Does your teen have a severe anger disorder?

Teens with Severe Anger DisorderTeenagers are often characterized as over-emotional, prone to outbursts that confuse their parents and leave teachers reeling.

But a study published in the July issue of the journal Archives of General Psychiatry says 1 in 12 adolescents may in fact be suffering from a real and severe anger problem known as intermittent explosive disorder (IED).

Study author Katie McLaughlin, a clinical psychologist and psychiatric epidemiologist, says IED is one of the most widespread mental health disorders – and one of the least studied.

"There’s a contrast between how common the disorder is and how much we know about it," she said.
IED is characterized by recurrent episodes of aggression that involve violence, a threat of violence and/or destruction of property, according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. It often begins around the age of 12, but scientists don’t know whether it continues into adulthood. (A similar study which focused on adults found 7.2% met the criteria for IED).

Full story of teen anger disorder at CNN Health

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It’s true – you can practice in your sleep

Practice in Your SleepNorthwestern University researchers are validating procrasti-nappers everywhere – they say a 90-minute nap can actually help in learning a new skill.

At least when that skill is remembering a musical tune.

Participants in the study, published June 26 in the scientific journal Nature Neuroscience, learned two different musical sequences on a computer screen while watching moving circles that went along with them, similar to video games such as Guitar Hero and Dance Dance Revolution.

After practicing for 25 minutes, the participants took a 90-minute nap. The researchers monitored the participants’ brain activity, and when they entered the “slow wave sleep stage” – a period of deep sleep with occasional intervening periods of REM sleep – the psychologists played one of the two sequences quietly.

Before nap time, the participants performed equally on both sequences. The researchers purposely made the sequences difficult so practice would become important, and the subjects could potentially show improvement. When they woke up, participants were re-tested and performed better on the sequence that had been played during their nap.

Full story of practicing in sleep at CNN Health

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Blogging Relieves Stress On New Mothers

Blogging Relieves Stress For New MothersNew mothers who read and write blogs may feel less alone than mothers who do not participate in a blogging community, according to family studies researchers.

"It looks like blogging might be helping these women as they transition into motherhood because they may begin to feel more connected to their extended family and friends, which leads them to feel more supported," said Brandon T. McDaniel, graduate student in human development and family studies at Penn State. "That potentially is going to spill out into other aspects of their well being, including their marital relationship with their partner, the ways that they’re feeling about their parenting stress, and eventually into their levels of depression."

McDaniel and colleagues from Brigham Young University surveyed 157 new mothers about their media use and their well-being. The moms were all first-time parents with only one child under the age of 18 months — most much younger than this. The researchers report in the online version of Maternal and Child Health Journal that blogging had a positive impact on new mothers, but social networking — mainly Facebook and MySpace — did not seem to impact their well-being.

Full story of relieving stress for new mothers at Science Daily

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Battle over housework breeds stress

Housework Breeds Stress for CouplesFor many couples, the division of household chores is a hot-button issue that stirs up questions about the essential fairness, or unfairness, of their relationship.

Chores can stir up emotions, too. Unpaid domestic work can be physically demanding, monotonous and isolating, and when one partner – usually the woman – is responsible for the lion’s share of the work, research has shown, that partner’s mental health can suffer.

This fact was largely borne out in a new study of more than 700 Swedish men and women, published this week in the journal PLoS ONE. Predictably, the researchers found that 42-year-old women bear a greater burden of housework than their male counterparts, and also that they’re more likely to experience restlessness,nervousness, anxiety and other symptoms of psychological distress.

But there was a catch: The link between stress and unequal household chores appeared to depend on other factors in the relationship, such as views on gender equality and the partners’ relative socioeconomic position in society – how lucrative and prestigious their jobs are, for instance.

Full story of housework breeds stress at CNN Health

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Link Between Metabolic Disorders and Alzheimer’s Disease Examined

Link Between Metabolic Disorders and AlzheimersNo effective treatments are currently available for the prevention or cure of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the most frequent form of dementia in the elderly. The most recognized risk factors, advancing age and having the apolipoprotein E Ɛ4 gene, cannot be modified or treated. Increasingly, scientists are looking toward other risk factors to identify preventive and therapeutic strategies. Much attention recently has focused on the metabolic syndrome (MetS), with a strong and growing body of research suggesting that metabolic disorders and obesity may play a role in the development of dementia.

A new supplement to the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease provides a state-of-the-art assessment of research into the link between metabolic syndrome and cognitive disorders. The supplement is guest edited by Vincenza Frisardi, of the Department of Neurological and Psychiatric Sciences, University of Bari, and the Geriatric Unit and Gerontology-Geriatrics Research Laboratory, IRCCS, Foggia, Italy, and Bruno P. Imbimbo, Research and Development Department, Chiesi Farmaceutici, Parma, Italy.

Full story of metabolic disorders and Alzheimer’s at Science Daily

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