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October 2011



Recent Posts


Depressed People’s Brains Process Feelings Of Hate Differently


Editor’s Choice
Academic Journal

Article Date: 05 Oct 2011 – 8:00 PDT


The human brain’s Hate Circuit appears to be uncoupled by depression, researchers from the University of Warwick reported in the journal Molecular Psychiatry. In other words, the brain of many people with depression appears to process hate differently, compared to those without depression.


Professor Jianfeng Feng and team used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to scan activity in the brains of 23 female and 16 male patients with diagnosed clinical depression, and compared their findings to 14 female and 23 male “controls” (people with no depression).


They found that the fMRI scans showed considerable differences in the brain circuitry of depressed individuals and the controls. The uncoupling of the “hate circuitry” involving the superior gyrus, insula and putamen was particularly noticeable, the authors wrote.


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Depression’s Secret Plan For Your Identity


By YourTango Experts

This guest article from YourTango was written by Erin C. Pollard.


We’ve all come to know the experience of the blues, being down, heartbreak, disappointment, sadness, or what some might even call depression. All too often the worst part of the experience isn’t even the sadness or the bad feelings themselves, but rather the way sadness is able to change the way we see ourselves, our past, and our hope for the future.


Depression may try to convince you that it holds the true assessment of your personality, weaknesses, and limitations. But before you become completely convinced by depression there are six important things you should know.



1. When depression enters your life, its main goal is to impact your identity.


Your identity is what is most meaningful to you, your talents, your character, what makes you uniquely you. Depression knows that this is the key to taking away the most hope and happiness from your life and keeping you under its thumb. Simply ruining your mood isn’t enough for depression; it aims to shake the core of how you see yourself.


2. Depression is a master manipulator.


It starts by discrediting your proud and good-feeling moments in your memory. It will insist that you didn’t really succeed when you thought you had, that you simply got lucky. You may think the compliment you just received wasn’t really genuine, that they were just being nice. It may even go as far as to say that your friends don’t really care about you and that you are totally alone. It will suggest that everyone else has this figured out and the fact that you don’t makes you a loser, a failure, unlovable, or any number of other things.


Read More …


Managing a Work Life with Depression

John Folk-Williams Updated: Oct 4th 2011


Decades of recurring depression caused me a lot of problems but one of the worst was its effect on my work life. Those familiar symptoms a doctor will ask when making a diagnosis are poison for the profession I was in.


Loss of energy and motivation, difficulty in mental concentration, feeling worthless, losing interest in everything, frequent despairing moods: they’re all disastrous when you’ve got high pressure work that involves running group meetings of all sizes, managing teams, writing detailed reports.


When you add in other symptoms that build over time, like weakening short-term memory, and a related condition of extreme social anxiety, professional life gradually takes a dive.


Sherwin Nuland, the physician/author of “How We Die”, described the collapse of his practice in a memoir about his father (“Lost in America”). Working in a hospital, his condition was no secret, and his colleagues realized he could no longer handle his patient load. He didn’t want to admit the debilitating effects of depression, but after a while he had no patients and faced the reality that his practice had become impossible.


I toughed it out for years, but my clients could see the decline. During the last years of my attempt to keep going, I went from inconsistent performance to a total inability to work effectively. I wasn’t fired altogether but had to bow out when I couldn’t even trust myself to get the job done.


Read in Full:


More Screening Needed to Identify Depression, Vision Loss After Mild Stroke

ScienceDaily (Oct. 3, 2011) — On the surface they appear unaffected, but people who have mild strokes may live with hidden disabilities, including depression, vision problems and difficulty thinking, according to a study released October 3 at the Canadian Stroke Congress.


The study calls for new guidelines for the treatment and management of mild strokes, which account for two-thirds of all strokes and usually involve a hospital stay of one to five days. Co-author Annie Rochette, Ph.D, of the University of Montreal, and her research team interviewed 200 people in Quebec, Ontario and Alberta within the first six weeks of their stroke.


“There is no such thing as a mild stroke,” says Dr. Rochette, who describes high rates of sleeplessness and depression among study participants – almost a quarter of whom were clinically depressed. “These patients face huge challenges in their daily lives.” Study participants reported a significantly poorer perceived quality of life.


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Be Prepared for SADness

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. Updated: Sep 27th 2011


Just because it’s only fall, don’t be fooled, winter is just around the corner and it’s always wise to plan if you’re someone who is affected by “winter blues.” In fact, over 10 million Americans alone experience SADness. That is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) where the lack of sunlight and the presence of gray skies begins to mirror how we feel inside leading us down a dark corridor to depressing thoughts, lethargic bodies, and uncomfortable emotions. Women are 3 times more likely than men to experience SADness during this time and suicide rates begin to spike up.


Here’s a little background to know how SADness operates. During any adjustment in mood there is an interaction that goes on between our thoughts, emotions, physical sensations, and behavior. For example, when you wake up in the morning and you’re tired and it’s cold, pulling off the covers and exposing your body to the cold might lead to some physical discomfort. The thought may arise, “oh, what I would give to just stay in bed, this is torture”. That may lead to the emotions of frustration and resentment, which makes the body feel agitated and tense. Your partner turns to you and sluggishly says “good morning” in which you reply “whatever”. While in the shower all you can think about is how miserable this day is going to be. The cycle continues throughout the day as you try to isolate and avoid people, finding yourself stuck, stewing in negative thoughts, uncomfortable sensations and emotions, and reactive behavior.


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