Abstract: Objective: This study examined differences in co-occurring symptoms, psychosocial correlates, health care utilization and functional impairment in youth who screened positive for depression, stratified by whether or not they also self-reported externalizing problems.Methods: The AdoleSCent Health Study examined a random sample of youth ages 13–17 enrolled in a health care system. A total of 2291 youth (60.7% of the eligible sample) completed a brief depression screen: the two-item Patient Health Questionnaire. The current analyses focus on a subset of youth (n=113) who had a follow-up interview and screened positive for possible depression on the Patient Health Questionnaire 9 using a cutoff score of 11 or higher .

Read >

Importance Maternal depression is a major risk factor for the development of children’s mental health problems. No population-based study to date has examined whether early child care spanning the full preschool period from infancy onward is protective for children of depressed mothers. Objective To examine whether early child care moderates associations between maternal depressive symptoms (MDSs) and child internalizing problems (emotional problems [EPs], separation anxiety symptoms, and social withdrawal symptoms [SWSs]) during the preschool period.

Read >

June 3 marked the first White House Conference on Mental Health in 14 years. President Obama opened the event by describing how many people “suffer in silence” rather than seeking help: Source: WhiteHouse.gov We see it in the veterans who come home from the battlefield with invisible wounds of war, but who feel like seeking treatment is somehow a sign of weakness – when, in fact, it’s a sign of strength. We see it in the parents who would do anything for their kids, but who often fight their mental health battle alone – afraid that reaching out would invite judgment or reflect badly on them.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: The aim of this study was to assess the contributions of different forms of intimate partner violence (physical violence, sexual violence, psychological abuse, and stalking) on symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression.Methods: In all 268 women (18 years and older) consecutively receiving a protection order in the Vhembe district in South Africa were assessed by an external interviewer. Hierarchical regressions tested the unique effects of different types of intimate partner violence on PTSD and depression.Results: In terms of PTSD symptom severity, more than half (51.9%) of the sample reported severe PTSD and 66.4% reported severe depression symptoms.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: This manuscript reviews the work on uptake and dissemination of health information technologies in mental health populations and settings, with the goal of informing the future research agenda.Methods: We reviewed both the formal and “grey” literature describing the rates and correlates of uptake for electronic health records (EHRs) and personal health records (PHRs) for general and specialty mental health settings.Results: Rates of uptake and use of EHRs and PHRs are low in general medical settings, and the limited evidence suggests even lower rates for specialty mental health settings. Many of the patient, provider and system-level characteristics associated with lower rates of use in general populations would be expected to be exacerbated in mental health settings.Conclusions: The findings suggest a need to better understand both the causes and strategies for overcoming barriers to uptake of health information technology (HIT) in mental health settings.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between alcohol use and psychological well-being among undergraduates of a Nigerian tertiary institution. The objectives included determining the prevalence and pattern of problematic alcohol use and ascertaining the association between alcohol use and some sociodemographic variables.Method: The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) was used to evaluate for alcohol-related problems in 443 students of a university in southwestern Nigeria.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: A technical expert panel convened by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the National Institute of Mental Health was charged with reviewing the state of research on behavioral intervention technologies (BITs) in mental health and identifying the top research priorities. BITs refers to behavioral and psychological interventions that use information and communication technology features to address behavioral and mental health outcomes.Method: This study on the findings of the technical expert panel.Results: Videoconferencing and standard telephone technologies to deliver psychotherapy have been well validated.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: A growing number of health information technologies (HIT) are being developed and tested to address mental health conditions. HIT includes Internet and smartphone programs or apps, text messaging protocols and telepsychiatry. We reviewed the promise and evidence that HIT can expand access to mental health care and reduce disparities in use of services across groups in need.Conclusions: Limited reach of mental health services is a pervasive problem in the United States, and solving it will require innovations that enable us to extend our clinical reach into underserved populations without significantly expanding our workforce.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: No studies have found a positive effect of anxiety treatment on physical functioning, but recent investigations of the 12-item Short Form Health Questionnaire (SF-12), which is frequently used to assess physical functioning, have suggested that orthogonal scoring of the summary measure may distort representations of physical health. The current study reanalyzes whether anxiety treatment improves physical functioning using oblique scoring in the Coordinated Anxiety Learning and Management (CALM) randomized clinical trial for the treatment of anxiety disorders.

Read >

Abstract: Objective: This study examined if associations between body mass index (BMI) and mental and physical health were independent of genetic and familial factors.Method: Data from 2831 twins (66% female) were used in an epidemiological co-twin control design with measures of BMI and mental and physical health outcomes. Generalized estimating equation regressions assessed relationships between BMI and health outcomes controlling for interdependency among twins and demographics. Within-pair regression analyses examined the association of BMI with health outcomes controlling for genetic and familial influences.Results: Adjusted analyses with individual twins found associations in women between BMI and perceived stress (P=.01) and depression (P=.002), and the link between BMI and depression (P=.03) was significant in men

Read >