Antidepressant, side effects, and delayed therapeutic effects: diagram a neuronal synapse
MH@H Depression

Antidepressant Side Effects & Delayed Therapeutic Effect

Have you ever wondered why antidepressant side effects seem to be worse at the beginning, or why it takes so long for them to actually start doing what you expect of them? There is actually some rhyme and reason for it, so let's talk about it. Let's talk serotonin People with depression don't have enough… Continue reading Antidepressant Side Effects & Delayed Therapeutic Effect

Supplements for health and illness, a $35 billion a year industry – but do they help?
MH@H Mental Health

Do You Take Supplements for Your Health or Illness?

According to a Washington Post article, Americans spend $35 billion per year on vitamins and supplements. Unlike pharmaceuticals, which have to demonstrate effectiveness and safety to get approved, supplements only need to demonstrate safety. That's a lot of money to spend on things that may or may not be helpful. Just because they're "natural" doesn't… Continue reading Do You Take Supplements for Your Health or Illness?

book cover: The Anxiety and Depression Workbook by Michael A. Tompkins
MH@H Book Reviews

Book Review: The Anxiety and Depression Workbook

The Anxiety and Depression Workbook by Michael A. Tompkins incorporate cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques to help you improve emotional flexibility. This is defined as "the ability to respond to life’s challenges with an appropriate level of emotion, and then to recover as these situations change." Sounds pretty good to me. Somewhat like Overcoming Avoidance,… Continue reading Book Review: The Anxiety and Depression Workbook

This one flew over the cuckoo's nest: electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) in real life
MH@H Depression

This One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest: ECT in Real Life

Ask anyone of a certain age what comes to mind first when they hear the term electroconvulsive therapy (aka ECT, aka electroshock therapy, aka shock therapy), and chances are they will mention the film One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest starring Jack Nicholson. The reality is very different.

Somatic treatments for depression: ECT, TMS, DBS, tDCS, and VNS
MH@H Depression

Brain Stimulation Treatments for Depression

There are a number of non-medication, non-therapy options for treatment-resistant depression. Somatic treatments involve brain stimulation through the application of energy. ECT and TMS are the most well-known, but there are some more obscure options as well. And then there's cranial electrotherapy, which isn't in the same ballpark at all. So let's dive in! Electroconvulsive… Continue reading Brain Stimulation Treatments for Depression

Book cover: Overcoming Avoidance Workbook by Daniel F. Gros
MH@H Book Reviews

Book Review: Overcoming Avoidance

The Overcoming Avoidance Workbook by psychologist Daniel F. Gros aims to help you stop avoiding and start living. It takes a transdiagnostic approach, meaning it focuses on specific behaviours rather than the diagnoses in which they occur. The cover says that it's for anxiety, depression, or PTSD, but the focus is on anxiety and depression.… Continue reading Book Review: Overcoming Avoidance

Aging and mental illness - split image of a younger and older woman's face
MH@H Mental Health

Aging and Mental Illness: Does It Show?

Mental illness can certainly feel like it ages you, but is the combination of aging and mental illness something that's visible from the outside? For a good chunk of my adult life, I looked youngish for my age. Not as in babyface, but youngish. When I finished university and started working, most people were a… Continue reading Aging and Mental Illness: Does It Show?

What is... insights into psychology series
Insights into Psychology

What Is… Learned Helplessness

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychology-related terms. This week's term is learned helplessness. Learned helplessness was first described by Martin Seligman, who is also the founder of positive psychology. It began with observations made during animal studies, and eventually became his theory of depression. While doing classical conditioning… Continue reading What Is… Learned Helplessness

What Is... Series (Insights into Psychology)
Insights into Psychology

What Is… Double Depression

In this series, I dig a little deeper into the meaning of psychology-related terms. This week's term is double depression, which comes at the suggestion of Meg of Where Good Advice Happens. This post uses a lot of abbreviations, which are summarized down at the bottom of this post. The term double depression is sometimes… Continue reading What Is… Double Depression

Treatment-resistant depression and what my meds do still help with - image of pill bottle and person crying
MH@H Depression

Treatment-Resistant Depression: What My Meds Do Help With

Pretty much the same cocktail of meds I'm on now used to work well, and got me into full remission (i.e. no symptoms at all between episodes). I'm not sure what got me thinking about this recently, but while my depression has become increasingly treatment-resistant overall, my medications are still doing a pretty good job… Continue reading Treatment-Resistant Depression: What My Meds Do Help With