were more likely to experience PTSD or depression in the wake of the disasters. Specifically, those who had lost a family member, witnessed previous earthquakes, had lower socioeconomic status, or had poor relationships with their parents were at higher risk.”

“Interpreting the result, the authors point out that while some children and adolescents who experience PTSD or depression after natural disasters recover within a couple years, some do not. According to the researchers, “some exhibit chronic, delayed-onset PTSD and depression, especially those with poor relationships with their parents or those living in precarious economic conditions.””

“The idea that those with poor parent-child relationships are more vulnerable to mental health disorders in the years following earthquakes fits with previous research that has found a link between social support and resilience after natural disasters. For example, one study found that social support as well as personality and spiritual beliefs affected how people recovered from the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. Another found that social support predicted quality of life.”

“These studies are a good reminder that some of the many kinds of destruction natural disasters bring with them have to do with mental health. Mental health issues like PTSD and depression make it harder for survivors to move on from what they experienced, and mental health care is an important part of rebuilding after natural disasters.”

Source: Consequences of natural disaster


Mental Health Awareness Week – October 2-8

Mental Health Awareness Week – October 2-8

Being bipolar myself, I can say that this weeks very important to me. I have become a huge advocate over the last few years about mental illnesses, especially bipolar disorder. I blog about it frequently and try to get the word out to all of my friends and family about how we must be aware of how many Americans are affected by some sort of mental illness. And not only must we know, but we also must be educated, so that you can spot the signs of someone who might be hurting or worse. Suicide prevention is real, and too many times, the signs were there and no one knew what to look for. And depression and anxiety are also forms of mental illnesses too. Please pledge today that you will become closer to your community and learn what you need to know about mental illnesses and how we can all help each other. 

  • Mental Illness Awareness Week
  • Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition.

“During the first full week of October, NAMI and participants across the country are raising awareness of mental illness. Each year we fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for equal care. Each year, the movement grows stronger.”

“During Mental Illness Awareness Week on Oct. 2-8, join NAMI in shining a light on mental illness and replacing stigma with hope by taking the #StigmaFree pledge at”

“To help spread the word, NAMI’s #MIAW pages provide a variety of resources to download, such as flyers, posters and social media graphics. Our resource toolkit contains press releases and other templates to customize within your communities.”

“We believe that mental health issues are important to address year-round, but highlighting them during #MIAW provides a time for people to come together and display the passion and strength of those working to improve the lives of the tens of millions of Americans affected by mental illness.”

“If you or someone you know may need a mental health assessment, anonymous online tools are available. For National Depression Screening Day on Oct. 6, you can get a free mental health screening at”


ADHD and Hyperfocus

ADHD and Hyperfocus

I found this article last night and it really struck me. I was unaware of hyper-focus, but once I started reading, I soon knew exactly what they were talking about. You know that ADHD prevents me from fully being able to focus, yet at the same time, if there is something that stimulates my brain, I can almost super-focus on that thing, and still be out of focus all around me too. It’s a weird phenomenon. 
“Hyperfocus is something in between a rumor and a symptom.”

“Among people with ADHD, it’s a commonly recognized phenomenon. Anecdotally, many people with ADHD can’t concentrate on some things but concentrate “too much” on others.”

“Still, it’s a stretch to say hyperfocus is a straight-up symptom of ADHD because there’s no mention of it in diagnostic guides and surprisingly little research has been done on it.”

“Part of the reason might be that the idea of having your attention glued to something with laser-like intensity doesn’t seem to line up with the idea of ADHD. People with ADHD, however, know that ADHD is more about not being able to regulate your attention than about never being able to pay attention to anything.”

“So when we find something engaging that gives our brain some kind of immediate reward, we sometimes just keep doing that thing, maybe long after other people would stop and go take care of other responsibilities. I’ve talked about ADHD as having magnetic attention, and the analogy here is that your attention gets stuck in a magnetic field so powerful you can’t pull away.”

“This can be good or bad. If the things that activate your hyperfocus are work projects, you’re probably not going to be complaining about that. If they’re things that are better done in moderation like playing video games, that might start to interfere with your life.”

“In a way, hyperfocus and inattention are two sides of the same symptom. Any time you’re not paying enough attention to one thing, there’s a good chance you’re paying too much attention to something else.”

“Some researchers are starting to take note that studying hyperfocus might provide some new insights into what ADHD is all about. For example, a group of researchers have just published a study showing that both medicated and unmedicated people with ADHD score higher on a questionnaire measuring hyperfocus than people without ADHD.”


6 Tips for Finding Happiness, Peace, and Good Mental Health

6 Tips for Finding Happiness, Peace, and Good Mental Health

“Sometimes life can throw us so many challenges, everything can start to feel overwhelming. It isn’t always easy to find the positive among the negative and keep smiling, and that’s OK. The good news is that there’s hope. There are countless ways to find the joy in life if you know how. Here are a few tips for finding inner peace and happiness:”

  • Play to your strengths

“When we’re feeling down we tend to focus on the negative, often on our own personal weaknesses. Don’t! Consciously identify your strengths and build on them. Maybe you wouldn’t be able to run a major corporation, but you’re a star at running your kitchen as head chef. That would make you an excellent candidate to help out at a local community kitchen — you’d have the chance to excel at something you enjoy and for an amazing cause. Find rewarding ways to use your abilities and you can build your self-confidence and happiness.”

  • Get outside

“Getting back to nature can do wonders for the human spirit. Make it a point to spend a little time outside each day, even if it’s only for a 15-minute walk. Better yet, break out of the ordinary, everyday, and take a day or weekend to visit a wildlife reserve, nature trail, or national landmark to completely immerse yourself in the natural world. It can be humbling to stand in the enormity of wilderness, and sometimes offers greatly-needed perspective.”

  • Be positive but realistic

“Practicing “realistic optimism” can be an effective way to keep positive without giving ourselves unrealistic expectations and setting us up for disappointment. Sometimes constant positive thinking is counterproductive, giving us the false idea that if we simply tell ourselves something, it will eventually happen. The truth is, some things are beyond your control. Good or bad, some things happen because they just do and others will never happen no matter how positive we stay. Brace yourself for the possibility that things could go wrong, but instead of being frustrated focus on how you’ll overcome it and move forward.”

  • Focus on the present

“Don’t let me scare you off, but here’s a fact: there are an infinite amount of things that could go wrong at your business dinner tonight or on your date next Thursday. But why worry about the future right now? Is fretting over the possibilities going to make any of them less likely to happen? Not a chance. So instead, keep your mind on the present moment because there are quite a few things you can do and control right now. For example, right now you can make sure you get your work done so you have plenty of time to prepare for your presentation. Right now you can grab some floss and get to work so that you have a charming smile for next week’s hot date. Focus on the present, and you’ll feel more in control.”

  • Get some exercise

“A sound mind requires a sound body, so keep yours in shape. Get your heart pumping with some exercise at least a few times a week. Seek daily opportunities to stay active — taking the stairs instead of the lift is an easy one — and do so with others when possible. Swimming in particular can boost your mood and even help manage depression. But even taking a 20-minute stroll around the neighborhood can be a great way to clear your mind and keep you fit.”

  • Communicate

“Relationships of every kind depend on clear, consistent communication. But being a strong communicator isn’t a skill that all of us have, and struggles with it can cause problems at home, work, and within our circle of friends. Be straightforward and say what you want to say; don’t talk around it. Be tactful, but if you aren’t happy about something, speak up! Whether it’s an unreasonable workload at the office or an argument with your spouse that’s still bothering you, find a way to calmly, reasonably approach your intended audience and talk to them about a solution. You may often find situations turn out in your favor: your boss genuinely didn’t realize he was overloading you and stops, for example.”


Here are some food tips on what foods to eat to make you more happy: 


Essential Oils for Autism

Essential Oils for Autism

 “More and more we are hearing about essential oils and the benefits of using them. Some time ago, I remember reading a thread in a private autism parents group. The gist was divided; half were for essential oils, half thought it was just another waste of time. Some parents even had the misconception that people were touting essential oils can “cure” autism.”



New Seasons can Affect Bipolar Disorder 

New Seasons Affect Bipolar Disorder 

I know that I am definitely one of the millions of people who suffer each season with Seasonal Affective Disorder. It’s part of the bipolar disorder. It has to do with our circadian rhythm’s, and how we get depressed from not enough daylight. 

Do you ever feel depressed for no reason during fall and winter months? Did you know that the amount of sun we receive each day does have an affect on our bodies happiness. And those who suffer from a mental illness are much more likely to feel or get depressed. When the sun is out less and less, more darkness is what we observe. So remember to get as much sun as possible by opening blinds, curtains, and letting in light. As well as, going outside more will help with not feeling as depressed.

*Seasonal Affective Disorder Versus Seasonal Bipolar Disorder

“Doctors have long distinguished between seasonal depression and seasonal bipolar disorder. Seasonal depression — commonly referred to as SAD, for seasonal affective disorder — is a mood disorder brought on by the biological effects of a lack of sunlight. Typically experienced in the late fall and winter, it is particularly prevalent in northern regions, according to the American Psychological Association (APA). What distinguishes seasonal bipolar disorder from SAD is the presence of a manic episode within a given period of time.”

“People must have a history of manic or hypomanic episodes (the extreme highs) to be diagnosed with a bipolar mood disorder, explains Ken Duckworth, MD, medical director for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and an assistant professor at the Harvard University Medical School. If that’s not part of their medical history, he says, then their seasonal winter response is a depressive disorder and not bipolar.”


Mental Health Awareness Month 

“Since 1949, Mental Health America and our affiliates across the country have led the observance of May is Mental Health Month by reaching millions of people through the media, local events and screenings. We welcome other organizations to join us in spreading the word that mental health is something everyone should care about by using the May is Mental Health Month toolkit materials and conducting awareness activities.”

  • May is Mental Health Month 2016

“This year’s theme for Mental Health Month is – Life with a Mental Illness – and will call on individuals to share what life with a mental illness feels like for them in words, pictures and video by tagging their social media posts with #mentalillnessfeelslike (or submitting to MHA anonymously). Posts will be collected and displayed at”

“Posting with the hashtag will allow people to speak up about their own experiences, to share their point of view with individuals who may be struggling to explain what they are going through—and help others figure out if they too are showing signs of a mental illness. Sharing is the key to breaking down negative attitudes and misperceptions surrounding mental illnesses, and to show others that they are not alone in their feelings and their symptoms.”

To read the whole article, click HERE.

“Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition.”

“1 in 5 Americans will be affected by a mental health condition in their lifetime and every American is affected or impacted through their friends and family. Take action today to help others as we fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for equal care.”

 See more at:


Project Semicolon ;

If You See Someone With A Semicolon On Their Body, Here’s What It Really Means;


Read the original:

Project Semicolon

“You may or may not have seen these drawings and tattoos of semicolons while browsing one of your social media feeds.”

“But these tattoos and drawings aren’t celebrating a punctuation mark; they actually have a deeper symbolism.”


“The semicolon symbolizes that the difficulties they face are not the end but a new beginning.”

“The symbolism of the semicolon is explained on Project Semicolon’s Website.”


  • A semicolon is used when an author could’ve chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you and the sentence is your life.

“By encouraging people to share their marks and stories, Project Semicolon seeks to instill hope and open up a dialogue about mental health.”

“People suffering from these issues don’t have to feel alone because there are thousands of people out there with similar struggles— their own semicolon’s.”


New Gene for Bipolar Found

Source: New Gene for Bipolar Found



Restoring Dignity to Mental Health

“Dignity in Mental Health was the theme for World Mental Health Day. As part of the discussion, we reflect on why there is such a big difference in attitude towards illness that stems from say the heart, to one that stems from the brain.”
“The World Health Organisation (WHO) has made it very clear how it views the way people with mental health conditions are treated: “Thousands of people with mental health conditions around the world are deprived of their human rights. They are not only discriminated against, stigmatised and marginalised but are also subject to emotional and physical abuse in both mental health facilities and the community. Poor quality care due to a lack of qualified health professionals and dilapidated facilities leads to further violations.”

“It makes for bleak reading and in the developed world, we’d like to think that the situation isn’t that bad. Sadly, it can be; hopefully, we will continue to change it for the better.”

Who Ambitions:

“In the coming months, WHO will be raising awareness of what can be done to ensure that people with mental health conditions can continue to live with dignity, through human rights-oriented policy and law, training of health professionals, respect for informed consent to treatment, inclusion in decision-making processes, and public information campaigns.”

“In their literature1, the WHO talks about how we can promote the rights and dignity of people with mental health conditions. In the health-care system we need to provide better support and care for people with mental health conditions by.”

• providing community-based services, encompassing a recovery approach that inspires hope and supports people to achieve their goals and aspirations;

• respecting people’s autonomy, including their right to make their own decisions about their treatment and care; and

• ensuring access to good quality care which promotes human rights, is responsive to people’s needs, and respects their values, choices and preferences
In the Community, we need to:

• support people with mental health conditions to participate in community life, and acknowledge the value of their contribution;

• respect their autonomy to make decisions for themselves, including about their living arrangements and personal and financial matters;

• ensure their access to employment, education, housing, social support and other opportunities; and

• include people in decision-making processes on issues affecting them, including policy, legislation and health service reform relating to mental health
“It will be interesting to observe how public (and professional) perceptions towards so-called mental illness evolves. Perhaps we should also be thinking about a better way to label conditions that affect different parts of the body, this in itself might help to shift some unwanted stigma.”




Check out this link to learn more:

 Restoring Dignity 


Small Lessons about Mental Illness 

The lessons learned about mental illness should transcend every day. These are a few points we should always be mindful of — if we vow to keep them close, they’ll make us more empathetic and understanding.

 People who suffer from mental illness are more than just the “sad” or “anti-social” stereotypes. There is no face of mental illness — your friend might be depressed, a parent or even yourself.


1. People with mental illness are more than what meets the eye. There are so many layers to these individuals, some with more baggage than others, but none the least, these people have so much going on in their lives. We cannot stereotype mental illnesses because every person, every case is different. Just like a diamond, no people are the same, nor do they have the same exact illness. People are born with mental illnesses, and then there are people who suffer traumatic experiences, then they inherit a mental illness. There are too many ways for illnesses to occur to be able to list them. That would be non-sense.

Click below to learn about an amazing advocate group:


 2. TV shows don’t always show an accurate representation of mental illness — so don’t be fooled.
There are too many tv shows that want to put the topic of mental illness in their scripts, but most are going about it all wrong by inaccurately portraying a mental illness, or saying degrading slurs about people with a mental illness, I am talking about reality tv. Those are the worst comments I have ever heard. So naïve, and also so wrong about their facts they say, and use inappropriate language about mental illnesses. I am talking about the reality show(s) “Real Housewives”. I can remember from the Atlanta season, Beverly Hills and Orange County all saying things such as don’t be schizo, or self-diagnosing friends to have bi-polar all because a person got angry and loud. You cannot self-diagnose, or invent illnesses that do not exist for ratings! This is a serious topic, and there is no room to use an illness to gain fame! 

Conversely, it feels like a huge win for those who suffer from a type of mental illness when the disorder is portrayed accurately on TV. Shows such as “Shameless” and “Homeland” do a fantastic job of presenting mental health issues how they actually are.

Here are some examples of incorrect portrayals:

  • Lizzie McGuire

“While you probably remember this episode for that killer dance number, an even bigger event happens. Miranda (Lalaine) thinks she’s too fat, so she develops an eating disorder. By the end of the episode, however, Miranda’s friends are able to convince her she looks great, and her eating disorder magically goes away. It’s never referenced in another episode.”

“This is definitely not accurate. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), “Eating disorders are serious biologically-influenced mental illnesses, not passing fads.” So, if Miranda’s condition was portrayed accurately, she would still be suffering from her eating disorder in future episodes.”

  • Full House

“Remember that random season 4 episode when D.J. (Candace Cameron Bure) had anorexia? It’s pretty easy to forget, since D.J. only had the eating disorder for 30 minutes (or 22, if you don’t count commercials). As we just learned from the NIMH, eating disorders aren’t just here one second, gone the next. They are serious issues that take adequate time to overcome. As much as we appreciate a good ol’ Danny Tanner dad talk, in reality, that’s not how eating disorders go away.”

  • Hey Arnold

“In one episode of this classic Nick show, Sid becomes obsessed — with a capital O — with germs. After watching a hygiene video, he constantly cleans everything he comes in contact with and eventually wears “protective” clothing. After Arnold explains to Sid that germs are everywhere, Sid almost instantly is back to himself again.”

“To be fair, the episode never clearly says Sid has OCD, but it’s definitely implied. Since that’s the case, Sid’s OCD wouldn’t just cure itself. There are several ways to treat OCD, such as medication or cognitive behavior therapy, but Sid’s mental illness went POOF, and was gone. Sadly, it’s not that easy to overcome OCD.”

  • Saved By the Bell

“One of the most iconic moments from this show has to be Jessie’s (Elizabeth Berkley) caffeine pill addiction. In order to get through midterms and her singing group, Jessie starts popping pills to stay away and stay focused. Of course, the pills end up having the opposite effect, after she has a breakdown in front of her BFF Zack (Mark-Paul Gosselaar). At the end of the episode, Jessie is surrounded by her friends and tells them, “My mom’s taking me to the doctor tomorrow for counseling.” Annnnd, that’s it.”

“Jessie’s issue isn’t addressed in any future episodes. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH) states, “Gaining the ability to stop abusing drugs is just one part of a long and complex recovery process.” The key words here are “long” and “complex,” neither of which are applied to Jessie’s addiction.”

  • Will & Grace

“In one episode, Grace (Debra Messing) tries to get out of jury duty by forging a note from her therapist that reads, “Borderline personality disorder. High-risk for psychotic break, particularly in a stressful situation.” Later, Grace tricks her friends into really thinking she’s mentally ill, and they become afraid of her.”

“The main problem with this episode is it presents people with mental health issues as “crazy people.” It’s helping to enhance the stigma surrounding mental disorders. True, the show is a comedy and at face-value, the scenes play out as entertaining. But, if you take a moment and really think about what you’re watching, you’ll notice it presents people who actually do have borderline personality disorder as neurotic people who we should fear and avoid — and this is simply the wrong message.”

3. Therapy is an awesome option and you should never be ashamed! 

Give Therapy a Try!
Going to therapy is like going to the gym. You’re putting time, money and thought routinely into something that makes you a healthier and happier. That’s something to be proud of.


Check out this link to learn more:

Reasons to go to Therapy

4. Guys aren’t exempt from eating disorders. Eating disorders can develop at any age but males and females are most at risk for anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa in their late teens/early twenties, while binge eating disorder is more prevalent in a person in their mid-twenties. 

Check out this link to learn more:

Males and Eating Disorders


5. You can’t just make your mental illness “go away”. Personality disorders involve long term, problematic behaviors that typically are first exhibited during adolescence and cause marked distress and impairment. The very definition of personality disorders as “chronic maladaptive patterns of behavior” implies that symptoms are stable over time; however, recent studies indicate that symptoms improve and may even completely remit over the years. Does this mean these disorders can go away? Yes and no. But mostly, no. 

When you talk about recovery, strangely enough, “recovery” is still a relatively new concept in our field and many of us had little or no exposure to it in our training. So it’s no surprise that there would be a lot of confusion about what recovery from mental illness actually means.


Check out this link to learn more:

Recovery for Mental Illness?


Take Our Quiz!


Please help others gain insight as to how much awareness people know about Mental Illnesses.




What Does Financial Health have to do with Mental Health?

Financial Health…
Studies Show Your Financial Health Could Be a Good Indicator of Your Mental Health


“Your debt may cost you more than just interest. Research shows there’s a clear link between your financial health and your mental health, and your debt may serve as a tangible representation of your psychological state.”

“Approximately 35 percent of Americans have delinquent debt, according to a 2014 report published by the Urban Institute. Overdue debts average around $5,178 and usually include a mixture of credit card balances, medical bills and unpaid utilities.”

“And that’s just personal debt. Most small business owners also have some form of business debt. A 2012 Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index poll found that 36 percent of business owners are uncomfortable with their company’s debt.”

Debt and Mental Health

“Approximately one in five U.S. adults experiences a mental illness each year according to the National Institute of Mental Health. And multiple studies report people with mental health problems are more likely to be in debt.”

“Researchers from the University of South Hampton examined 65 studies on debt and mental health. Their report, which was published in Clinical Psychology Review, found a correlation between mental illness and financial problems.”

“Researchers concluded the likelihood of having a mental health problem is three times higher among people who have debt. Depression, anxiety disorders and psychotic disorders were among the common mental illnesses people in debt experienced.”



8 Normal Experiences That Should Not Always Be Labeled a Mental Illness

Don’t Always Label Mental Illness
“What does mental illness look like to you? If you walked by someone on the street, would you be able to detect that they are a sufferer? Many of us would struggle with this because there are so many things that cloak illness such as intelligence, prestige, style, culture, or personality. But what do you think a mental health condition is? How would you define it? Could you define it properly? A mental health condition is typically something that interferes with daily functionality and causes difficulties in every aspect of existence (social, emotional, psychological, and even physiological). Symptoms are so obvious and debilitating some times that school or work and home or community life is difficult. A mental health condition often causes behaviors, thinking patterns, and emotions that interferes with relationships, education/employment, and reality testing. This article will emphasize how important it is to refrain from self-evaluation and quick judgments about mental illness.”


As a result, I have put together a short list that outlines reasons why certain experiences should not be labeled as a mental health condition without careful evaluation:

1. Anxiety

“Life is full of anxiety and it’s a very normal part of existence. Can you think of a time when you were very anxious about life and your future? Some people say “that’s all the time!” For young people, anxiety is typical during early adulthood when college, relationships, and seeking employment are the main stressors in life. Even those of us who are therapists struggle with anxiety. The work we do, the people we see, the world-wide complexities we ponder, and the schedules we have are all a recipe for anxiety. There’s always something to be anxious about such as financial concerns, safety, family, employment, health, your children, your spouse, etc. Life is going to be filled with worry and anxiety. Who said it wouldn’t or shouldn’t be? None of us will escape this. Just because you are anxious does not mean you need medication or a diagnosis. Anxiety only becomes a clinical problem when it is difficult to control and results in psychological symptoms (feeling stressed or fatigued and depressed), behavioral symptoms (neglecting responsibilities or engaging in avoidance or using substances to cope), or physiological symptoms (vomiting, nausea, shaking, muscle spasms, etc). Even if you must reach out to a therapist or doctor, that is okay too!”

  2. Restlessness or hyperactivity: How many times have you heard someone say that “hyperactivity and restlessness means you have ADHD?” How many people have you heard say that your child is “overly hyperactive?” We are in the ADHD-age. Everything from forgetfulness to hyperactive behaviors are all instantly characterized as ADHD. It’s okay to have energy, it’s okay that your child bounces all over the place (he’s a child!), and it’s okay that you are forgetful at times. ADHD-like symptoms only become a problem when, again, it interferes with daily life. If you are forgetting that you left the door to your home unlocked, are so inattentive that you are extremely disorganized, or are so hyperactive that you are offensive to others and cannot slow down your pace, you might indeed have some ADHD symptoms.”

3. Depressed/sad mood: 

Just like with anxiety, depression or low mood is often a normal occurrence in many situations. Life can sometimes hit us hard with unexpected things such as speeding tickets, fines, or fender benders, loss of employment, having to move, or the death of a loved one or severe illness. Depressed mood or sadness is likely to occur during these times and it’s expected to happen. However, depressed mood or sadness that results in loss of appetite, poor sleep patterns, anhedonia or loss of interest in things once enjoyed, substance use, or irritability should be diagnosed as clinical depression. Depression is diagnosed when it interferes with the normal flow of life.”

4. Grief:

 Grief is very complicated. In fact, there are multiple studies on grief and therapy groups providing support to grieving individuals to help us understand what it is and why it is different from depression. There have been major “arguments” in the field of psychiatry/psychology over what grief is and the fear that the DSM will pathologize normal grief. It’s important that we understand that grief does not have a time-frame of when it will disappear. Someone can grieve deep down inside for decades, but this doesn’t mean they are depressed. It will take a meticulous and knowledgeable therapist and psychiatrist to tease depression and normal grief apart. But it is important that I mention that grief can certainly turn into depression.”

5. Rigid beliefs/behaviors: 

As a therapist, I often see parents and families who come to me asking for help for their child or adolescent who “seems to have autism.” When I ask parents to elaborate on the type of “symptoms” they believe characterizes an autism spectrum disorder, I often hear parents say: “Johnny is so rigid and will throw a major tantrum if things change around the house” or “Bobby only wants to play with kids who enjoy what he enjoys.” The reality is that many of us are this way, not just kids with autism. Many of us would only socialize with people who think like we do, view life as we do, and have similar goals. Many of us would also only find pleasure in discussing the things we find most interesting. It’s very difficult for families to tease apart inflexible, autism-like behaviors from normal behaviors. Most kids will only be screened for autism if they show a constellation of symptoms. Inflexible behavior alone is not enough to suspect autism.”

6. Fear:

 “Unfortunately, most parents become very concerned when their child develops a host of irrational fears and often questions a mental health professional about disorders that can highly stigmatize a young person. For example, I’ve had clients in the past who were extremely afraid of animals and would cry, scream, or run at the sight of a small dog or cat. For some parents, this behavior would be alarming, especially if the animal is a family pet or friendly pet. However, it is important to consider the history and temperament of the child. Was the child attacked (or witnessed someone else attached) by an animal? Is the child exposed to animals on a regular basis? Does the child just simply not like small crawling creatures? Is the child high-strung? Could the child have anxiety that increases their fear of animals? Essentially, it’s important to keep an open mind about fear because it doesn’t always mean that an individual has a diagnosable disorder. In fact, fear can be very healthy as it alerts us to what can negatively affect us in our environment.”

7. Reduced interest in social relationships: 

“Some people have struggled their entire life with relationships and get to a place where they don’t want to deal with the stressors that often accompanies a relationship. Some examples include: misunderstandings and arguments, jealousy in romantic relationships, commitment (which can be scary for some people), or sharing. For other people, relationships are extremely important to them but they just can’t seem to make or keep friends. Does this truly mean the person has a psychological problem? Not necessarily. We all have preferences, we all have fears, and we all have challenges. Your challenge may be facing your boss everyday, while someone else’s challenge might be making or keeping friends. If the inability to keep or maintain friendships and other relationships interferes with daily functionality, then the person might want to speak with a therapist to explore whether this truly is a problem.”


8. Difficulty learning certain subjects:

 “Whether you believe it or not, some kids (including adults) struggle with subjects that most of us think all of us should know. For example, many adults struggle with mathematics or grammar. Using numbers and language in daily life is important but many kids struggle and even adults. This doesn’t always mean the person has a learning disorder. In fact, some kids and adults are gifted and require a certain type of teacher, are better in certain subjects than in others, or are simply more technical than academic. There are a variety of things that should be taken into consider such as:”

“How well you were taught in your school or how well the school understands you, socio-economic status, trauma history, frequent relocation of schools, abuse or neglect history, a mental health condition that interferes with concentration, etc.”


Living with Bipolar: What is it REALLY Like?


Being Bipolar…  

“Whilst reading about how bipolar I affects the lives of patients and their families is insightful, listening first hand to a patient describe their experience of actually living with the condition takes us much closer to understanding what it’s really like. It’s a moving experience.”

“This is particularly noticeable at international conferences; experts provide a fascinating insight about new developments and progress in the management of bipolar I but when a patient takes centre stage, there’s a sense of the here and now. Suddenly what doctors believe or know to be true is translated through the mouths of the experienced and our understanding is deepened.”

“What patients describe is somehow more terrifying than the audience anticipate; for a moment you might be fooled into thinking that his/her journey with bipolar I has been relatively okay. But then comes that break in the voice, a poignant pause or a tear in the eye and suddenly it’s apparent that this patient speaker has been on a rollercoaster journey more befitting a horror movie.”

“The hospital admissions, the mood extremities, the self-loathing, feelings of anxiety, irritability and agitation, the once not knowing what was happening to him/her, the battle with reaching the optimal treatment regime and finding support, the estrangement from “friends”, the misdiagnosis, the suicide attempts. About two-thirds of patients also report feeling depressed during an episode of mania1 which is particularly worrying because suicide attempts are more likely during mania with depressive symptoms.”

“Successful attorney and patient with bipolar I disorder Terri Cheney from Beverly Hills says: “I’m always looking for someone to express what I’m feeling and can’t put into words, particularly with mania with depressive symptoms; that’s my current quest, to find other people who have been through this who know what I’m talking about when I say I have to break something and don’t look at me like I’m crazy.””

Involving family and friends:

“Having a good support network is vital for patients with mental health issues. As Terri Cheney describes in one of her videos (you can find the links at the end of this article): “When I came out with my book, there was this miraculous understanding and support and empathy and now I have a support team rather than people that I’ve alienated. It’s like people have really rallied and come to my rescue so now when I’m suicidal I know that I can tell people and not go that far down the path like I did before so it’s amazing to me what the effect of disclosure has been with my relationships with other people.””

“Involving family and friends is also important in terms of visits to the clinician. “Who knows you better than your loved ones. They are so well equipped to explain to the doctor exactly what he needs to know,” says Cheney.”

“For the clinician, it’s often very difficult to diagnose bipolar I disorder based on an initial visit, typically because the patient’s self-awareness changes with mood and it becomes difficult to translate the experiences and moods into symptoms identified in the DSM or other scales. For instance, what might appear to a patient as confidence and clever ideas for a new business venture might be a pattern of grandiose thinking and manic behaviour that close friends and family acknowledge to be uncharacteristic.”

“The symptoms of anxiety, irritability and agitation are another example of symptoms that might go unrecognized: The patient might be more focused on feeling frustrated, for example, than looking inward and so may not be a reliable reporter. Involving loved ones helps to achieve objective impressions, as well as providing that all-important support to help people with bipolar I maintain well-being.”

Mental health: Overcoming the stigma of mental illness

Overcoming The Stigma  
“False beliefs about mental illness can cause significant problems. Learn what you can do about stigma.”

Stigma is when someone views you in a negative way because you have a distinguishing characteristic or personal trait that’s thought to be, or actually is, a disadvantage (a negative stereotype). Unfortunately, negative attitudes and beliefs toward people who have a mental health condition are common.

“Stigma can lead to discrimination. Discrimination may be obvious and direct, such as someone making a negative remark about your mental illness or your treatment. Or it may be unintentional or subtle, such as someone avoiding you because the person assumes you could be unstable, violent or dangerous due to your mental health condition. You may even judge yourself.”

“Some of the harmful effects of stigma can include:”

  • “Reluctance to seek help or treatment”
  • “Lack of understanding by family, friends, co-workers or others you know”
  • “Fewer opportunities for work, school or social activities or trouble finding housing”
  • “Bullying, physical violence or harassment”
  • “Health insurance that doesn’t adequately cover your mental illness treatment”
  • “The belief that you’ll never be able to succeed at certain challenges or that you can’t improve your situation”

Steps to cope with stigma:

  • “Get treatment. You may be reluctant to admit you need treatment. Don’t let the fear of being labeled with a mental illness prevent you from seeking help. Treatment can provide relief by identifying what’s wrong and reducing symptoms that interfere with your work and personal life.”
  • “Don’t let stigma create self-doubt and shame. Stigma doesn’t just come from others. You may mistakenly believe that your condition is a sign of personal weakness or that you should be able to control it without help. Seeking psychological counseling, educating yourself about your condition and connecting with others with mental illness can help you gain self-esteem and overcome destructive self-judgment.”
  • “Don’t isolate yourself. If you have a mental illness, you may be reluctant to tell anyone about it. Your family, friends, clergy or members of your community can offer you support if they know about your mental illness. Reach out to people you trust for the compassion, support and understanding you need.”
  • “Don’t equate yourself with your illness. You are not an illness. So instead of saying “I’m bipolar,” say “I have bipolar disorder.” Instead of calling yourself “a schizophrenic,” say “I have schizophrenia.””
  • “Join a support group. Some local and national groups, such as the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), offer local programs and Internet resources that help reduce stigma by educating people with mental illness, their families and the general public. Some state and federal agencies and programs, such as those that focus on vocational rehabilitation or the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), offer support for people with mental health conditions.”
  • “Get help at school. If you or your child has a mental illness that affects learning, find out what plans and programs might help. Discrimination against students because of a mental health condition is against the law, and educators at primary, secondary and college levels are required to accommodate students as best they can. Talk to teachers, professors or administrators about the best approach and resources. If a teacher doesn’t know about a student’s disability, it can lead to discrimination, barriers to learning and poor grades.”
  • “Speak out against stigma. Consider expressing your opinions at events, in letters to the editor or on the Internet. It can help instill courage in others facing similar challenges and educate the public about mental illness.”

Others’ judgments almost always stem from a lack of understanding rather than information based on the facts. Learning to accept your condition and recognize what you need to do to treat it, seeking support, and helping educate others can make a big difference.”


What Your Smartphone’s Sleep Interference Could Mean For Mental Health

Smartphone’s Interference & Mental Health  
“Your smartphone habit may be doing more than harming your relationships — it could be damaging your sleep and ultimately triggering depression and anxiety.”

“A growing body of research finds that smartphone users have sleep problems that interfere with their daily functioning.”

“We know that young people and older people are on some kind of screen before bedtime, even within the last 30 or 60 minutes before going to sleep,” said Dr. Shalini Paruthi, the director of the Pediatric Sleep and Research Center at Saint Louis University.”

“Everybody has a wakeup alarm, but it may be equally important to set a bedtime alarm,” Paruthi continued. “That way it gives ourselves a signal: ‘Okay, time to put this away. Time to start my bedtime routine.'”

“One study, published in 2014, found an association between smartphone use after 9 p.m. and decreased sleep quantity. Its researchers surveyed 82 upper-level managers and found that those who slept less felt depleted in the morning and were less engaged at work the next day.”

“Strikingly, as part of the study, smartphones were worse for employees’ sleep and workplace engagement than other screen-based devices, such as laptops, tablets or television, perhaps in part because they make it hard to detach from workplace obligations.”

“And another study, also published in 2014, found that university students who self-reported high use (based on a six-point Smartphone Addiction Scale) were also more likely to report higher levels of depression, anxiety and what’s know as “daytime dysfunction,” or excessive daytime sleepiness.”

“While the study didn’t prove that smartphones cause anxiety and depression, it did show a correlation between high smartphone use, high depression levels and poor sleep. In the study, respondents who reported suffering from depression and anxiety were also more likely to report poor sleep quality.”

“Sleep loss and anxiety are unfortunate bedfellows. Lack of sleep can provoke parts of the brain that regulate anxiety, and unfortunately, innate worriers are most susceptible to the damaging effects of sleep loss.”

“There’s some evidence, as HuffPost reported in February, that some people may find smartphone behavior changes more challenging than others: In a 2015 study published in Personality and Individual Differences, respondents who checked their smartphones frequently were more prone to impulsive, moody, temperamental and materialistic behavior.”

“Regardless of personality type, it’s clear that sleep needs to be a top priority for all of us. “Smartphone use, tablets, screen time use — it can have such a major effect on sleep,” Paruthi said. “We don’t want screens to cut into the quantity of our sleep — but also the quality of our sleep.””


Slow medicine

We need more doctors like Michael Finkelstein who understands the very basic reality that he shares in the brief video below. I use the simple meme Everything Matters to call attention to it and have written a lot about it as a concept as well.

slow-medicine-fbIn our fast-paced world, we often look for quick-fix solutions to our health challenges, not realizing that these “solutions” in fact may contribute to our problems. Most health challenges are in fact the result of an imbalance in our bodies and lives, and most quick-fix solutions actually exacerbate these imbalances. Slow Medicine teaches that to achieve and sustain good health, we need to become aware of each area of our lives and explore how to optimize our wellness, not only within each of these areas, but also through their harmonious integration. In this video, Michael Finkelstein MD demonstrates the Slow Medicine principles, guiding viewers on…

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What to Do During a Mental Health Crisis

What’s Your Plan of Action?  

  • “Before a crisis occurs, people with mental illness and their family members can be prepared by educating themselves on the condition and finding out what local mental health services are available.”

All American youngsters know the rules: Don’t take candy from strangers, play nice in the sandbox and call 911 during an emergency.

  • But what if the emergency is related to mental health?

“More than 4 million people visited the emergency room due to a mental health condition from 2009 to 2010, according to the latest data from the the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That same year, Americans made 63.3 million visits to doctors offices, hospitals and emergency rooms for what were eventually diagnosed as mental disorders, the CDC also found. “The reality is, a mental health crisis is a common occurrence,” says Paolo del Vecchio, who directs the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Center for Mental Health Services.”

Here’s what to know if one strikes you or someone you love:
1. Get to know a psychiatrist.

“Mental health crises rarely arise out of nowhere. “Psychiatric illnesses, for the most part, evolve slowly, and so there’s going to be a lot of warning,” says Dr. Daniel Lieberman, the ​clinical director of the Department of Psychiatry at George Washington University Hospital. Ninety percent of people who die by suicide,​ for instance, give some indication they’re considering it, he says. “There’s this really irrational myth that people who talk about suicide do not commit suicide, and that’s exactly the opposite of reality,” he says.”
“That means that, in many cases, there’s ample time to get in touch with a mental health professional before a mental illness – be it a psychotic disorder, bipolar disorder or depression – becomes an emergency. In addition to providing ongoing care that can help prevent a crisis, he or she can be your first point of contact should an emergency arise. “If somebody does have a relationship with an outpatient psychiatrist, that’s the first place to go,” Lieberman says.”

“Such a partnership is key after the crisis, too, since almost 1 in 10 people discharged from state psychiatric hospitals are readmitted within 30 days, according to SAMHSA.​ “Having that kind of ongoing care is critical,” del Vecchio says.”

2. Empower yourself./2

“Before a crisis, people with mental illness and their family members can benefit from educating themselves about a condition. Dr. Jeffrey Borenstein​, president and CEO of the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, recommends​ reviewing the American Psychiatric Association’s consumer guide to the latest Diagnostic and Statistical Manual or reading other research-based materials on your loved one’s condition. “Having a book is extremely useful because it really empowers the family and the person to understand the cutting edge information about these conditions,” he says.”

“You can also be proactive by ​getting to know the lay of the mental health services land in your area, del Vecchio says. Your community may have mental health services outside of hospitals such as mobile crisis teams, respite programs, and triage and assessment facilities. One way to find out is through SAMHSA’s treatment locator, which identifies mental health and addiction treatment settings based on ZIP code.”
3. Recognize an emergency.

“What constitutes a mental health emergency? Any time a person is an immediate danger to others or themselves, experts say. “In many ways, issues related to suicide are similar to having chest pain: This is an emergency, and it should be taken seriously,” Borenstein says. In other words, if someone around you is threatening violence, call 911​ or take the person to the nearest emergency room yourself, he says.”

“Other situations that warrant quick care include people who show signs of psychosis that affect their functioning such as delusions, paranoia or fear, Borenstein says. People who are extremely agitated, wild, overly active and unable to calm down should also raise red flags – particularly if they don’t respond to verbal interventions like saying, “Hey, can we sit down and talk?” Lieberman adds.”

“Sudden behavior changes should be taken seriously, too. “If something evolves rapidly, it’s probably not psychiatric,” Lieberman says. It’s probably something really, really serious like poisoning, and they just need to be taken to the closest emergency room immediately.” If you have a choice, head to an academic medical center, since clinicians there tend to be up-to-date on the most effective procedures and treatments, he says.”
4. Know where (else) to go.

“​The emergency room is often not the best place to go in a psychiatric crisis since the waits can be long and the psychiatric care insufficient, del Vecchio says. What’s more, most hospitals won’t hospitalize patients for mental health conditions unless they are suicidal or homicidal, Lieberman says. “Mental health professionals are using hospitals less and less as time goes on,” he explains, due to the high cost of care and low rate of reimbursement from insurance companies. That’s part of the reason why it’s often a better idea to call your mental health care provider (if you have one) or your primary care provider if you don’t.”

“Not everyone has quick access to a hospital or psychiatric care, either. “There’s a crisis in mental health care across the country,” says Virginia Sen. Creigh Deeds, who has focused on mental health care reform since his son died by suicide in 2013. “As your skin darkens, as your income goes down, as the people around you are fewer and fewer, your access to care is tough, very tough.””

“If mental health care seems out of reach, try a hotline such as SAMHSA’s suicide prevention line or disaster distress helpline, which can walk you through the safest steps, or use a resource like SAMHSA’s locator, which can help you find the closest service.”

4. Know where (else) to go.
​The emergency room is often not the best place to go in a psychiatric crisis since the waits can be long and the psychiatric care insufficient, del Vecchio says. What’s more, most hospitals won’t hospitalize patients for mental health conditions unless they are suicidal or homicidal, Lieberman says. “Mental health professionals are using hospitals less and less as time goes on,” he explains, due to the high cost of care and low rate of reimbursement from insurance companies. That’s part of the reason why it’s often a better idea to call your mental health care provider (if you have one) or your primary care provider if you don’t. 
Not everyone has quick access to a hospital or psychiatric care, either. “There’s a crisis in mental health care across the country,” says Virginia Sen. Creigh Deeds, who has focused on mental health care reform since his son died by suicide in 2013. “As your skin darkens, as your income goes down, as the people around you are fewer and fewer, your access to care is tough, very tough.”
If mental health care seems out of reach, try a hotline such as SAMHSA’s suicide prevention line or disaster distress helpline, which can walk you through the safest steps, or use a resource like SAMHSA’s locator, which can help you find the closest service. 
5. Seek support.

“Dealing with a mental health crisis is extremely stressful. In order to handle it as effectively as possible, the loved ones affected by a crisis need to take care of themselves, too, del Vechhio says. This might be by connecting with family members or friends who have gone through similar situations or reaching out to an organization like the National Alliance on Mental Illness, which has chapters in every state, he says.”

“It’s important to know that these types of things are fairly common and that they’re not alone,” Borenstein adds. “Treatment is available for their loved one.”


Can You Curb Anger???

Eat Away Your Anger

“Ever wonder which foods are best for reducing anger? Freeing inhibitions? Fighting anxiety and sadness? Food & Life prescribes the following…”

Food That Help Reduce Anger

Mollusks, oysters, clams, scallops, mussels; grains (sweet rice); vegetables (fennel, celery — also useful for high blood pressure — purple cabbage); black berries, black soy beans; mung beans; pecans, hazelnuts and coconuts; certain fish (carp, freshwater eels, sardines, herring, anchovies); egg whites (they may be added to soup); black sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and flaxseeds.”

Foods To Fight Anxiety And Sadness

“Radish, turnips, lotus root, carrots, certain fruits (orange, pear—especially Asian pear— quince, persimmon, almonds, pine nuts), small white beans, millet, trout and carp, sea bass.”

Foods To Fight Fear

Certain vegetables (zucchini, endive), mushrooms, seaweed, certain fruits (chestnuts, melon, watermelon, tropical fruits), legumes (black beans, black-eyes peas), shellfish, mussels, certain fish (catfish, shark, grouper), sesame seeds.”

Foods For Fighting The Cold Or Overcoming Pain

“(For instance, menstrual cramps): strong-flavored vegetables (garlic, onions, green onions), aromatic herbs, (parsley, chives), certain fruits (plums, cherries)”


Six Journal Ideas to Deal with Depression

Ideas to deal with depression

“I have been writing in a journal almost all of my life. In the beginning I wrote about movies I saw and my Superman trading card collection, but by the time I was a teen I learned that journaling helped me work out my moods, worries, and problems. Sometimes there was no more therapeutic a process I could do for my ADHD & Depression than hold an internal conversation with myself. This was the power of the journal: to provide a constructive environment for me to explore private issues and often resolve them.”


“Here are six ideas for journals that can provide a constructive method of self-expression as a coping strategy:”

“The Traditional Journal: Your local bookstore will usually have an entire wall dedicated to journals. You don’t have to break the bank for a leather-bound, hand-sewn journal filled with handmade papers. An inexpensive notebook will do. You can even make your own journal with scraps of paper & yarn to thread the pages together, but you might want something sturdier for regular usage.
I recommend writing about your thoughts & feelings instead of creating a journalogue of your day to day activities. Life often flies by faster than you can keep up, getting you quickly behind in your journal writing and making the process work instead of joy. Most people eventually stop because catching up is too stressful. Try setting a theme for each journal instead. Having a topic relieves some of the pressure of thinking of what to write. You can also let your journals represent set periods of time like semesters, quarters, or years. This gives you a chance to begin anew mentally and creatively at the beginning of each new time period.”

“The Digital Journal: These are functionally the same as traditional journals, but with the benefits of having less to carry around since you already have a smart phone, tablet, or laptop, being able to add media files to your entries, and always having them on hand when you feel the need to jot down your thoughts. Some apps give you access to the same journal across all devices. These journals generally sync to the cloud, so you may want to see if encryption and password protection is possible. An alternative to journaling apps is blogging. This is a public process usually, though they can be password protected if you wish. I knew a girl who created a new blog for each phase of her life. It was a creative & unique use of blogging.”


“The Art Journal: Whether you sketch, paint, or collage, sketch books are built with heavier paper and can handle much more than the flimsy pages of traditional journals. There are many choices from spiral bound student sketchbooks to hardbound beauties made with journaling in mind. Turning a sketch book into an art journal lets you express with images what you are feeling. It can be as fancy as you need it to be, or as sparse. You can annotate, or let the art stand on its own. Pairing art with self-expression can be very healing and stress reducing.”

“Sound & Video Journals: Modern devices make these types of journals possible. If writing is hard for you, but talking isn’t, you may find that an app that gathers your voice memos or video clips gives you an avenue of expression that is very therapeutic. The downside to these types of journals is that they take up a lot of data, and they can be overheard, but they are the easiest to maintain. Just tap and talk.”

“The Social Media Journal: Social media is often mocked for its emphasis on ephemera and boring minutia like what somebody had for breakfast, but who is to say that there isn’t an audience to appreciate breakfast microblogging? Here is a perfect medium for expressing feelings that ebb and flow with your day. Many people find social media a very convenient and succinct way to journal without the work. It’s spontaneous and unfiltered. Twitter’s limit of 140 characters per post should help you keep your thoughts short and sweet as you experience ups and downs. Tumblr or Facebook can offer you longer entries. Other likeminded individuals can then find you and offer words of encouragement.”


“You may want to create an anonymous profile to spare friends & family members the pain of reading your entries. Not everybody is supportive of transparency. There have been more than a few times in my twenty years online where a family member has complained to my parents that I am too negative or too down on myself. They don’t call me to see how I’m doing. They don’t offer words of encouragement. They just worry that I am embarrassing myself. Somehow they feel that shutting down my avenue of expression will help me become more positive, so I politely ignore them. However, this is the reality of public journaling. When you express yourself in public, you cannot control who reads it and how they feel about it. Just a word of warning.”

“The Throw-Away Journal: Why keep a journal‽ Who’s going to read it anyway, right? There have been times that I have created text journals on my computer that I deleted from existence once I felt they were done. They were never meant to be passed down to posterity. They were never meant to be shared. I poured my darkest, most secret feelings into them until I had nothing left to pour. You can buy a cheap notebook and fill it with your thoughts, then recycle it or chuck it in the bin. It is in these journals I expressed my ugliest, suicidal thoughts—a cathartic bleeding with text. When I destroy them, nobody, not even I, will ever miss them. In journal writing, the process is sometimes more important than the archive.”

“Having a place where you can regularly expunge or explore your feelings can be very therapeutic. Perhaps you haven’t given journals a chance because they seem like work. However, if you find your unique method of expression you may find journals more helpful than you ever imagined.”


6 Blessings of Mental Illness

Blessings of Mental Illness

1. Generosity
“Think of the most generous friend you have. I will tell you what you already know: They are not proud or self-important. What they have, they can give because unlike the self-important person, they don’t view their possessions and time as personal entitlements. Mental Illness shatters the altar of self. When minimal mental stability is hard to grasp, of what use is this item or that? Besides, when I give, for a little while, I control the direction of my world, and control is not something I often feel.”


2. Spirituality
“True spirituality begins with one of two desires. We are driven either by the longing for a transcendent experience or the desperate hope that someone greater than ourselves exists to meet our needs. Those struggling with mental illness rarely question that they are needy. Life makes this rather clear. This allows us to reach out our hands without reservation.”

sun in hands

3. Empathy
“The phrase “hurting people hurt people” rings true. So does this corollary: “Those who know they need know when others need.” The experience of helplessness is one of the most universal realities of the mentally ill, and meeting a perceived need in another is one of the most potent ways to feel empowered.”


4. Accepting Spirit
“It becomes quite difficult to condemn when it is consistently obvious that my own life is not all together. Awareness of my own confusion allows me to accept you freely. Ironically, although I can accept you with ease, I don’t show the same grace to myself. Here is where I need you to help.”


5. Courage
“Many formative experiences create courage. But few of them involve Herculean steps of courage before your feet hit the floor. Getting out of bed to begin the day can be a sweet victory, and strings of victories create confidence. Courage to wake. Courage to rest. Courage to live in between. It isn’t a bad mantra.”


6. Creativity
“There are societal norms for living. We call people who adhere to them “normal.” I sincerely doubt the presence of normal actually exist; nonetheless, those of us who clearly live outside the lines find our square-peg existence in constant conflict with how the normal operate. Living, then, becomes an exercise in creativity. If the world walks from A to B, but my mind doesn’t allow me to, it takes creativity to reach my destination. If you could be guaranteed that your child would grow up to be a generous, spiritual, empathetic, accepting spirited, courageous, creative adult, if only you would consent to their experiencing this formation through mental illness, would you make the deal? I believe few would. But this I know: Those of us already on that road can be grateful for our blessings.”



Diet, Nutrition Closely Linked to Mental Health

Links to Mental Health


“It’s extremely important that experts in the fields of psychiatry and public health recognize the undeniable link between mental health and diet and nutrition, say leading academics in a new paper published in the The Lancet Psychiatry.”

“Research has overwhelmingly confirmed the relationship between nutritional deficiencies and poor mental health. Psychiatry is now at a critical stage, say the experts, with the current medically focused model having achieved only minimal progress toward relieving the global burden of poor mental health.”



“Another systematic review published in late 2014 has also confirmed a relationship between “unhealthy” dietary patterns and poor mental health in children and teens. Given the early age of onset for depression and anxiety, the information points to dietary improvements as a way of preventing the initial onset of common mental disorders.”

“It is time for clinicians to consider diet and additional nutrients as part of the treating package to manage the enormous burden of mental ill health,” said Sarris, an executive member of the ISNPR. He believes that it is time to advocate for a more integrative approach to psychiatry, with diet and nutrition as key elements.



What If People Treated Physical Illness Like Mental Illness?

What if…

“It’s no secret there’s a serious stigma attached to mental illness. According to the CDC, only 25 percent of people with mental health issues feel that other people are compassionate and sympathetic toward them. It’s a shameful statistic when one in four people have been touched by some form of mental illness.
Experts say that part of the problem when it comes to criticizing someone’s mental health is a lack of empathy and knowledge about the ailments. Yet, despite the staggering evidence and rhetoric aimed at helping people understand, many people still don’t get that being diagnosed with a mental illness isn’t something that’s in their control — just like having the flu, or food poisoning, or cancer isn’t in their control.
In an effort to reframe the conversation, artist Robot Hugs created a comic that displays what it would be like if we discussed physical illnesses in the same way we do mental illnesses. Take a look at the graphic below.”

Makes you think, doesn’t it?




Friends with Mental Illness and Those Who Love Us, Please Take This NAMI Survey!


This is a survey by NAMI about experiences with ER mental health services. I believe the survey is for both people with mental illness and friends/family who have experienced the ER mental health situation. Please take the survey to help improve ER mental health treatment. I hope by taking this survey ERs will listen to how to improve things!

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Sociopaths vs. Psychopaths

What’s the Difference?
“The terms psychopaths and sociopaths share many similarities, being used almost interchangeably by criminologists and forensic psychologists on television. Although both are subtypes of antisocial personality disorder marked by dissociation from emotions and a lack of ability to feel empathy, there are several key differences between the two disorders.

Psychopaths and sociopaths make up one percent and four percent of the population, or 3 million and 13 million Americans, respectively. Despite them having a separate set of diagnostic criteria, psychopaths and sociopaths do share several traits in common. These include a disregard for laws and social rules, a disregard for the rights of others, an inclination towards violent behavior and an inability to feel remorse or guilt.”

Sociopathic behavior:
However, their similarities end there, with both disorders carrying a separate set of behavioral characteristics. Sociopaths tend to be more nervous and easy to agitate or frighten, being much more emotional than the emotionally vacant psychopaths. Sociopaths are prone to emotional outbursts and rages, employing their ability to detach emotionally from others more as a defense mechanism than an inherent personality trait. Many sociopaths are able to feel some amount of empathy, being able to reluctantly form attachments with people or groups despite usually having low regard for society in general.

Sociopaths are statistically from lower income/lower educated areas that are usually marginalized by society to begin with. Due to their unstable emotions and impulse to keep moving, they often have trouble staying employed and live transient lifestyles. As opposed to psychopaths, crimes committed by sociopaths are much more impulsive, unplanned and generally more sloppily executed than their more calculating counterparts.”

Psychopathic behavior:
Unlike sociopaths, psychopaths are truly unable to empathize with others and form emotional bonds. Where sociopaths are usually created by childhood trauma and other environmental factors, the cause of psychopathy is genetic in nature. Sociopaths are able to retain a small amount of empathic ability since they were born “normal” for the most part, but psychopaths are born with an underdeveloped area of the brain responsible for emotions and impulse control, giving them the ability to dissociate themselves from others and making it far easier for them to commit remorseless acts.

Also differentiating psychopathic individuals are their usually charming personalities and conversational skills. Psychopaths are very manipulative and are usually intelligent people, allowing them to fake empathy and other emotions they lack in order to obtain their goal of gaining power and control. Many are so adept at this that they can maintain relationships and families completely unbeknownst to them of their true nature. Psychopaths blend into society much easier than sociopaths, holding careers and being found to occupy many positions of power. According to a disconcerting NIH study, three percent of those in management positions are diagnosable psychopaths, three times the national average of one percent.

Where sociopaths often commit crimes haphazardly, psychopaths tend to methodically plan out their actions, calculating the details and possible scenarios in advance. When under pressure, they also maintain their composure much better than their more emotional counterparts.

Psychopathy and sociopathy are the most dangerous psychological disorders on the spectrum, giving people affected with it the potential to commit murder and extreme acts of violence without hesitation or second thought. Because of this, many of the worst serial killers in history have been known psychopaths.”

Although there is no medication to have proven effective in treating psychopathy and sociopathy, some trials have shown some forms of psychotherapy to be effective in treating symptoms in adolescents. Occasionally anti-depressants and mood stabilizers are administered to sociopathic patients subject to anger and irritability, although not effective in everyone. The psychotherapy involves teaching them interpersonal and relationship skills, leading to a reduction in signs of their disorder. However, considering the high degree of manipulativeness in those suffering from these disorders, the true extent of the therapy’s efficacy is anyone’s guess.

Sovereign Health has a breadth of experience in the treatment of antisocial personality disorders such as sociopathy and psychopathy. If you have any questions about antisocial personality disorders or suspect that a loved one may be suffering from one, feel free to contact us today.”



Simple and Practical Mental Health: Comorbid Bipolar Disorder and ADHD

Petite Girls Guide

Simple & Pactical Mental Health

Comorbid Bipolar Disorder and ADHD

“If you ask me “What is the most important thing you have learned in psychiatry over the last ten or twelve years?” I would say without hesitation that it is to identify and treat ADHD — with both medications and psychotherapy.”



“If you ask me, “What is the most important thing you have learned in psychiatry in 2014?”, it is that bipolar disorder and ADHD occur in the same person MUCH more commonly than I had thought and that I must continue to be very diligent in screening patients with bipolar disorder for ADHD.”

“I knew this comorbidity very well, have treated patients who had both disorders, spoke about it to the residents on several occasions, discussed the data on treatment of this comorbidity, and would share the article by Wingo and Ghaemi in Current Psychiatry 2007. You can get…

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Living Mindfully with Mood Disorders

Living Mindfully


Living Mindfully and Compassionately with Mood Disorders

“Manic depression, post-traumatic stress, and addiction are all complex psychiatric mood disorders that many suffer concurrently. Those of us who have been diagnosed with one or more of these mood disorders, or mental illnesses, (co-occurring) contend with debilitating symptoms, which may include severe anxiety, dramatic mood swings, rage, ruminations, flashbacks, and nightmares. Our manic episodes are often life-changing and can result in death. Although there are no cures for any of these disorders, adopting a Buddhist practice that includes mindfulness and Tonglen meditations can augment our existing treatment protocol.”


“Mindfulness Meditation:

Mindfulness is simply being fully aware and present in the moment. It’s like having an orchestra conductor inside our heads, who also serves as a gatekeeper—intercepting negative thoughts, such as urges, ruminations, flashbacks, and addiction cravings. When we’re free of these triggers and symptoms, we can concentrate, reach a higher consciousness, and embrace insights, which can lead to emotional breakthroughs and healing.

Belly breathing is the core technique for practicing mindfulness meditation. Also referred to as “abdominal” and “diaphragmatic” breathing, this is our inborn way of respiring and it has distinct advantages over breathing from our chest. Belly breathing enables us to take in more oxygen with fewer breaths—with more carbon dioxide being expelled on the out breath. Increased utilization of our diaphragm to breathe lowers our heart rate and helps to stabilize our blood pressure. Belly breathing stimulates the area just below the navel, where our body stores chi energy. This is where our Buddha nature resides.”


Click on the link above, to read the full article


Schizophrenia Is Really Eight Distinct Disorders, Study Suggests


“Rather than a single disease, schizophrenia can actually be broken down into eight genetically distinct disorders, according to research published in the online American Journal of Psychiatry.

Investigators came to their findings after analyzing DNA variations in 4,200 people with schizophrenia and 3,800 healthy control subjects and matching those variations to symptoms in individual patients.

In doing so, they identified distinct gene clusters that seem to cause eight separate types of the disorder, each with its own particular symptoms.

“What we’ve done here, after a decade of frustration in the field of psychiatric genetics, is identify the way genes interact with each other, how the ‘orchestra’ is either harmonious and leads to health, or disorganized in ways that lead to distinct classes of schizophrenia,” said senior investigator C. Robert Cloninger, MD, PhD, the Wallace Renard Professor of Psychiatry and Genetics at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.”

“Among patients who experienced hallucinations or delusions, specific genetic variations identified by researchers demonstrated 95% certainty of schizophrenia. That certainty extended to a full 100% for the gene variations researchers identified in patients with disorganized speech and behavior.

Overall, researchers found 42 clusters of genetic variations that increased a person’s risk of schizophrenia between 70% and 100%.

Researchers hope their findings will lead to improved diagnosis and treatment of schizophrenia.

“People have been looking at genes to get a better handle on heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes, and it’s been a real disappointment,” Dr. Cloninger said. “Most of the variability in the severity of disease has not been explained, but we were able to find that different sets of genetic variations were leading to distinct clinical syndromes. So I think this really could change the way people approach understanding the causes of complex diseases.”



Mental Illness Awareness Week

Awareness Week!

Mental Illness Awareness Week, Oct. 5-11, 2014


“In 1990, the U.S. Congress established the first full week of October as Mental Illness Awareness Week (MIAW) in recognition of NAMI’s efforts to raise mental illness awareness. Since then, mental health advocates across the country have joined with others in their communities to sponsor activities, large or small, for public education about mental illness.”

“MIAW coincides with the National Day of Prayer for Mental Illness Recovery and Understanding (Oct. 7) and National Depression Screening Day (Oct. 9.)”

“Why is MIAW important?:

Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition. During the first full week of October, NAMI and participants across the country are bringing awareness to mental illness. Each year we fight stigma, provide support, educate the public and advocate for equal care. Each year, the movement grows stronger.

We believe that these issues are important to address year round, but highlighting these issues during Mental Illness Awareness Week provides a time for people to come together and display the passion and strength of those working to improve the lives of the tens of millions of Americans affected by mental illness.

If you or someone you know may need a mental health assessment, anonymous online tools are available. Learn more and help yourself or someone you care about.

NAMI thanks Forest Laboratories, LLC., a subsidiary of Actavis, for being the National Sponsor of Mental Illness Awareness Week.”



Say It Forward Anti-Stigma Campaign

Anti-Stigma Campaign



Monday, October 6, 2014 – 12:00 to Sunday, October 12, 2014 – 12:00 – See more at:

“When it comes to mental health conditions, silence is not golden. Silence breeds stigma, and stigma prevents people from seeking life-saving treatment and support.

Please join the International Bipolar Foundation and our partners in a social media campaign the week of Oct. 6-12 to fight the stigma of mental illness and encourage those who need it, to seek treatment. Help us “bust the stigma” by “saying it forward.””


“When we separate myth from fact, stigma loses its power and seeking treatment is less scary for those who need help. Help me fight stigma!”


“Starting Oct. 6, visit to share the facts and shatter the myths of mental illness through email, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. You can also share your stories and stigma-busting triumphs by using the hashtags #BustTheStigma and #SayItForward. Last year we reached more than a million people, and with your support, we hope to surpass that milestone this year.”


Stop the Stigma: ‘Bipolar’ Is Not a New Word for Just Darn Unpleasant


“You hear it everywhere. “Oh, she’s so bipolar.”

It’s the diagnosis of the decade. At least in the general public.

It didn’t start with Catherine Zeta-Jones treatment and its publicity, but it has certainly picked up speed since then. Tiger Woods was treated for sexual addiction. You don’t hear people pointing their fingers at others saying, “Oh, he’s such a sex addict.””

“Here are some statistics:
The National Institute of Mental Health (2005) reports that the prevalence of bipolar disorder is 2.6 percent of the U.S. population. It is interesting and unhappy to note their report that only about half of those with bipolar disorder are getting good treatment. Another scholarly report (2007) breaks down the two major diagnostic categories of Bipolar, I and II, and reports their prevalence, respectively, as 1 percent and 1.1 percent, with what they term “sub threshold” bipolar II at 2.4 percent. A study in 2011 showed it to be higher, 4.4 percent. Probably depends if you are adding all of these up or not.”

“What do these stats mean?
That probably around 4 percent of the people that you have met in your entire life have had bipolar disorder. It does run in families (meaning that it has a high genetic load) so some of you may have had more experience with people with the disorder than others. Some, none at all.”

“The disorder is characterized by changes in mood, in energy level, that may appear to come out of nowhere. Perhaps triggered by stress, by events. Perhaps not. Irrational ups and downs. Sometimes mixed in with irritability and/or anxiety. Sleep problems are a big issue. A person with bipolar disorder has to learn to live with and manage the disease. The medications can have negative side effects. It can be difficult to find a medication/s that works.”

“There are many people with bipolar disorder who are highly creative, high-functioning people. They can have lives that are not governed by their illness and live happy, loving, productive lives.

But there’s no cure. And there are some that are not so lucky.

It’s tough.

To make matters worse, now the term “bipolar” is being used as slang to describe folks who wear their feelings on their sleeves, are overly reactive, quite moody, selfish or demanding (and then pout a lot).”

“So let’s not throw them under the bus further by calling everybody we don’t like very much — or who is hard to get along with — “bipolar.”

That’s just not fair.

It’s not right.

And it hurts the people who are fighting to cope with it.”

“So please. Just stop.

Please send this on if you enjoyed! Especially if you know of someone who has experienced mental health issues, whether it be bipolar disorder, anxiety or panic or depression. It’s important that those trying to heal and live their lives know they have our support!”



Demand that People with Mental Illness Be Treated with Respect

Petite Girls Guide

IMG_3485.JPG Petition


Helping Families In Mental Crisis


CHECK OUT THIS SITE: It’s a place where you can sign a petition that demands that people with mental illness be treated with respect. I’ve already signed, won’t you?


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Learning To Live Well With A Mental Illness


Happiness is Governed by our Mental Attitude









Demand that People with Mental Illness Be Treated with Respect

IMG_3485.JPG Petition


Helping Families In Mental Crisis


CHECK OUT THIS SITE: It’s a place where you can sign a petition that demands that people with mental illness be treated with respect. I’ve already signed, won’t you?



Simple and Practical Mental Health: Comorbid Bipolar Disorder and ADHD

Simple & Pactical Mental Health

Comorbid Bipolar Disorder and ADHD

“If you ask me “What is the most important thing you have learned in psychiatry over the last ten or twelve years?” I would say without hesitation that it is to identify and treat ADHD — with both medications and psychotherapy.”



“If you ask me, “What is the most important thing you have learned in psychiatry in 2014?”, it is that bipolar disorder and ADHD occur in the same person MUCH more commonly than I had thought and that I must continue to be very diligent in screening patients with bipolar disorder for ADHD.”

“I knew this comorbidity very well, have treated patients who had both disorders, spoke about it to the residents on several occasions, discussed the data on treatment of this comorbidity, and would share the article by Wingo and Ghaemi in Current Psychiatry 2007. You can get the PDF free at Current Psychiatry’s website by clicking on THIS LINK which will open the PDF in a separate window.”

“However, with increasing experience with this comorbidity and careful longitudinal assessment, I have been really surprised by how OFTEN these two occur together. Patient after patient after patient. That is what prompted me to write this post. Even if you are aware of this, look for the comorbidity systematically by asking the patient and family member about symptoms of ADHD — BEFORE the bipolar disorder episodes and when the person is NOT depressed or manic. It it not too difficult once we focus the conversation on this issue.”




Hope for Mental Health

Hope for Mental Health



“Hope for Mental Health: Even if we can’t cure our disorder, we can always try to manage it.”

“Even though mental health treatments may not work consistently, there is always hope for patients. I’ve had bipolar disorder since the day I was born but I didn’t start displaying symptoms until the age of 26. So I’ve been dealing with a mental illness for nearly 11 years. As I reflect on my medical history I’ve come to accept that with any mental illness, it is only ‘manageable’ and not curable. There are limitations with what one can do to stay well and there are also barriers on what a doctor can do to help. This may sound discouraging, however, I feel that it’s important to recognize that there’s a difference between managing your illness and trying to cure it. A mental illness is not curable, despite what anti-psychiatric proponents would argue. Realistically we have to face that we may be ill for periods of time during our lifetime.”



The Problems of People with Mental Illness

People with Mental Illnesses


“Problems associated with people with mental illness pose a significant challenge for modern policing. This guide begins by describing the problem and reviewing factors that increase the challenges that police face in relation to the mentally ill. It then identifies a series of questions that might help you analyze your local policing problems associated with people with mental illness. Finally, it reviews responses to the problems and what we know about these from evaluative research and police practice.”


“Police officers frequently encounter people with mental illness—approximately 5 percent of U.S. residents have a serious mental illness,§ and 10 to 15 percent of jailed people have severe mental illness. [2] An estimated 7 percent of police contacts in jurisdictions with 100,000 or more people involve the mentally ill.[3] A three-city study found that 92 percent of patrol officers had at least one encounter with a mentally ill person in crisis in the previous month,[4] and officers averaged six such encounters per month. The Lincoln (Nebraska) Police Department found that it handled over 1,500 mental health investigation cases in 2002, and that it spent more time on these cases than on injury traffic accidents, burglaries, or felony assaults. [5] The New York City Police Department responds to about 150,000 “emotionally disturbed persons” calls per year.”






Clegg: Mental health research ‘needs boost’

Mental Illness
“Nick Clegg: “We want a new mental health research fund.”
IMG_2554.JPG“A major push is needed to boost mental health research, Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has told the BBC.”






Disorders: 5 Myths & Facts





It’s Time To Change

Where you can Pledge To End Mental Illness Stigma!!


“Mental health problems are common – but nearly nine out of ten people who experience them say they face stigma and discrimination as a result. This can be even worse than the symptoms themselves. Time to Change is England’s biggest programme to challenge mental health stigma and discrimination.”


Which Organ Contains the Mind?


“The organs and hence the body forgets to fall sick. The cells work on a momentum set by nature and outside factors do not interfere with skilled exchanges in the body.”




US Adult Mental Illness Surveillance Report


“The economic burden of mental illness in the United States is substantial—about $300 billion in 2002. Mental illness is an important public health problem in itself—about 25% of U.S. adults have a mental illness—but also because it is associated with chronic medical diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. Mental illness surveillance by organizations such as CDC is a critically important part of disease prevention and control.”


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