The Importance of Developing a Support System

Part of life is experiencing ups and downs. We need people who understand us and can be depended upon during tough times. Research has shown that having a support system has many positive benefits, such as higher levels of well-being, better coping skills and a longer and healthier life. Learn more about developing your own support system.

Vicarious Trauma: High Risk for Helpers

It has long been acknowledged that empathetic interpersonal skills are an asset in the medical field and helping roles in general. These same skills, however, increase the risk of experiencing personal symptoms of trauma exposure and chronic stress. Vicarious trauma occurs when an individual who was not an immediate witness to the trauma absorbs and integrates disturbing aspects of the traumatic experience into his or her own functioning.

The Emotions of Chronic Illness

Being diagnosed with a chronic illness can feel like being hit with a ton of bricks. Learn ways to cope with this news and create a happy, healthy life.

Seasonal Affective Disorder: Battling the Winter Blues

 Are you experiencing the "winter blues"? It could be seasonal affective disorder, a mood disorder related to the change in seasons and lack of exposure to daylight. SAD is a rare example of a psychiatric disorder with a clear, identifiable biological cause.

Physical Health vs. Mental Health: Is One More Important?

Did you know that taking care of your mental/emotional health is just as important to a long healthy life as taking care of your physical health? Just like physical health, mental health can affect motivation, energy level and other daily functioning tasks. 

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Symptoms & Solutions

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) develops after a terrifying event that involves physical harm or threat of physical harm. This can be from direct exposure, witnessing a traumatic event or from someone close to you experiencing a traumatic event. PTSD is classified by mental health professionals as an anxiety disorder. Those at risk include veterans, victims of crime, kidnap victims and survivors of car accidents, bombings or natural disasters. PTSD affects 7.7 million American adults.

The Healing Power of Humor

When you’re dealing with a change in your life, try laughing for a change. Even though smiling may be the furthest thing from your mind, it may surprise you to learn that a good joke can do far more than just “tickle your funny bone.” In fact, studies have shown that humor and laughter can improve your physical and mental health and coping abilities.

Adult ADD: Symptoms & Solutions

Do your friends complain that you aren’t paying attention when they talk? Do you feel disorganized, find yourself procrastinating, losing things or missing appointments? Do you enthusiastically start projects, only to lose interest and abandon the project a short time later? Do you have a quick temper? Do you make rash decisions? Do you have a child who has been diagnosed with ADD or ADHD? If this sounds like you, you may be one of the 4% of adults who have adult ADD.

Recognizing and Managing Compassion Fatigue

Compassion fatigue is a condition characterized by a gradual lessening of compassion. It is common among individuals who work directly with trauma victims -- such as nurses, psychologists and first responders. It was first diagnosed in nurses in the 1950s. Research suggests that sufferers can exhibit several symptoms including hopelessness, constant stress and anxiety, sleeplessness or nightmares and a general negative attitude.

The Difference Between Male and Female Depression

Depression in men often goes undiagnosed because the symptoms are different than the classic symptoms we associate with depression. Because the symptoms of male depression are not well-known, family members, physicians and mental health professionals often fail to recognize it. Complicating the issue is the fact that many men are reluctant to acknowledge issues and can be resistant to treatment. However, male depression can have devastating consequences.