Category Archives: Mental Health

Attention area veterans! Did you know there’s a Veterans Mental Health Council? With monthly meetings at the VA Medical Center in Lebanon.

VA mental health council

Click on the graphic above to download the brochure for more information.

“How childhood trauma can affect mental and physical health into adulthood” – The Conversation

childhood traumaChildhood trauma can have an impact across generations. ambrozinio/Shutterstock

Editor’s Note: May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This article is the first in a series exploring how research into adverse childhood experiences – or ACEs – is helping therapists, parents, educators and the medical community better understand the lasting effects of trauma on mental health.

“For millions of children in the U.S., poverty, neglect or abuse is a reality of everyday life, though these struggles are often hidden from view.

“Adult survivors often feel ashamed about and stigmatized for their childhood adversity. This makes it difficult to recognize that these events occur.

“While it’s easier to turn away than to face these issues, we can no longer afford to do so. Stress, mental illness and substance abuse – all health outcomes linked to childhood trauma – occur in the U.S. today at very high rates.

“In 1999, I joined the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as an early investigator on a study to examine how childhood trauma can impact health decades later. Little did I know that I was about to begin both a professional and personal journey that would forever change my understanding of medicine, public health and the human capacity to heal.

“That seminal study provided insight into the lifelong health consequences of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs).

Read this article at The Conversation in its entirety, click here.

 

 

“Understanding depression | Caregiver: get the facts” – SAMHSA

understanding depression

Click on the graphic to download this important information.

“A Day in the Life of Older Adults: Substance Use Facts” – SAMHSA

This Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) report is important to read.

older adults drug use

“Illicit drug use generally declines as individuals move through young adulthood and into middle adulthood. Although the percentage of people with substance use disorder (SUD) reflects the decline in use as people age, more than 1 million individuals aged 65 or older (“older adults”) had an SUD in 2014, including 978,000 older adults with an alcohol use disorder and 161,000 with an illicit drug use disorder.

Research suggests that substance use is an emerging public health issue among the nation’s older adults. Illicit drug use among adults aged 50 or older is projected to increase from 2.2 percent to 3.1 percent between 2001 and 2020. For example, the number of older Americans with SUD is expected to rise from 2.8 million in 2002–2006 to 5.7 million by 2020. The emergence of SUD as a public health concern among older adults reflects, in part, the relatively higher drug use rates of the baby boom generation (people born between 1946 and 1964) compared with previous generations. Thus, there is a cohort of older adults who may experience the negative consequences of substance use, including physical and mental health issues, social and family problems, involvement with the criminal justice system, and death from drug overdose. Older adults are more likely than people in other age groups to have chronic health conditions and to take prescription medication, which may further complicate adverse effects of substance use.

Click here to continue reading this Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality (CBHSQ) Report.

“America’s Health Rankings Senior Report released by United Health Foundation”

Pennsylvania ranks 26th in the country for senior citizens, according to the 2017 America’s Health Rankings Senior Report released by United Health Foundation.

Minnesota is the leading state for senior health in 2017, a title it also held in the first two years of the America’s Health Rankings Senior Report. Utah (second) reached its highest ranking in the report’s five-year history, after rising four spots this year. Hawaii (third), Colorado (fourth) and New Hampshire (fifth) round out the top five states.”

PA

 

Army OneSource offers FREE online behavioral health continuing education courses

caring for those who serve

Military Families face some unique challenges. In today’s Military culture, many Service members experience multiple deployments. This can leave them with health concerns, such as Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), domestic violence issues and suicidal tendencies. Now more than ever, Military Families need our support.

Army OneSource can help. FREE online behavioral health continuing education courses are available (through August 26, 2017) to help inform health care providers, physicians and first responders about Military culture and the traumas of war. We want to help those who, in the course of their work, come into contact with a Service member, Family member or Veteran.

If you treat Service members, strengthen your knowledge – Take advantage of this FREE resource. Register and complete a continuing education course today. 

register now

Instructions:
Log in to the Army OneSource Member Sign-In Page and click “My Courses” to complete this important and timely training today.

To register for courses:

  • After logging in, select “Bring Them the Rest of the Way Home,” from the navigational toolbar.
  • Click “Army OneSource Online Training” and select “Add to Cart.”
  • Select “Checkout,” then update your contact information when asked, and click “Submit Order.”
  • Once you submit your order, you’ll be able to see the continuing education under “My Courses” and begin the online course.

Behavioral Health Continuing Education Courses help service providers better understand Military culture and the traumas of war. Thank you for your interest in caring for those who serve.

 

 

HHS Unification – a website explaining the particulars.

Earlier today, the Governor’s Office launched its website for all stakeholders to learn more about Governor Wolf’s initiative to create a unified Pennsylvania Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).  On this site, you can review the draft legislation, dive deep into the HHS draft organizational charts, and hear from the prime sponsors in the House and Senate. The website also includes a way for all stakeholders to provide feedback.

HHS Unification Website

“How 30 opioid pills for surgery turn into a habit” – Futurity.org

opioids

“A small number of people—about 6 percent—who had not been taking opioids before an operation, but got them to ease post-surgery pain, are still taking painkillers three to six months later. That’s long after what is considered normal for surgical recovery.

“Smokers and those who had a history of alcohol or drug issues were about 30 percent more likely to keep filling prescriptions. People with arthritis were more than 50 percent more likely to do so.

“A new study suggests that certain factors make these “opioid-naïve” surgery patients more likely …  ”

Click here to continue reading this article at Futurity.org.

“From shell-shock to PTSD, a century of invisible war trauma” – The Conversation

As veterans returned home from the war in Vietnam, combat trauma became less stigmatized. manhhai, CC BY

“In the wake of World War I, some veterans returned wounded, but not with obvious physical injuries. Instead, their symptoms were similar to those that had previously been associated with hysterical women – most commonly amnesia, or some kind of paralysis or inability to communicate with no clear physical cause.

“English physician Charles Myers, who wrote the first paper on “shell-shock” in 1915, theorized that these symptoms actually did stem from a physical injury. He posited that repetitive exposure to concussive blasts caused brain trauma that resulted in this strange grouping of symptoms. But once put to the test, his hypothesis didn’t hold up. There were plenty of veterans who had not been exposed to the concussive blasts of trench warfare, for example, who were still experiencing the symptoms of shell-shock. (And certainly not all veterans who had seen this kind of battle returned with symptoms.)

“We now know that what these combat veterans were facing was likely what today we call post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.”

Click to continue reading this article in its entirety at The Conversation.

Special Webinar | “For Men Who Think of Sirens as Driving Music: Addressing the Emotional Needs of First Responders and Public Safety Officials. “

responder Webinar

click on the graphic to download as a .pdf file for sharing or printing.

Click here to register for the Webinar.