Articles on Mental health

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Over seven million Australian adults have experienced a mental illness. Image from shutterstock.com

Mental health report card: it’s time to address quality of life

The National Mental Health Commission (NMHC) today released its first annual report card on the state of mental health and suicide prevention services in Australia. Called A Contributing Life, the report…
Current immigration policies promote uncertainty, fear and disempowerment, which contribute to mental illness. AAP

One step forward, two steps back for asylum seeker mental health

The recent overhaul of Australia’s immigration policies aims to protect the lives of asylum seekers by removing any advantage of arriving by boat. Whether this goal will be achieved remains unclear. But…
Those who know the identity of their donor from a young age are less likely to experience psychological problems. Ron Wiecki

Rights of donor children must come before egg donation compensation

University of Tasmania academic Meredith Nash recently argued on The Conversation that women who donate their eggs for fertility treatments should be financially compensated. It’s a risky and time-consuming…
People who were abused as children are more likely to suffer mental health and substance abuse disorders. Dawn Ashley

Protecting the abused from further trauma during the Royal Commission

There is great support within the community for the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse. Many people have high hopes it will right the wrongs of the past and help us, as a nation, to eliminate future…
Early childhood stress can cause brain changes, the study said. http://www.flickr.com/photos/tacitrequiem/

Stressed female infants may become anxious teens

Exposure to stress in infancy can create changes in the brain that may predispose teenage girls to depression and anxiety…
Whatever the specific cause of ADHD-like behaviours for a particular child, it’s the people and institutions around them that define it as problematic. Katy Stoddard

We need a different national conversation about ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most diagnosed childhood disorder in Australia. Most of us now know someone, or someone’s child, who has been diagnosed with ADHD. Reports on television…
Many of us feel that our internet use verges on problematic but this is different to addiction. justingaynor

Internet use and the DSM-5’s revival of addiction

MATTERS OF THE MIND – a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. The term “addiction” is conspicuously…
As an adolescent and child psychiatrist, I dispense all sorts of labels – but what do they mean? emildom

Psychiatric labels and kids: benefits, side-effects and confusion

MATTERS OF THE MIND – a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. As a child and adolescent psychiatrist…
Overall, there will be fewer symptoms and disorders listed in the new psychiatry manual. Axel Buhrmann

Redefining autism in the DSM-5

MATTERS OF THE MIND – a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. For autistic people and their…
Trichotillomania, where individuals pull out their hair, has long been considered a mental disorder, but where does it fit in the DSM-5? Tigresblanco

Don’t pull your hair out over trichotillomania

MATTERS OF THE MIND – a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. Trichotillomania is a psychological…
The inclusion of hoarding on the DSM-5 will drive an integrated response to this complex problem. Hoarding Grap Wikimedia Commons

When stuff gets in the way of life: hoarding and the DSM-5

MATTERS OF THE MIND – a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. We’ve all got boxes of old letters…
Exposure to multiple forms of abuse dramatically drives up the risk of suicidal thoughts in young people, the study found. http://www.flickr.com/photos/lainamarie/

Youth suicide risk soars after manifold abuse

Young people exposed to multiple types of abuse are up to six times more likely to have suicidal thoughts than those who…
Many non-western cultures recognise states of mind that look like mental illness but don’t fit DSM categories. Todd Huffman

Strange or just plain weird? Cultural variation in mental illness

MATTERS OF THE MIND – a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. There’s an old saying that psychology…
Criteria for mental health disorders have been formulated by expert committees. But are they right? Psychiatry image from shutterstock

Explainer: what is the DSM and how are mental disorders diagnosed?

Welcome to Matters of the Mind, a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. The Diagnostic and…
The symptom-based approach of the current DSM does not take life events into account. Woman image from shutterstock.com

Forget talking, just fill a script: how modern psychiatry lost its mind

Welcome to Matters of the Mind, a series which examines the clinician’s bible for diagnosing mental disorders, the DSM, and the controversy surrounding the forthcoming fifth edition. You’re feeling down…

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