Fighting Opioid Abuse and Chronic Pain

Guest Post by Amanda Merchant, Ph.D., Lisa Willner, Ph.D. and Jonathon Cole, Ph.D. Psychologists who treat those with chronic pain are well aware that living with daily pain for months or years on end can take a significant toll. Being limited in daily activities due to pain can lead to loss of job and livelihood, … Read more…

I’m Working on a New Me

Stories of Hope: Laura Marchildon This is part of a series featuring individuals who share their life experiences with mental health issues. Recently, I asked mental health advocate Laura Marchildon to share her story about her history of mental health challenges and some of her current advocacy work. Here’s Laura’s story: My name is Laura Marchildon and I have Bipolar Disorder. My mental health … Read more…

Why I’m a Mental Health Advocate

Recently, I got some exciting news that I’ve been selected as a finalist for a 2016 WEGO Health Activist Award in the “Best in Show – Blog” category. The awards also recognize outstanding activists in several other categories, such as social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube), “best kept secret,” “rookie of the year,” “lifetime … Read more…

Whatever Is Happening Will Pass

Stories of Hope: An Interview with Ben Scanlan This is part of a series featuring individuals who share their life experiences with mental health issues. Recently, I asked Ben Scanlan about his history of mental health challenges and about some of his current activities. Here’s our interview: DS: Tell us about when you first started becoming aware of concerns related to your mental … Read more…

It’s National Recovery Month!

Each September, SAMHSA, the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration sponsors “National Recovery Month” to increase awareness of mental health and substance use issues. Key themes include: 1) mental health is essential to overall health; 2) prevention works; 3) treatments are effective; and 4) recovery is possible. The Recovery Month theme for 2016 is “Join the Voices … Read more…

There’s a Rainbow Waiting for You

Stories of Hope: An Interview with Richard Brea This is part of a series featuring individuals who share their life experiences with mental health issues. Recently, I asked mental health advocate Richard Brea about his history of mental health challenges and about some of his current advocacy work. Here’s our interview: DS: Tell us about when you first started becoming aware of concerns related to … Read more…

Back to School with a Focus on Mental Health

It’s back to school time for kids of all ages. Schools and colleges are bustling again with the promise of a new year. As someone who went to school for a very long time and who teaches in a university setting, I’ve always found this to be an exciting time of year. However, we know … Read more…

Recovery is a Journey, not a Destination

Stories of Hope: An Interview with Jim Buchanan This is part of a series featuring individuals who share their life experiences with mental health issues. Recently, I asked mental health advocate Jim Buchanan about his history of mental health challenges and about some of his current advocacy work. Here’s our interview: DS: Tell us about when you first started becoming … Read more…

The Incredible Power of Peer Support

If you’re at all familiar with issues surrounding mental health and/or addiction, you’ve probably heard of the idea of peer support. But what is peer support and how do you become a peer supporter? Let’s cover these and a few other important points about this very effective and helpful approach. What are the origins of peer … Read more…

“Stories of Hope” – Behind the Scenes

Perhaps you’re already familiar with my “Stories of Hope” series, in which I interview people who have dealt with mental health challenges and who share the lessons they have learned through their journey. I’ve completed and published several Stories of Hope interviews; you can click here to see and read them all. I think you’ll … Read more…

Do You Have a Healthy Lifestyle?

What constitutes a healthy lifestyle? Perhaps even more importantly, is your lifestyle healthy? Also, how are healthy lifestyle factors associated with health markers such as cholesterol level, blood sugar, and blood pressure? In a study of 4,745 US adults recently published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, researchers assessed for the presence or absence of four “healthy lifestyle” … Read more…

Musings of a Mental Health Hero

Stories of Hope: An Interview with Christina Huff This is part of a series featuring individuals who share their life experiences with mental health issues. Recently, I asked mental health advocate Christina Huff about her history of mental health challenges and about some of her current advocacy work. Here’s our interview: DS: How did your mental health concerns develop? What … Read more…

Top 20 US Mental Health Organizations (Part 2)

In a recent post, I listed the first 10 of my personal list of 20 top US-based mental health organizations. Now, let’s go over the other 10 organizations comprising the rest of the list. As I mentioned before, my informal criteria for including an organization on the list are: a) being well-established and credible; b) having … Read more…

Top 20 US Mental Health Organizations (Part 1)

It’s always a risky venture to do a “top 10” list. You invariably leave out some really worthy and wonderful entries, which may create some hurt feelings among the groups who weren’t included. Nevertheless, I’ll take that risk and offer not just 10, but 20 of the top mental health organizations based in the United States, in … Read more…

How to Evaluate Online Health Information

It’s well known that most people go online to find health information. In fact, 80% of Internet users have searched for health information online. However, there’s great variability in the quality and reliability of online health information. While some is from top-notch health care organizations, other information can be misleading and even harmful. How can … Read more…

10 Healthy Benefits from Your Next Vacation

Are you ready for a break, a holiday, a sabbatical, or a vacation? Whatever you like to call it, I know I sure need one. As I write this, I’m getting ready to head out for a much-needed family vacation. It’s interesting to look at the comparison between the amount of vacation typically offered in the US … Read more…

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