Category Archives: Mental Health

Zen and Washing Dishes: How to Be Mindful in Everyday Tasks

mindfulness meditation

With all the emphasis on the benefits of mindfulness meditation, you might think that the practice involves drastic changes in your everyday routine. This might not sound all that appealing, considering all the must-do items you have already on your list, especially since you’re now in recovery. There is, however, a way to incorporate mindfulness into almost everything you do. Here’s a look at how to be mindful in everyday tasks. Continue reading

Are Addiction and Mental Illness Decreasing America’s Life Expectancy?

Addiction and Life Expectancy

By Michael Desjardins, APRN

The steady flow of clients visiting me and my colleagues’ offices and treatment centers for “diseases of despair” like depression and addiction seems to mirror trends in a recently released report by the National Center for Health Statistics. The report shows that U.S. life expectancy rates have decreased for the first time since 1993, and some data analysts are pointing the finger at a rise in substance abuse and mental illness.
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Why Alcohol and Antidepressants Don’t Mix

drunk and depressed

If you take antidepressants to treat your depression, you may notice a warning on the medication to avoid or limit alcohol consumption. It’s important that you take this warning seriously and stay away from alcohol. Even if your particular medication does not have a specific interaction with alcohol, drinking while being treated for depression is never a good idea.

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Can Smartphone Monitoring Help People With Dual Diagnosis?

People who receive a dual diagnosis have simultaneous problems with a non-substance-related mental illness and some form of substance abuse or substance addiction. Doctors often have difficulty properly treating affected individuals, and the presence of dual diagnosis can seriously degrade any given person’s short- and long-term well-being. In a study published in September 2014 in the Journal of Dual Diagnosis, a team of American researchers sought to determine if remote monitoring of patients through modern smartphone technology can increase the ease and effectiveness of dual diagnosis treatment.

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What Does It Mean to Be a “Real” Man?

June is Men’s Health Month, meant to call to attention the importance of proactive, preventive and treatment-oriented care for boys and men. But as we emphasize the importance of regular check-ups, good self-care and healthy lifestyle choices, let’s not forget that mental health is likewise crucial to men’s wellbeing. An important part of any man’s emotional wellness is an understanding of his own perspectives about masculinity, as well as how these concepts of manliness fit into his identity.

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Stress: Is It All In Your Head?

“Stress.” This one word can describe anything from the national economy to work conditions to one’s psychological state on any given day, when long commutes, work deadlines and family duties have taken their toll. Stress — much like its relative “addiction” — is a 21st century buzzword. But is stress real, as in an external phenomenon that can be measured, or is it all in our heads?

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Sports Injuries Can Lead to Serious Psychological Trauma

Many different events can result in psychological trauma, but some are comparatively easy to overlook. Experiences such as domestic violence, child abuse, violent and/or sexual assault and combat service are the kinds of traumatic events that we typically associate with emotional trauma.

Other experiences that can lead to serious psychological distress are easier to discount, either because they are not life-threatening or because they appear to be more commonplace. Sporting injuries are one such experience—they are rarely life-threatening and few professional or even amateur athletes manage to avoid some form of injury over the course of their careers.

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How Many Americans Have Dual Diagnosis?

Dual diagnosis is the term addiction and mental health experts reserve for the identification of overlapping cases of mental illness and substance use disorder (substance abuse/substance addiction). People affected by such overlapping problems typically encounter much greater difficulties during treatment and recovery than people who only have a non-substance-related mental illness or who only have a diagnosable problem with drugs and/or alcohol.

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