Archived Report: September 23 - September 29, 2019
Health Topic: Mental Health
Weekly Report: September 23 - September 29, 2019
Weekly Insights
New findings propose explanations for the prevalence of mental health conditions
The past week's conversation around mental health highlighted new studies and books proposing new explanations behind the prevalence of mental health conditions. One study from the University of Cincinnati found that air pollution may be associated with increased mental health conditions in children. Researchers found that whenever there were increases in PM2.5 (atmospheric particulate matter that have a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometers) in a patient’s residential area, there were increased psychiatric visits within the following few days. Children in disadvantaged areas were more vulnerable to the psychiatric effects of pollution spikes, with increased reports of anxiety and suicidal thoughts.
Online conversation also highlighted a new TedTalk from journalist Johann Hari. In the talk, Hari shares his insights on the causes of depression and anxiety - which he believes center around having unmet needs. Although some factors at play are biological, he cites that many of the factors that have been proven to cause depression and anxiety are factors in the way we live. For example, people are lonely and have been socialized to look for happiness in the wrong places (often in material goods), so psychological needs remain unmet. Social prescriptions, in which a person is instructed to spend time with others to connect with something larger than themselves, is one possible aid that is gaining popularity in Europe to address mental health.


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Most Influential Authors
2 HuffPost
3 The Washington Post
4 BBC News (UK)
5 CNN International
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