Tag Archives: treatment

Outcast

Loneliness is a public health concern [1]. Loneliness is linked to depression and suicide [3]. Adult, white, heterosexual men have the least friends of all groups [2]. White men kill themselves at higher rates than every other demographic [4]. Half of all suicides are carried out with firearms [4]. Registered gun-owners are more likely to be “white, male, married, conservative, older, and from rural [re: non-inner city poor] areas”[5]. They are also more likely to feel “socially alienated”[5]. This social alienation has roots in economic and education levels, but I won’t explore those roots here as there is already a lot of literature about what it’s like to be poor and white [6][12].

When people are alone, they tend to have more inflammation and stress hormones [11]. Most cults recruit people during especially stressful times in their life [13]. Indeed, many terrorist recruiters can turn lonely people into “violent extremists” by capitalizing on their fears and insecurities [14]. The things people do to fit in somewhere and be accepted, huh?

So when I hear people say things like”…since he was in middle school, it was no surprise to anyone that knew him that he was the shooter. Those talking about how we should have not ostracized him, you didn’t know this kid! We did!” I don’t think they really understand their own position on the subject. Part of a larger speech [8], the words of Emma Gonzalez have been described by many as powerful and moving.

Many see it as a galvanizing call-to-arms in the aftermath of one of the worst tragedies to rock this nation since Columbine. It is natural to think this justifies throwing aside the fact that Nikolas Cruz was a social outcast. It is immaterial to the main point. The main point being that “Guns are Evil”. This assertion is of course central to the ineffable magnificence of Progressivism and the inexorable pull of civilization to cleanse our great nation of hideous violence through gun control. We, the eminently beneficent Left, just “know better than you” [9].

I don’t know if simply including Nikolas Cruz in the reindeer games of high school would have prevented him from doing what he did. Hell, remembering my own high school days, I remember seeing plenty of teary-eyed miserable teenagers with tons of friends who might have harbored thoughts of ill-will toward their cohorts. But when 92 of the last 95 mass shootings were male [7], and 54 were white [7], I wonder. Are guns really the cause?

 

[1] https://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/22/upshot/how-social-isolation-is-killing-us.html [2] http://www.jstor.org/stable/30038995?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents [3]https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/hidden-motives/201305/suicide-loneliness-and-the-vulnerability-men [4] https://afsp.org/about-suicide/suicide-statistics/ [5]https://arstechnica.com/science/2017/11/study-white-men-facing-money-trouble-tend-to-cling-to-guns-for-power-identity/ [6] https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2016/09/the-original-underclass/492731/ [7]https://news.sky.com/story/why-are-white-men-more-likely-to-carry-out-mass-shootings-11252808 [8] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxD3o-9H1lY [9] https://www.vox.com/2016/4/21/11451378/smug-american-liberalism [10] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Race_and_ethnicity_in_the_United_States [11] https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/11/well/mind/how-loneliness-affects-our-health.html [12]https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/01/white-working-class-poverty/424341/ [13] https://people.howstuffworks.com/cult3.htm [14] https://www.fbi.gov/cve508/teen-website/why-do-people-become-violent-extremists

A new way to treat depression

In a 2014 study, specialists at UCLA asked over 153,000 first year undergraduates to assess their general emotional health — and it was rated at the lowest level that UCLA has ever documented. Researchers found that nearly one in ten students said they frequently felt depressed.

A separate study by the American College Health Association discovered that more than fifty percent of colleges students have experienced “overwhelming anxiety” sometime over the past year. More than 30 percent of them said they have felt so depressed “that it was difficult to function.” Nearly 40 percent said they “felt things were hopeless.”

A new treatment for depression could significantly decrease its severity. Image from bkreader.com

Depression and anxiety with college students have been growing, and treatment of depression has been developing as well.

Analysts of a new study published in the most recent issue of Biological Psychiatry report effective decrease of depression symptoms in patients utilizing an innovative non-invasive method of vagus nerve stimulation, or VNS.

In spite of the increasing amount of neurostimulation approaches and medications available, leftover side effects may be both upsetting and incapacitating. Customary VNS is a neurostimulation procedure that has been utilized to diminish treatment-resistant symptoms of depression. Clinical trials proposed that it delivered relative advantage that developed over drawn out periods of time. Be that as it may, it was additionally expensive and required dangerous neurosurgery to embed the vagal nerve stimulators.

Drs. Peijing Rong and Jiliang Fang at the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, working together with Jian Kong’s analysis group at Harvard Medical School, researched a new, altered type of VNS called transcutaneous VNS, which alternatively stimulates the vagus nerve through electrodes put into the ear.

Patients with major depressive disorder who volunteered for the study were either given transcutaneous VNS or placebo VNS and experienced a functional neuroimaging scan both before and after being treated for one month.

Contrasted with patients who were given placebo VNS, the patients who were given actual transcutaneous VNS displayed noteworthy improvement of their symptoms of depression. This change was linked with expanded functional connectivity amid the default mode system and precuneus and orbital prefrontal cortex, a critical system in the brain known that is changed in depression.

As claimed by Rong, this treatment can significantly downsize the asperity of depression and shows promise for use later on in the future.

5 things you didn’t know about living with anxiety

Having anxiety can be hell for the person living with it. For those who don’t have it, this article will help you understand what those who do have anxiety go through. There are a lot of ideas behind what anxiety looks like, but there are a lot of things we don’t talk about.

  1. Picking

When many people think of anxiety, they think of nail-biting. Often in television shows, especially cartoons, nervousness is expressed through nail-biting. I’ve been a nail-biter since I can remember. However, there are other ways we cope with anxiety physically.

Trichotillomania is a disorder which causes a person with anxiety to pull out their hair. Dermatillomania is when a person with anxiety picks their skin. For the past year or so, I have picked my legs to shreds. It honestly looks like I walked into a mosquito nest. During a recent doctor’s visit, my doctor noticed my scarred legs. She said, “you definitely have anxiety. I can tell because a lot of my patients with anxiety pick their legs or arms.”

It’s an ugly truth to anxiety that we may cause physical harm to ourselves, whether we know it or not. Skin-picking and hair-pulling is dangerous because if it leaves open wounds, you risk infections such as Staph.

  1. Panic attacks are more than just crying

The image that often comes to mind of a panic attack is usually of that person crying hysterically. Although that may be the case, not all panic attacks are the same.

When I’m having a panic attack, it feels like my body’s on fire. I become irritable and feel this intense sense of urgency. When someone is having a panic attack, often their fight or flight mode gets switched on. For me, this is often more towards the fight side. I become extremely aggressive when I’m having a panic attack. I’ve said things I would never say to someone when I’m my “normal” self.

For others, anxiety attacks can mean extreme confusion. As their sense of urgency is heightened, collecting their thoughts and assessing a situation can become extremely difficult, if not impossible.

  1. Panic attacks don’t just happen in stressful situations

I’ve had panic attacks in high-stress situations such as the last few moments of crunch time during finals week. However, I’ve had even more panic attacks in situations that shouldn’t be stressful at all. For example, I had a panic attack in my sleep once. It manifested as a horrible nightmare that I was being eaten alive by insects. It felt so real, when I woke up I flailed my arms in an attempt to get the imaginary bugs off of me. I was also in a pool of sweat and tears, and I was breathing so hard I thought my heart might explode.

Even in extremely relaxed states, anxiety can attack.

The thoughts are endless with anxiety Photo from psych2go
The thoughts are endless with anxiety
Photo from psych2go     

 4. Anxiety doesn’t discriminate

Mental illness is often thought to be more a women’s health issue. Women are more likely to seek help for anxiety, but that doesn’t mean men aren’t afflicted. Although women are more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety disorders, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are more anxious than men. Due to societal expectations of masculinity, men are less likely to seek help for mental illness. As a result, men are much more likely to commit suicide.

Anxiety doesn’t care if you’re physically fit, either. Although diet and exercise may help curb anxiety symptoms, no amount of either will cure an anxiety disorder.

Age also doesn’t seem to matter in terms of the prevalence of anxiety. Children are just as likely to suffer from anxiety, but less likely to be treated, as many times anxiety in children can be considered a “phase.” Although for many children, anxiety directed towards certain situations may just be phases, it’s important that they are monitored. Children can be prescribed medication for anxiety, but Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is also a very useful tool in allowing children to live normal and healthy childhoods.

  1. There isn’t a “one size fits all” treatment for anxiety

When it comes to treating anxiety, there are a million options out there. I’ve been urged to try everything from therapy to gluten-free and organic diets. The option I’ve found that works for me is medication. When I first became “public” about my anxiety, I had a lot of people messaging me recommendations for various therapists, medications, exercise programs, and so much more. Although I’ve found yoga to be a useful tool in calming my anxiety after a long week, I immediately decided to try medication. Anxiety runs in my family, and I know my mother, aunt and sister had positive experiences with medication.

Although medication works for me, I’m in no place to tell you what the “best” option is for someone seeking treatment for anxiety. Honestly, no one is in that place but your doctor. I will say, however, if you know anxiety is in your genes, talk to your family members. Chances are, they’ve found something that works for them, and because you share genes, it may work for you.

Anxiety affects 28.8% of U.S. residents over their lifetime. Although that may seem like a small number since we’re in the minority, that means we’re nowhere near alone. Anxiety can feel very isolating. Although few people experience anxiety the same way you do, there are a lot of people who know how you feel. Now more than ever there is a better understanding of the crippling forms of anxiety, and getting treatment can be scary but it’s much easier than it’s ever been.

Benefits of using neti pots

Spring is finally here, and you know what that means: allergy season.

 

http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m04x0dXzQ91qj5iiho1_400.jpg
Neti pots… Who would’ve thought! Photo from Tumblr.com.

Neti pots have been used for thousands of years in Asia, but they’ve only gained popularity in America during the last couple of years. It sounds gross to stick a spout up your nose and flush out everything up in there, but a neti pot has many benefits over using antihistamines, if done correctly. Here are a few you should consider if you’re thinking about using a neti pot. Continue reading Benefits of using neti pots