Suicide Contagion: New Reserach, New Resources

One of the many disturbing aspects of youth suicide is the concern that they can be “contagious” in the sense that one suicide or suicide attempt increases the risk that others around them will follow suit. A recent study that surveyed thousands of Canadian adolescents did indeed find that having a schoolmate that died by […]

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Causes of Adolescent Depression

A recent posting on Babysitting.net describes 10 Common Causes for Teenage Depression.  I thought it was a useful post and worth passing along.   I think it is also certainly worth noting that most frequently there isn’t a single cause but several that can conspire to work together.  A child with a genetic predisposition for depression […]

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Cardiac Warnings Out for Citalopram and Escitalopram

Last year’s warnings from the FDA about dose-dependent QTc elongation and cardiac arrhythmias including Torsade De Pointes among patients taking citalopram at higher doses have been supplemented by warnings issued by HealthCanada on escitalopram (Lexapro), the S-isomer of racemic citalopram.  The FDA’s 2012 guidelines exclude escitalopram but hedge on concluding that the QT effects are […]

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Why “Just” is Such a Dangerous Word in Mental Health

How many times have you heard a psychiatric diagnosis questioned based on the possibility that the behaviors are JUST something else.  You know the drill: “C’mon doc, are you sure this ADHD thing isn’t a fancy label for kids who are JUST (insert lazy, bad, spoiled, etc.)?” Another common one is “Can’t a kid JUST be […]

Tips to Help Against Youth Suicide and Depression

The recent tragedy surrounding the attempted suicide in Walpole NH reminds us all that the danger of youth suicide remains active in our own backyard.  Drawing upon the recently blogged Vermont Youth Suicide Prevention Platform and the new website http://www.umatterucanhelp.com , it is worth thinking again about some suggestions for parents and primary care clinicians.  […]

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New Program for Vermont Youth Suicide Prevention

The Vermont Youth Suicide Prevention Platform 2012 was released yesterday by the Center for Health and Learning.  This program is developed from a grant awarded to the Center from SAMHSA and features 10 specific components, including a new website http://www.umatterucangethelp.com/ designed for youth to access themselves to get important information of what to do if […]

Overtreatment of Adolescent Depression? A New SAMHSA Report Says Otherwise

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHA) recently issued a report based on new survey results.  One area of focus was major depression among adolescents.   Major findings from the survey included the following: 1.9 million youth (8% of the population) between the ages 12-17 experienced a major depressive episode in 2010, a rate […]

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Genetic Sensitivities to Negative AND Positive Parenting

Traditional models of child emotional-behavioral problems often posit the presence of genetic “vulnerabilities” that can be realized in the presence of specific environmental triggers.  A series of new studies, however, suggest that some genes may make children more sensitive to both negative and positive environments.   Three separate studies that were published together examine the interaction […]

Findings from the Vermont Youth Risk Behavior Survey 2011

The Department of Health conducts a survey among high school and now middle school students in Vermont every two years to query about behaviors that are known to contribute to injury and disease.  The 2011 survey has recently been recently released.  Highlights for the 2011 survey in comparison to the 2009 survey include the following. […]

Antidepressants and Suicide – What’s Happened Since the Black Box?

  In 2004, the FDA mandated that all antidepressants carry a black box warning related to the risk of new suicidal behavior.  This warning generated a great deal of attention and controversy leading up to the warning and in its immediate aftermath, as data showed a subsequent drop in antidepressant prescription and an 18% increase […]

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