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Changing the conversation: Body shaming

Body shaming is a growing epidemic, rising to a fevered pitch in recent years alongside social media. Photos and advertisements of perfectly shaped and airbrushed bodies plaster the cities we live in, setting an unrealistic stigma for perfection. Even social media can play a role as people choose to share the best shots online, utilizing filters and editing apps to touch up their “reality.”

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UMN expert: More global mental health and substance abuse research needed

In a recent review published in Nature, Mustafa al’Absi, Ph.D., director of the Duluth Medical Research Institute at the Medical School, Duluth campus, and other authors, outlined recommendations to shape the global mental health agenda.

“Mental health and substance abuse disorders have profound effects on overall health,” al’Absi said. “They are becoming a pressing global and local burden.”

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In The News: UMN Psychiatry, MnDRIVE researchers provide non-invasive brain stimulation for treatment-resistant depression

For nearly 20-30 percent of people who suffer from depression, antidepressants and psychotherapy will not be effective. The depression can be endless and debilitating. Many patients may try multiple medications and therapies with no symptom improvement. They may turn to electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) as a last-resort, which involves inducing seizures to stimulate the brain.

UMN researchers with MnDRIVE are offering a new option which could eliminate the need for ECT for many depression patients, and would provide considerable improvement in their symptoms.

The non-invasive brain therapy is called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). It uses a magnetic coil within a helmet-like device to stimulate the brain with electric currents.

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New ACA money goes to reaching new patients, expanded student training

Recently, the U of M’s Community-University Health Care Center began receiving three new federal grants to fund additional clinic services. Totaling $744,000 over two years, the grants from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will allow the Community-University Health Care Center at the University of Minnesota to begin providing combined substance abuse and mental health screenings for approximately 80 percent of patients over age 12 …

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First World Suicide Report released on World Suicide Prevention Day at University of Minnesota

For the first time, the World Health Organization (WHO) has created the World Suicide Report in collaboration with nations around the world. It is being released today in the USA in recognition of World Suicide Prevention Day by SAVE, IASP and the University of Minnesota.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 800,000 people die by suicide each year, one person every 40 seconds, and suicide is the second leading cause of death for people 15-29 years old.

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U of M psychiatry experts, Minnesota legislators align to advance first episode psychosis programs

Last weekend, Minnesota senator Amy Klobuchar visited the University of Minnesota Psychiatry Clinic to host a roundtable discussion around first episode psychosis and to discuss options for improving the care and long-term prognosis for patients suffering psychiatric illness.

Recent federal legislation allocated more behavioral health funding to establish new first episode programs at the state level or bolster existing programs like the one found at the University of Minnesota.

According to Charles Schulz, M.D., chair of the University of Minnesota Medical School’s Department of Psychiatry, Senator Klobuchar has an active interest in mental health but shares the concerns of University providers around the average time it takes patients to receive treatment from the onset of their disease, a statistic that continues to hover around a year and a half.

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