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Features Related to Mental Health

  1. The Health Benefits of Dreams

    Sometimes dreams make a lot of sense -- like when we’ve been working hard and we end up dreaming, alas, that we’re still at work. Other times the meaning of dreams is less clear. That doesn’t mean the dream isn’t important to our well-being, however.   Retired teacher Barbara Kern can vividly recall

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  2. Meditation Heals Body and Mind

    Often thought of as a hippy-dippy practice aimed at transcendence, meditation is coming into its own as a stress-reduction technique for even the most type-A kind of people. In 2005, for instance, severe chest pains sent Michael Mitchell to the emergency room in fear of a heart attack. It turned out

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  3. Depression: When It’s All in the Family

    Researchers are becoming increasingly aware that depression runs in families -- sometimes across multiple generations. If Lynne Boschee were to draw her family tree of depression, for instance, it would branch across three generations to include her father and her brother and his two teen-aged child

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  4. The New Addictions

    Behavioral addictions - to shopping, sex, even e-mail - trigger the same rush of feel-good dopamine to the brain as drugs and alcohol. Since these "fixes" aren't formally recognized by the medical establishment, insurance won't pony up for treatment. But that doesn't mean they can't undo your life.

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  5. Web Confessions: Guilty Pleasure or Healthy Habit?

    These days, more and more people are engaged in “web confessions” -- baring their secrets to online communities, often anonymously. It can feel great in the short-term; it’s a chance to come clean about long-held secrets and bond with others who have had similar experiences. But is it a healthy habi

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  6. Swoon at the Sight of Blood?

    I didn’t expect to faint at the sight of my son’s blood. As a mother, my job is to nurse boo-boos -- and when when my son came to me after smashing his thumb a few months ago, I prepared to do my best Florence Nightingale. Then I saw the blood. The room began to spin. I broke out in a cold sweat. I

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  7. Prescription Drug Abuse: Who Gets Addicted and Why?

    No one decides to get addicted to prescription pain pills. Alienating family and friends, failing at work, and launching a small-time criminal career aren't what anyone plans on when they swallow their first Vicodin. One in five Americans report misusing a prescription drug at least once in their li

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  8. Craving Carbs in Winter: Is It Depression?

    If winter weather triggers carbohydrate cravings, you're not alone.  Many people snack more on carbohydrate-containing foods in winter, sometimes in an unconscious effort to boost their mood, says Judith Wurtman, PhD, a former scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and co-author of T

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  9. New Year’s Blues

    Does this depressing conversation sound like the one you have with yourself sometime between Thanksgiving and New Year's, year after year? "I didn't take off that 15 pounds." "I didn’t make as much money as I said I would." "I didn't get that promotion or switch jobs." "I'm hopeless." While some peo

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  10. Winter Babies and Postpartum Depression

    As many as three out of every four women will experience the short-term mood swings known as the "baby blues" after their baby is born. But nearly 12% experience more serious and longer-lasting postpartum depression. How can you tell the difference between the normal mood changes that will abate, an

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