Speaking up and out to reduce the stigma of mental illness

by Nancy Trowbridge May 28, 2014

As a staunch advocate for eliminating the stigma surrounding mental illness and brain disorders, Menninger encourages conversation in our homes, our communities and our media outlets. So let me begin this conversation by offering kudos to the Houston Chronicle editorial writers for the May 19 admonishment “Low Blow” that said the tactic of leaking a […]

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Addict, junkie, pothead, crackhead, loser: Putting tired old labels to rest & challenging stigma

by Beth Eversole, LMSW, LCDC May 22, 2014

Labels play a large part in defining our experiences; they also play a role in stigmatization. Webster’s Dictionary defines stigma as “a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person.” Just take the word “addict,” a common label for people who use substances. The mark of disgrace here is the label. Many […]

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Caring for the mentally ill & combatting stigma is the heart & soul of psychiatric nursing

by Marilyn Warnock, RN May 9, 2014

Every year during National Nurses Week I think back on the start of my career more than 20 years ago and how I always knew that my life’s passion was nursing.     On a search to discover which aspect of this care-giving profession would be most fulfilling to me, I started out working in […]

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A mother’s recollections of postpartum depression

by Ann Marie Buckley, LCSW May 9, 2014

Motherʼs Day always invites me to recall my early days as a new mother, more than 27 years ago. Among all the sweet baby-breath, bath time, first smile and first sleep-through-the-night memories that warm my heart, I also remember an afternoon when I was walking the floor with my new baby, trying to soothe her, […]

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Do you want fries with that? A provider’s view on “drive-thru” mental health treatment

by Hannah Szlyk, LMSW April 3, 2014

“Popular female celebrity has gone into rehab. She expects to make a full recovery and return to her tour and her fans by next month, says the publicist.” How many times have we read this in the news? As I write, I am thinking of Justin Bieber’s recent DUI arrest, and I can only help […]

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Marijuana: The modern-day trojan horse we need to talk about

by John O'Neill, LCSW, LCDC, CAS March 27, 2014

For the first time in history more than 50 percent of Americans support the legalization of marijuana. Those of us in the addiction field are faced with new attitudes about a substance that is not as innocent and harmless as many of its proponents would like us to believe. Contributing to the confusion about the […]

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Can public education decrease the stigma of mental illness?

by Jon G. Allen, PhD March 14, 2014

I do not know the answer to this question, but I have some thoughts about one aspect of it. A significant public education effort has been mounted to decrease the stigma associated with mental illnesses by emphasizing their neurobiological basis. We can rightly think of psychiatric conditions as brain disorders with a partly genetic basis. […]

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Is psychiatry’s drug addiction increasing the stigma of mental illness?

by Jon G. Allen, PhD March 11, 2014

I deliberately chose a tendentious title for this essay – misleadingly metaphorical rather than literal – to highlight, as one of my recent posts outlines, my alarm stemming from reading research on stigma. With many others, I had assumed that treating psychiatric disorders as “a disease like any other” (i.e., like any other general medical […]

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I’m a registered dietitian, and I don’t like “The Biggest Loser”

by Kim Morgan, RD March 7, 2014

Rachel Frederickson, (right), the most recent winner of The Biggest Loser, lost 60 percent of her body weight on the show. The “winner’s” initial weight of 260 pounds made her BMI a health risk at 44.2, while her new weight of 105 pounds also has her BMI a health risk at 18.1. Is she healthier […]

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It’s time to arm teenagers with knowledge of psychology

by Michele Arnold March 4, 2014

The American Psychological Association (APA) has a psychology course for high school students. All the lesson plans, except “Emotion,” are locked because only Teachers of Psychology in Secondary School (TOPSS) can open them. The “Emotion” lesson looks comprehensive (it includes a section on neuroscience); I just hope the teachers who use the APA course infuse […]

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