Mental Health Month Coming to a Close and Other Related News

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president_obamaMay is Mental Health Awareness Month!  Although the month is coming to a close, we wanted to share some of the top news stories that we have been following with you.

President Obama's Proclamation of May as Mental Health Awareness Month discussed the need to eliminate the stigma of depressive disorders because it can act as a barrier to treatment. He wrote, "We need to make sure [people with a mental health condition] know that asking for help is not a sign of weakness -- it is a sign of strength."

The American Psychiatric Association released the updated Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) to great controversy, as National Institutes of Mental Health Director Thomas Insel turned researchers away from the DSM-5 and criticism emerged about categorization of grief versus depression, elimination of Asperberger's Syndrome as a diagnosis, revision to childhood bipolar disorder criteria, and more. Other articles on this topic include: The Big ChangesOver-diagnosing Mental Illness; Abnormal Is the New Normal; and What Parents Need to Know. As the dust settles, NIMH and the APA have reached accord on use of the DSM-5.

Suicide trends became news as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report with 1999-2010 cause of death data. Americans seemed startled that suicides are on the rise for those aged 35-64, taking more lives than car accidents. Also cause for concern: preliminary data for 2011 indicate that suicide has become the second-leading cause of death for ages 15-24.


Photo by: Chuck Kennedy

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