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Global News

December 1, 2011 Raise drinking age now, lower suicide and homicide rates later (USA)

In a study to be published in the February 2012 issue of Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, researchers will show that a lower drinking age is associated with several adverse, long-term outcomes that include suicide and homicide. While this may not come as a surprise, the novel discovery is that youth who were legally permitted to drink between the ages of 18 to 21 years showed an ongoing, elevated risk for suicide and homicide throughout their entire lives, particularly amongst women.

December 1, 2011 Increased risk for diabetes for kids on antipsychotics (USA)

A new study by the University of Massachusetts finds that children who take antipsychotic drugs for the treatment of bipolar disorder, autism and other mental disorders may be at an increased risk of diabetes. Previously conducted research has linked “second-generation” antipsychotics to increased risk of developing diabetes amongst adults but this new study, published in the journal Pediatrics, raises concerns that medications may also lead to diabetes amongst children.

December 1, 2011 DSM-5 proposed disorders under scrutiny (USA)

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-5), to be published in 2013, is receiving push back from some experts in the form of an open letter and on-line petition.

November 17, 2011 SAMHSA changes mental health and substance abuse grants (USA)

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) in the United States, has altered its approach to the administration of State Mental Health and Substance Abuse Block Grants. This change was undertaken to give individual States increased health funding flexibility and support in preparation for health coverage expansion in 2014.

November 17, 2011 Suicide Intervention training should target family and friends (UK)

A new study from the UK suggests that additional suicide prevention strategies should be geared to social networks because 75 per cent of suicides occur in people who have not sought mental health care in the year prior to their death. In these cases, clinical intervention is not possible because no contact has been made.

November 17, 2011 Depression and heart disease in young adults (USA)

A new study conducted by researchers from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia shows that major depressive disorder is associated with increased risk for heart disease that starts in young adults. In a survey that included more than 7,000 participants under the age of 40 years, investigators found that young people with a history of depression or attempted suicide had a significantly higher risk of ischemic (IHD) and cardiovascular heart disease (CVD) than those without.

November 3, 2011 Substance abuse vaccines (USA)

Can a vaccine for cigarette smokers help someone quit the habit? Will a vaccine for metamphetamine help a user give up the drug?

November 3, 2011 Healthy diet means better mental health (Australia)

Australian researchers have shown that a nutritious diet has a significant, positive effect on mental health and can even aid in the prevention and treatment of depression and anxiety.

November 3, 2011 New study on suicide released (Denmark)

A recently released study from Denmark found that patients who have any major psychiatric disorder are at significantly higher risk for suicide after their first hospitalization. The study looked at more than 175,000 people who were followed for up to 36 years. Findings suggest that among men, those diagnosed with bipolar or unipolar affective disorder have the highest absolute risk for suicide. Schizophrenia represented the highest risk for women, followed closely by bipolar disorder. Another significant risk factor for both genders was co-morbidity; the co-occurrence of deliberate self-harm doubled the risk.

October 20, 2011 Study finds self-reports of mental health disability increasing (USA)

While self-reports of disability related to other chronic conditions are decreasing, a Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researcher has found that self-reports of mental health disabilities are on the rise. His findings will be published in the November edition of the American Journal of Public Health.