Emotional Child Abuse Just as Harmful as Physical Abuse

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Different types of child abuse have equivalent psychological effects, according to a study in JAMA Psychiatry. It has previously been assumed that emotional and verbal abuse could have different or less harmful impact on a child’s psychology than physical or sexual abuse, but research now suggests that these forms of abuse can be just as damaging.

“New Plan to Treat Schizophrenia Is Worth Added Cost, Study Says”

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Benedict Carey of the New York Times reports on the success of new schizophrenia and psychosis programs that provide family counseling and job and...

Antipsychotic Medications Are Causing Obsessive Compulsive Disorders

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Common second-generation antipsychotic medications are causing symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder to emerge in many people who previously only had schizophrenia symptoms, according to a...

Patients on Antipsychotics at High Risk for Cardiovascular Issues, Study Finds

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Antipsychotics present a known risk for major side effects. A new study suggests that certain antipsychotics may present a greater risk for cardiovascular disease than others.

On “Schizophrenia”

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The first time I heard someone labeled schizophrenic I was about 10 years old. A man was talking to himself and appeared to be house-less and perhaps on drugs. My mom, a very good teacher and explainer of things to me, said, “That man is schizophrenic. That means he can't tell the difference between what's inside of himself and what's outside.” In retrospect this seems like a relatively sophisticated and sensitive explanation; Falling in love, hearing music that enters our heart, having children/giving birth, connecting powerfully with another person in a meeting of the minds, feeling empathy, deeply caring about something, experiencing oneness with nature, are all examples of times when the line between inner and outer reality is blurred.

Psychosocial Explanations of Psychosis Reduce Stigma, Study Finds

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A review of mental health anti-stigma campaigns finds psychosocial models are effective in reducing stigma, while biogenetic models often worsen attitudes.

What Happened After a Nation Methodically Murdered Its Schizophrenics? Rethinking Mental Illness and Its...

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When we begin to question, we discover that (1) scientifically flawed research has been used to promote ideas around mental illness and its heritability, and (2) instead of focusing on nature vs. nurture causes of mental illness, it’s time to consider whether certain phenomena are really symptoms of pathology or instead are inextricable aspects of our humanity.

Study Finds Improved Functioning for ‘Schizophrenia’ Without Antipsychotics

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Long-term treatment with antipsychotic drugs is currently considered the standard treatment for patients diagnosed with ‘schizophrenia.’ A new study challenges this practice, however. The...

Why Paul Steinberg Has It All Wrong (and Should Stop Seeing Patients)

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(This commentary originally ran on Beyond Meds) In his New York Times op-ed entitled “Our Failed Approach to Schizophrenia“ Paul Steinberg, a psychiatrist in private practice, proposes we...

Cannabis May Precipitate Psychosis

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In a study of 785 patients with a psychotic disorder, researchers from The Netherlands found that cannabis us was associated with an earlier onset...

What Are Best Practices For Psychosis And What Gets In The Way?

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Research investigates clinicians’ perspectives on best care practices and the complicated realities of providing care in the face of agency limitations and mechanized interventions.

Study Examines Voice Hearing Accounts of 499 Nonclinical Individuals

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Researchers look at voice hearing experiences shared by nonclinical samples, exploring these experiences in the general population.

What is Contributory Injustice in Psychiatry?

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An article on contributory injustice describes the clinical and ethical imperative that clinicians listen to service users experiences.

Individuals with Psychosis Symptoms More Likely to be Victimized

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Individuals diagnosed with a psychotic disorder are 4-6 times more likely than the general population to experience victimization.

Letters to the Editor: “The Treatment of Choice”

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Readers respond to the New York Times article, “The Treatment of Choice,” about innovative programs for psychosis and schizophrenia that involve patients and their families in treatment decisions. “Narratives of success counter a drumbeat of faulty links of mental illness and violence, inaccuracies which serve only to further stigmatize and isolate individuals with psychiatric illness.”

The Role of Context, Language, and Meaning in Hearing Voices

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Sociocultural context, language, and sense-making process are among concepts that can help hearers and providers better understand the phenomenon of hearing voices

“Cannabis for Schizophrenia – Does it Work?”

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The German news agency DW features a video report on whether cannabidiol, an active substance derived from marijuana, can help relieve the symptoms of schizophrenia.

Over Ten Thousand Unfiled Claims Against Risperdal Over Breast Growth in Young Boys

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Johnson & Johnson is exposed to personal injury and product liability lawsuits over the failure to warn about Risperdal gynecomastia side effects in boys.

Psychotic Symptoms/Childhood Trauma Common in Primary as Well as Psychiatric Care

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Researchers in Finland reviewed questionnaires filled out by 911 primary and psychiatric care patients over 16 years of age. They found that more than...

Massachusetts Launches New Strengths-Based Early Psychosis Program

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ServiceNet, a mental health and human service agency in western Massachusetts, received a three year, two million dollar grant to launch a program designed to support young adults who have recently experienced their first episode of psychosis. The Prevention and Recovery Early Psychosis (PREP) program is funded by the Massachusetts department of mental health and is designed to treat psychosis as a symptom, not an illness, resulting from other illnesses, substance abuse, trauma, or extreme stress.

“California Moves to Stop Misuse of Psychiatric Meds in Foster Care”

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On Tuesday, NPR told the story of DeAngelo Cortijo. DeAngelo became a foster kid at age 3 after his mother attempted suicide. He was “diagnosed with bipolar and anxiety disorders, attachment disorder, intermittent explosive disorder or posttraumatic stress disorder,” and was prescribed “a combination of antipsychotics, antidepressants and stimulants, and was told that taking them was his only hope of being normal.” Through equine therapy, DeAngelo was eventually able to get off all of his medication. Now, California is hoping to pass reforms that would prevent foster kids, like DeAngelo, from being “prescribed antipsychotic drugs at double to quadruple the rate of that not in foster care.”

Open Letter to Senator Creigh Deeds

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Dear Senator Deeds: Hello from another fellow Virginian. First, I want to extend my deepest condolences for the horrific tragedy that befell your family last year, and for the loss of your precious son Gus. I think I know, at least in part, how agonizing it is when our loved ones cannot access helpful supports, and how it feels to watch in horror as they spiral downward into darkness and despair. We all agree that our mental health systems are broken. Those of us who have been down the hellish road of struggling with our mental health and have found recovery have developed a new vision that will take us forwards, not backwards. Please give us the opportunity to share that new vision with you.

The Dopamine Hypothesis of Schizophrenia – Version III

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The Division of Clinical Psychology of the British Psychological Society published a paper titled Understanding Psychosis and SchizophreniaThe central theme of the paper is that the condition known as psychosis is better understood as a response to adverse life events rather than as a symptom of neurological pathology. The paper was wide-ranging and insightful and, predictably, drew support from most of us on this side of the issue and criticism from psychiatry.  Section 12 of the paper is headed "Medication" and under the subheading "Key Points" you'll find this quote: "[Antipsychotic] drugs appear to have a general rather than a specific effect: there is little evidence that they are correcting an underlying biochemical abnormality."

Study Suggests Long-Term Antipsychotic Use May Result in Poorer Cognitive Functioning

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Association found between long-term antipsychotic use and poorer performance on cognitive tasks in adults diagnosed with ‘schizophrenia.’