August 17, 2007

Mental Health

Get the glory, write a story, use your creative mind
Irish Examiner (Fri, 7 Aug 2007)
People suffering from mental illness are invited to submit short stories for the Lilly Creative Writing Competition, launched by Eli Lily & Company. The competition is open to all clients of the mental health services in Ireland and runs through August, with the closing date for entries on Monday, September 3. 
Mobiles for four-year-olds under attack
Sunday Times (Sun, 12 Aug 2007)
A mobile phone designed for children as young as four goes on sale in Ireland this week, and has sparked concern among parents' groups and mental health experts. The Firefly has five keys instead of a keypad. Children can dial only 20 numbers programmed into the phones by their parents and is protected by a pin code. The plans to introduce phones aimed specifically at parents of four- to 12-year-olds, however, has caused controversy. Experts said concern about child safety in the wake of four- year-old Madeleine McCann's disappearance is overdone and that children should not be left alone without adult supervision in the first place.

Stressed out Leaving Cert students get helping 'feet'
Irish Independent (Sat, 11 Aug 2007)
Stressed Leaving Cert students will be provided with a helping hand during this year's results celebrations. A campaign called 'Feet on the Street' will have volunteers from the Samaritans patrol Temple Bar to offer help to those who feel isolated or stressed by the festivities. A new free 24-hour text support service, will also be available to students who are experiencing panic, anxiety and despair at less than first-rate results.; It will provide students with information; on how to access support services on a range of issues.  The automated service, which is fully confidential, will allow distraught students to access help on mental health issues, sexual health, suicide and relationships by texting 'Headsup' to 50424.

Corridors of the mind
Irish Times Subscription (Sat, 11 Aug 2007)
The Central Mental Hospital was already out of date when it was built in 1850 – so how does it cope in the 21st century, asks Carl O’Brien, Social Affairs Correspondent. Hidden away from the main street, beyond the high granite walls, through the security barrier and past the 12ft-high electronically-controlled gate, the first glimpse of the grey institution of the Central Mental Hospital comes into view. The Victorian-era building feels incongruous, just a short distance away from the glitzy, chrome-and-glass monument to consumerism that is the Dundrum Town Centre.

Addiction costs State €500m annually
Irish Examiner (Tues, 14 Aug 2007)
Problems of
addiction, including alcoholism, drug abuse and smoking, costs the Irish economy half a billion euro a year. Much of this cost is preventable, according to a report in the Irish Medical Journal (IMJ), which says more investment in prevention would dramatically alleviate the cost. The report shows that each Irish citizen pays a price of €129 a year for problems caused by addiction. This includes the cost of medical and non-medical intervention, but the majority of the cost is indirect, through crime or social problems. The study looks at the costs of all brain disorders, including addiction, anxiety, and depression, as well as neurological problems including stroke and epilepsy.

One-fifth of Irish have brain disorders
Irish Health (Tue, 14 Aug 2007)
At least one-fifth of the Irish population has some sort of brain disorder, and these conditions are costing each Irish citizen €775 per year, according to new research. These disorders include mental health disorders such as depression and psychosis, and neurology disorders such as migraine, epilepsy, MS, stroke and dementia. Doctors at the Department of Neurology at Tallaght Hospital in Dublin have reported on data for Ireland from the recent Cost of Disorders of the Brain in Europe (CBDE) study.

Suicide Prevention

Sticker campaign
Mayo News (Tue, 14 Aug 2007)
An information sticker campaign has been launched in Erris to make people who may feel isolated or suicidal aware of the services that are available to help them. The ‘Please Talk – We Will  Help You’ campaign was launched last month and the information stickers are designed to go on the back of all toilet doors in the Erris area that will be used by the public. The stickers display information about and contact details for services that people may want to avail of.Please Talk is a joint initiative between Iorras le Chéile, HSE Belmullet Health Centre, and the HSE Suicide Prevention Department in Galway.

Teagasc to fund research into rising number of suicides among farmers
Irish Times Subscription (Wed, 15 Aug 2007)
Amid growing concern at the number of men taking their own lives in rural areas, a three-year study into rural suicides is to be funded by Teagasc's Rural Economy Research Centre in Galway.  Áine Macken Walsh, a sociologist at the RERC, said the research will also seek to determine the exact numbers involved. "We know the national suicide rate, but we have no breakdown between rural and other areas. We want to find out exactly what this is and the reasons for it," she said.


Irish Independent (Mon, 14 Aug 2007)
The 'baby blues' is a transient condition that affects about 80pc of women following the birth of their baby. It involves a new mother feeling sadness and experiencing crying spells and sudden mood swings for a couple of weeks after the birth. However, Denise Lawler, lecturer at the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Trinity College Dublin, explains that longer-lasting post-natal depression is not considered to be a normal emotional transition.