We Need Competent Mental Health Professionals

Even when individuals do receive mental health care they can be repeatedly misdiagnosed and given improper treatment. Kay Redfiled Jamison speaks out to mental health professionals. How this can happen these days reflects the need to focus on medical training across the board. We have a long way to go.

The New York Times
The Opinion Pages | Op-Ed Contributor
To Know Suicide
Depression Can Be Treated, but It Takes Competence

By KAY REDFIELD JAMISON
AUG. 15, 2014

“Suicidal depression involves a kind of pain and hopelessness that is impossible to describe — and I have tried. I teach in psychiatry and have written about my bipolar illness, but words struggle to do justice to it. How can you say what it feels like to go from being someone who loves life to wishing only to die?

Suicidal depression is a state of cold, agitated horror and relentless despair. The things that you most love in life leach away. Everything is an effort, all day and throughout the night. There is no hope, no point, no nothing.

The burden you know yourself to be to others is intolerable. So, too, is the agitation from the mania that may simmer within a depression. There is no way out and an endless road ahead. When someone is in this state, suicide can seem a bad choice but the only one.”

Click Here To Read The Full Article

Blood Test For Depression - One Step Closer

There is still the endless struggle to “legitimize” mental illness as a MEDICAL disorder. Current research is bringing us one step closer. Here is exciting news in the Los Angeles Times via the journal Translational Psychiatry.

Critical here is this study was conducted on teens. Here’s to stepping up to diagnosing those with predispositions and even distinguishing between different types of depression.
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“Even among psychiatric disorders, depression is a difficult disease to diagnose. Its causes remain a mystery, its symptoms can't be defined with precision, and treatments are spotty at best.

But that may soon change. Scientists are looking for ways to identify patients with depression as reliably as they diagnose cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer. A new study takes a significant, though preliminary, step in that direction by demonstrating that a simple blood test can distinguish between people who are depressed and those who are not.”
. . .

"Once you have a measurable index of an illness, it's very difficult to say, 'Just pull yourself together,' or 'Get over it,' " said study leader Eva Redei, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. A federal report released last year estimated that as many as two-thirds of the nation's 2 million depressed teens are too embarrassed or ashamed to get help.

Visit this link to read the full article in The Los Angeles Times: Blood Test Looks Promising in Diagnosing Depression
By Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times
April 17, 2012, 6:39 p.m.

Extraordinary Depression Blog

Visit: McMan's Depression and Bipolar Web
“Knowledge is Necessity. Recovery starts with knowledge. I can't emphasize this enough.” -- John McManamy
Living Well With Depression and Bipolar
My name is John McManamy. I am an award-winning mental health journalist and author. I have dedicated the last 11 years of my life to researching and writing on depression and bipolar disorder for people like yourself — patients and loved ones. I know where you are coming from. I am also a patient, as well as a loved one.

Here, you will find articles that will give you greater insight into your illness and behaviors and help you make your own choices in your treatment and recovery. Thanks for stopping by. Jump in wherever you like ...
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These days, I have been slipping into a bad depression ... really for the past few months. Finding this Blog, and this book, has been a Godsend for me. I hope it is of help to you.
Sandy