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Parents Can Help Their Sleep-Deprived Teens

Mom and dad may be key in curbing the epidemic of drowsy teens, a new study suggests.

American teens aren't getting enough sleep, which can lead to anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts. Sleepy teens also are more likely to get into car crashes and have a greater risk of being injured while playing sports.

The lack of sleep may be due to too much homework, too many ext...

Hong Kong Unrest Leaves Millions to Struggle With PTSD, Depression

As mass protests have swept across Hong Kong in recent months, a mounting mental health toll will be tough to tackle, new research suggests.

Surveys conducted over 10 years show there was a sixfold increase in the prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms among Hong Kong residents from shortly after Occupy Central in March 2015 (about 5%) to Sept./Nov. 2019 (ne...

Veterans' Study Shows Genetic Origins of Anxiety

New research involving the DNA of 200,000 U.S. veterans suggests that there really is such a thing as a "worry gene."

Researchers have identified six genetic variants linked to anxiety -- a discovery that may help explain why anxiety and depression often go hand in hand.

"This is the richest set of results for the genetic basis of anxiety to date," said study co-lead author...

Health Care Is Top Concern for U.S. Veterans

After discharge, military veterans are most concerned about their physical and mental health, a new study finds.

Although most vets are satisfied with their work and social relationships, they are less happy with their health care. Most are coping with chronic physical or mental health conditions, researchers found.

"What remains to be seen is whether those veterans with h...

Could Brain Scans Spot Children's Mood, Attention Problems Early?

Children's mental health issues are hard to predict until they're causing problems, but researchers may have found a way to use brain scans to spot which kids are at risk for depression, anxiety and attention problems.

"We're facing a tremendous epidemic with teen anxiety and depression, and we wanted to find an early marker that predicted the development of anxiety, depression and a...

Heavy Drinking Plus Xanax, Valium: A Dangerous Mix

People who regularly drink to excess are also likely to use benzodiazepines, a new study finds.

These drugs -- like Valium (diazepam), Xanax (alprazolam), Klonopin (clonazepam), Ativan (lorazepam), and Restoril (temazepam) -- are used to treat depression and anxiety.

But when heavy drinkers use them, benzodiazepines (sometimes referred to as "benzos") may increase the risk...

TV Could Sway Viewers to Prefer Thinner Women: Study

People who watch lots of TV prefer thinner women, which suggests that TV can influence opinions about preferred body shapes, researchers say.

Their study included 299 men and women in a remote area of Nicaragua, in Central America. Participants were either regular TV viewers or had little or no access to it.

While regular viewers preferred thinner females, those with little...

People With Depression Are Turning to Pot for Relief: Study

People suffering from depression are often desperate for anything to break them out of their debilitating mood disorder.

But in their misery, many might be turning to a risky solution that's likely to make their condition even worse -- marijuana.

People with depression are twice as likely to be using pot as those who aren't depressed, researchers reported in the current issu...

Differences Found in Brains of Kids Born to Depressed Parents

The brains of kids who have a high risk of depression because they have parents with depression are structurally different from other kids' brains, a new study finds.

Depression often first appears during adolescence. Having a parent with depression is one of the biggest known risk factors. Teens whose parents have depression are two to three times more likely to develop depression th...

Chyler Leigh of 'Supergirl' Battles Bipolar Disorder

Chyler Leigh has taken on some challenging roles in her career, including helping keep the world safe from alien threats on the TV show "Supergirl" and learning to be a surgeon as Lexie Grey on "Grey's Anatomy." But her most demanding task has been learning to manage bipolar disorder.

"I wasn't diagnosed until my late 20s, but I knew at a pretty early age that something wasn't quite ...

One-Third of Lung Cancer Patients Battle Depression: Study

Depression is common among lung cancer patients and can damage their quality of life and treatment outcomes, a new study indicates.

The findings suggest that doctors should screen lung cancer patients for depression and refer them for mental health care if necessary, said lead author Barbara Andersen, a professor of psychology at Ohio State University in Columbus.

"Depressio...

Another Downside to Vaping: Higher Odds for Depression

Vaping, already linked to lung damage, may also have harmful psychological effects, a new study suggests.

The researchers found a strong association between vaping and depression in a study of nearly 900,000 U.S. adults.

The apparent culprit: nicotine.

"There is a potential risk between e-cigarette use and depression," said lead researcher Dr. Olufunmilayo Obises...

Birth Control Pill May Alter Part of Women's Brains

A small, preliminary study suggests that a brain area called the hypothalamus appears to be about 6% smaller in women who use birth control pills.

But exactly what that means isn't yet clear. In this study, women on the pill had statistically significant increases in anger. Researchers also found a possible link with depression symptoms.

The good news: They didn't see ...

Can You Beat the Blues With 'Downward Dog'?

New evidence bolsters the belief that yoga can offer real and lasting relief to people with depression.

Dr. Chris Streeter, a psychiatrist at Boston University's School of Medicine, said the new study she led builds on earlier work showing a correlation between yoga and levels of GABA (gamma aminobutyric acid), a chemical in the brain. Yoga seems to raise GABA levels, much as anti-dep...

Most Parents Struggle to Spot Depression in Teens

Most American parents say they might have trouble distinguishing between a teen's typical mood swings and possible signs of depression, a new survey finds.

The nationwide poll of 819 parents with at least one child in middle school, junior high or high school found that while one-third were confident they could detect depression in their children, two-thirds said certain things would ...

Exercise Can Help Prevent Depression, Even for Those at High Risk

Getting more exercise could help ward off depression, even if you have a genetic risk for it, new research shows.

For the study, researchers analyzed data from nearly 8,000 people and found that those with a genetic predisposition were more likely to be diagnosed with depression over the next two years.

But that was less likely for people who were more active at the study's ...

Are You Lonely? Your Tweets Offer Important Clues, Experts Say

Analyzing people's tweets could reveal if they're lonely, researchers say.

Loneliness -- which has been linked with depression, heart disease, dementia and other health problems -- affects about 1 in 5 adults in the United States.

Researchers analyzed public accounts of Twitter users in Pennsylvania and identified more than 6,200 who used words like "lonely" or "alone" more ...

ADHD Rates Doubled Among U.S. Adults Over 10 Years

If the latest statistics are any indication, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is no longer an issue for children only.

Over a 10-year period, ADHD rates more than doubled among American adults, new research shows.

However, the rate among children remains much higher than in adults.

"While we can't pinpoint the source of the increase in ADHD rates in ...

Stressed Out? Maybe Not If You're a Narcissist

Do you have an overinflated sense of your own importance? Do you feel that you're better than everyone else, and have next to no shame about it?

If so, you'd probably be pegged as a "grandiose narcissist" and considered the most obnoxious person in the room.

But three British studies now suggest that some amount of narcissism may not be such a bad thing. Why? Because it conf...

It May Be Even Tougher for Women to Quit Smoking Than Men

Smoking is a notoriously tough habit to quit, but a new study suggests it is far harder for women to stop than it is for men.

Why? The researchers point to a higher prevalence of anxiety and depression in women, which might interfere with even the best intentions to kick the habit. And one expert noted that prior evidence has shown that women's brains react differently to nicotine.

Can Medical Pot Ease Mental Ills? Study Says Probably Not

People struggling with anxiety, depression or other psychiatric problems shouldn't pin their hopes on medical marijuana, a new review suggests.

Dozens of studies involving more than 3,000 people did not provide compelling evidence that medical cannabis can help treat disorders of the mind, the review authors concluded.

"Cannabinoids are often advocated as a treatment for var...

What Works Best to Treat Depression?

"Talk therapy" for depression may cost more than medication initially, but in the long run, both may have a similar payoff, a new study finds.

The study estimated the cost-effectiveness of the two treatments. It found that over one year, antidepressants offered more value for the money. But when the researchers looked at the five-year picture, talk therapy seemed to provide more bene...

Depression Rates Not Budging for Lesbian and Gay Teens

While fewer straight teens suffer depression than did two decades ago, the same cannot be said for lesbian, gay and bisexual teens.

For those teens, depression risk remains much higher than among their straight peers, new research shows, and it is not following a similar downward trend.

Each year between 1999 and 2017, Massachusetts-based teens reported on struggles w...

Deaths Due to Suicide, Homicide on the Rise Among U.S. Youth

The anger and fear seething throughout the United States could be having a fatal impact on some of the nation's youngest citizens.

More teens and young adults are coming to a violent end in recent years, either at their own hand or another's, new federal data show.

Both suicide and homicide death rates are rising among 10- to 24-year-olds, according to the U.S. Centers for D...

PTSD Linked to Increased Risk of Stroke in Younger Adults

Young and middle-aged adults with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have an increased risk of stroke, new research suggests.

For the study, researchers analyzed medical data from more than 1 million veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. They ranged in age from 18 to 60 years and two-thirds were white.

Of those, 29% had been diagnosed with PTSD. None had previo...

Stress in Pregnancy May Affect Baby's Sex, Preterm Delivery Risk: Study

Physical and mental stress during pregnancy may influence the baby's sex, and physical stress may increase the risk of preterm birth, a new study suggests.

Researchers assessed 187 healthy pregnant women between 18 and 45 years of age. About 17% were mentally stressed, with high levels of depression, anxiety and perceived stress. Sixteen percent were physically stressed, with high...

Depression, Anxiety Can Dampen Efforts to Recover From a Heart Attack

Recovering from a heart attack can be tough, but new research suggests that depression, anxiety and stress can make it even tougher.

"Anxiety may lead to fear of another cardiac event and stop people from being active," said study author Angela Rao, from the University of Technology Sydney in Australia. "Depression and anxiety can also impair the ability to retain new information need...

Could Eating Healthier Be a Natural Antidepressant?

Kids have long heard the refrain: Eat your vegetables to grow up big and strong. But a healthy diet may make you happier, too, according to Australian researchers.

That was the effect eating healthier had in a small study of young adults with poor diets and moderate-to-high symptoms of depression. Those who embraced healthier food choices reported less anxiety and much better moods w...

Gender Reassignment Surgery Does Bring Mental Health Benefits

Transgender men and women who undergo gender reassignment surgery are much less likely to need mental health services later, new research suggests.

The researchers, Richard Branstrom and John Pachankis of the Yale School of Public Health, said the finding "lends support to the decision to provide gender-affirming surgeries to transgender individuals who seek them."

The conc...

For Insomniacs, Sleep Aids Can Ease a Troubled Mind

People with severe insomnia may find that a sedative helps them sleep and banishes thoughts of suicide, a new study suggests.

"If you have a patient who complains that their sleep has taken a turn for the worse, then there is reason to open the door to a question about suicide," said corresponding author Dr. W. Vaughn McCall. He's chairman of the department of psychiatry and health b...

Seaside Living Soothes the Mind of Rich and Poor Alike

Could living near the coast be an inexpensive balm for mental troubles?

"Our research suggests, for the first time, that people in poorer households living close to the coast experience fewer symptoms of mental health disorders," said researcher Dr. Jo Garrett, from the University of Exeter, in England.

"When it comes to mental health, this 'protective' zone could play a use...

How to Wait Out a Blue Mood

Feel bad about feeling bad? Don't.

Studies done at the University of California, Berkeley, have found that acknowledging a blue mood -- and not berating yourself for it -- can help you work through it more easily.

It turns out that accepting negative emotions is better for your long-term mental health than constantly passing judgment on yourself, which can cause your feeling...

For Kids With Asthma, Depression Makes ER Visit More Likely

New research suggests that anxiety and depression can make it hard for some kids to manage their asthma.

Young patients with all three conditions ended up in the emergency room nearly twice as often as kids who only struggle with asthma, the study found.

"Asthma self-management is complex, requiring recognition of symptoms, adherence to medication and avoidance of triggers,...

Depressed Moms, More Anxious, Troubled Kids?

If a mother is depressed, her young children might be at risk for hyperactivity, aggressiveness and anxiety, a new study suggests.

Interestingly, a father's depression only affected kids if mom was also depressed, the researchers found.

"Depression among parents both during and after pregnancy not only affects the person suffering from depression but also has a long-term imp...

Why You Should Ask to Be Screened for Postpartum Depression

It's not uncommon for new moms to feel an emotional letdown shortly after baby is born. Though symptoms of these so-called "baby blues" can be wide-ranging, they last no more than two weeks and go away on their own.

Some Signs of the Baby Blues:

  • Mood swings
  • Feeling sad or overwhelmed
  • Being unable to concentrate
  • Appetite and sleep tr...

Mental Ills May Put Veterans at Higher Odds for Heart Trouble

Veterans who suffer from depression, anxiety, psychosis or bipolar disorder are more likely to suffer a heart attack, stroke or die from heart disease, a new study finds.

Those who have most severe mental health problems, such as schizophrenia, are at greatest risk.

Although it's unclear how mental problems affect heart disease risks, researchers think stress may play a pa...

Common Antidepressants May Work in Unexpected Way: Study

Many people who take the antidepressant Zoloft report feeling better. But new research suggests the drug may be treating their anxiety, rather than their depression, at least in the early weeks.

Zoloft (sertraline) -- and the family of similar drugs it belongs to -- may actually take months to ease classic symptoms of depression, U.K. researchers found.

That doesn't mean the...

Youngest in Classroom Diagnosed More Often With ADHD, Other Problems

If a child can't sit still or blurts out random thoughts in kindergarten or first grade, does the child have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? Or is the youngster just not mature enough to sit still yet?

Both are possibilities, and whichever might be true, new research suggests that the youngest kids in class are being diagnosed with ADHD, intellectual disability and ev...

Sick Americans Turning to Medical Pot for Help

More Americans use marijuana to help them cope with an illness than just to get high, a new study finds.

Nearly 46% of those who use pot say they do so because of a medical condition, compared with 22% who say they use marijuana for recreation.

And only 36% of those with a medical problem say they use pot to get high, compared with 58% of other users, resear...

Four-Legged Friends Help Buffer Loss of a Spouse

The loss of a loved one is one of life's most stressful events. But new research suggests that having a furry loved one still at home may help ease the pain.

Investigators looked at 437 older adults, some of whom lost a spouse, either through divorce or death. They found that having a cat or dog at home was linked to an easing of loneliness and depression.

Study leader Daw...

Hysterectomy Tied to Depression, Anxiety

Having a hysterectomy can be a traumatic experience, and new research now shows it may also increase the long-term risk for depression and anxiety.

"Our study shows that removing the uterus may have more effect on physical and mental health than previously thought," said senior author Dr. Shannon Laughlin-Tommaso, an ob-gyn at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

"Because wom...

Vets With Traumatic Brain Injury Have Higher Suicide Risk: Study

The risk of suicide among U.S. military veterans who have suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) is more than double that of other vets, a new study finds.

Researchers analyzed records of more than 1.4 million vets who received care from the U.S. Veterans Health Administration (VHA) between 2005 and 2015.

They compared severity of the traumatic brain injury with diagnoses o...

Lots of Time on Social Media Linked to Anxiety, Depression in Teens

Teens who spend more time with social media are more likely to suffer from social withdrawal, anxiety or depression, a new study says.

Twelve- to 15-year-olds who spent more than six hours a day on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media were nearly three times more likely to have these types of "internalizing" mental health issues, researchers report in the journal JAMA ...

Nurturing Childhood Boosts Odds of a Happy Adult Life: Study

Kids who grow up confident that their parents, friends and community have their back are far less likely to struggle with depression or other serious mental health issues as adults, new research indicates.

The survey of nearly 6,200 adults also found that bad experiences, such as emotional or physical abuse, don't inevitably doom kids to a difficult adulthood. When children who have e...

Experimental Drug Works Quickly on Major Depression

Antidepressants typically take four to eight weeks to ease the debilitating symptoms of depression, but an early clinical trial found a new type of drug brought relief in just two weeks.

"SAGE-217, once fully developed, has potential to offer relatively quick and clinically meaningful alleviation of depressive symptoms in patients with moderate to severe major depressive disorder," sa...

For NFL Players, Career Length, Role Affect Future Health Risks: Study

Pro football players who had long careers at key positions are more likely to have concussion-related problems such as confusion, memory loss, depression and anxiety, a new study finds.

In a survey of nearly 3,500 former NFL players (average age 53), 1 in 8 (12%) reported serious cognitive problems. That compares to about 2% of the general U.S. population.

Age didn't...

Jumps in Pot Use, Depression and Drinking Threaten Gains Against Smoking

Pot. Alcohol. Depression.

This trio of factors is on the increase in former smokers and ups the risk of relapse, undermining decades of gains made in the effort to help Americans kick the habit, a new study suggests.

"Because previous research has demonstrated that these factors put former smokers at greater risk of relapsing with tobacco … our study should signal an ...

Staying Optimistic Might Lengthen Your Life, Study Shows

An upbeat view of life may increase your odds for living to a ripe old age, new research suggests.

The finding stems from a look at optimism and longevity among nearly 70,000 women and 1,400 men. It builds on earlier research linking higher levels of optimism to lower risks of chronic illness and premature death.

"This study took us further by suggesting that optimistic peo...

Restless Legs Syndrome Might Raise Risk of Suicide, Self-Harm

People with restless legs syndrome (RLS) have nearly three times the risk of suicide and self-harm, which indicates that there may be a link between the physical condition and mental health.

In a new study, Penn State researchers analyzed data on more than 24,000 people with RLS and about 145,000 people without the neurological condition. None had a history of suicide attempts or self...

Mixing Marijuana With Opioids May Not Be Good for Mental Health

As America continues to struggle with an opioid epidemic, marijuana has been suggested by some as a safer alternative to opioid painkillers. But taking the two together may leave users vulnerable to mental health issues, a new study finds.

Not only that, researchers found that those who combined pot and opioids for pain were also more likely to abuse other drugs such as cocaine, alcoh...

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