Scientific News and Reading Suggestion #24

The 10th October is the World Mental Health Day, whose objective is raising awareness on mental health issues, trying to promote and supporting people who suffer from mental illnesses, but also mental health workers.  The main theme this year is:

YOUNG PEOPLE AND MENTAL HEALTH IN A CHANGING WORLD”.

Adolescence and the immediately following years are characterized by several changes and challenges, which can represent a powerful motivation towards growth, as well as a source of discomfort and worries. A further complication for adolescence is represented by the constant confrontation with peers, the adult world and the showcase of social networks.

The WHO has published on its website this statement about the World Mental Health Day: “in terms of the burden of the disease among adolescents, depression is the third leading cause. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15-29-year-olds”.  Loneliness and sadness may be the first signs of a distress that can eventually lead to greater discomforts. Contrarily to what is usually believed, most suicides do not happen without warning, and it is important to be aware of risk factors and warning signs. Recently, attention has been paid also to those personal and social resources that may play the role of protecting factors for the individual, including  resilience and coping strategies to face the challenges of today’s world.

The “WHO’s Preventing suicide: a community engagement toolkit” (click HEREhas been published on  September 10th, 2018. This toolkit stresses the role of communities in suicide prevention: “They can provide support to people who are vulnerable and to those who have made an attempt on their life. They can provide comfort to people who have lost someone to suicide and can also help fight stigma”.


Sources: 


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Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #23

Our member Erminia Colucci suggests her latest publication about suicide:

Suicide first aid guidelines for assisting persons from
immigrant or refugee background:
a Delphi study
”.

Here her comment about it:

This article is part of a series of projects by the authors aimed to develop a community-based tool to help members of the public to recognise potential warning signs for suicide and practical advice about how to respond (and what not to do) if someone close to them was considering taking their own life. The guidelines  specific for assisting persons from immigrant or refugee background were developed using an expert-consensus method (Delphi) with panel of professional and/or lived-experience experts. The article provides a list of the items included as well as links to the free resources developed from this project, i.e. the complete printable Suicide First Aid guidelines and the shorter infographic (available also on https://mhfa.com.au/mental-health-first-aid-guidelines#mhfa-suicide-refugee ). Members of this mailing list are invited to distribute the article as well as the free resources to anyone who is likely to encounter people from immigrant or refugee background at risk for suicide. The authors are now looking for opportunities to also develop training based on these guidelines (train the trainer style) and members are encourage to contact the first author Dr Erminia Colucci (e.colucci@mdx.ac.uk) if interested”.


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Thanks to Erminia Colucci

Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #22

Some jobs are highly related to occupation-associated suicide; in particular, physicians have a suicide rate which is twice that of the general population. Recently, on Jama Psychiatry, it has been published the article “A Physician’s Suffering – Facing Depression as a Trainee”, which focuses on the impact that a physician suicide may have on colleagues. It describes the experience of a physician who was in training when he learnt about a colleague’s suicide, his feelings and the problems he experienced during the training period, that lead him to think about suicide himself. After a period when he was afraid to ask for help because of the stigmatization of psychiatric problems, he then decided to disclose his condition to his primary care physicians and eventually to a psychiatrist and a therapist who helped him overcome his crisis, accomplish his projects, becoming a doctor and helping his patients.

LINK: A Physician’s Suffering – Facing Depression as a Trainee


Farrell CM. A Physician’s Suffering—Facing Depression as a Trainee. JAMA Intern Med. 2018;178(6):749–750. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2018.1520


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Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #21

On 31st July 2018 Health Europa Quarterly invited us to write a short article on the emergency department as a site for suicide risk management and prevention. Health Europa website provides minute news and developments from across the entire spectrum of European Health Policy. Our Chair, Marco Sarchiapone, together with our Secretary Carla Gramaglia, Patrizia Zeppegno and the Website Staff wrote a short summary about the critical key role of the emergency department (ED) in the evaluation and management of suicidal behaviors. Here you can find the article: “Suicide prevention: the role of the emergency department”.


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To know more, contact EPA-SSSP e-mail address:
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Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #20

Suicide is a global public health concern: human activities and rapid urbanisation influence the environments in which people live, and this may impact on health, including mental health. In particular, a recent article published on The Lancet Planetary Health by M.Helbich and colleagues, focuses on the association between natural environments and population suicide risk. Authors studied how green or blue spaces may influence suicide rate in association with many socio-economic factors and provide references on previous studies about how  suicide-methods access may contribute to suicidal behaviors.

LINK: Natural environments and suicide

Moreover, “suicide hotspots” should be considered among the environmental factors that may influence suicide rate in a specific context. Several articles have been published about this topic in different countries: on PloS One, in 2017, it was published a Swiss study that compares different suicide prevention measures in jumping hotspots; an Austrian study (2017) focuses on railway suicide, studying clustering phenomena, and particular events occuring in proximity to psychiatric institutions in order to help further prevention strategies.  

LINK: Comparing Different Suicide Prevention Measures at Bridges and Buildings: Lessons We Have Learned from a National Survey in Switzerland

LINK: Suicides on the Austrian railway network: hotspot analysis and effect of proximity to psychiatric institutions.


If you want to know more about suicide hotspots you can visit our post about it! 

Natural environments and suicide. Chang, Shu-Sen et al.
The Lancet Planetary Health , Volume 2 , Issue 3 , e109 – e110

Hemmer A, Meier P, Reisch T (2017) Comparing Different Suicide Prevention Measures at Bridges and Buildings: Lessons We Have Learned from a National Survey in Switzerland.
PLoS ONE 12(1): e0169625. doi:10.1371/journal. pone.0169625

Strauss MJ, Klimek P, Sonneck G, Niederkrotenthaler T. Suicides on the Austrian railway network: hotspot analysis and effect of proximity to psychiatric institutions. Royal Society Open Science. 2017;4(3):160711. doi:10.1098/rsos.160711.


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To know more, contact EPA- SSSP e-mail address:
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Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #19

Recently, on the Journal of Medical Internet and Research (IF: 5,175), an English research group published a systematic review about self-harm, suicidal behaviours and cyberbullying, in people younger than 25 years. Many research studies are available about the association between electronic bullying and suicidal behaviors in this population at risk, and the review tries to systematize the existing literature about this topic. Briefly, victims of cyberbullying seem to be at a greater risk of self-harm and suicidal behaviors.

LINK: Self-Harm, Suicidal Behaviours, and Cyberbullying in Children and Young People: Systematic Review

Young people suffering from mental illness are at higher risk for suicide than their healthy peers. A recent study published on JAMA Psychiatry, performed by a group of researchers from Hong Kong University, reports about the impact of an Early Intervention Service on  suicide rate. While it is widely acknowledged that early interventions improve short-term outcomes in schizophrenia, this study is specifically focused on suicide reduction in the long term (12 years follow up) and main risk factors for early and late suicide.

LINK: Association of an Early Intervention Service for Psychosis With Suicide Rate Among Patients With First-Episode Schizophrenia-Spectrum Disorders


John A, Glendenning AC, Marchant A, Montgomery P, Stewart A, Wood S, Lloyd K, Hawton K. Self-Harm, Suicidal Behaviours, and Cyberbullying in Children and Young People: Systematic Review. J Med Internet Res 2018;20(4):e129. DOI: 10.2196/jmir.9044

Chan SKW, Chan SWY, Pang HH, et al. Association of an Early Intervention Service for Psychosis With Suicide Rate Among Patients With First-Episode Schizophrenia-Spectrum Disorders. JAMA Psychiatry.2018;75(5):458–464. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2018.0185

 Image From Pixabay


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Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #18

Recently on BMJ it has been published a free meta-analysis and systematic review about job-related stressors and suicidality (Milner et al, 2018), a very interesting topic. Job stressors are widely acknowledged as determinants of common mental health disorders, and in literature there are several works about their correlation with suicidality. The paper by Milner and coworkers offers an overview of what is known in the literature about this topic.

LINKPsychosocial job stressors and suicidality: a meta-analysis and systematic review

Regarding job stressors and suicidality, it is known that physicians have an increased risk to die by suicide; it is quite difficult to estimate with accuracy the phenomenon, but it seems that approximately 300-400 physicians die every year for suicide, a doctor a day. Medical profession is one of the occupations with the highest risk of death by suicide.

The Washington Post recently published the article “What I’ve learned from my tally of 757 doctor suicides”, written by a family physician who, in addition to her daily work, is committed in suicide prevention. She reports about  an “uncomfortable” topic for discussion, the problem of suicide among physicians, trying to summarize the main findings collected during many years of practice.

LINKWhat I’ve learned from my tally of 757 doctor suicides

Among physycians, psychiatrist have to face with people who attempt suicide nearly every day. On Jama Psychiatry has been recently published an interesting issue by N. P. Morris, a medical doctor working at the Department of Psychiatry in Stanford University; the text is a reflection on psychiatrists daily activities and feelings, in particular when they are called to face with patients who made suicide attempts or self-harm.

LINKWhen Mind Deforms Body


Image From Pixabay


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Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #17 – part 2

On March our reading suggestion was about a recent article by our member Christina van der Feltz-Cornelis on “Frontiers in Psychiatry”:

“Springtime Peaks and Christmas Troughs: A National Longitudinal Population-Based Study into Suicide Incidence Time Trends in the Netherlands”
Emma Hofstra, Iman Elfeddali, Marjan Bakker, Jacobus J. de Jong, Chijs van Nieuwenhuizen and Christina M. van der Feltz-Cornelis

Here her comment about it:

“Time trends are one of the most studied phenomena in suicide research; however, evidence for time trends in the Dutch population remains understudied. Insight into time trends can contribute to the development of effective suicide prevention strategies.

Therefore, we examined time trends in national daily and monthly data of 33,224 suicide events that occurred in the Netherlands from 1995 to 2015, as well as the influence of age, gender, and province, in a longitudinal population-based design with Poisson regression analyses and Bayesian change point analyses.

We found that suicide incidence among Dutch residents increased from 2007 until 2015 by 38%. Suicide rates peak in spring, up to 8% higher than in summer (< 0.001). Suicide incidence was 42% lower at Christmas, compared to the December-average (IRR = 0.580, < 0.001). After Christmas, a substantial increase occurred on January 1, which remained high during the first weeks of the new year. We also found effects by gender, age and province of residence, however, no differential effects were found for gender, age and province of residence in both season and Christmas with regards to suicide incidence.

It is recommended to plan (mental) health care services to be available especially at high-risk moments, at spring time, and in the beginning of January. Further research is needed to explore the protective effect of Christmas in suicide incidence”.


You can find it on Frontiers in Psychiatry: click HERE

Image From Pixabay


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To know more, contact EPA- SSSP e-mail address:
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Thanks to Christina M. van der Feltz-Cornelis

Scientific News and Reading Suggestions #17

Our member Christina van der Feltz-Cornelis suggested us her recent article, published on February, 2018, online on “Frontiers in Psychiatry”:

“Springtime Peaks and Christmas Troughs: A National Longitudinal Population-Based Study into Suicide Incidence Time Trends in the Netherlands”
Emma Hofstra, Iman Elfeddali, Marjan Bakker, Jacobus J. de Jong, Chijs van Nieuwenhuizen and Christina M. van der Feltz-Cornelis

It talks about suicide time trends in the Dutch population: it can be useful in order to create new prevention strategies, looking at planning mental health care services especially at high-risk moments (eg at spring time or in the beginning of January).


You can find it on Frontiers in Psychiatry: click HERE

Image From Pixabay


Looking forward to sharing with you
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To know more, contact EPA- SSSP e-mail address:
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Thanks to Christina M. van der Feltz-Cornelis

 

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