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Could asking teens a simple, but pointed, question about their mental health reveal whether they are at risk for suicide?

It might, new research suggests.

Since suicide is now the second leading cause of death among American teens, any strategy that could lower that risk may be worth trying.

...

When Elizabeth R.’s husband passed away from bone cancer in 2016, she felt grateful that her employer offered generous bereavement leave.

Now 40, she worked in the development department of a large nonprofit cancer group at the time and felt ready to go back when her leave was up. However, about two weeks into her return, she realized it was too much, too soon.

“Every time I wou...

Antidepressants are often prescribed to people suffering from chronic pain, but a new evidence review argues that the science behind these prescriptions is shaky at best.

These drugs helped people in chronic pain in only a quarter of potential uses tested, and even then the effect ranged from low to moderate, according to a combined analysis of 26 prior reviews.

"We found that, for ...

A new study hints that treating low vitamin D levels with supplements might have a critical benefit for certain people: a decreased risk of attempting suicide.

In a study of more than 1 million U.S. veterans, researchers found that those prescribed vitamin D were nearly 50% less likely to attempt suicide over eight years, versus those who were not prescribed the supplements.

The ben...

Many adults with epilepsy have agoraphobia, or a fear of public places, new research suggests.

That impacts quality of life and is something doctors should include in other screening that looks for anxiety or depression, the investigators said.

"We know that agoraphobia can lead to delays in patient care because of a reluctance to go out in public, which includes appointments with ...

Actor Michael J. Fox details his experiences with Parkinson’s disease, including turning to alcohol and pills in an attempt to cope, in a new documentary.

Fox, 61, has had the degenerative brain disorder since 1991, but didn’t disclose it publicly until 1998.

The star — best known for the “Back to the Future” movies — said he was an alcoholic in the early days and also...

A cancer diagnosis can be devastating.

Now, new research shows that patients diagnosed with cancer have a risk of suicide 26% higher than the general population.

A variety of factors contribute to the elevated risk, including geography, race and ethnicity, economic status and clinical characteristics, American Cancer Society (ACS) researchers found.

The study also showed a dec...

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be an even bigger predictor of depression and anxiety in adulthood than autism is, a new study finds — highlighting the mental health side of the disorder.

It's known that kids and adults with ADHD often have co-existing conditions, including depression and anxiety. Research suggests that about 14% of children with ADHD have depression...

As numerous U.S. states move to restrict transgender health care, a new study shows that such care can substantially improve teenagers' mental health.

The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, followed transgender and nonbinary teenagers who received "gender-affirming" hormones -- either estrogen or testosterone -- for two years.

During that time, researc...

People suffering from depression or anxiety may be able to help themselves by helping others -- even in small ways, researchers report.

In a recent study of 122 people with depression or anxiety symptoms, those who started fitting small acts of kindness into their day showed an improvement in their symptoms.

And when it came to boosting feelings of social connectedness, those kind g...

Worries that clergy will urge depressed congregants to rely on prayer and not other mental health care appear to be unfounded.

A nationwide survey found that 90% of clergy members embraced a medical understanding of the causes and treatment of depression. About 10% said they would recomm...

When teenagers feel good about themselves and their lives, it may also do their hearts good in the long run, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that teenagers who generally felt happy, optimistic and loved went on to show better cardiovascular health in their 20s and 30s, versus kids who lacked that level of mental well-being.

Overall, they were more likely to maintain a healt...

Military service members who conceal their suicidal thoughts are also more likely to store their guns unsafely, a new study reveals.

“These findings highlight a real problem with our suicide prevention system,” said Michael Anestis, lead author of the study and...

An antidote to teenage depression might be found in school gymnasiums and on sports fields, a major new review argues.

Supervised exercise programs are associated with significant reductions in symptoms of depression among children and teenagers, according to the analysis of data from 21 studies involving more than 2,400 kids.

“This is the first time that we've been able to put en...

Generous parental leave policies at work can do wonders for a new mom's mental health.

This is among the key messages from a new review of 45 studies examining how parental leave policies affect mom and dad’s mental health and well-being.

Mothers working for companies with generous parental leave policies were less likely to experience symptoms of depression, poor mental heal...

College students who routinely cram at the last minute may not only see their grades suffer, but their health, too, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that of more than 3,500 college students they followed, those who scored high on a procrastination scale were more likely to report certain health issues nine months later. The list included body aches, poor sleep, and depression and a...

Made infamous as the club drug Special K, ketamine is nowadays being seen as a wonder drug for some folks with hard-to-treat depression.

However, a new study finds that some types of patients are more likely to gain a rapid and significant benefit from ketamine than others.

Overall, while most patients did benef...

Living in tight-knit communities where neighbors are connected to one another helped improve health outcomes for older Chinese Americans, a new study found.

Rutgers University researchers used data from a study of more than 3,100 elderly Chinese people in the Chicago area to investigate whether the perception of trust and connection among neighbors had an impact on their risk of death.

It's a scenario no parent would ever want to witness: Their child suffers a mental health crisis and is taken to the emergency room, only to have to wait 12 hours or more for the right medical care.

Sadly, it is what 1 in 5 of these young patients now face, new research finds.

"For kids with mental health conditions, long waits in the emergency department have been a compounding pr...

Depression can be tricky to detect in some people, and Black women may exhibit different symptoms, leading to missed care, researchers say.

Black women report sleep disturbances, self-criticism and irritability more often than the stereotypical low mood, according to a new study.

As a result, standard screening tools may underdiagnose depression in Black women, the study authors sai...

Scientists have pinpointed four genes that seem to play a part in how vulnerable you are to suicidal thoughts or behaviors.

"It's important to note that these genes do not predestine anyone to problems, but it's also important to understand that there could be heightened risks, particularly when combined with life events," said study co-author

  • Cara Murez HealthDay Reporter
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  • December 14, 2022
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  • Surprisingly, most people suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are in excellent mental health, Canadian researchers report.

    Two-thirds of COPD patients don't suffer from common mental health issues such as depression, anxiety or addiction to drugs, the new study found. The key to well-being seems to be having the support of loved ones and not being isolated or lonel...

    Patients who undergo angioplasty and stenting to open clogged arteries in and around the heart should also be screened for depression, according to a new study.

    Researchers found that depressed patients were less likely than their mentally healthy peers to take their prescribed medications, including beta-blockers, antiplatelets and statins.

    These medications reduce the likelihood...

    Pregnant and postpartum women are dying of drug overdoses in record numbers, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only made things worse, a new study shows.

    Deaths increased about 81% over the past four years, hitting a record high in 2020, according to researchers from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health in New York City.

    "We've seen significant increases in fatal and non...

    Depression may be a disorder of the brain, but new research adds to evidence that it also involves the gut.

    While depression is complex, recent research has been pointing to a role for bacteria that dwell in the gut -- suggesting that certain bacterial strains might feed depression symptoms, while others might be protective.

    In a pair of new studies, researchers identified 13 g...

    People with long COVID deal with months or years of punishing fatigue, mind-numbing brain fog or a frightening fight to take each and every breath.

    But they can also face the skepticism of others, a new study finds -- employers and doctors questioning whether they're really sick, friends avoiding them, family losing patience.

    About 95% of people living with long COVID say they've ex...

    Taking care of a loved one can either be a break from loneliness or help to bring loneliness on, depending on your circumstances, new research shows.

    Researchers broadly studied the issue, using data from 28 studies with more than 190,000 participants in 21 countries. They found certain types of caregiving — such as volunteering and caring for grandchildren — offered protection agains...

    The kids aren't alright.

    Up to 1 in 5 children in the United States has a mental health condition, but only about half of those who need mental health care are now receiving it. What's more, suicide is the second leading cause of death among U.S. kids and teens, and youth suicide rates have been rising over the last decade.

    Now, about one year after the U.S. Surgeon General cit...

    In a finding that illustrates just how deeply racial disparities permeate the U.S. health care system, a new government report finds that suicide rates dipped slightly among white Americans while they rose for Black and Hispanic Americans.

    "Although the recent decline in suicide rates for non-Hispanic whi...

    Though the COVID-19 pandemic has eased, a mental health crisis persists, a nationwide survey of U.S. psychologists reveals.

    And growing demand for help with depression, anxiety and substance use issues means many psychologists across the United States are unable to take on new patients, according to the American Psychological Association's 2022 COVID-19 Practitioner Impact

  • Cara Murez HealthDay Reporter
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  • November 16, 2022
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  • Illinois has seen a recent surge in the number of kids arriving in the emergency room for suicidal thoughts -- both during and shortly before the pandemic, according to a new study.

    Among kids ages 5 to 19, ER visits for suicidal thoughts rose by 59% across the state between 2016 and 2021, researchers found. That included a sharp spike in the fall of 2019, followed by another in the fall ...

    A good workout can boost mood, making it an ideal routine as the days get shorter and darker.

    If you're one of the millions affected by seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and you feel tired, unmotivated, down on life and crave carbs and sweets, staying active can help. An expert from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston offers some tips for maintaining an exercise routine.

    “With ...

    Evaluating a person's psychological stress can be a good way to gauge their risk of heart and blood vessel disease, new research suggests.

    And a brief questionnaire could help with the assessment, the study findings showed.

    “Our study is part of the accumulating evidence that psychological distress is a really important factor in a cardiovascular diagnosis, such as the other healt...

    As the daylight hours shrink, people's moods can wind up in the tank.

    Rest assured, you're not alone. It's the SAD season for those affected by seasonal affective disorder. That's the depression, fatigue and withdrawal that shorter days and longer nights often bring.

    “The seasonal mood change can come in different shapes and forms,” said

  • Cara Murez HealthDay Reporter
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  • November 7, 2022
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  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has proposed limiting the amount of nicotine in cigarettes to minimally addictive levels, but there's been concern that the drop in nicotine could exacerbate anxieties in smokers who might already battle mood issues.

    However, a...

    A single psychedelic trip with psilocybin -- the mind-altering component of magic mushrooms -- appears to lift the fog of major depression in some hard-to-treat patients, a new clinical trial reports.

    A 25-milligram dose of a synthetic psilocybin compound called COMP360 caused a "rapid and durable response" in more than a third of patients suffering from treatment-resistant depression, sa...

    When a parent is depressed, their child's asthma care may suffer. Now, research suggests that getting a child's asthma under control may include assessing a parents' mental health.

    Researchers at University of Texas Southwestern found that treating a parent's depression could sometimes improve symptom control in asthmatic children.

    About 8% of American children have asthma. Sympto...

    New research reveals that the brain is much more flexible than once thought and can change rapidly during treatment for major depression.

    People receiving inpatient treatment for major depression had increased brain connectivity after just six weeks, German researchers report.

    They compared brain connectivity -- various brain regions acting together in generating thought, emotion an...

    Training to become a doctor can be grueling, and now a new study finds a direct correlation between longer work hours and depression symptoms in first-year residents.

    Medical residency -- the training that new doctors undergo at hospitals or clinics -- is infamous for its

  • Amy Norton HealthDay Reporter
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  • October 24, 2022
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  • When teens and young adults go to the emergency room or are hospitalized for critical mental health issues a staggering number are not receiving quick follow-up care, new U.S. research finds.

    Researchers at the University of Massachusetts looked at more than 100,000 ER visits of young people ages 12 to 27 who have private insurance. Only about 29% received follow-up care within seve...

    Some people believe in the idea of “depressive realism” — that depressed people are just more realistic than others about how much they control their lives. But a new study upends that theory.

    The idea has been around for about four decades, ever since a 1979 study of college students that seemed to support the theory.

    That study looked at whether students could predict how m...

    Over time, men and women under chronic stress face a significantly higher risk that they will die as a result of cancer, a new study warns.

    The finding comes from an analysis of more than three decades of U.S. data from a federal health and nutrition survey.

    After adjusting f...

    As the 988 crisis line debuts across the United States, a new Harris Poll shows that Americans are ready to make mental health and suicide prevention a top priority.

    Over eight in 10 adults now believe it's more important than ever to consider suicide prevention a national public health crisis, according to the poll spon...

    When summer turns to fall, the shorter days can cause some people to feel the "winter blues." Now one expert offers information on how to cope with seasonal depression, which comes during the cold, dark months of the year.

    Also known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD), the condition ca...

    Thoughts of suicide are often a first reaction to a diagnosis of dementia before age 65, a new study suggests.

    Suicide risk is highest in the first three months after the dementia diagnosis and if the patient already has a psychiatric disorder, British researchers found. For those younger...

    The suicide rate in the United States increased in 2021, following two years of decline, according to preliminary data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    The number of suicides increased to 47,646 in 2021, up from 45,979 in 2020, according to researchers at the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics.

    As a result, the U.S. suicide rate also increased ...

    More than 1 million Americans attempted suicide in 2020, and a new study is hinting at a potential way to reduce that risk: prescription folic acid.

    The study, of more than 800,000 Americans in a health care database, found that when people were on prescription folic acid, their likelihood of being treated for

  • Amy Norton HealthDay Reporter
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  • September 30, 2022
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  • An unprecedented water crisis continues to take a heavy toll on the mental health of adults in Flint, Michigan, a large survey shows.

    Five years after the crisis, an estimated one in five — about 13,600 people — remained clinically depressed, the survey found. And about one in four — 1...

    More than four out of five pregnancy-related deaths in the United States could have been prevented, according to a new federal government report.

    The researchers examined data from

    Nearly 10% of Americans suffer from depression, with the mood disorder increasing fastest among teens and young adults, a new study finds.

    Between 2015 and 2020, incidence of depression reached 9% among Americans 12 and older. Among teens and young adults, the depression rate stood at 17% in 2020, the researchers found.

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