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Researchers Identify Gene Linked to PTSD

The Compassionate Mind

Violence: An American Archetype

Alone: The Mental Health Effects of Solitary Confinement

People See Sexy Pictures of Women as Objects, Not People

Children in U.S. and U.K. Share Risk Factors for Behavior Problems

Kudzu May Curb Binge Drinking, New Study Suggests

The Pain of Social Rejection: As far as the brain is concerned, a broken heart may not be so different from a broken arm.

Foul-Mouthed Characters in Teen Books Have It All

 

 

In the News
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Fathers' Engagement with Baby Depends on Mother

 

When moms are well-prepared for parenthood, fathers less involved


COLUMBUS, OH; November 19, 2014—Fathers’ involvement with their newborns depends on mothers’ preparation for parenthood, even for fathers who show the most parenting skills, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that fathers who showed high levels of intuitive parenting were more involved than other fathers with their infants at 3 months of age—but only if the mothers showed lower levels of intuitive parenting.

Intuitive parenting involves subtle, nonconscious behaviors—like cooing and making eye contact with the baby—that have been shown to stimulate and engage infants.

It may seem that fathers who are better at this positive parenting behavior would be more engaged with their infants, but that is not always the case, said Sarah Schoppe-Sullivan, lead author of the study and professor of human sciences at The Ohio State University.
(Full story . . . )

Pain from Rejection and Physical Pain Show Some Differences

November 18, 2014—Over the last decade, neuroscientists have largely come to believe that physical pain and social pain are processed by the brain in much the same way. But a new study led by the University of Colorado shows that the two kinds of pain actually use distinct neural circuits, a finding that could lead to more targeted treatments and a better understanding of how the two kinds of pain interact.
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Fatigue, Irritability, and Demoralization Can Affect Your Heart Health

 

Mount Sinai study shows vital exhaustion may raise risk of cardiovascular disease

November 17, 2014—Fatigue, increased irritability, and feeling demoralized, may raise a healthy man or woman's risk of first-time cardiovascular disease by 36 percent, according to a study led by researchers at Mount Sinai St. Luke's and Mount Sinai Roosevelt hospitals presented on Nov. 17 at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2014 in Chicago, IL.
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Oxytocin Helps in Overcoming Fear

 

Researchers at the University of Bonn Hospital show that the bonding hormone inhibits the fear center in the brain

November 13, 2014—Frightening experiences do not quickly fade from memory. A team of researchers under the guidance of the University of Bonn Hospital has now been able to demonstrate in a study that the bonding hormone oxytocin inhibits the fear center in the brain and allows fear stimuli to subside more easily. This basic research could also usher in a new era in the treatment of anxiety disorders. The study has been published online in the journal Biological Psychiatry.
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Facial Motion a Clue to Difficulties in Social Interaction among Autistic Adults

 

People with ASD struggle to recognise changing facial expressions

November 13, 2014—People on the autistic spectrum may struggle to recognise social cues, unfamiliar people or even someone's gender because of an inability to interpret changing facial expressions, new research has found.
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How Does the Brain Develop in Individuals with Autism?

 

New mouse model for autism: Mutated gene causes parts of the brain to degenerate, leading to behavioral deficits, geneticists from Heidelberg publish study in Molecular Psychiatry, better understanding can help deal with disease

November 12, 2014—Geneticists at Heidelberg University Hospital's Department of Molecular Human Genetics have used a new mouse model to demonstrate the way a certain genetic mutation is linked to a type of autism in humans and affects brain development and behavior.
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Federal Legislation Ignores PTSD Toll on Civilians

November 11, 2014— Federal laws explicitly addressing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have overwhelmingly focused on the needs of military personnel and veterans, according to a new analysis published in the Journal of Traumatic Stress.
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Progress in Understanding Bipolar Disorder

 

Experts review advances in understanding and treatment of bipolar disorder

November 11, 2014—Several lines of research have opened exciting new frontiers in scientific understanding and clinical management of bipolar disorder (formerly referred to as manic-depression). Recent advances in bipolar disorder research are described in this month's special issue of Harvard Review of Psychiatry. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.
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Skin-to-Skin Contact between Mothers and Infants Is Important after Cesarean Birth

 

Skin-to-skin contact supports breastfeeding, bonding and better health outcomes

November 11, 2014—Research during the past 30 years has found many benefits of skin-to-skin contact between mothers and newborns immediately after birth, particularly with aiding breastfeeding. However, in some hospitals, skin-to-skin contact following cesarean birth is not implemented, due to practices around the surgery. A recent Quality Improvement (QI) project demonstrated that women's birth experiences were improved by implementing skin-to-skin contact after cesarean surgery.
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Why 'I'm so Happy I Could Cry' Makes Sense

New Haven, CT; November 11, 2014—The phrase "tears of joy" never made much sense to Yale psychologist Oriana Aragon. But after conducting a series of studies of such seemingly incongruous expressions, she now understands better why people cry when they are happy.
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Reminders of Emotional Support Silence the Brain's Response to Threat

November 7, 2014—Being shown pictures of others being loved and cared for reduces the brain's response to threat, new research from the University of Exeter has found.
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Sense of Meaning and Purpose in Life Linked to Longer Lifespan

November 6, 2014—A UCL-led study of 9,050 English people with an average age of 65 found that the people with the greatest wellbeing were 30% less likely to die during the average eight and a half year follow-up period than those with the least wellbeing.
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New Knowledge about the Human Brain's Plasticity

November 6, 2014—The brain's plasticity and its adaptability to new situations do not function the way researchers previously thought, according to a new study published in the journal Cell. Earlier theories are based on laboratory animals, but now researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden have studied the human brain. The results show that a type of support cell, the oligodendrocyte, which plays an important role in the cell-cell communication in the nervous system, is more sophisticated in humans than in rats and mice—a fact that may contribute to the superior plasticity of the human brain.
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Compensation and Punishment: "Justice" Depends on Whether or Not We're a Victim

October 28, 2014—We’re more likely to punish wrongdoing as a third party to a non-violent offense than when we’re victimized by it, according to a new study by New York University psychology researchers. The findings, which appear in the journal Nature Communications, may offer insights into how juries differ from plaintiffs in seeking to restore justice.
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Menopausal Symptoms May Be Lessened with Young Children in the House

BLOOMINGTON, IN; October 27, 2014—A new study by researchers at The Kinsey Institute and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center has found that the timeless, multicultural tradition of grandmothering might have an unexpected benefit: helping some women temper their hot flashes and night sweats during menopause.
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Receiving Gossip about Others Promotes Self-Reflection and Growth

October 24, 2014—Gossip is pervasive in our society, and our penchant for gossip can be found in most of our everyday conversations. Why are individuals interested in hearing gossip about others' achievements and failures? Researchers at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands studied the effect positive and negative gossip has on how the recipient evaluates him or herself. The study is published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
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Relationships Benefit When Parents, Adult Children Connect through Multiple Channels

LAWRENCE, KS; October 24, 2014—"Call your mother" may be the familiar refrain, but research from the University of Kansas shows that being able to text, email and 'Facebook' dad may be just as important for young adults.  
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Two Days Later: Adolescents' Conflicts Spill Over between Home and School

October 23, 2014—The lives of adolescents at home and at school may seem quite separate, but recent research has highlighted important connections. Family conflict and problems at school tend to occur together on the same day and sometimes even spill over in both directions to the next day, with family conflict increasing the likelihood of problems at school and vice versa. Now a new study has found that conflicts at home spill over to school and school problems influence problems at home up to two days later, and that negative mood and psychological symptoms are important factors in the process.
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Daydreaming Can Help Boost Mental Performance

October 23, 2014—New research led by Cornell University neuroscientist Nathan Spreng shows for the first time that engaging brain areas linked to so-called “off-task” mental activities (such as mind-wandering and reminiscing) can actually boost performance on some challenging mental tasks. The results advance our understanding of how externally and internally focused neural networks interact to facilitate complex thought, the authors say.
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Teens Whose Parents Exert More Psychological Control Have Trouble with Closeness, Independence

October 23, 2014—For teenagers, learning to establish a healthy degree of autonomy and closeness in relationships (rather than easily giving in to peer pressure) is an important task. A new longitudinal study has found one reason adolescents struggle with balancing autonomy and closeness in relationships: parents' psychological control. Teens whose parents exerted more psychological control over them when they were 13 had more problems establishing friendships and romantic relationships that balanced closeness and independence, both in adolescence and into early adulthood.
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Might versus Right: Bullies, Allies and Victims

October 21, 2014—Every year when the World Day of Bullying Prevention peeks over the October horizon, the year’s bullying research gets a thorough going-over by school administrators, parents and politicians. It isn’t that no one cares the rest of the year; rather, having an “awareness day” gives everyone a chance to take stock. How far have we come? What have we learned? Are we all on the same page?
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Association between Air Toxicants and Childhood Autism

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 22, 2014 – Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) were more likely to have been exposed to higher levels of certain air toxicants during their mothers' pregnancies and the first two years of life compared to children without the condition, according to the preliminary findings of a University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health investigation of children in southwestern Pennsylvania.
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Bullying in Schools Is Still Prevalent, American Report Says

CLEMSON; October 22, 2014—Despite a dramatic increase in public awareness and anti-bullying legislation nationwide, the prevalence of bullying is still one of the most pressing issues facing American youth, according to a report by researchers from Clemson University and Professional Data Analysts Inc., and published by the Hazelden Foundation.
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Even Depressed People Believe That Life Gets Better

October 21, 2014—Adults typically believe that life gets better—today is better than yesterday was and tomorrow will be even better than today. A new study shows that even depressed individuals believe in a brighter future, but this optimistic belief may not lead to better outcomes. The findings are published in Clinical Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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Siblings of Children with Autism Can Show Signs at 18 Months

October 20, 2014—About 20% of younger siblings of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) will develop the condition by age 3. A new study by Yale School of Medicine researchers has found that 57% of these younger siblings who later develop the condition already showed symptoms at age 18 months.
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Orphanage Care Linked to Thinner Brain Tissue in Regions Related to ADHD

October 14, 2014—Under the rule of dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, thousands of Romanian children were placed in overcrowded orphanages with bleak conditions and minimal human contact. Even after the 1989 revolution, the legacy of institutionalization continued. Only recently has research and public concern over early childhood environments caused changes in policies.
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Not Playing Politics: How to Stay Friends When Your Views Differ

October 13, 2014—As the political posturing amps up in advance of the midterm elections, you know you can always turn off the TV or the radio when you don’t agree with the viewpoint on Obamacare, gun control or policy in the Middle East.
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Trying to Share Our 'Epic' Moments May Leave Us Feeling Left Out

October 6, 2014—We might love to reminisce and tell others about our extraordinary experiences—that time we climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, got to taste a rare wine, or ran into a celebrity on the street—but new research suggests that sharing these extraordinary experiences may come at a social cost. The findings are published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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How Curiosity Changes the Brain to Enhance Learning

October 2, 2014—The more curious we are about a topic, the easier it is to learn information about that topic. New research publishing online October 2 in the Cell Press journal Neuron provides insights into what happens in our brains when curiosity is piqued. The findings could help scientists find ways to enhance overall learning and memory in both healthy individuals and those with neurological conditions.
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Support from Grandparents Reduces Behavioral Problems, But May Lead to Children's Weight Gain

 

Overall, Grandparents' support linked to parents' willingness to have additional children and child well-being

October 2, 2014—Grandparents can significantly influence parents' decisions to have additional children and the well-being of grandchildren, according to a recent study completed at the University of Eastern Finland.
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Who Are the Men and Boys Suffering from Anorexia?

September 29, 2014—A new study by researchers from the University of Montreal reveals the current state of knowledge about anorexia in men and boys. "Most of the knowledge about anorexia pertains to females. However, about 10% of persons affected are males, and we believe this figure is underestimated," says Laurence Corbeil-Serre, lead author of the study. "Our results show that there appear to be similarities between the behavioural symptoms of males and females, but certain particularities can be identified in males, especially related to personality, gender identity, and sexual orientation."
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How Empathy Can Spark Aggression

September 26, 2014—Empathy is typically seen as eliciting warmth and compassion—a generally positive state that makes people do good things to others. However, empathy may also motivate aggression on behalf of the vulnerable other. Researchers at the State University of New York at Buffalo, examined whether assessed or elicited empathy would lead to situation-specific aggression on behalf of another person, and to explore the potential role of two neurohormones in explaining a connection between empathy and aggression. The study is published in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
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Talk Therapy, Not Medication, Best for Social Anxiety Disorder, Large Study Finds

 

But many lack access to trained therapists, choose medication or nothing at all to treat the common mental illness

September 25, 2014—While antidepressants are the most commonly used treatment for social anxiety disorder, new research suggests that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is more effective and, unlike medication, can have lasting effects long after treatment has stopped.
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Family-Based Therapies Can Treat Anorexia in Teens, Study Finds

September 24, 2014—Two different family-based therapies are both effective at combating anorexia nervosa in teenagers, according to the largest study ever to compare two such treatments for the life-threatening eating disorder.
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Hold On, Tiger Mom

 

Research by a UC Riverside assistant professor refutes the idea that the traditional, strict 'Chinese' upbringing, advocated for in the book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, is superior

September 22, 2014—Less supportive and punitive parenting techniques used by some Chinese parents might lead to the development of skewed self-understanding and school adjustment difficulties in their children and leave them vulnerable to depression and problem behaviors, according to a paper recently published by a University of California, Riverside assistant professor and other researchers.
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Fighting Parents Hurt Children’s Ability to Recognize and Regulate Emotions


September 17, 2014—Exposure to verbal and physical aggression between parents may hurt a child’s ability to identify and control emotions, according to a longitudinal study led by NYU’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.

The findings, which appear in the journal Development and Psychopathology, also suggest that household chaos and prolonged periods of poverty during early childhood may take a substantial toll on the emotional adjustment of young children.
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Evidence of Genetic Link to PTSD in Soldiers Exposed to Childhood Trauma

September 16, 2014—While abnormalities in the adrenergic and noradrenergic systems, both integral in the fight-or-flight response, are thought to play a role in the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), until now there has been no genetic evidence of this connection. A collaborative study just released by researchers at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health and the University of Michigan found an interaction between the ADRB2 gene and childhood adversity. For individuals with two or more experiences of childhood trauma, such as abuse, genotype was associated with risk for adult PTSD symptoms. These findings are significant for the study of the physiology of PTSD, for the treatment and prevention of stress-related illnesses, and may have implications for treating pain, which has also been linked to the ADRB2 gene.
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A Wife’s Happiness is More Crucial than Her Husband’s in Keeping Marriage on Track

 

Rutgers Study Finds Research offers insight into link between marital quality and well-being later in life

September 12, 2014—When it comes to a happy marriage, a new Rutgers study finds that the more content the wife is with the long-term union, the happier the husband is with his life no matter how he feels about their nuptials.
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World Suicide Prevention Day: Young People Who Have Attempted Suicide Disadvantaged on the Job Market

September 8, 2014—People who have attempted suicide when young are less likely to have a successful professional career later in life. This was discovered in a joint study by the Swedish Karolinska Institutet and MedUni Vienna. The prospect of long-term unemployment later in life threatens many people who have attempted suicide once or more. However, they make up an even larger proportion of the statistics for long-term sick leave and disability pensions.
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Stigma as a Barrier to Mental Health Care

September 5, 2014—Over 60 million Americans are thought to experience mental illness in a given year, and the impacts of mental illness are undoubtedly felt by millions more in the form of family members, friends, and coworkers. Despite the availability of effective evidence-based treatment, about 40% of individuals with serious mental illness do not receive care and many who begin an intervention fail to complete it. A new report, published in Psychological Science in the Public Interest, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, investigates stigma as a significant barrier to care for many individuals with mental illness.While stigma is one of many factors that may influence care seeking, it is one that has profound effects for those who suffer from mental illness:
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Reacting to Personal Setbacks: Do You Bounce Back or Give Up?

 

Rutgers researchers find the ability to persist may depend on how the news is delivered

September 4, 2014—Sometimes when people get upsetting news—such as a failing exam grade or a negative job review—they decide instantly to do better the next time. In other situations that are equally disappointing, the same people may feel inclined to just give up.
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Dad Is Important for His Children's Development

September 3, 2014—A sensitive and attentive father has a positive influence on his child’s development, but only if he spends a considerable amount of time with the child during its first year.
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Experiences Make You Happier than Possessions: Before and After

September 2, 2014—To get the most enjoyment out of our dollar, science tells us to focus our discretionary spending on experiences such as travel over material goods. A new Cornell University study shows that the enjoyment we derive from experiential purchases may begin even before we buy.
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Rediscovering Our Mundane Moments Brings Us Unexpected Pleasure

September 2, 2014—We like to document the exciting and momentous occasions in our lives, but new research suggests there is value in capturing our more mundane, everyday experiences, which can bring us unexpected joy in the future.
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Why Plants in the Office Make Us More Productive

August 31, 2014—'Green' offices with plants make staff happier and more productive than 'lean' designs stripped of greenery, new research shows.
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Meaningful Relationships Can Help You Thrive

August 29, 2014—Deep and meaningful relationships play a vital role in overall well-being, says new research. Past studies have shown that individuals with supportive and rewarding relationships have better mental health, higher levels of subjective well-being and lower rates of morbidity and mortality. A paper published in Personality and Social Psychology Review provides an important perspective on thriving through relationships.
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Warm Thanks: Gratitude Can Win You New Friends

August 28, 2014—Parents have long told their children to mind their Ps and Qs, and remember to say thank you. Now the evidence is in on why it matters. But a new UNSW Australia-led study has shown for the first time that thanking a new acquaintance for their help makes them more likely to seek an ongoing social relationship with you.
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Outsourcing Parenthood? It Takes a Village and the Marketplace to Raise a Child

August 26, 2014—Ask any parent raising kids in today's fast-paced society and chances are they would agree that there are only so many hours in the day. Recognizing a need for help, many businesses now offer traditional caregiving services ranging from planning birthday parties to teaching children how to ride a bike. According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research, by outsourcing traditional parental duties, modern-day parents feel they are ultimately protecting parenthood.
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How Parents of Anxious Children Can Avoid the 'Protection Trap'

 

Anxiety in kids one of the most common disorders

Tempe, AZ; Aug. 25, 2014—Parents naturally comfort their children when they are scared, but new research shows that some reactions may actually reinforce their children's feelings of anxiety.
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Learning by Watching, Toddlers Show Intuitive Understanding of Probability

August 25, 2014— Most people know children learn many skills simply by watching people around them. Without explicit instructions youngsters know to do things like press a button to operate the television and twist a knob to open a door. Now researchers have taken this further, finding that children as young as age 2 intuitively use mathematical concepts such as probability to help make sense of the world around them.
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Use a Rule of Thumb to Control How Much You Drink

AMES, IA; August 22, 2014—Sticking to a general rule of pouring just a half glass of wine limits the likelihood of overconsumption, even for men with a higher body mass index. That’s the finding of a new Iowa State and Cornell University study to be published in a forthcoming issue of the International Journal of Drug Policy.
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Once a Cheater, Always a Cheater?

August 21, 2014—Once a cheater, always a cheater? The adage might be true, suggests a University of Denver study.
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Study: Bigger Weddings, Fewer Partners, Less 'Sliding,' Better Marriages

August 19, 2014—The more people who attend your wedding to share in the launch of your marriage, the better the chances you will be happily married years down the road. And, somewhat counter-intuitively, the more relationships you had prior to your marriage, the less likely you are to report a high-quality marriage.
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'Super-Parent' Cultural Pressures Can Spur Mental Health Conditions in New Moms and Dads

SAN FRANCISCO; August 18, 2014—Mental health experts in the past three decades have emphasized the dangers of post-partum depression for mothers, but a University of Kansas researcher says expanding awareness of several other perinatal mental health conditions is important for all new parents, including fathers.
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Stuck in Neutral: Brain Defect Traps Schizophrenics in Twilight Zone

August 17, 2014—People with schizophrenia struggle to turn goals into actions because brain structures governing desire and emotion are less active and fail to pass goal-directed messages to cortical regions affecting human decision-making, new research reveals.
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Can Fiction Stories Make Us More Empathetic?

August 11, 2014—Empathy is important for navigating complex social situations, and is considered a highly desirable trait. Raymond Mar, a psychologist at York University in Canada, discussed how exposure to narrative fiction may improve our ability to understand what other people are thinking or feeling in his session at the American Psychological Association's 122nd Annual Convention.
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Trauma before Enlistment Linked to High Suicide Rates among Military Personnel, Veterans

 

Child abuse, sexual victimization, prior suicidal behavior significant risk factors

WASHINGTON, DC; August 9, 2014—High rates of suicide among military service members and veterans may be related to traumatic experiences they had before enlisting, making them more vulnerable to suicidal behavior when coping with combat and multiple deployments, according to the findings of several recent studies presented at the American Psychological Association's 122nd Annual Convention.
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Expecting to Teach Enhances Learning, Recall

 

Student mindset has big impact on learning, study finds

August 8, 2014—"When compared to learners expecting a test, learners expecting to teach recalled more material correctly, they organized their recall more effectively and they had better memory for especially important information," said lead author John Nestojko, PhD, a postdoctoral researcher in psychology in Arts & Sciences at the Washington University in St. Louis.
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Aggressive Behavior Increases Adolescent Drinking, Depression Doesn't

August 6, 2014—Adolescents who behave aggressively are more likely to drink alcohol and in larger quantities than their peers, according to a recent study completed in Finland. Depression and anxiety, on the other hand, were not linked to increased alcohol use. The study investigated the association between psychosocial problems and alcohol use among 4074 Finnish 13- to 18-year-old adolescents. The results were published in Journal of Adolescence.
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Girls Feel They Must 'Play Dumb' to Please Boys, Says Research

August 5, 2014—Girls feel the need to play down their intelligence to not intimidate boys, concludes research by a sociologist who spent three months amongst a class of school children.
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Our Brains Judge a Face's Trustworthiness—Even When We Can't See It

August 5, 2014—Our brains are able to judge the trustworthiness of a face even when we cannot consciously see it, a team of scientists has found. Their findings, which appear in the Journal of Neuroscience, shed new light on how we form snap judgments of others.
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Anorexia Fueled by Pride About Weight Loss

 

Rutgers study finds that positive emotions could play a role in the deadly disorder

August 4, 2014—Positive emotions—even those viewed through a distorted lens—may play an exacerbating role in fueling eating disorders like anorexia nervosa, which has a death rate 12 times higher for females between the ages of 15 and 24 than all other causes of death combined, according to a Rutgers study.
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A Blood Test for Suicide?

 

Alterations to a single gene could predict risk of suicide attempt

July 30, 2014—Johns Hopkins researchers say they have discovered a chemical alteration in a single human gene linked to stress reactions that, if confirmed in larger studies, could give doctors a simple blood test to reliably predict a person's risk of attempting suicide.
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The Social Origins of Intelligence in the Brain

CHAMPAIGN, IL; July 29, 2014—By studying the injuries and aptitudes of Vietnam War veterans who suffered penetrating head wounds during the war, scientists are tackling—and beginning to answer—longstanding questions about how the brain works.
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Children with Disabilities Benefit from Classroom Inclusion

 

Language skills improve when preschoolers with disabilities are included in classes with typical peers

COLUMBUS, OH; July 28, 2014—The secret to boosting the language skills of preschoolers with disabilities may be to put them in classrooms with typically developing peers, a new study finds.
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Experiences at Every Stage of Life Contribute to Cognitive Abilities in Old Age

July 24, 2014—Early life experiences, such as childhood socioeconomic status and literacy, may have greater influence on the risk of cognitive impairment late in life than such demographic characteristics as race and ethnicity, a large study by researchers with the UC Davis Alzheimer’s Disease Center and the University of Victoria, Canada, has found.
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Early Warning Sign in Babies at Risk for Autism

 

Researchers at the University of Miami find that early joint attention predicts later autism symptoms

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (July 24, 2014)—Some babies are at risk for autism because they have an older sibling that has the disorder. To find new ways to detect Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) earlier in life, researchers are exploring the subtleties of babies' interactions with others and how they relate to the possibility and severity of future symptoms.
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Study Finds Greater Odds of Adverse Childhood Experiences in Those with Military Service

July 23, 2014—Men and women who have served in the military have a higher prevalence of adverse childhood events (ACEs), suggesting that enlistment may be a way to escape adversity for some.
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Extra Exercise Helps Depressed Smokers Kick the Habit Faster

 

New research shows quitting cigarettes is a more complicated struggle when mental health is a factor

July 22, 2014—People diagnosed with depression need to step out for a cigarette twice as often as smokers who are not dealing with a mood disorder. And those who have the hardest time shaking off the habit may have more mental health issues than they are actually aware of.
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Are State Medicaid Policies Sentencing People with Mental Illnesses to Prison?

July 22, 2014—Researchers from the USC Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics have linked tighter Medicaid policies governing antipsychotic drugs with increased incarceration rates for schizophrenic individuals.
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CEOs Who Motivate with 'Fightin' Words' Shoot Themselves in the Foot

 

Research shows violent rhetoric affects employee ethics

July 22, 2014—Heading into the war room to fire up the troops? Declaring war on the competition to boost sales? Well, CEO, you might want to tamp down them's fightin' words—you could be shooting yourself in the foot.
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Children as Young as Three Recognise 'Cuteness' in Faces of People and Animals

July 21, 2014—Children as young as three are able to recognise the same ‘cute’ infantile facial features in humans and animals which encourage caregiving behaviour in adults, new research has shown.
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Mom Was Wrong: You Should Talk to Strangers

 

New study finds commuters have a more positive experience when they connect with strangers

July 17, 2014—An interesting social paradox plays out every morning around the world as millions of people board commuter trains and buses: Human beings are one of the most social species on the planet, yet when in close proximity with one another—sitting inches away on a train—we routinely ignore each other.
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Eye Movements Reveal Difference between Love and Lust

July 17, 2014—Soul singer Betty Everett once proclaimed, “If you want to know if he loves you so, it’s in his kiss.” But a new study by University of Chicago researchers suggests the difference between true love and mere lust might be in the eyes after all.
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Researchers Find Impaired Self-Face Recognition in Those with Major Depressive Disorder

July 16, 2014—Neuropsychological impairment has long been established as a fundamental characteristic of depression, but a specific pattern of impairment that is widely recognized has not been summarized. However, new research has found self-serving bias and self-recognition bias to be impaired in individuals suffering from major depressive disorder (MDD) compared with a control group. This research lays the groundwork for further study on the etiology and pathological mechanisms of major depressive disorder.
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Defects in Fatty Acid Transport Proteins Linked to Schizophrenia and Autism

July 15, 2014—Using diverse methodologies, neuroscientists from the RIKEN Brain Science Institute report that defects in Fatty Acid Binding Proteins (FABPs) may help to explain the pathology in some cases of schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders. After identifying mutations in FABPs from patients, the group led by Senior Team Leader Takeo Yoshikawa determined that the genetic disruption of Fabps in mice mimics disease behaviors seen in patients. This work suggests that disruption of FABPs could be a common link underlying some forms of these two prevalent mental disorders.
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Study: Young Women with Sexy Social Media Photos Seen as Less Competent

BEND, OR; July 14, 2014—Girls and young women who post sexy or revealing photos on social media sites such as Facebook are viewed by their female peers as less physically and socially attractive and less competent to perform tasks, a new study from Oregon State University indicates.
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Teaching the Brain to Reduce Pain

July 10, 2014—People can be conditioned to feel less pain when they hear a neutral sound, new research from the University of Luxembourg has found. This lends weight to the idea that we can learn to use mind-over-matter to beat pain.  The scientific article was published recently in the online journal PLOS One.
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New Research Examines Women Who Kill Their Children

July 10, 2014—Research by the University of Huddersfield’s Dr Helen Gavin will make an impact on psychiatrists, psychologists and other clinicians around the world who are trying to comprehend and reduce child-killing by women.
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Study Cracks How the Brain Processes Emotions

July 9, 2014—Although feelings are personal and subjective, the human brain turns them into a standard code that objectively represents emotions across different senses, situations and even people, reports a new study by Cornell University neuroscientist Adam Anderson.
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Why People with Bipolar Disorder Are Bigger Risk-Takers

July 9, 2014—Researchers at the Universities of Manchester and Liverpool have discovered that circuits in the brain involved in pursuing and relishing rewarding experiences are more strongly activated in people with bipolar disorder—guiding them towards riskier gambles and away from safer ones.
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Same Genes Drive Maths and Reading Ability

July 8, 2014—Around half of the genes that influence how well a child can read also play a role in their mathematics ability, say scientists from UCL, the University of Oxford and King's College London who led a study into the genetic basis of cognitive traits.
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Working Memory: Potential Key to Early Academic Achievement

 

New research digs for the roots of illiteracy

July 8, 2014—Working memory in children is linked strongly to reading and academic achievement, a new study from the University of Luxembourg and partner Universities from Brazil* has shown. Moreover, this finding holds true regardless of socio-economic status. This suggests that children with learning difficulties might benefit from teaching methods that prevent working memory overload. The study was published recently in the scientific journal Frontiers in Psychology.
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Smart and Socially Adept

 

Study by UCSB economist finds that individuals who demonstrate both qualities achieve greatest success in the workplace

July 7, 2014—Wanted: Highly skilled individual who is also a team player. In other words, someone who knows his or her stuff and also plays well with others. Two qualities are particularly essential for success in the workplace: book smarts and social adeptness. The folks who do well tend to demonstrate one or the other. However, according to research conducted by UC Santa Barbara economist Catherine Weinberger, the individuals who reach the highest rungs on the corporate ladder are smart and social. Her findings appear in a recent online issue of the Review of Economics and Statistics.
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Teen Dating Violence Cuts Both Ways: 1 in 6 Girls and Guys Are Aggressors, Victims or Both

 

ER-based study reinforces need for screening to get teens help

ANN ARBOR, MI; July 7, 2014—Dating during the teen years takes a violent turn for nearly 1 in 6 young people, a new study finds, with both genders reporting acts like punching, pulling hair, shoving, and throwing things.
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For a Holistic Approach to POW Trauma

 

Tel Aviv University researcher cautions against psychological 'tunnel vision'

July 7, 2014—In a new study conducted with Dr. Sharon Dekel of Harvard University's Department of Psychiatry and slated for publication in the Journal of Psychiatric Research, Prof. Solomon examines the co-morbid effects of war captivity and war trauma on prisoners of war. While symptoms of psychological illness are often pigeon-holed as specific individual disorders, Prof. Solomon argues against a narrow "tunnel vision" in treating POWs such as Bowe Bergdahl, who remains in rehabilitation after being held in captivity for five years by the Taliban.
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Antidepressant Drugs Do Not Improve Well-Being In Children And Adolescents

July 5, 2014—A study published in the current issue of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics analyzing the use of antidepressant drugs in children and adolescents questions the effect of antidepressant drugs on overall well-being.
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Researchers Find Genetic Link to Autism Known as CHD8 Mutation

 

Discovery affects half of 1 percent of autism patients but could lead way for more genetic testing

July 3, 2014—In a collaboration involving 13 institutions around the world, researchers have broken new ground in understanding what causes autism. The results are being published in Cellmagazine July 3, 2014: "Disruptive CHD8 Mutations Define a Subtype of Autism in Early Development."
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How You Cope with Stress May Increase Your Risk for Insomnia

DARIEN, IL; July 2, 2014—A new study is the first to identify specific coping behaviors through which stress exposure leads to the development of insomnia.
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Behavioral Therapy in Pediatric Antidepressant Treatment Reduces Likelihood of Relapse

DALLAS; July 2, 2014—Cognitive behavioral therapy in addition to medication improves the long-term success of treatment for children and adolescents suffering from depression, a new UT Southwestern Medical Center study indicates.
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Study Finds Online Bullying Creates Offline Fear at School

HUNTSVILLE, TX; July 1, 2014—Cyberbullying creates fear among students about being victimized at school, a recent study by Sam Houston State University found. While traditional bullying still creates the most fear among students, cyberbullying is a significant factor for fear of victimization at school among students who have experienced bullying or disorder at school, such as the presence of gangs. The fear from cyberbullying is most prominent in minority populations.
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Gestures That Speak

 

Gesticulating while speaking is not just a 'colorful' habit

June 23, 2014—Have you ever found yourself gesticulating—and felt a bit stupid for it—while talking on the phone? You're not alone: it happens very often that people accompany their speech with hand gestures, sometimes even when no one can see them. Why can't we keep still while speaking? "Because gestures and words very probably form a single 'communication system,' which ultimately serves to enhance expression intended as the ability to make oneself understood," explains Marina Nespor, a neuroscientist at the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) of Trieste. Nespor, together with Alan Langus, a SISSA research fellow, and Bahia Guellai from the Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défence, who conducted the investigation at SISSA, has just published a study in Frontiers in Psychology which demonstrates the role of gestures in speech "prosody."
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Kids with Strong Bonds to Parents Make Better Friends, Can Adapt in Relationships

Urbana, IL; June 19, 2014—What social skills does a three-year-old bring to interactions with a new peer partner? If he has strong bonds to his parents, the child is likely to be a positive, responsive playmate, and he'll be able to adapt to a difficult peer by asserting his needs, according to a new University of Illinois study published in Developmental Psychology.
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Childhood Maltreatment Associated with Cerebral Grey Matter Abnormalities

 

Abuse could lead to permanent brain damage

June 18, 2014—An international study has analysed the association between childhood maltreatment and the volume of cerebral grey matter, responsible for processing information. The results revealed a significant deficit in various late developing regions of the brain after abuse.
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Moral Tales with Positive Outcomes Motivate Kids to Be Honest

June 18, 2014—A moral story that praises a character's honesty is more effective at getting young children to tell the truth than a story that emphasizes the negative repercussions of lying, according to research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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MRI Technique May Help Prevent ADHD Misdiagnosis

Oak Brook, IL; June 17,2014—Brain iron levels offer a potential biomarker in the diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and may help physicians and parents make better informed treatment decisions, according to new research published online in the journal Radiology.
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In Managing Boundaries Between Work and Home, Technology Can Be Both “Friend” and “Foe”

 

When it comes to managing boundaries between work and home life, technology is neither all good nor all bad, according to ongoing research from the University of Cincinnati.

June 16, 2014—When it comes to managing boundaries between work responsibilities and home life, technology is our “frenemy.” Mobile technology, in particular, can be alternately used to maintain, erase or manage home and work boundaries along a spectrum. 
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Anxious Children have Bigger “Fear Centers” in the Brain

Philadelphia, PA; June 16, 2014—The amygdala is a key "fear center" in the brain. Alterations in the development of the amygdala during childhood may have an important influence on the development of anxiety problems, reports a new study in the current issue of Biological Psychiatry.
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Emotional Contagion Sweeps Facebook, Finds New Study

Ithaca, NY; June 15, 2014—When it hasn't been your day—your week, your month, or even your year—it might be time to turn to Facebook friends for a little positive reinforcement. According to a new study by social scientists at Cornell University, the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and Facebook, emotions can spread among users of online social networks.
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With Distance Comes Greater Wisdom, Research Finds

June 9, 2014—If you're faced with a troubling personal dilemma, such as a cheating spouse, you are more likely to think wisely about it if you consider it as an observer would, says a study led by a professor at the University of Waterloo.
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Argument with Dad? Find Friendly Ears to Talk It Out

June 06, 2014—With Father's Day approaching, San Francisco State University researchers have some advice for creating better harmony with dad. In a recent study, he found that when an adolescent is having an argument with their father and seeks out others for help, the response he or she receives is linked to well-being and father-child relationships.
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Multilingual or Not, Infants Learn Words Best When It Sounds like Home

June 4, 2014—Growing up in a multilingual home has many advantages, but many parents worry that exposure to multiple languages might delay language acquisition. New research could now lay some of these multilingual myths to rest, thanks to a revealing study that shows both monolingual and bilingual infants learn a new word best from someone with a language background that matches their own.
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Does Practice Make Perfect? Or Are Some People More Creative than Others? If so, Why?

 

Study finds brain integration correlates with greater creativity in product-development engineers

June 4, 2014—Creativity may depend on greater brain integration, according to a new study published in Creativity Research Journal.
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Study Finds That Suicides Are Far More Likely to Occur after Midnight

Darien, IL; June 2, 2014—A new study provides novel evidence suggesting that suicides are far more likely to occur between midnight and 4 a.m. than during the daytime or evening.
(Full story . . . )

Minority Entrepreneurs Face Discrimination When Seeking Loans

 

Minority small-business owners face more questions, get less help than white counterparts

May 29, 2014—A disheartening new study from researchers at Utah State University, BYU and Rutgers University reveals that discrimination is still tainting the American Dream for minorities.
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Negative Social Interactions Increase Hypertension Risk in Older Adults

 

Women more affected by negative social interactions than men

PITTSBURGH, PA; May 28, 2014—Keeping your friends close and your enemies closer may not be the best advice if you are 50 or older.
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Personal Judgments Are Swayed by Group Opinion, but Only Temporarily

May 23, 2014—We all want to feel like we’re free-thinking individuals, but there’s nothing like the power of social pressure to sway an opinion. New research suggests that people do change their own personal judgments so that they fall in line with the group norm, but the change only seems to last about 3 days. The research is published inPsychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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Maternal Depression Peaks at Four Years Postpartum

May 21, 2014—Maternal depression is more common at four years following childbirth than at any other time in the first 12 months after childbirth, and there needs to be a greater focus on maternal mental health, suggests a new study published today (21 May) in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
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PTSD Symptoms Common After an ICU Stay

SAN DIEGO; May 19, 2014—Patients who have survived a stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) have a greatly increased risk of developing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to a new study presented at the 2014 American Thoracic Society International Conference.
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Favoritism, Not Hostility, Causes Most Discrimination, Says Research Review

May 19, 2014—Most discrimination in the U.S. is not caused by intention to harm people different from us, but by ordinary favoritism directed at helping people similar to us, according to a review published online in American Psychologist.
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Children Who Exercise Have Better Body-Fat Distribution, Regardless of Their Weight

URBANA, IL; May 19, 2014—Maybe the numbers on the scale aren’t alarming, but that doesn’t mean that healthy-weight children get a pass on exercising, according to a new University of Illinois study published in Pediatrics.
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Study Reveals 10 Percent of 16-Year-Olds Surveyed Have Considered Self-Harm

May 16, 2014—One in ten 16-year-olds surveyed in a new study by Queen's University and the University of Ulster have considered self-harm or taking an overdose.
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Mothers’ Symptoms of Depression Predict How They Respond to Child Behavior

May 15, 2014—Depressive symptoms seem to focus mothers’ responses on minimizing their own distress, which may come at the expense of focusing on the impact their responses have on their children, according to research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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Victims Want to Change, Not Just Punish, Offenders

May 14, 2014—Revenge is a dish best served with a side of change. A series of experiments conducted by researchers affiliated with Princeton University has found that punishment is only satisfying to victims if the offenders change their attitude as a result of the punishment.
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Get It Over With: People Choose More Difficult Tasks to Get Jobs Done More Quickly

May 13, 2014—Putting off tasks until later, or procrastination, is a common phenomenon—but new research suggests that “pre-crastination,” hurrying to complete a task as soon as possible, may also be common.
(Full story . . . )

Researchers Identify Genetic Marker Linked to OCD

 

Finding likely to advance research in little-understood disorder

May 13, 2014—A group of researchers led by Johns Hopkins scientists say they have identified a genetic marker that may be associated with the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), whose causes and mechanisms are among the least understood among mental illnesses.
(Full story . . . )

Preschool Teacher Depression Linked to Behavioral Problems in Children

 

Study suggests unhealthy classroom climate is contributing factor

May 13, 2014—Depression in preschool teachers is associated with behavioral problems ranging from aggression to sadness in children under the teachers’ care, new research suggests.
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Distance Influences Accuracy of Eyewitness Identification

 

First study to use controlled outside setting and actual people to test eyewitness accuracy across a variety of distances

May 13, 2014—Eyewitness accuracy declines steadily and quite measuredly as the distance increases. Additionally, a good deal of guess work or so-called "false alarms" also comes into play as the distance increases. These findings have implications for the trustworthiness of eyewitness accounts that are used to solve criminal cases. Research led by James Lampinen of the University of Arkansas in the US and published in Springer's journal Psychonomic Bulletin & Review sheds light on the matter.
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No Such Thing as a 'Universal' Intelligence Test

 

Cultural Differences Determine Results Country by Country

May 13, 2014—Researchers at the University of Granada have shown that a universal test of intelligence quotient (IQ) does not exist. Results in this type of test are determined by cultural differences.
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Having a Sense of Purpose May Add Years to Your Life

May 12, 2014—Feeling that you have a sense of purpose in life may help you live longer, no matter what your age, according toresearch published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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Video Stories, Other Bonding Exercises Could Help Foster Families Connect

May 12, 2014—Teenagers and their foster families often say they don't feel connected and have trouble communicating, but few resources exist that nurture their bonding. In a research paper being published in the June issue of Children and Youth Services Review, researchers affiliated with the University of Washington's School of Social Work describe how they tailored a parenting program known to improve communication in non-foster families for use in foster families.
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Autism-Related Protein Shown to Play Vital Role in Addiction

 

May have major implications for understanding and implementation of drug-addiction treatment

BELMONT; May 9, 2014—In a paper published in the latest issue of the neuroscience journal Neuron, McLean Hospital investigators report that a gene essential for normal brain development, and previously linked to Autism Spectrum Disorders, also plays a critical role in addiction-related behaviors.
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Love Makes You Strong: Romantic Relationships Help Neurotic People Stabilize Their Personality

May 9, 2014—It's springtime and they are everywhere: Newly enamored couples walking through the city hand in hand, floating on cloud nine. Yet a few weeks later the initial rush of romance will have dissolved and the world will not appear as rosy anymore. Nevertheless, love and romance have long lasting effects.
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Study Finds ADHD and Trauma Often Go Hand in Hand

 

Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder experienced more adversities than those without ADHD

VANCOUVER, BC; May 6, 2014—When children struggle with focusing on tasks, staying organized, controlling their behavior and sitting still, they may be evaluated for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Clinicians, however, shouldn't stop there, according to a study to be presented Tuesday, May 6, at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
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Domestic Violence Victims More Likely to Take up Smoking

 

Women who experienced physical or sexual violence perpetrated by their partner were 58 percent more likely to be smokers

May 5, 2014—One third of women around the world have experienced physical or sexual violence at the hands of their intimate partners with consequences from post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression, to sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV. Now, in a new study in 29 low-income and middle-income countries, researchers at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health have identified yet another serious health risk associated with intimate partner violence (IPV): smoking.
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Stigma: At the Root of Ostracism and Bullying

 

Experts in bullying and children's mental health gather at the Pediatric Academic Societies meeting to describe new research and what it means for children's mental health

VANCOUVER, BC; May 5, 2014—Increasing evidence shows that stigma—whether due to a child's weight, sexual orientation, race, income or other attribute—is at the root of bullying, and that it can cause considerable harm to a child's mental health.
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Study Finds Family-Based Exposure Therapy Effective Treatment for Young Children with OCD

 

Children 5 to 8 years old with emerging OCD can benefit from therapies used for older children

PROVIDENCE, RI; May 5, 2014—A new study from the Bradley Hasbro Children's Research Center has found that family-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is beneficial to young children between the ages of five and eight with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). The study, now published online in JAMA Psychiatry, found developmentally sensitive family-based CBT that included exposure/response prevention (EX/RP) was more effective in reducing OCD symptoms and functional impairment in this age group than a similarly structured relaxation program.
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Discrimination Associated with Mental Health Woes in Black Teens

 

Researchers find racism a common 'toxic stressor' among African-American, Afro-Caribbean youth

VANCOUVER, BC; May 3, 2014—The vast majority of African-American and Afro-Caribbean youth face racial discrimination, and these experiences are associated with an increased risk of mental health problems, according to a study to be presented Saturday, May 3, at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
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Nightmares May Signal a Child Is Being Bullied

 

Study finds victims of bullying are at increased risk of experiencing sleep disturbances

VANCOUVER, BC; May 3, 2014—Many children who are bullied suffer in silence. The trauma can lead to anxiety, depression, psychotic episodes and even suicide.
(Full story . . . )

Out of Shape? Your Memory May Suffer

May 2, 2014—Here’s another reason to drop that doughnut and hit the treadmill: A new study suggests aerobic fitness affects long-term memory.
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Catastrophic Thoughts about the Future Linked to Suicidal Patients

April 28, 2014—Suicide has been on the increase recently in the United States, currently accounting for almost 40,000 deaths a year. A new study indicates that one important strategy for reducing suicide attempts would be to focus on correcting the distorted, catastrophic thoughts about the future that are held by many who try to kill themselves. Such thoughts are unique and characteristic to those who attempt suicide, says Shari Jager-Hyman of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in the US.
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Paying Closer Attention to Attention

 

Attention problems may be overreported in children with fetal alcohol syndrome disorder

April 24, 2014—Ellen’s (not her real name) adoptive parents weren’t surprised when the school counselor suggested that she might have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Several professionals had made this suggestion over the years. Given that homework led to one explosion after another, and that at school Ellen, who is eleven, spent her days jiggling up and down in her seat, unable to concentrate for more than ten minutes, it seemed a reasonable assumption. Yet her parents always felt that ADHD didn't quite capture the extent of Ellen's issues over the years. 
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Altruistic Adolescents Less Likely to Become Depressed

CHAMPAIGN, IL; April 24, 2014—It is better to give than to receive—at least if you're an adolescent and you enjoy giving, a new study suggests.
(Full story . . . )

Biting into Whole Foods Can Make Children Rowdy

April 23, 2014—There's a new secret to get your child to behave at the dinner table—cut up their food and they'll relax.
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Do Scare Tactics Motivate?

 

Not so much, say researchers. Teachers' scare tactics lead to lower exam scores than focusing on the benefits of success.

WASHINGTON, DC; April 21, 2014—As the school year winds down and final exams loom, teachers may want to avoid reminding students of the bad consequences of failing a test because doing so could lead to lower scores, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association (APA).
(Full story . . . )

New Study Suggests A Better Way to Deal with Bad Memories

 

Research uncovers a simple and effective emotion-regulation strategy that has neurologically and behaviorally been proven to lessen the emotional impact of personal negative memories.

April 18, 2014—What’s one of your worst memories? How did it make you feel? According to psychologists, remembering the emotions felt during a negative personal experience, such as how sad you were or how embarrassed you felt, can lead to emotional distress, especially when you can’t stop thinking about it. 
(Full story . . . )

Scientists Discover Brain's Anti-Distraction System

April 17, 2014—Two Simon Fraser University psychologists have made a brain-related discovery that could revolutionize doctors’ perception and treatment of attention-deficit disorders.
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'Brain Training' May Overcome Tics in Tourette Syndrome, Study Finds

April 17, 2014—Children with Tourette Syndrome (TS) may unconsciously train their brain to more effectively control their tics, finds new research from the University of Nottingham.
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Loud Talking and Horseplay in Car Results in More Serious Incidents for Teen Drivers

April 17, 2014—Adolescent drivers are often distracted by technology while they are driving, but loud conversations and horseplay between passengers appear more likely to result in a dangerous incident, according to a new study from the UNC Highway Safety Research Center.
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The Ilk of Human Kindness

 

Older women with gumption score high on compassion

April 17, 2014—Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine report that older women, plucky individuals and those who have suffered a recent major loss are more likely to be compassionate toward strangers than other older adults.
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“Date at Your Own Risk”: Coworkers Perceptions of Workplace Romances

 

Study finds honesty is the best policy with coworkers

April 16, 2014—Workplace romances are very common in contemporary organizations. In 2004, The Wall Street Journal reported that 47% of employees were currently involved in a workplace romance, and 19% would engage in one if the opportunity arose. However, little attention has been placed on other colleague reactions to workplace romances, and how they might perceive those involved.
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Kids Misbehave within 10 Minutes of Spanking

 

First-of-its-kind study also finds that parents ignored best practices recommended by spanking advocates

April 15, 2014—A new study based on real-time audio recordings of parents practicing corporal punishment discovered that spanking was far more common than parents admit, that children were hit for trivial misdeeds and that children then misbehaved within 10 minutes of being punished.
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How Mothers Help Children Explore Right and Wrong

 

Concordia study shows that parental talks support children’s understanding of their moral experiences

April 15, 2015—There’s no question that mothers want their children to grow up to be good people—but less is known about how they actually help their offspring sort out different types of moral issues. According to a new study published in Developmental Psychology and led by Holly Recchia, assistant professor in Concordia’s Department of Education and Centre for Research in Human Development, many mums talk to their kids in ways that help them understand moral missteps.
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Study Links Domestic Abuse to Mental Health Problems in New Mothers

April 14, 2014—A new study shows that domestic abuse is closely linked to postpartum mental health problems, including depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), in mothers. The research also found that specific types of abuse are associated with specific mental health problems. The work was done by researchers at North Carolina State University, Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia.
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Hereditary Trauma Traced to RNA Molecules                                              

April 13, 2014—The phenomenon has long been known in psychology: traumatic experiences can induce behavioural disorders that are passed down from one generation to the next. It is only recently that scientists have begun to understand the physiological processes underlying hereditary trauma. "There are diseases such as bipolar disorder, that run in families but can't be traced back to a particular gene", explains Isabelle Mansuy, professor at ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich. With her research group at the Brain Research Institute of the University of Zurich, she has been studying the molecular processes involved in non-genetic inheritance of behavioural symptoms induced by traumatic experiences in early life. Mansuy and her team have succeeded in identifying a key component of these processes: short RNA molecules.
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Green Space Keeps You From Feeling Blue

Madison, WI; April 11, 2014—If you start feeling better as spring begins pushing up its tender shoots, you might be living proof of a trend discovered in data from the Survey of the Health of Wisconsin: The more green space in the neighborhood, the happier people reported feeling.
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There's No Faking It: Your Sexual Partner Knows If You're Really Satisfied

April 10, 2014—There is no point faking it in bed because chances are your sexual partner will be able to tell. A study by researchers at the University of Waterloo found that men and women are equally perceptive of their partners' levels of sexual satisfaction.
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Single Mothers Don't Delay Marriage Just to Boost Tax Credit, Study Says

MADISON, WI: April 10, 2014—When the Earned Income Tax Credit was expanded in 1993, supporters hoped it would reward poor parents for working while critics feared that it might discourage single mothers from marrying or incentivize women to have more children to boost their tax refund.
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Girls View Sexual Violence as Normal

April 8, 2014—New evidence from the journal Gender & Society helps explain what women’s advocates have argued for years—that women report abuse at much lower rates than it actually occurs. According to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN), 44% of victims are under the age of 18, and 60% of sexual assaults are not reported to police.
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The Surprising Truth about Obsessive-Compulsive Thinking


International study finds that 94 percent of people experience unwanted, intrusive thoughts

Montreal, April 8, 2014—People who check whether their hands are clean or imagine their house might be on fire are not alone. New research from Concordia University and 15 other universities worldwide shows that 94 per cent of people experience unwanted, intrusive thoughts, images and/or impulses.
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DNA Changes Found in Blood That Are Directly Related to Changes in the Brain

 

Research linked to stress in mice confirms blood-brain comparison is valid

April 8, 2014—Johns Hopkins researchers say they have confirmed suspicions that DNA modifications found in the blood of mice exposed to high levels of stress hormone—and showing signs of anxiety—are directly related to changes found in their brain tissues.
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Lipid Levels during Prenatal Brain Development Impact Autism

 

Exposure to environmental chemicals known to affect these levels

TORONTO, April 8, 2014—In a groundbreaking York University study, researchers have found that abnormal levels of lipid molecules in the brain can affect the interaction between two key neural pathways in early prenatal brain development, which can trigger autism. And, environmental causes such as exposure to chemicals in some cosmetics and common over-the-counter medication can affect the levels of these lipids, according to the researchers.
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Language Structure: You’re Born with It

April 8, 2014—Humans are unique in their ability to acquire language. But how? A new study published in the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) shows that we are in fact born with the basic fundamental knowledge of language, thus shedding light on the age-old linguistic “nature vs. nurture” debate.
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Perceptions of Student Ability, Testing Pressures Hinder Some Science Teachers

 

Boston College researchers find barriers to use of science teaching method

Chestnut Hill, MA ; April 5, 2014—A survey of science teachers finds they support a new approach to science education, but they struggle to believe that all students are capable of exploring science using a method called argumentation, according to researchers from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College.
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Indoor Tanning by Teens Linked to Unhealthy Weight Control Methods

 

Indoor tanning may be marker of eating disorder-related behaviors, suggests recent study

Philadelphia, PA; April 4, 2014—High school students who use indoor tanning also have higher rates of unhealthy weight control behaviors—such as taking diet pills or vomiting to lose weight, reports a study in the April Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, the official journal of the Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.
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Grandparents May Worsen Some Moms' Baby Blues

 

Married and single moms suffer higher rates of depression living with parents

April 4, 2014—Does living with grandparents ease or worsen a mother's baby blues? The answer may depend on the mother's marital status, a new study from Duke University suggests.
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Drawing Conclusions

Researcher finds drawing pictures can be key tool in investigations of child abuse

April 3, 2014—Is a picture worth only a thousand words? According to Dr. Carmit Katz of Tel Aviv University's Bob Shapell School of Social Work, illustrations by children can be a critical tool in forensic investigations of child abuse.
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Infants Are Sensitive to Pleasant Touch

April 2, 2014—Infants show unique physiological and behavioral responses to pleasant touch, which may help to cement the bonds between child and parent and promote early social and physiological development, according to research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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For Most Adolescents, Popularity Increases the Risk of Getting Bullied

WASHINGTON, DC; April 1, 2014—A new study suggests that for most adolescents, becoming more popular both increases their risk of getting bullied and worsens the negative consequences of being victimized.
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Oxytocin, the 'Love' Hormone, Promotes Group Lying, Say Researchers

 

Findings highlight why collaboration turns into corruption

BEER-SHEVA, Israel; April 1, 2014—According to a new study by researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) and the University of Amsterdam, oxytocin caused participants to lie more to benefit their groups, and to do so more quickly and without expectation of reciprocal dishonesty from their group. Oxytocin is a hormone the body naturally produces to stimulate bonding.
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Kinder, Gentler Med School: Students Less Depressed, Learn More

 

Curriculum changes, resilience training lowers anxiety, SLU research shows                                           

ST. LOUIS; March 31, 2014—Removing pressure from medical school while teaching students skills to manage stress and bounce back from adversity improves their mental health and boosts their academic achievement, Saint Louis University research finds.
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Study: Online Self-Injury Information Often Inaccurate

March 31, 2014—People seeking help or information online about cutting and other forms of self-injury are likely finding falsehoods and myths, according to new research from the University of Guelph.
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Four in 10 Infants Lack Strong Parental Attachments

PRINCETON, NJ; March 27,2014—In a study of 14,000 U.S. children, 40 percent lack strong emotional bonds—what psychologists call "secure attachment"—with their parents that are crucial to success later in life, according to a new report. The researchers found that these children are more likely to face educational and behavioral problems.
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Neurobiologists Find Chronic Stress in Early Life Causes Anxiety, Aggression in Adulthood

Cold Spring Harbor, NY; March 27, 2014— In recent years, a plethora of independently conducted experiments have looked at the impact of chronic, early-life stress upon behavior—both at the time that stress is experienced, and upon the same individuals later in life, during adulthood. Today, a research team led by Associate Professor Grigori Enikolopov of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) reports online in the journal PlOS One the results of experiments designed to assess the impacts of social stress upon adolescent mice, both at the time they are experienced and during adulthood. Involving many different kinds of stress tests and means of measuring their impacts, the research indicates that a "hostile environment in adolescence disturbs psychoemotional state and social behaviors of animals in adult life," the team says.
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Researchers Find New Chemical Involved in Depression Risk

March 26, 2014—Scientists have shown for the first time that a chemical in the brain called galanin is involved in the risk of developing depression.
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Mentally Challenging Jobs May Keep Your Mind Sharp Long after Retirement

ANN ARBOR, MI; March 25, 2014—A mentally demanding job may stress you out today but can provide important benefits after you retire, according to a new study.
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The Unconscious Mind Can Detect a Liar Even When the Conscious Mind Fails

March 24, 2014—When it comes to detecting deceit, your automatic associations may be more accurate than conscious thought in pegging truth-tellers and liars, according to research published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.
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Diabetes Drug Shows Promise in Reducing Alzheimer's Disease in an Experimental Model

BOSTON; March 24, 2014—Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have found that the diabetic drug, pramlintide, reduces amyloid-beta peptides, a major component of Alzheimer's disease (AD) in the brain and improves learning and memory in two experimental AD models. These findings, which appear online in Molecular Psychiatry, also found AD patients have a lower level of amylin in blood compared to those without this disease. These results may provide a new avenue for both treatment and diagnosis of AD.
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New Study Shows We Work Harder When We Are Happy

March 21, 2014—Happiness makes people more productive at work, according to the latest research from the University of Warwick.
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Can 'Love Hormone' Protect against Addiction?

March 20, 2014—Researchers at the University of Adelaide say addictive behaviour such as drug and alcohol abuse could be associated with poor development of the so-called "love hormone" system in our bodies during early childhood.
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Childhood Abuse May Impair Weight-Regulating Hormones

 

Early stress on endocrine system raises risk of excess belly fat later in life

Washington, DC; March 20, 2014—Childhood abuse or neglect can lead to long-term hormone impairment that raises the risk of developing obesity, diabetes or other metabolic disorders in adulthood, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM).
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Safety First, Children

 

University of Iowa study examines how parents can teach their children to be safer

March 20, 2014—As parents, we’ve all been there: Watching our children teeter on a chair, leap from the sofa, or careen about the playground, fearing the worst. And, we all wonder, how can we teach them to be safer?
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Social Groups Alleviate Depression

March 19, 2014—Building a strong connection to a social group helps clinically depressed patients recover and helps prevent relapse, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Queensland. Senior Fellow Alexander Haslam, lead author Tegan Cruwys and their colleagues conducted two studies of patients diagnosed with depression or anxiety. The patients either joined a community group with activities such as sewing, yoga, sports and art, or partook in group therapy at a psychiatric hospital.
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Social Feedback Loop Aids Language Development

March 19, 2014—Verbal interactions between parents and children create a social feedback loop important for language development, according to research forthcoming in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science. That loop appears to be experienced less frequently and is diminished in strength in interactions with autistic children.
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Who’s Afraid of Math? Study Finds Some Genetic Factors


Genetics plays a role, but researchers say environment still key

COLUMBUS, OH; March 18, 2014—A new study of math anxiety shows how some people may be at greater risk to fear math not only because of negative experiences, but also because of genetic risks related to both general anxiety and math skills.
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Emotional Children's Testimonies Are Judged as More Credible

MAR 17, 2014—A new study from the University of Gothenburg, show that aspiring lawyers assess child complainants as more credible and truthful if they communicate their statement in an emotional manner. Thus, there is a risk that children that behave in a neutral manner may be perceived as less credible in court.
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What's so Bad about Feeling Happy?

 

Study sheds light on how cultures differ in their happiness beliefs

March 17, 2014—Why is being happy, positive and satisfied with life the ultimate goal of so many people, while others steer clear of such feelings? It is often because of the lingering belief that happiness causes bad things to happen, says Mohsen Joshanloo and Dan Weijers of the Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. Their article, published in Springer’s Journal of Happiness Studies, is the first to review the concept of aversion to happiness, and looks at why various cultures react differently to feelings of well-being and satisfaction.
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Stimulants Used to Treat ADHD Influence BMI Growth Patterns Through Childhood With a BMI Rebound in Late Adolescence

 

ADHD Stimulant treatment initially slowed BMI Growth: Findings are first to link childhood ADHD treatment to possible later obesity

March 17, 2014—A new study from researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that children treated with stimulants for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) experienced slower body mass index (BMI) growth than their undiagnosed or untreated peers, followed by a rapid rebound of BMI that exceeded that of children with no history of ADHD or stimulant use and that could continue to obesity.
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Study Identifies Most Common, Costly Reasons for Mental Health Hospitalizations for Kids

March 17, 2014—Nearly one in 10 children are hospitalized with a primary diagnosis of a mental health condition, and depression alone accounts for $1.33 billion in hospital charges annually, according to a new analysis led by the University of California, San Francisco, Benioff Children's Hospital.
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Male, Stressed, and Poorly Social

 

Stress undermines empathic abilities in men but increases them in women

March 17, 2014—Stressed males tend to become more self-centred and less able to distinguish their own emotions and intentions from those of other people. For women the exact opposite is true. This is the main finding of a study just published in Psychoneuroendocrinology, carried out with the collaboration of the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) of Triest.
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Democrats, Republicans See Each Other as Mindless—Unless They Pose a Threat

March 17, 2014—We are less likely to humanize members of groups we don’t belong to—except, under some circumstances, when it comes to members of the opposite political party. A study by researchers at New York University and Harvard Business School suggests that we are more prone to view members of the opposite political party as human if we view those individuals as threatening.
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Brain Mapping Confirms Patients with Schizophrenia Have Impaired Ability to Imitate

March 14, 2014—According to George Bernard Shaw, "Imitation is not just the sincerest form of flattery – it's the sincerest form of learning." According to psychologists, imitation is something that we all do whenever we learn a new skill, whether it is dancing or how to behave in specific social situations.
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Husband's Health and Attitude Loom Large for Happy Long-Term Marriages

MARCH 13, 2014— A husband’s agreeable personality and good health appear crucial to preventing conflict among older couples who have been together a long time, according to a study from University of Chicago researchers. The report found that such characteristics in wives play less of a role in limiting marital conflict, perhaps because of different expectations among women and men in durable relationships.
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Study Suggests Potential Association between Soy Formula and Seizures in Children with Autism

MADISON, WI; March 13, 2014—A University of Wisconsin-Madison researcher has detected a higher rate of seizures among children with autism who were fed infant formula containing soy protein rather than milk protein.
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'Love Hormone' Could Provide New Treatment for Anorexia

March 12, 2014—Oxytocin, also known as the 'love hormone', could provide a new treatment for anorexia nervosa, according to new research by a team of British and Korean scientists.
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Youth Who Help Others and Volunteer are Less Likely to Associate with Deviant Peers and Engage in Problem Behaviors

 

Intervention programs should focus on encouraging “prosocial” behaviors in youth

Columbia, MO; March 11, 2014—Prosocial behaviors, or actions intended to help others, remain an important area of focus for researchers interested in factors that reduce violence and other behavioral problems in youth. However, little is known regarding the connection between prosocial and antisocial behaviors.  A new study by a University of Missouri human development expert found that prosocial behaviors can prevent youth from associating with deviant peers, thereby making the youth less likely to exhibit antisocial or problem behaviors, such as aggression and delinquency.
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Giving Potentially Dangerous Employees Organizational Socialization and Close Supervision Can Avoid Tragedy, Say Researchers

March 11, 2014—James Campbell Quick and M. Ann McFadyen of the College of Business management department analyzed FBI reports, case studies and human resource records to focus on the estimated 1 to 3 percent of employees prone to workplace acts of aggression, such as homicide, suicide or destruction of property. The team advances the case for “mindfully observing” employees and found that human resources professionals and supervisors can advance health, wellbeing, and performance while averting danger and violence by identifying and managing high-risk employees, anticipating their needs and providing support and resources.
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Book Review: Mild Autism? Or Something Else?

Back to Normal: Why Ordinary Childhood Behavior Is Mistaken for ADHD, Bipolar Disorder, and Autism Spectrum Disorder
Enrico Gnaulati, PhD. 2013. Beacon Press, Boston. 239 pages.


March 9, 2014—If you have a child with serious forms of autism, with ADHD, or with bipolar disorder, you know what a struggle it can be to secure his or her wellbeing in a society that doesn’t go out of its way for those who are atypical. You know how real your child’s diagnosis is; and how meaningless it could become if it became “watered down,” so to speak, by being mistakenly assigned to children who may, in fact, have very different challenges.
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Preschoolers Outsmart College Students at Figuring out Gizmos

BERKELEY; March 6, 2014—Preschoolers can be smarter than college students at figuring out how unusual toys and gadgets work because they’re more flexible and less biased than adults in their ideas about cause and effect, according to new research from the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Edinburgh.
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Study: Classroom Focus on Social and Emotional Skills Can Lead to Academic Gains

WASHINGTON, DC; March 6, 2014—Classroom programs designed to improve elementary school students’ social and emotional skills can also increase reading and math achievement, even if academic improvement is not a direct goal of the skills building, according to a study to be published this month in American Educational Research Journal (AERJ). The benefit holds true for students across a range of socio-economic backgrounds.
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Experiential Avoidance Increases PTSD Risk following Child Maltreatment

March 5, 2014—Child abuse is a reliable predictor of post-traumatic stress disorder, but not all maltreated children suffer from it, according to Chad Shenk, assistant professor of human development and family studies, Penn State, who examined why some maltreated children develop PTSD and some do not.
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Playing with Barbie Dolls Could Limit Girls' Career Choices, Study Shows

CORVALLIS, OR; March 5, 2014—In one of the first experiments to explore the influence of fashion dolls, an Oregon State University researcher has found that girls who play with Barbie dolls see fewer career options for themselves than for boys.
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New Evidence Confirms IQ Is Not Static: Change is Linked to Brain Cortex Thickness

 

Montreal scientists play key role in long-term international study

March 4, 2014—Rate of change in the thickness of the brain’s cortex is an important factor associated with a person’s change in IQ, according to a collaborative study by scientists in five countries including researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute and HospitalMcGill University and the McGill University Health Centre. The study has potentially wide-ranging implications for the pedagogical world and for judicial cases in which the defendant’s IQ score could play a role in determining the severity of the sentence.
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Frequent Childhood Nightmares May Indicate an Increased Risk of Psychotic Traits

February 28, 2014—Children who suffer from frequent nightmares or bouts of night terrors may be at an increased risk of psychotic experiences in adolescence, according to new research from the University of Warwick.
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Retention Leads to Discipline Problems in Other Kids

 

Kids who are 'held back' may contribute to disruptive middle school environment

DURHAM, NC; February 28, 2014—When students repeat a grade, it can spell trouble for their classmates, according to a new Duke University-led study of nearly 80,000 middle-schoolers.
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The Pain of Social Exclusion

 

'Social' pain hurts physically, even when we see it in others

February 27, 2014—We would like to do without pain and yet without it we wouldn't be able to survive. Pain signals dangerous stimuli (internal or external) and guides our behaviour. Its ultimate goal is to prioritize escape, recovery and healing. That's why we feel it and why we're also good at detecting it in others.
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Effective Treatment for Youth Anxiety Disorders Has Lasting Benefit

 

New study finds majority of youth respond well

Washington D.C., February 27, 2013— A study published in the March 2014 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry found that the majority of youth with moderate to severe anxiety disorders responded well to acute treatment with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), medication (sertraline), or a combination of both. They maintained positive treatment response over a 6 month follow-up period with the help of monthly booster sessions.
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Study Shows Why Breastfed Babies Are so Smart

 

Two parenting skills deserve the credit

February 26, 2014—Loads of studies over the years have shown that children who were breastfed score higher on IQ tests and perform better in school, but the reason why remained unclear until now.
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Psychological Side-Effects of Anti-Depressants Worse than Thought

LIVERPOOL, UK; February 26, 2014—A University of Liverpool researcher has shown that thoughts of suicide, sexual difficulties and emotional numbness as a result of anti-depressants may be more widespread than previously thought.
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Can Babies Learn to Read? Probably Not, NYU Study Finds

February 25, 2014—Can babies learn to read? While parents use DVDs and other media in an attempt to teach their infants to read, these tools don't instill reading skills in babies, a study by researchers at New York University's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development has found.
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Parents' Attitudes about Helping Their Grown Children Affect Their Mental Health

February 24, 2014—Older parents frequently give help to their middle-aged offspring, and their perceptions about giving this help may affect their mental health, according to a team of researchers.
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Culture Influences Young People's Self-Esteem

February 24. 2014—Regardless of our personal values, we base most of our self-esteem on the fulfilment of the dominant values of our culture, reveals a global survey supervised by social psychologist Maja Becker. We can all think of situations that give us a positive image of ourselves, such as success at school or at work, satisfying relationships with friends and family, living up to our moral standards in our interactions with others or having desirable possessions. We can also think of other things we are less proud of and that do not make us feel so good about ourselves. But why are they important? What are the factors that influence our self-esteem?
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