Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

This forum is to discuss general things concerning TSOI.
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Early identification, treatment is vital to avoid COVID-19-related health anxieties in children

9/5/20

https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... ldren.aspx

Early identification and treatment is vital to avoid long-term mental health consequences from COVID-19 among children and young people, say researchers.

Writing in the Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy Journal, the psychologists from the University of Bath highlight how health anxieties can be triggered by changes like returning to school and argue that young people need time to readjust to routine and to deal with emotions after such a prolonged period at home.

For some, they say, ongoing concerns about health, triggered by the invisible threat posed by COVID-19, could interfere with life and parents and teachers need to be aware of signs such as excessive hand washing, and reassurance-seeking about health-related worries.

Crucially not all children and young people will experience or develop health anxiety, and many have shown remarkable resilience in the face of an unprecedented health crisis. Yet for some, particularly those who are already vulnerable to worrying and anxiety, this year's tumultuous events are likely to have significantly and negatively impacted them.

Dr Jo Daniels clinical psychologist within the Department of Psychology at the University of Bath, who throughout the pandemic has been active in advising and guiding individuals and organisations on responding to COVID-19-related health anxieties, explains: "Children are not immune to worries about their health, or the health of those around them. It is essential that we are able to recognize when normal concerns around covid become more problematic.

"Signs of stress in children may include tummy ache, sleeping problems and not engaging in normally enjoyable activities; for those particularly affected by health related anxiety, you might expect to see excessive hand-washing, exaggerated avoidance of touching objects for fear of picking up the virus, or repeated reassurance seeking from adults in addition to the usual signs of stress and worry.

"Children may not always be able to describe or verbalize their concerns clearly, so we are looking for marked changes in behaviour or worries that get in the way of living life to the full. Teachers also now have a role in this when children return back to school, as they tend to know the children well and school is where they will be spending a large part of their day."

The team behind the study suggest health anxieties in children might be triggered by an immediate family member becoming ill, a shielding member of the household, or perhaps because of raised family tensions due to parental health-related worries. In these scenarios they advise parents and teachers to seek professional help where needed.

Their guidance offers suggestions about how cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), including CBT conducted online or by phone, can be an effective treatment option to address children and young people's health anxieties.

During the pandemic, the team have previously highlighted mental health vulnerabilities including health anxiety in adults, and loneliness in children and young people.

Dr Maria Loades, also from Bath's Department of Psychology and who earlier this year published findings about the potential long-term mental health challenges for children and young people as a result of lockdown and loneliness, added: "As children and young people return to school, they need to have the opportunity to catch up, not just academically, but also socially and emotionally.

"A big part of this is having the time and space to connect with one another, through play, which gives them a chance to process the emotions and to share their experiences with others. It will take time for children and young people to adjust. While we want to avoid pathologizing normal responses to the pandemic, in children and young people especially, it is vital to spot the signs and intervene early."

They recommend that parents or teachers who notice that a child or young person is worried about health should offer them the opportunity to talk about their worries by gently listening to their concerns, and then encouraging them to find ways to gradually face and overcome their fears.

Where a child or young person is seeking excessive reassurance from others, it's important to remember that although this may help them in the short-term, it can keep their worries going over time. It is understandable to worry about health at this time and they say it is important to work with young people to find ways to resolve and understand their worries. Simple interventions that may be helpful could include correcting misunderstandings surrounding covid and the necessary precautions.

Although most will overcome their fears without specialist help, for some, their anxiety may get in the way of functioning and cause distress; in this instance, additional help should be sought via health care professionals or teachers.

" We all need to work together to ensure children and young people are able to live their lives to the fullest."

-Dr Maria Loades, Bath's Department of Psychology
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Study: Elevated adverse mental health conditions are associated with COVID-19

9/17/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... ID-19.aspx

Social isolation. Financial worries. They're two unfortunate realities causing great anxiety for many people during the COVID-19 pandemic. They also may raise the risk of death by suicide.

While no definitive data exists yet on suicide rates during the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducted a study in late June on mental health, substance use and suicidal ideation in U.S. adults.


The results showed elevated adverse mental health conditions associated with COVID-19. Thirty-one percent of respondents reported symptoms of anxiety or depression and 11% reported having seriously considered suicide in the 30 days prior to the study.

The results are concerning given the tie between suicide and mental health conditions such as major depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and post-traumatic stress disorder.


" About 90% of individuals who die by suicide have either a diagnosed or diagnosable mental health disorder."

-Dr. Ahmad Hameed, Psychiatrist, Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center

Suicide isn't inevitable. It's preventable, and individuals considering suicide want help. "A majority of the time, individuals who survived a serious suicide attempt say they were relieved that they are alive and that someone was there to listen to them and understand what they were going through," Hameed said.

Impact of COVID-19


Helping to prevent suicide begins with understanding of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health. For people already prone to anxiety, the pandemic's stressors-;health concerns, potential job losses, worries about loved ones, non-stop COVID-19 news reports-;can seem unbearable.

A Duke University study published in July revealed that individuals experiencing unemployment, homelessness, debt, bankruptcy or a lower income were 20 times more likely to attempt suicide.

While anxiety among adults is high, the risk for suicide crosses across demographics and affects some groups, such as military veterans, more than others. Eighty percent of people who die by suicide are men. In the June CDC study, younger adults, racial/ethnic minorities, essential workers and unpaid adult caregivers reported disproportionately worse mental health outcomes, increased substance use and elevated suicidal ideation.

And a study published on Sept. 11 showed that primary school students in China experienced more depressive symptoms and made more suicide attempts after schools were closed during the pandemic.

Helping people prevent suicide

As the U.S. recognizes Suicide Prevention Awareness Month in September, "it's time for loved ones, friends and family members to be really mindful of any potential behaviors they might see in a person with a mental health condition," Hameed said.

Look for signs that a person's depression, anxiety or isolation is worsening. Are they more distant? Are they able to care for themselves? Are they experiencing sudden weight loss or weight gain? Are they having trouble sleeping? Do they talk about not wanting to live?

Have they made a plan to die by suicide? Has their alcohol or drug use increased? Did they recently buy a gun (more than half of people who die by suicide use a firearm)? Are they getting their affairs in order?

People who recognize warning signs can then assist individuals at risk for suicide by following these four steps:


Ask if they are struggling with their emotions or considering suicide.
Listen to their concerns without judgment.
Validate their feelings.
Help. Guide them to the right professional resources.

Options include bringing a loved one to a psychiatrist, therapist, primary care provider or emergency department. People considering suicide can also speak with a counselor for free 24/7 by calling the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Press 1 to reach the Veterans Crisis Line. Or host a free lifeline chat. In addition, the CDC offers these tips on coping with COVID-19-related stress.

"People really do want help," Hameed said. "All we have to do is ensure that the help is readily available."
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

U.S. adults experienced increased mental health issues as COVID-19 cases skyrocketed

9/19/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... keted.aspx

U.S. adults increasingly experienced symptoms associated with acute stress and depression as COVID-19 cases and deaths skyrocketed between mid-March and mid-April 2020, according to a study of more than 6,500 people from three large, nationally representative cohorts. These symptoms were related to preexisting mental and physical health conditions, as well as secondary stressors such as job and wage loss.

Acute stress and depressive symptoms were also related to greater COVID-19-related media consumption, a general increase in media consumption during the outbreak, and exposure to conflicting information in the media about the outbreak. E. Alison Holman and colleagues suggest these findings may be used to develop targeted public mental health interventions. While the scientific community has largely focused on understanding and treating COVID-19, little research has investigated the accompanying mental health crisis.

Prior studies that examined the pandemic's mental health implications have relied on non-representative samples from opt-in online panels that may not accurately reflect the nation as a whole. Between March 18, 2020 and April 18, 2020, Holman et al. assessed acute stress; symptoms of depression; and direct, community, and media-based exposures to COVID-19 in three nationally representative cohorts (a total of more than 6,500 people) in staggered 10-day periods. Holman et al. found that while personal exposure to COVID-19, such as testing positive for the virus or coping with a close friend or family member's diagnosis, was associated with heightened anxiety and depression symptoms, community-level exposure was not.

This suggests U.S. adults are more concerned with contracting the virus than dealing with pandemic-induced daily life disruptions.
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

People with severe dementia are unaware of COVID-19 outbreak, indicates study

9/21/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... study.aspx

The ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has substantially affected patients with dementia and their caregivers.

Owing to the restrictive measures taken worldwide to block the spread of COVID-19 outbreaks (including the declaration of a state of emergency in Japan), patients with dementia and their caregivers have not been able to receive the usual support and care.

Therefore, this is expected to lead to adverse effects on the patients and their caregivers, and many investigators have warned about the risks. In fact, many scheduled appointments for routine outpatients' examinations and care services have been canceled and postponed owing to the COVID-19 outbreak.

When dementia outpatients came to our clinic for their postponed outpatient appointments after the state of emergency declaration was lifted, we found that some patients were afraid of COVID-19 infection whereas some were not. We noticed that patients with severe dementia tended to be less susceptible to COVID-19 than patients with mild dementia in the daily clinical setting.

Based on the hypothesis that patients with severe dementia tend to be unaware of the COVID-19 outbreak and hence may be less depressed
, we compared the rate of recognition of the COVID-19 outbreak and resultant depressive tendencies between patients with mild dementia and those with severe dementia.

In this study, patients with Alzheimer disease (AD) are included in this study because the depressive tendency depends on the cause of dementia
. A total of 126 consecutive outpatients with AD from the Memory Disorder Clinic at the Department of Geriatric Medicine, Tokyo Medical University, were enrolled in this study from May 25, on the day when the declaration of emergency was lifted, to June 30, 2020.

In addition to the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) and Geriatric Depression Scale - Short Version (GDS-S) performed as routine psychological tests, the participants were asked the following 2 questions: "Do you know COVID-19?" and "Why are you wearing a face mask?".

The patients were divided into the mild AD group (MMSE score < 21, n = 51) and the moderate to severe AD group (MMSE score < 21, n = 75), and the results of the neuropsychological tests and the 2 questions were compared.

During the state of emergency, none of the patients had received a diagnosis of COVID-19 or had required any treatment changes or additional treatments owing to Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD).

Consistent with our hypothesis, AD patients with moderate to severe cognitive impairment were found to have a low COVID-19 recognition rate and did not fully understand why they were wearing face masks.

In this study, patients with Alzheimer disease (AD) are included in this study because the depressive tendency depends on the cause of dementia. A total of 126 consecutive outpatients with AD from the Memory Disorder Clinic at the Department of Geriatric Medicine, Tokyo Medical University, were enrolled in this study from May 25, on the day when the declaration of emergency was lifted, to June 30, 2020.

In addition to the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) and Geriatric Depression Scale - Short Version (GDS-S) performed as routine psychological tests, the participants were asked the following 2 questions: "Do you know COVID-19?" and "Why are you wearing a face mask?".

The patients were divided into the mild AD group (MMSE score < 21, n = 51) and the moderate to severe AD group (MMSE score < 21, n = 75), and the results of the neuropsychological tests and the 2 questions were compared.

During the state of emergency, none of the patients had received a diagnosis of COVID-19 or had required any treatment changes or additional treatments owing to Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD).

Consistent with our hypothesis, AD patients with moderate to severe cognitive impairment were found to have a low COVID-19 recognition rate and did not fully understand why they were wearing face masks.

In addition, because they did not understand the seriousness of the COVID-19 outbreak, their GDS scores were also substantially lower

These results may appear to simply indicate that people with severe dementia are unaware of current events. However, these results provide us with insights into how to care for patients with dementia and how to efficiently use of the time and support of our limited staff during the COVID-19 outbreak.

A previous study demonstrated that the COVID-19 outbreak adversely affected not only cognition and neuropsychiatric symptoms but also the functional independence of patients with dementia.

Therefore, our results indicate that for patients with moderate to severe cognitive impairment, it may be useful to prioritize prevention of their cognitive decline and maintenance of their functional independence, whereas for those with mild cognitive impairment, it may be useful to prioritize reducing psychological stress and preventing neuropsychiatric symptoms, such as depression.


Moreover, when explaining the necessity of wearing a face mask to patients with moderate to severe dementia, it is necessary to persuade them to wear a mask, as they do not understand COVID-19.

Not only because they are unaware of COVID-19 that moderate to severe dementia patients are less prone to depression, but also it should be remembered that their caregivers have made great efforts trying to prevent patients from becoming depressed. Therefore, it will be important to also investigate the depressive tendencies of caregivers during the COVID-19 outbreak.


Although these findings are limited because they were obtained from a single memory clinic and small sample size, our results provide suggestions as to how to care for patients with dementia during the COVID-19 outbreak.

This study provides insights into ways of caring for people with dementia while the COVID-19 outbreak continues, as we must work to provide appropriate care to old patients with dementia during all situations.
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Carers of adults with intellectual disability report higher rates of lockdown mental health problems

9/24/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... blems.aspx

Family carers for children and adults with intellectual disabilities have reported rates of mental health problems under lockdown that are up to 10 times higher than parents without those responsibilities, a new study has found.

They were five times more likely to report severe anxiety, and between four and ten times more likely to report major depression, compared to parents who did not have caring responsibilities for children with intellectual disability.

The challenges faced by informal carers - usually mothers - of children and adults with intellectual disability have been largely overlooked during the coronavirus crisis.

To address this, a research team carried out an online study aimed at documenting their mental health. Led by Professor Paul Willner from Swansea University, the project involved Swansea researchers and colleagues from the universities of Warwick, Kent and Birmingham, and the Challenging Behaviour Foundation.

The team analysed 244 online surveys, which were completed during the strict lockdown period by carers of adults with intellectual disability, of children with intellectual disability, and a comparison group of carers for children without intellectual disability.

More than 90 per cent of the carers taking part were female. Eleven households had had direct experience of COVID-19.

Key findings were:

Moderate to severe anxiety - 43% of carers of children with intellectual disability reported this, compared with 8% of parents of children without intellectual disability.
Moderate to severe levels of depression were reported by 45% of carers of children with intellectual disability, compared with 11% of parents of children without.
Major depression was found in 31% of carers of children with intellectual disability but only 3% of parents of children without intellectual disability.
Social support - compared to parents of children without intellectual disability, carers of children with intellectual disability received significantly less support from other sources, particularly family and friends - despite their greater needs.
No respite: carers for adults with intellectual disability; the closure of adult day services and respite care meant that this group felt they had significantly less support than carers of children, who could still send their children to school if they wished.


" It is likely from these data that the mental health of carers of children and adults with intellectual disability has been adversely affected by the pandemic. This effect is over and above any pre-existing mental health problems. They are also affected to a greater extent than parents of people without disabilities but are less well supported. Our findings are one illustration of how the pandemic has amplified existing inequalities."

- Professor Paul Willner, head of the project, Swansea University

The authors make recommendations on supporting carers better, including:

Long-term consistent support from a named key worker
More nurses trained in learning disabilities, with carers' mental health in their remit
More respite provision, to be continued through any further lockdowns
Services better equipped to offer support to carers remotely via phone or online
Access for carers to specialist mental health support
Peer support groups

Professor Willner added:

"We should acknowledge the essential role played by informal carers and take steps to ensure they are appropriately and proactively supported. There are significant costs for the carers themselves and for society more generally if mental ill health robs them of their ability to continue providing care for their loved ones."

The research was published in the Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Students without pre-existing mental health issues more severely affected by COVID-19 stressors

9/25/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... ssors.aspx

Surprisingly, university students without pre-existing mental health concerns seem to be suffering greater psychological distress during the pandemic than their peers with pre-existing mental health problems according to a study of close to 800 university students in Toronto carried out by researchers from McGill and University of Toronto.

"It is unexpected and counterintuitive," says Nancy Heath, a professor in the Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology at McGill and a co- author on the paper that was published today in Canadian Psychology. "We all expected that those 'at risk' due to prior mental health difficulties would be the most vulnerable to the COVID-19 stressors. However, those university students without mental health concerns are consistently and significantly more negatively impacted by COVID-19. Our explanation is that social isolation is hitting those without prior mental health difficulties much harder."

Weathering the loneliness of social isolation

The study compared the results of two surveys of close to 800 students, who answered questions online about their mental health and wellbeing, initially in May 2019, and then again in May 2020. 74% of the students were female, 25% were male and 1% were other.

Their average age was 18. The survey questions were designed to elicit information about a range of areas including recent stressful experiences, social support, depressive symptoms, difficulties in emotional regulation, non-suicidal self-injury, symptoms of anxiety along and alcohol dependence, among other subjects.

Analyses for mental health indicators after the survey in May 2020 showed that among students with pre-existing mental health concerns, there had been decreased levels of stress, sadness, depressive symptoms, anxiety and perceived burdensomeness over time. In contrast, students without pre-existing mental health concerns showed increasing stress, sadness, depressive symptoms, anxiety and burdensomeness over time.

" Those with previous mental health difficulties showed either little change or even improvements. It seems that what is likely to be contributing to this, is that for those without mental health difficulties before the pandemic, COVID-19 resulted in them having greater social isolation AND social isolation was a significant contributor to their poor mental health outcomes after the beginning of the pandemic. But those with prior mental health difficulties were more likely to have the same or better social circumstances post-COVID-19 than they did before it. In effect, by being isolated pre-COVID, those with prior mental health difficulties were well positioned to weather COVID-19!"

- Dr. Chloe Hamza, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto and first author on the study

A need for support for students both with and without mental health challenges

"Our findings underscore the fact that universities will need to continue to support the ongoing needs of students with pre-existing mental health challenges," adds Heath. "However, our findings suggest that universities should also prioritize developing early intervention and prevention programming for students for whom the pandemic may be particularly challenging, such as students who are beginning to show declining mental health in response to increasing social isolation."
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Addressing the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on global mental health

9/26/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... ealth.aspx

In a special session addressing global mental health before, during and after the COVID-19 pandemic held at the ESCMID Conference on Coronavirus Disease (ECCVID) Professor Vikram Patel H(arvard Medical School, USA) will present a new review of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on global mental health.

He will explain: "Mental health problems were already a leading cause of suffering and the most neglected health issue globally before the pandemic. The pandemic will, through worsening the social determinants of mental health, fuel a worsening of this crisis,"

The pressures on mental health, that already existed in abundance before this global pandemic, are increasing at an alarming rate. Prof Patel will touch on some of these in his talk.

"There are so many issues which affect large sections of the population, including worries about jobs and income security, social exclusion, school closures and working from home creating huge pressure on families. There are also disruptions to medical services and care, potential domestic violence situations, and the varying levels of fear people have of being infected by this new virus."

-Vikram Patel, Professor, Harvard Medical School

The pandemic threatens to reverse years of global development, including in the countries that can least afford to start going backwards. In August 2020, World Bank President David Malpass predicted as many as 100 million people will be pushed back into extreme poverty.

As a result of the global economic recession, the mental health tsunami is going to sweep through all countries, rich and poor. "The 2008 recession, which largely affected only the US, was followed by a wave of 'deaths of despair' in the USA, driven by suicide and substance use," explains Prof Patel.

"Without huge levels of government support for both the mental health sector and a whole host of other sectors, we are tragically facing a repeat of this, but perhaps on a much greater scale."

He points out at that before COVID-19 arrived, there was already a global mental health crisis. "The relative burden of mental and substance use disorders increased by nearly 50% in the past 25 years. These disorders now account for one in every ten years of lost health globally and suicide rates in young people are rising in many countries."

However, he concludes: "I believe the pandemic presents a historic opportunity to reimagine mental health care, by realising the science which demonstrates that we must reframe mental health beyond a narrow focus on 'diagnoses, doctors and drugs'.

This implies that we need to greatly increase the emphasis on prevention through actions on social determinants in the first two decades of life, adopt a human rights approach to eliminate coercion and place the lived experience at the heart of all mental health care, and scale up the evidence demonstrating that non-specialist, community based providers can effectively deliver psychosocial interventions.

Above all, the science emphasizes the need to embrace the diversity of experiences and interventions to address this crisis - that for most of us, will be the worst health crisis we are likely to see in our lifetimes."
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

New research projects intend to alleviate farmer and rancher stress

9/26/20


https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... tress.aspx

The stress level in rural communities is off the charts. Farm and ranch closures, land forfeitures, labor issues and more contribute, and according to a 2015 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - a full five years before the COVID-19 pandemic hit - rates of suicide in rural communities measured twice that of urban areas.

To address this desperate problem, the USDA is creating the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN) by funding four regional projects intended to improve behavioral health by providing stress management assistance for people in farming, ranching and other agriculture-related occupations as well as assistance for their families. The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture has been chosen to coordinate the effort in the South.

The three-year, $7.2 million southern region effort, funded by USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), will span thirteen states and two U.S. territories. It will include more than 50 partner organizations, from land-grant institutions to government agencies, commodity and lending groups, and non-profit organizations.

Heather Sedges, an associate professor in the UT Extension Department of Family and Consumer Sciences, will serve as the southern region project leader and she also will coordinate efforts across the state of Tennessee.

In Tennessee among the leading partners are the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, the UT Institute of Agriculture's MANAGE program and the Tennessee Farmer Suicide Prevention Taskforce.

"This funding allows us to establish a multi-faceted and network-driven response to the needs of farmers and ranchers, their families and communities as they navigate challenging times," says Sedges.

The network will coordinate six specific strategies designed to help rural citizens and communities. These include establishing a hotline for immediate accessibility, developing a comprehensive website with information and resources to address individual situations, and curating and creating resources for the website.

The effort will also establish training for representatives working within rural communities to support individuals through direct services or support groups. Research into how to alleviate farmer and rancher stress as well as the issues endemic to rural communities is also part of the effort.

Tim Cross, senior vice president and senior vice chancellor for the UT Institute of Agriculture, says the regional networks are needed and UT Extension is well suited to lead the effort to establish the southern region network.


" These regional networks should be a natural synergy between our agriculture and family and consumer sciences programs in cooperation with other public and private partners. Individual farmer success and mentally strong families are a direct complement to economically and physically healthy rural communities."

-Tim Cross, Senior Vice President and Senior Vice Chancellor, UT Institute of Agriculture

"We support work that promotes the well-being and good mental health of farmers and their families," says Tennessee Agriculture Commissioner Charlie Hatcher, D.V.M. "Farming families encounter factors such as isolation, market instability, unpredictable weather and plant and livestock diseases that contribute to stress. We're glad to be a partner in projects that lead to solutions for our farming community."

As announced by USDA, each of the four regions will receive approximately $7.2 million over the course of three years. The other regional efforts will be led by the University of Illinois, Urbana (North Central Region); the National Young Farmers Coalition (Northeast Region); and Washington State University (Western Region).

Sedges says partners will begin almost immediately working to establish the overall network infrastructure, as well as links to partnering agencies. Training and outreach will begin in 2021.

Through its land-grant mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions.
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Children’s Hospital Sees An Alarming Rise In Suicide Patients, “Nearly A Child Or Teen A Day” Last Month

9/25/20


https://kingworldnews.com/childrens-hos ... ast-month/

An alarming rate of children are purposefully harming themselves and ending up at Cook Children’s Medical Center. In August, 29 patients were admitted to the hospital after attempting suicide. This marks the second worst month since at least 2015.

“We’ve definitely seen a high number of adolescent suicide attempts over the past couple of months, especially during COVID-19
,” said Kia Carter, M.D., medical director of psychiatry at Cook Children’s Medical Center. “We’ve also seen younger kids endorse suicidal ideation.”

At Cook Children’s, the vast majority of patients treated for self-harming are girls, typically between the ages of 13 and 15. But Dr. Carter says she’s had patients in her unit as young as 4 years old talking about wanting to die.

“We’ve seen a huge increase with younger kids knowing what death is because of video games,” said Dr. Carter. “We have to assess their cognitive level and find out if they know what death means or do they think it’s like the video game where they die, but get a backup player.”

So far in 2020, 192 kids have been admitted to Cook Children’s for attempting suicide. Compare that to the same time period in 2015 when the hospital saw 88 patients – less than half of the current statistics.

Unfortunately, the data from Cook Children’s Behavioral Health Center is in line with a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The article, released Sept. 11, shows suicide rates among 10 to 24 year olds have increased 57.4% from 2007 to 2018.

“It’s a real trend that has been demanding, for a while, a serious public health and research effort to understand what is happening and why,” said Anna Mueller, an associate professor of sociology at Indiana University Bloomington. In an interview with USA Today, Mueller said she doesn’t buy that it’s just social media, though we do know many children express anxiety and depression linked to social media.

“Social media plays a big role in the mental health of children and teens,” said Dr. Carter. “They experience bullying online, they may not feel self-worth because they’re comparing themselves to what they see on Instagram. They’re also getting ideas on the internet about how to harm themselves.”

Dr. Carter says social media and sites like YouTube have made self-harm almost acceptable. She says children are looking to those avenues to find out how many pills to take or other ways they can attempt suicide.

“A lot of kids will research how much medication to take to not wake up,” said Dr. Carter. “I would say 99% of the overdoses we see have some over-the-counter component.”

Since January, 31 children have been admitted to Cook Children’s for ingesting too much Benadryl. At least three of the Benadryl overdoses are linked to a TikTok challenge, but the majority of cases were among patients intending to harm themselves. Other drugs commonly found in medicine cabinets such as Tylenol, aspirin and ibuprofen are also frequently used.

So why do children and teens take these drastic measures?

“When people feel like they’re not going to get better and there’s no way out, they tend to go to these levels,” Dr. Carter explained. “I think the biggest thing is hopelessness. When kids feel like they don’t have anyone to talk to, they don’t feel like they can communicate with their parents or they’re getting bullied and they don’t have a social circle. Some kids also are struggling with gender and sexual identity.”

“There are some kids who physically don’t feel comfortable in the body they’re in and they don’t feel that they relate to the other girls or the other boys. We see this occur a lot around age 10,” said Dr. Carter. “A lot of times parents feel like it’s a phase, and that might be true, but I would encourage parents to not minimize it because kids can begin to feel hopeless.”

She suggests parents keep an open mind, listen to their children and get them in to see a licensed professional counselor. And she says it’s ok to not agree with their feelings, but to share those thoughts with your spouse or a friend instead of the child.

“If you’re resistant to it, your child’s going to shut down and that can cause a whole realm of depression, hopelessness and not wanting to be alive anymore,” she said.

With COVID-19 and social distancing, spotting signs of depression and hopelessness can be challenging. Things that may have seemed out of the norm in the past, like avoiding social activities, may not be so odd now. But Dr. Carter says watching for changes in behavior is still key.

“Most kids still want to play video games and have their cell phones, so if they don’t want a new video game and all they want to do is sleep, you’re going to want to assess where that change is coming from,” she said.

Other signs of depression to look out for include:

Declining grades
Lack of concern about appearance and hygiene
Changes in eating and/or sleep
Self-injury such as cutting
Less motivation
Alcohol/drug use
Acting highly anxious or agitated
Recklessness
trader32176
Posts: 2522
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2020 5:22 am

Re: Depression & Mental Health Issues Re: Covid 19

Post by trader32176 »

Fear of COVID-19 can increase risk of substance abuse

9/29/20

https://www.news-medical.net/news/20200 ... abuse.aspx

Long after a COVID-19 vaccination is developed and years after the coronavirus death toll is tallied, the impact on mental health will linger, continuing to inflict damage if not addressed, according to new research.

Michael Zvolensky, University of Houston Hugh Roy and Lillie Cranz Cullen Distinguished University Professor of Psychology and director of the Anxiety and Health Research Laboratory/Substance Use Treatment Clinic, has published two papers discussing the psychological, addictive and health behavior issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic from a behavioral science perspective.

" The impact of COVID-19 on psychological symptoms and disorders, addiction and health behavior is substantial and ongoing and will negatively impact people's mental health
and put them at greater risk for chronic illness and drug addiction. It will not equally impact all of society. Those at greater risk are those that have mental health vulnerabilities or disorders."

- Michael Zvolensky, Corresponding Author, University of Houston

For instance, those who 'catastrophize' the pandemic amplify the actual stress impact, increasing their symptoms and creating the possibility for substance abuse.

"That sets in motion a future wave of mental health, addiction and worsening health problems in our society.
It's not going to go away, even with a vaccination, because the damage is already done. That's why we're going to see people with greater health problems struggling for generations," said Zvolensky

Zvolensky offers a model of how the COVID-19 stress burden may be associated with addictive problems and health behaviors, and how these may be associated with later chronic illness and psychological problems.

In Psychiatry Research, Zvolensky presents findings linking worry and fear about the pandemic to drug use and abuse.

Zvolensky evaluated a group of 160 participants to find if COVID-19-related worry and fear differed between substance abstainers, pre-COVID-19 users and those who initiated drug use for the first time during the pandemic.

"Results generally suggest the persons using substance experience the highest levels of COVID-19-related worry and fear," said Zvolensky. "Additionally, worry about COVID-19 is related to coping motives for substance use."

These results provide preliminary evidence that COVID-19-related worry and fear may be putative risk factors for substance use initiation in the face of COVID-19, and these results may provide critical clinical information for helping individuals cope with this pandemic," he said.
Post Reply