The link between genes, the environment and depression

Further research is needed to discover all the genetic and environmental factors involved in depression

The link between genes, the environment and depressionFor many years, researchers have suspected the existence of specific genes that make certain individuals more susceptible to depression than others. The suspicion arose when it became obvious through observation that some people seem to be more sensitive to stress than others and some develop depression regardless of the events in their lives. There are…

Don’t turn away when you see potential for suicide in others

As many as 90% of people who commit suicide experience depression, substance abuse or other mental health disorders

Don’t turn away when you see potential for suicide in othersSuicide is the darkest and most tragic face of mental illness – but we can reach out and help. When a person cuts his or her own life short out of desperation to end mental and emotional suffering, there is little that can comfort families and loved ones. One in 25 Canadians will attempt suicide during their…

Canada’s most vulnerable children deserve far better

First Nations children are denied the same funding for health care, social services and education as non-Indigenous kids

Canada’s most vulnerable children deserve far betterBy Jane Cordy and Raymonde Gagné National Child Day, which commemorates the adoption of the United Nations Conventions on the Rights of the Child, has come and gone for another year, but Canada cannot celebrate much progress. Yes, the federal government has established a Poverty Reduction Strategy; there is a Youth Council to advise the prime…

Reaching out, leaning in to improve mental health

Connie Jakab of Movement with a Message talks about addressing mental wellness concerns at home and in the workplace

Reaching out, leaning in to improve mental healthConnie Jakab is a mental health speaker and owner of Movement with a Message. Tell me what Movement with a Message is all about? Jakab: Movement With A Message is about building community, courage and compassion in our society. We do this through school workshops, mental health presentations with our National Hope Talks division (nationalhopetalks.com),…

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicare

Publicly funding comprehensive treatment for depression is cost-effective

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicareHeadlines tell us in detail about the mental health struggles of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain before their deaths by suicide. But what too often goes untold are the stories of thousands of people who die by suicide every year in Canada – our friends, relatives, colleagues and neighbours. What’s also not well documented is…

The high cost of pathological gambling

Are the profits from government sponsored gambling worth the cost in human lives, broken relationships and misery?

The high cost of pathological gamblingSince the early 1990s permanent casinos have been springing up in communities all across Canada. Our government has relaxed its views on gambling and made it much more accessible to adults everywhere. In more recent years this has expanded to include government-run online gambling portals as well. With this increase in availability has come an…

Early intervention important when fighting depression

If you are depressed you should not procrastinate and you should not settle for partial treatment

Early intervention important when fighting depressionIn the fight against depression, time is the enemy. Early intervention is critical when treating this chronic disorder and it often determines the success of treatment. What many people are unaware of is that depression can be a progressive disorder that gets worse as time goes on. Not only does the person experience more severe…

We can’t be afraid to look into the dark corners of history

We need to learn from the lessons of history when considering assisted dying for those with disabilities – no matter how unsettling that history may be

We can’t be afraid to look into the dark corners of historyHistory has a role in the national conversation about medically-assisted death, despite protests to the contrary. A respected physician and scholar recently stepped down as chair of the expert working group appointed to study the issue of advanced directives for medically-assisted death. Named to this position only two weeks earlier by the Council of Canadian…