He’s up at 5:00 a.m. every morning, slipping into jogging shorts despite the single-digit temperatures, cold winds, and darkness. He pounds the pavement faithfully for 90 minutes a day, at least five days a week. He is also chronically tired and complains of frequent joint pain. He has recently been feeling like, “Why bother? Life […]
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Depression and anxiety are the most common of all mental illnesses, the services for which continue to grow faster than the rate of population growth. Depression and anxiety can often be managed in the general practitioner’s office, and they are the fourth most common problems brought to general practitioners. People who have either condition are […]
If your client was suffering from trauma, which approach would you choose to help them? In this post we explore eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing, or EMDR. Background EMDR is a trauma-focused psychological intervention created from an accelerated information-processing model. Because it also incorporates dissociation and nonverbal representation of traumas (such as visual memories), EMDR […]
In recent years, many disaster response experts and mental health researchers have switched their focus from looking exclusively at at-risk populations in the aftermath of an emergency to asking, “What are the protective factors?” “What situations, experiences, or personal traits help people to come through a traumatic incident with greater resilience?” First, let’s clear what […]
The CEO of the fast-expanding organisation looked at me, despair seeping through a veneer of confidence. With three growing children, a loving husband, and work at the top of the corporate ladder, her life ticked all the boxes. “I’m coping OK,” she confided, “but I’ve been better.” “Better” was before she came to be afflicted […]
We can broadly define CBT as a combination of cognitive and behavioural therapeutic approaches used to help clients modify limiting, maladaptive thoughts and behaviours, ones that are often inconsistent with consensual reality (Beck, Rush, Shaw, & Emery, 1979). The basic premise of CBT is that troublesome emotions are difficult to change directly, so CBT targets […]
As a counsellor/therapist, doctor, allied health professional (or just a caregiver) of a depressed older adult, you are undoubtedly wondering what you can do to encourage them to help themselves. The following list is a compilation of strategies and tips culled from sites specialising in caring for the depressed elderly. You may wish to discuss […]
For most of the two percent of Australians affected by panic disorder, the onset was during their teens or early twenties. It is twice as common in women as men. Not everyone who has panic attacks will develop panic disorder, as some people will have just one attack and never have a recurrence. The tendency […]
Many people have suspected for a long time that we human beings are designed to be able to experience things happening for another person: in good times or in bad. So we see a stranger clumsily bump their head on a low-hanging branch at the park, and we flinch, too. We hear that a friend […]
There are perhaps few human events which generate as many emotions and as intense a set of reactions as someone ending their own life. We can divide the reactions into two categories: those which tend to occur early in the grieving, and those which are ongoing. In this post we explore the early reactions of […]
Every 40 seconds a person dies by suicide somewhere in the world. “Preventing suicide: a global imperative” is the first WHO report of its kind. It aims to increase awareness of the public health significance of suicide and suicide attempts, to make suicide prevention a higher priority on the global public health agenda, and to […]
The DSM-5 has been out for a year now and — fourteen years in the making — it has been the subject of seemingly endless discussion. Are you “up with the play” on the changes — or just up to your ears in confusion? One source said that there were 464 changes, although many of […]
Mindfulness (learn more about mindfulness here) interventions have been shown to be beneficial for a wide range of psychological and physical conditions such as anxiety, depression, chronic pain, personality disorders, and addictions. Controlled trials of normal populations have also demonstrated positive changes in brain function and immune response, self-awareness, perceived stress, and increase in self-compassion […]
The World Health Organization estimates that about million people die by suicide each year (World Health Organization, 2004). Understanding what drives people to take their own life is not easy for those who are not enmeshed in intolerable pain themselves; thus, myths and misconceptions tend to proliferate about this very final act. It is important […]
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD) are said to affect two to three percent of the population for OCD (that is: more than 500,000 Australians) and one percent for OCPD, although three to ten percent of the psychiatric population is said to have it (Long, 2011). Many cases probably go untreated. Definitions If […]