Psychiatry Essential Reads

What Not to Say to a Depressed Person

By Jean Kim M.D. on July 01, 2015 in Culture Shrink
What isn’t helpful and remains a huge hurdle for the lay public to understand about depression is that it isn’t just a matter of moral failure or weakness or lack of willpower. The following comments are worth avoiding when talking to people you know going through a depressive episode:

The X Factor: Genetics and Female Mental Health

XIST, the gene that controls X chromosome gene expression, is up regulated in psychosis, just as the imprinted brain theory predicts.

Psychiatry Headed into the Future or Off A Cliff?

Two Chinese investigators, Ying Wu and Zhiguang Duan at Shanxi Medical University, have recently tried to assess highlights in psychiatry since the 1960s. They analyzed references in 85, 612 papers published in 10 leading psychiatry journals, using a variant of who-cites-whom analysis, to identify central issues. This is not a method of establishing truth but rather of te

When to Sue Your Psychiatrist for Malpractice

By Ruth Lee Johnson J.D. on June 24, 2015 in So Sue Me
Many cases of psychiatric malpractice are never reported because the victims are already emotionally unstable. What exactly does it mean for a psychiatrist to commit malpractice?

23 Mental Health Professionals Interviewed About Their Jobs

By Brad Waters on June 24, 2015 in Design Your Path
Going behind the scenes with 23 mental health professionals to gain insight into the pros and cons of the industry.

Headquarters? What Headquarters? Behind Pixar's Inside Out

By Ravi Chandra M.D. on June 22, 2015 in The Pacific Heart
Inside Out is a fantastic movie, highlighting the inner life of a girl, with plenty of positive female role models in the form of emotions. Sadness is the unlikely hero. We learn a lot about childhood vulnerability, emotional regulation, and adaptation. But emotional regulation, and the idea of a “Headquarters” in our mind, bear a closer look.

Mass Shootings, Psychiatric Medications, and Rick Perry

By Joe Pierre M.D. on June 20, 2015 in Psych Unseen
Psychiatric medications cause violent behavior? Where's the evidence?

Humanizing the “Mentally Ill”

Want evidence to believe in the human spirit? Want to see how the world looks from the most stigmatized element of society? Check out Infinitely Polar Bear.

Tackling the Emotions in Borderline Personality Disorder

People with borderline personality disorder have one of the most challenging psychological problems to treat. Furthermore, if you or someone you know is in a relationship with someone who has this disorder, you know how difficult it can be to live with the disorder. Mentalization-based therapy, focused on emotions, may provide an important new approach.

Why Patients with Borderline Personality Don't Get Better

People who exhibit symptoms of borderline personality disorder, despite being intelligent and showing no signs of psychosis, persist tenaciously in their troublesome, self-destructive behaviors. They will not stop no matter what other people try to do to get them to. They will not tell you about the horrifying reactions they get from family members when they act better.

Climate and Suicide

Decades of data link increases in temperature to higher violent suicide rates. What sort of factors could be at play, and what questions need to be answered to help us understand this linkage better?

Contact

The world can be a lonely place

Is Evidence-Based Treatment All It's Cracked Up To Be?

Evidence-based treatment sounds great. There's just one problem: if the evidence is faulty or irrelevant, so is the claim based on it.

The FDA, the DSM, Gender Equality, and “Female Viagra”

By Christopher Lane Ph.D. on June 08, 2015 in Side Effects
Concerning the demand for "female Viagra," will the FDA succumb to lobbyists accusing it of gender bias?

Depression During Pregnancy Requires Detection and Treatment

Depression during pregnancy requires treatment.

Positive Psychiatry: The Next Chapter for an Evolving Field

It’s time for psychiatry to move towards being true physician experts in mental health, not just mental illness. This means going beyond psychotherapy and medications treatment by incorporating validated wellness strategies in the day to day work with patients and families.

Game Theory: How to Put Oneself in Someone Else's Shoes

By Eyal Winter on June 03, 2015 in Feeling Smart
About the John Nash I knew and his magical theories.

How to Fix Broken Sleep

By Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D. on June 01, 2015 in Think, Act, Be
What works for insomnia might surprise you--and your doctor.

Happiness versus Success

Over the decades - as both a psychiatrist practicing in Silicon Valley and a civilian living here locally - I have witnessed so much success and yet so little happiness. In our valley of material riches and natural beauty, the two are regrettably too often in opposition.

Your Brain on Chocolate

Chocolate, a fermented extract of the seed pods of the Theobroma cacao plant, is one of the world’s most popular foods. Given the active caffeine, theobromides, and rich number of flavanols in chocolate, it’s no surprise that cocoa has been used as a medicine for at least 3000 years. Could it have beneficial effects on the brain?

A Beautiful Mind: What Did John Nash Really Have?

Nash was certainly delusional and evidently hallucinated as well. He filled the blackboards of Fine Hall at Princeton with indecipherable scribblings, and wandered about the campus in an apparent daze. He became known as “The Phantom of Fine Hall.”

What Happens When a Psychopath Falls in Love

The typical profile of a psychopath is of someone who is incapable of love. However, should people high in psychopathy manage to form intimate bonds, here's what can await them and their partners.

The Surprising News about Children's Mental Health

How mentally healthy are today’s children and teens? A comprehensive new survey shows that the current generation of young people are in better shape than we’ve realized. However, trends in medication use continue to draw concern by mental health experts.

Diametric Differences in Seeing the Other’s Point of View

Both tendencies to autism and proneness to psychosis induce perspective-taking errors, but their interaction reduces these errors: a finding only explicable by the diametric model.

April (and May, and Probably June) Is the Cruelest Month

By Steven Schlozman M.D. on May 11, 2015 in Grand Rounds
Depression and even suicidal behavior increase in spring. But why?

How Many People Take Benzodiazepines?

Benzodiazepines can be helpful in treating anxiety and insomnia. These medications are used more often by elderly adults than by younger people even though there are increased safety concerns with use by older individuals.

ADHD Kills

There was a two fold increase in death rates for those with ADHD.

Why We Still Need Mental Health Awareness Month, for Now

So it’s national Mental Health Month… Guest post By Aaron Krasner, M.D.

The Self "Loathsome Gluttony" of Binge-eating Disorder

Binge eating disorder (BED) is a new diagnostic category in psychiatry's DSM-5 although it was first described in 1959. Already pharmaceutical companies are heavily marketing their medications to this new population.

Analyzing Analysts

In Shrinks, Jeffrey Lieberman reviews psychiatry's "tumultuous history," and its current emphasis on the medical treatment of mental illnesses. He maintains that psychiatry fares best when it avoids the extremes of reductionist neurobiology and the psychodynamic element in existential disease. That said, Shrinks does not address important questions about talk therapy.