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mental illness

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Generally, childhood is considered to be the best part of one’s life. Children are happy and free of the stresses that concern an adult. They do not suffer from emotional problems and mental problems, as adults do. However, research has proved over and over again that children experience similar psychological problems as adults. They also suffer from clinical depression and may be at a risk of committing suicide. According to an estimate, every hour 57 children and teenagers attempt suicide and every day 18 of these children and teenagers succeed.

These glaring facts definitely prove that mental illness is not just a creative imagination of a crooked mind. This also shows that parents need to provide them the special care and attention they need in order to prevent such mental illnesses.

Although some are biological in nature, some arise due to the circumstances they have faced while they were growing up. These illnesses can be taken care of if identified on time.

Depression

Prevalent in adults, depression is not rare or uncommon in children. Research shows that one in 10 children suffer from depression during the age of 6 to 12. Here are some facts about Australia alone. Its symptoms may be similar to those in adults such as hopelessness, excessive guilt, fatigue and change in sleep patterns. However, they may not be able to communicate their feelings. You can look for behaviors such as school performance, heightened anxiety and fear and constant wringing of hands. Depression can be caused due to biological reasons or may have its link with the family environment that the child is living in. For example, a divorce among parents, loss of a parent or an abusive parent might be some reasons triggering depression. It can be treated with therapy or antidepressants.

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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Attention deficit disorder influences the child’s ability to concentrate and learn. This is 10 times more common in boys and usually develops before the age of 7. However, it is diagnosed between 8 to 10 years of age. Symptoms include lack of concentration in running and participating in active games. The reasons can be biological or environmental. Environmental problems might include the exposure of the child to cigarette smoke and alcohol. This can be easily cured through therapy and medication.

Separation Anxiety Disorder

Separation anxiety disorder appears in children when they are separated from a parent or a sibling. It usually appears suddenly and is extreme in the sense that it may hinder the normal activities of the child. The child may refuse to go to school, leave the house alone and may shadow parents by following them around all the time. They may also have difficulty in sleeping.  The reasons may vary depending on the environment the child is exposed to or the biological characteristics. Any stressful personal experience might also trigger such a disorder. It may be cured with detailed evaluation, therapy and medication. For troubled parents, it is better to consult with a family law Sydney for child custody, family violence and divorce cases.

Although, not an exhaustive list, these are some of the typical mental illnesses prevalent in children. When identified at an early age, they can be cured and the child would live a normal life.

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Post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD is an anxiety disorder which can develop after a very stressful, frightening or distressing event, or a prolonged traumatic experience.

People naturally feel afraid when in danger, but the legacy of some traumatic events is a change in perception of fear.

Image source Wikimedia

Image source Wikimedia

They may feel stressed or frightened in day-to-day life.

PTSD can be caused by any traumatic event – including military conflict, serious road accidents, natural disasters, assaults, and muggings.

Patients typically tend to re-experience the event in flashbacks, avoid talking about it, have trouble sleeping, or experience a change in mood.

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Lady Gaga has revealed she has been suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) since being raped at the age of 19.

The pop star talked about her mental illness during a visit to a homeless shelter for young LGBT people last month.

In a TV interview about the visit, Lady Gaga said: “I suffer from a mental illness – I suffer from PTSD. I’ve never told anyone that before.”

The 30-year-old singer first spoke publicly about the rape two years ago.

Lady Gaga has since admitted she blamed herself and did not tell anyone about it for seven years.

Image source Wikimedia

Image source Wikimedia

She made the revelation during an interview with the Today Show, which was broadcast on NBC on December 5.

It is the first time Lady Gaga has talked about having PTSD.

During her visit to the Ali Forney Centre in New York, Lady Gaga told the homeless LGBT teenagers that her trauma helped her understand others.

She said: “The kindness that’s been shown to me, by doctors as well as my family and my friends, it’s really saved my life.”

“Meditation helps me to calm down,” the singer said, adding that she was struggling with her mental illness “every day”.

The pop star brought presents to the teenagers at the center.

Lady Gaga later tweeted: “Today I shared one my deepest secrets w/ the world. Secrets keep you sick w/ shame.”

A tearful young person from the center she visited said: “Lady Gaga’s act of kindness today was a reminder that love still exists – and that there’s still some for me.”

On social media, Lady Gaga’s fans opened up with their own experiences in response.

She is one of the world’s most successful contemporary artists, with a string of hits across her first five albums. Her sixth album, Joanne, was released two months ago.

Lady Gaga has long been an advocate for the LGBTQ community; campaigning for Hillary Clinton during the election and protesting outside Trump Tower when the results were announced.

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Matthew Warren, Rick Warren’s youngest son, has committed suicide at the age of 27 after a long battle with depression.

It was reported that the estimated time of Matthew Warren’s death was Friday at 10 a.m. and said he died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Rick Warren, the evangelical pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California, revealed his son’s death to his church on Saturday.

“No words can express the anguished grief we feel right now,” the pastor told his congregation in a statement, pleading for their prayers as the family mourned.

Rick Warren revealed in a statement that Matthew had struggled with mental illness from a young age, experiencing “dark holes of depression, and even suicidal thoughts”.

Matthew Warren, Rick Warren's youngest son, has committed suicide at the age of 27 after a long battle with depression

Matthew Warren, Rick Warren’s youngest son, has committed suicide at the age of 27 after a long battle with depression

Despite countless doctors and medication, “the torture of mental illness never subsided”.

“Kay and I often marveled at his courage to keep moving in spite of relentless pain. I’ll never forget how, many years ago, after another approach had failed to give relief, Matthew said <<Dad, I know I’m going to heaven. Why can’t I just die and end this pain?>> but he kept going for another decade,” Rick Warren continued.

Rick Warren is married to Kay, who is active in her husband’s ministry, and they have two other adult children, Amy and Joshua, and five grandchildren.

He said that the tragic event occurred after Matthew had spent time with the couple on Thursday.

“In a momentary wave of despair at his home [in Mission Viejo, California], he took his life.”

The Coroner’s office said that an autopsy would be conducted next week on either Monday or Tuesday.

Rick Warren frequently communicates via his Twitter account but did not post any messages on Friday.

On Saturday afternoon, the pastor posted this tweet referencing the Lord’s Prayer.

“We pray <<Thy WILL be done on earth AS IT IS IN HEAVEN>> since in heaven God’s will is done #always. On earth, it’s done rarely,” seemingly in response to the family’s tragic loss.

Rick Warren, 59, is one of the leading voices in the evangelical movement in America.

His church, located in Orange County, is ranked the seventh largest congregation in the U.S. with an average weekly attendance of 20,000.

The Southern Baptist pastor authored the Purpose Driven Life, a devotional study book, that was published in 2002 and became a New York Times bestseller, selling over 32 million copies as it exploded as a popular trend among conservative Christians.

Rick Warren has taken an active role in promoting social justice and even hosted the Civil Forum on The Presidency, attended by both Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) and then Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill.) during the 2008 presidential election.

Pastor Rick Warren was also selected to deliver the invocation at President Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration.

His wife, Kay Warren, helped him establish the evangelical church in 1980.

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According to a study of more than a million people, creativity is often part of a mental illness, with writers particularly susceptible.

Writers had a higher risk of anxiety and bipolar disorders, schizophrenia, unipolar depression, and substance abuse, the Swedish researchers at the Karolinska Institute found.

They were almost twice as likely as the general population to kill themselves.

The dancers and photographers were also more likely to have bipolar disorder.

As a group, those in the creative professions were no more likely to suffer from psychiatric disorders than other people.

But they were more likely to have a close relative with a disorder, including anorexia and, to some extent, autism, the Journal of Psychiatric Research reports.

Lead researcher Dr. Simon Kyaga said the findings suggested disorders should be viewed in a new light and that certain traits might be beneficial or desirable.

For example, the restrictive and intense interests of someone with autism and the manic drive of a person with bipolar disorder might provide the necessary focus and determination for genius and creativity.

Similarly, the disordered thoughts associated with schizophrenia might spark the all-important originality element of a masterpiece.

Dr. Simon Kyaga said: “If one takes the view that certain phenomena associated with the patient’s illness are beneficial, it opens the way for a new approach to treatment.

“In that case, the doctor and patient must come to an agreement on what is to be treated, and at what cost.

“In psychiatry and medicine generally there has been a tradition to see the disease in black-and-white terms and to endeavour to treat the patient by removing everything regarded as morbid.”

Beth Murphy, head of information at Mind, said bipolar disorder personality traits could be beneficial to those in creative professions, but it may also be that people with bipolar disorder are more attracted to professions where they can use their creative skills.

“It is important that we do not romanticize people with mental health problems, who are too often portrayed as struggling creative geniuses.

“We know that one in four people will be diagnosed with a mental health problem this year and that these individuals will come from a range of different backgrounds, professions and walks of live. Our main concern is that they get the information and support that they need and deserve.”

Troubled minds:

• Novelist Virginia Woolf, who wrote A Room of One’s Own and To the Lighthouse, had depression and drowned herself

• Fairytale author Hans Christian Andersen, who wrote The Ugly Duckling and The Little Mermaid, had depression

• US author and journalist Ernest Hemingway, who wrote For Whom the Bell Tolls, had depression and killed himself with a shotgun

• Author and playwright Graham Greene, who wrote the novel Brighton Rock, had bipolar disorder

 

A new study shows that grieving men who have lost their wives to cancer cope better mentally if they meet a new partner within 5 years.

Researchers found that those men who are single four or five years after the death are at a far greater risk of mental illness.

Previous work has shown that the relatives of cancer victims are at greater risk of dying themselves or developing mental or physical illness.

However, these studies have largely focused on widows and the short term risks, say researchers from Sweden’s University of Gothenburg.

They looked at long term data from 691 widowers and found that those who had met a new partner within 5 years had dealt with the loss relatively well.

Those who remained single were at far greater risk of developing depression, anxiety, sleep disorders and emotional blunting, and were also more likely to use sleeping pills and antidepressants.

Prof. Gunnar Steineck said: “Previous studies have shown that people who lose their partner are at greater short-term poor mental health.

“Our study is the first to show that the risk of poor mental health last for many years but, on the average, the risk is restricted to those who don’t find a new partner.

“We need more research to understand the underlying mechanisms, but emotional support from a new partner does probably help to process grief and protect against mental illness.

“But it could also be the case that those men who cope best with their loss are more likely to show an interest in finding a new partner.”