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New Horizons - Government Consults On Mental Health And Well-Being, UK

Urban allotments, reading groups and computer training for the over 50s are just some of the good practice initiatives featured as part of a new approach to public mental health and well-being, announced by Care Services Minister Phil Hope today. 'New Horizons' marks a new era in mental health. It sets out a dynamic new approach to improving well-being for the whole population, aiming for the first time to create a powerful alliance that can target the root causes of poor mental health. The consultation launched today was developed with a wide range of partners, all of whom have a vital role to play. As well as health services, the response of local authorities and education will be critical.

What Rorschach Tests Really Tell Us

One of the most well-known psychological tools is the Rorschach Inkblot Test. A viewer looks at ten inkblots, one at a time, and describes what they see. The rationale behind this test is the idea that certain aspects of the subject's personality will be exposed as they are interpreting the images, allowing for the possible diagnosis of various psychological disorders. However, does the inkblot really reveal all? Psychological Science in the Public Interest, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, published an exhaustive review of all data on the Rorschach (and other similar "projective" tests) in 2000. Such meta-analyses are major undertakings, so although this report is a few years old, it remains the most definitive word on the Rorschach.

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A Silly Pat On The Head Helps Seniors Remember Daily Med

Doing something unusual, like knocking on wood or patting yourself on the head, while taking a daily dose of medicine may be an effective strategy to help seniors remember whether they've already taken their daily medications, suggests new research from Washington University in St. Louis. We've all heard warnings that some medications may be habit-forming, but research also shows that "getting into the habit" of taking a daily medicine in a routine and precise fashion can be a befuddling challenge for some older adults, many of whom tend to err on the side of over-medication, taking a dangerous second dose when in doubt about the first.

What Is Alzheimer's Disease? What Causes Alzheimer's Disease?

Alzheimer's disease is a progressive neurologic disease of the brain leading to the irreversible loss of neurons and the loss of intellectual abilities, including memory and reasoning, which become severe enough to impede social or occupational functioning. Alzheimer's disease is also known as simply Alzheimer's, and Senile Dementia of the Alzheimer Type (SDAT). During the course of the disease plaques and tangles develop within the structure of the brain. This causes brain cells to die. Patients with Alzheimer's also have a deficiency in the levels of some vital brain chemicals which are involved with the transmission of messages in the brain - neurotransmitters.

Better Support Needed For Suicide Surfers, Australia

Better online support services for suicidal people is more important than shutting down websites showing ways to die, a research academic from The University of Queensland says. Dr Keith Harris found in his recently-completed PhD in Psychology that suicidal people using the internet had not necessarily made up their minds to die. This meant providing professional online support was more important than having a firewall to prevent online search engines finding sites which used words such as "suicide", Dr Harris said. "Australian laws prohibit pro-suicide sites, sites that tell you how to commit suicide or encourage you to commit suicide - but that is not effective, " he said.

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If Bipolar Disorder Is Over-Diagnosed, What Are The Actual Diagnoses?

A year ago, a study by Rhode Island Hospital and Brown University researchers reported that fewer than half the patients previously diagnosed with bipolar disorder received an actual diagnosis of bipolar disorder after using a comprehensive, psychiatric diagnostic interview tool -- the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID). In this follow-up study, the researchers have determined the actual diagnoses of those patients. Their study is published in the July 28 ahead of print online edition of The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. Under the direction of lead author Mark Zimmerman, MD, director of outpatient psychiatry at Rhode Island Hospital, the researchers' findings indicate that patients who received a previous diagnosis of bipolar disorder that was not confirmed by a SCID, they were significantly more likely to be diagnosed with borderline personality disorder as well as impulse control disorders.

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