Serious Dangers Sleep-Deprived Teens Face

Most teens aren’t getting the 9 ¼ hours of sleep recommended by doctors. According to the 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey, only 31% of high school students reported getting at least 8 hours of sleep per night. Late evening sporting events, long hours of homework, and part-time jobs can interfere with a good night’s sleep. For other teens, video games, social media, and web surfing prevent them from going to sleep at a reasonable hour.

7 Serious Dangers Sleep-Deprived Teens Face.

The toll of childhood trauma

| Counseling Today

Mention the word trauma to Americans in the 21st century, and their thoughts are likely to turn to images of terrorism, war, natural disasters and a seemingly continual stream of school shootings. The horrific scenes at Newtown and Columbine still dominate public consciousness, particularly when our society discusses child trauma. While those events make headlines, however, counseling professionals say the most pervasive traumatic threat to children is found not in big events or stranger danger, but in chronic and systemic violence that happens in or close to the home.

This kind of ongoing trauma, much of which takes place out of public view, leaves deep scars that can cause a lifetime of emotional, mental, physical and social dysfunction if left untreated. Research shows that chronic, complex trauma can even rewire a child’s brain, leading to cognitive and developmental issues.

The good news is that counselors in all areas of practice — in schools, agencies, shelters, clinics, private practice and elsewhere — can and are working with children and, when possible, their parents to stop the cycle of violence, or at least to mitigate its effects.

The toll of childhood trauma | Counseling Today.

Freedom from Depression – Beyond Meds

freedom f dDr. James S. Gordon, the founder and director of the Center for Mind-Body Medicine and a clinical professor at the Georgetown University School of Medicine, speaks with Tami Simon about self-healing strategies for overcoming depression. Dr. Gordon is the author of Unstuck, and with Sounds True he has created the six-session audio program Freedom from Depression: A Practical Guide for the Journey. In this episode, Tami speaks with Dr. Gordon about the actual research on antidepressants and their effectiveness, the importance of breaking the taboo around talking about our suicidal thoughts, and which mind-body practices are most powerful for helping people experiencing severe depression. (57 minutes) To listen click on the link below….

Freedom from Depression – Beyond Meds.


Continue reading

Struggling to cope with the stress of work and life?

mh week

 The Globe and Mail

To deal with stress, Sally seeks comfort in food. Caught in the cycle of work-stress-coping-with-food, within a few years Sally put 40 pounds onto her once 110-pound, 5-foot,1-inch frame. She is so sapped of energy at the end of the day that her activity and fitness level are low and at 48 years of age she’s a walking health risk.

Already, Sally has developed diabetes. During a recent medical exam, her doctor found her blood pressure was high and prescribed medication. When she told him that she has also been struggling with stress and depression, he gave her some recommendations and suggested that if nothing improved in a couple of weeks they would explore medication for her depression.

Sally’s food-coping mechanism not only leads to obesity but makes her three times more likely to develop diabetes. Are you struggling to cope with the stress of work and life? – The Globe and Mail.

Mental Health First Aid Canada



One in three Canadians will experience a mental health problem at some point in their life. The earlier a problem is detected and treated, the better the outcome. Mental Health First Aid Canada gives people the skills to provide that early help that is so important in recovery.

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is the primary help provided to a person developing a mental health problem or experiencing a mental health crisis. Just as physical first aid is administered to an injured person before medical treatment can be obtained, MHFA is given until appropriate treatment is found or until the crisis is resolved.

The MHFA Canada program aims to improve mental health literacy, and provide the skills and knowledge to help people better manage potential or developing mental health problems in themselves, a family member, a friend or a colleague.

The program teaches people how to:

  • Recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health problems.
  • Provide initial help.
  • Guide a person towards appropriate professional help

What is Mental Health First Aid Canada.


11 Common things you hear about Mental Illness are Myths…

Huffpost Living, Canada

In Canada alone, 20 per cent of Canadians will personally experience a mental illness in their lifetime, according to the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), so one way or the other, the rest of us will experience it indirectly. Even though the dialogue for mental health has become increasingly open — Bell’s Let’s Talk Day, for example, started a Canada-wide campaign to end stigmas associated with mental illness — it also means we hear a lot more myths about what it means to be mentally ill.

“Believing these myths leads people with depression, for example, to blame themselves, family members or others around them,” says Dr. Prakash Masand, a psychiatrist and president of Global Medical Education. Masand adds many people with depression are untreated and not seeking help, which can lead to worse outcomes. Mental illness does not have one single definition either. Whether it is depression or bi-polar disorder or ADHD, all of which have very different diagnoses. Causes also vary from person to person and include genetic, biological, personality related or environmental factors. CMHA identifies  that almost fifty percent of people who go through anxiety or depression do not ever go to see a doctor.

Mental Illness Myths: 11 Common Things You Hear About Depression, Bipolar Disorder And ADHD.

Several types of talk therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy, can be just as effective as medication in treating depression and anxiety disorders.

Several types of talk therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy, can be just as effective as medication in treating depression and anxiety disorders. Courtesy: Huffpost Living, Canada

What Anxiety Can Look Like in the Body –  Stuart A. Kaplowitz, MFT

Remember that this is a subjective experience, meaning that each of us may experience anxiety in different ways. The dictionary will gives us an explanation such as (1). feeling of worry: nervousness or agitation, often about something that is going to happen (2). something that worries somebody: a subject or concern that causes worry (3). strong wish to do something: the strong wish to do something, especially if the wish is unnecessarily or unhealthily strong

From my own past experiences with anxiety, I would feel it in my stomach. The negative thoughts would trigger the chemicals in my body and I would have an upset stomach. It was as if I had eaten some really spicy food and my stomach was reacting. Many clients have reported some of the same feelings as well as feeling a general uneasiness, as if they could not sit still and they were waiting for something (bad) to happen. This leads to an agitation that can be felt not only in the one’s stomach but throughout the body. Jim Folk with stresses that there are over 100 symptoms of anxiety, and I want to look at some of them here.

What Anxiety Can Look Like in the Body.

New Strategies to Calm a Child’s Mind …

Based on the Scientific American article:

It just may be one of the most underappreciated health problems in the U.S. today: As many as one in five children experience a mental disorder in a given year. The effects can be lasting, reducing their life satisfaction and productivity for years if their symptoms go undiagnosed and untreated.

For these reasons, in this special report, “Calming a Child’s Mind,” we highlight emerging therapies for the three most prevalent childhood disorders— anxiety, behavior or conduct disorder, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)  Psychologist Jerry Bubrick leads off the section with his account of helping several young patients overcome anxiety in “New Therapy Helps Children Wallop Their Worries.” In “Parent Training Can Improve Kids’ Behavior” staff editor Ingrid Wickelgren drops in on a parent-training program that helps moms and dads build healthier relationships with their recalcitrant offspring. And contributing editor Emily Laber-Warren explores a growing trend to treat signs of ADHD at ages four or five, before the disorder can be officially diagnosed. Read further…

New Strategies to Calm a Child’s Mind – Scientific American.