Science lite From the Boston Globe.
Screening college students for depression with an e-mailed questionnaire may be a promising way to track levels of mental health on campus. But connecting students with help looks more challenging, according to new research that also found depression rates higher among college students than in the general population. Irene Shyu and a team from Massachusetts General Hospital distributed a depression questionnaire at four unidentified colleges in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and California, using e-mail lists provided by student groups. A total of 631 students agreed to take the survey for a chance to win a $200 gift card.
There’s a sucker born every minute. The survey found that the rate of major depression in those surveyed was higher than the rate in the general public (about four percentage points higher.)
For some people, worrying about bad breath or body odor can be so extreme they become housebound or suicidal, a Brown University researcher reported this week. Even though others can’t detect any smell, the preoccupation persisted among the 20 people whose cases Dr. Katharine A. Phillips described at a meeting of the American Psychiatric Association in New Orleans.
“Patients suffer tremendously as a result of this false belief and they appear to be very impaired,’’ she said.
I think I see where Dr. Phillips is heading. I’ve cut and pasted her previous infomercial from the New York Times on the subject of debilitating underbites.
The good news is that there are treatments that can help. The scientific research that’s been done indicates that serotonin reuptake inhibitor medications (for example, escitalopram, fluoxetine or fluvoxamine) and cognitive behavioral therapy are helpful for a majority of people with B.D.D. More research is needed on these treatments and on other types of therapy, but this is good news for people who suffer from this distressing, impairing and sometimes disabling disorder.
Oh I wish I were picketing down at the American Psychiatric Association Convention in New Orleans. That would be time well spent.