Psychiatric Times Vol 20 No 6

Stigma Continues in Hollywood

June 01, 2003

Stereotypical portrayals of people with mental illness are as old as Hollywood itself. What are some of the clinical implications of the continued stigmatization of the mentally ill in television and film?

The Art of the Unconscious

June 01, 2003

Theater, film, literature and poetry are forms of expression that allow artists and their audiences to explore the compelling issues of their lives. By understanding which pieces "speak" to patients and physicians, the dialogue and therapy may be enhanced.

Psychiatrists Strive to Assure Patients' Safety

June 01, 2003

In the wake of the report issued by the Institute of Medicine detailing the number of medical errors each year, the American Psychiatric Association has issued a set of patient safety recommendations. Will these recommendations reduce the number of psychiatric patient deaths and injuries?

Conference Probes Pathology of Self-Awareness

June 01, 2003

The inability to create an accurate picture of self-awareness is a feature in many mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, autism, ADHD, personality disorders and substance abuse. At a Kansas City, Mo., conference, researchers begin to establish a biological basis for self-awareness and hope to isolate the deficits in the brain that causes abnormal functioning.

Music Therapy With Emotionally Disturbed Children

June 01, 2003

Using music as a form of therapy for emotionally disturbed children seems quite natural, given children's innate love of music. How can this form of creativity be used as therapy to help children better communicate feelings and emotions?

The Assessment of Danger in Everyday Practice

June 01, 2003

In presenting the subject of dangerousness assessments at my hospital, I told a story about my grandchildren that illustrated the fact that we all make such assessments and act on them regularly in various contexts.

Dyspareunia Resulting From Vulvar Vestibulitis Syndrome: A Neglected Health Problem

June 01, 2003

With a prevalence of approximately 10% for North American women, vulvar vestibulitis can have enormous quality of life implications for patients and their partners. When gynecologists and other medical specialists have difficulty finding an organic cause for the chronic pain associated with this disorder, patients find themselves referred to the mental health care professional, who must determine the diagnosis and course of treatment

The Other Side of the Story

June 01, 2003

Literature invites readers to see the world from another viewpoint, which can, in turn, lead to an increased capacity for empathy. In working with difficult-to-treat children, Alexandra Helper, MD, has found that the use of literature that focuses on alternative viewpoints helps such patients develop empathy and improve their functioning in the "real world."

Using Creativity to Explore in Psychotherapy

June 01, 2003

Becoming more creative and improvising have certain dynamics that can be used by therapists in fostering a more healing process. Playfulness, imagination, dialogue, skill-building, narrative, inspiration and integration can all be employed in clinical settings. These tools create an environment where spontaneity can arise, anxiety is reduced, and patients are more receptive to their own intuition.