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Mental Health

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The Nuance

Expanding our definitions of harm, trauma, and mental disorder may be a “mixed blessing,” experts say

Several years ago, in 2013, the American Psychiatric Association made a controversial change to its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).

For years, the DSM’s criteria for diagnosing depression had included what was known as the “bereavement exclusion.” In a nutshell, the exclusion stated that people who had…

How researchers are changing the brain’s messaging system to tackle mental health disorders

There’s a disturbingly long list of ways in which the brain can go wrong. I might name for you a sample of mental health conditions: schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, clinical depression, anxiety disorders of all kinds, obsessive compulsive disorder. Even just the list of movement disorders is miserably long: Parkinson’s disease…

Research shows these psychospiritual forces may be critically important for decreasing risk of illness and death and boosting overall health

When I was in graduate school studying world religion, philosophy, and psychology, I became intrigued by what, if anything, undergirds all the wisdom traditions. I had no interest in diluting them or melting them into one. I was more curious about what was beneath belief. After much research, I arrived…

The Nuance

Novel, complex, and perspective-changing experiences are undervalued parts of a satisfying life

Imagine that you’re stuck in a room by yourself, and your only entertainment is a short movie clip — played over and over again.

That was the setup for a 2015 study led by researchers in the Netherlands. For one hour, people in the study sat alone at a table…

Here’s what science tells us about these powerful molecules

In the last decade, discussions around psychedelics have exploded, driven in part by research showing their safety and efficacy in treating a number of mental health conditions ranging from depression to anxiety to addiction. Psychedelic molecules have obvious, dramatic effects on our thinking and mood. But when it comes to…

The Nuance

The new Facebook allegations strengthen the case that social media — as it exists today — has a net negative impact

Toward the start of the pandemic — I think it was in April of 2020 — I was driving near my home in Detroit and listening to the radio.

Someone on the air, a comedian, was joking that if the coronavirus suddenly became sentient, it might be surprised to learn…


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