Depression

A Crisis of Comfort

In “The Comfort Crisis,” UNLV journalism professor Michael Easter investigates how our modern-day comforts are linked to some of our most pressing problems—obesity, chronic disease, depression—and how by leaving our comfort zone, we can improve our overall mental, physical, and spiritual wellbeing.

Researchers Find Association Between Financial Strain Due to COVID-19 and Depression

Researchers have found an independent association between COVID-19-related income loss and financial strain and depression, according to the latest study from the COVID-19 Resilience Project, run by the Lifespan Brain Institute (LiBI) of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and Penn Medicine. This association was found in two separate cohorts – one primarily in the United States and one in Israel – and the depressive symptoms worsened over time in participants who were hit financially, above and beyond pandemic-related anxiety. The findings were published today in the Journal of Affective Disorders.

Depression in older adults undergoing hip fracture repair associated with delirium after surgery

Screening for even mild depressive symptoms before hip fracture repair may be helpful in predicting which patients are at higher risk of developing delirium after emergency surgery, according to results of a new study by researchers from Johns Hopkins Medicine. The researchers say their findings also add to evidence that symptoms of depression and postoperative delirium may be an early indicator of Alzheimer’s disease, although those findings were not conclusive.

Young People and Those Without a High School Degree More Likely to Suffer Untreated Mental Health Disorders

People between ages 18 and 29 and those without a high school degree are more likely to experience anxiety or depression during the pandemic and also are least likely to seek mental health treatment, according to a recent report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that surveyed nearly 800,000 households from August 2020 to February 2021.

Blood test for depression, bipolar disorder offers promise of personalized treatment

Worldwide, 1 in 4 people will suffer from a depressive episode in their lifetime.
While current diagnosis and treatment approaches are largely trial and error, a breakthrough study by Indiana University School of Medicine researchers sheds new light on the biological basis of mood disorders and offers a promising blood test aimed at a precision-medicine approach to treatment.

Psychedelic Science Holds Promise for Mainstream Medicine

A team of UNLV neuroscientists are uncovering how psychedelics affect brain activity. Their work, published recently in Nature: Scientific Reports, shows a strong connection in rodent models between brain activity and behaviors resulting from psychedelic treatment, a step forward in the quest to better understand their potential therapeutic effects.

A Remote, Computerized Training Program Eases Anxiety in Children

Using a computerized and completely remote training program, researchers have found a way to mitigate negative emotions in children. Results support the link between inhibitory control dysfunction and anxiety/depression. EEG results also provide evidence of frontal alpha asymmetry shifting to the left after completing an emotional version of the training. Computerized cognitive training programs can be highly beneficial for children, not just for academics, but for psychological and emotional functioning during a challenging time in their development.

With unfair police treatment, the tragedy is not limited to the incident itself

Research using a nationally representative sample of more than 12,000 participants shows the collateral consequences victims are likely to confront following unfair treatment by police. Those who are unjustly stopped, searched or questioned by law enforcement will likely experience a range of detrimental outcomes associated with the encounter, including depression, suicidal thoughts, drug use, and a loss of self-efficacy, according to the results.

Mental health app equally effective, half the cost

Digital mental health apps and internet-based treatments could overcome both access problems and provider shortages. But these apps have yet to be adopted in the U.S. healthcare system. One reason is that these apps need payment and reimbursement models that would enable broad adoption.

Researchers at the University of Washington School of Medicine recently published results to help propel policymakers to create these payment models. They proved that an app to help people with serious mental illness was just as effective as a clinic-based group intervention for half the cost.

Depressed Moms Who Breastfeed Boost Babies’ Mood, Neuroprotection and Mutual Touch

Feeding method and affectionate touch patterns in depressed and non-depressed mothers and babies as well as infant’s EEG activity showed that mother-infant affectionate touch differed as a function of mood and feeding method (breastfeeding and bottle-feeding). Infants in the depressed and bottle-fed group reduced touch toward their mothers while breastfeeding had a positive effect on both mother and baby. Infants of depressed and breastfeeding mothers showed neither behavioral nor brain development dysregulation previously found in infants of depressed mothers.

Stay-at-home orders tied to an increase in harmful alcohol consumption, study finds

Binge drinkers increased their alcohol consumption by nearly 20% during COVID-19 stay-at-home orders, according to new research by public health experts at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). Their study, published in the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, is one of the first to analyze the association of stress caused by the pandemic and dangerous alcohol consumption.

Brain magnetic stimulation for veterans with concussion: Need is high, but evidence is limited

Studies using repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), a noninvasive technique, to help veterans and active-duty service members living with depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and other lasting consequences of concussion have shown promise. However, there’s an urgent need for studies designed to address the unique patterns of post-concussion symptoms seen in military populations, concludes a review in the November/December issue of the Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation (JHTR). The official journal of the Brain Injury Association of America, JHTR is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.