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Women's Health and Education Center (WHEC)

Focus on Mental Health

List of Articles

  • The Diseases of Addiction: Disorders Relating to Alcohol
    Mind-altering substances all yield four basic types of disorders: Substance Dependence; Abuse; Intoxication, and Withdrawal. The etiology and pathophysiology of addictive behavior has been somewhat a mystery to the primary care physician. As such, patients with addiction issues are a particularly difficult group to treat in a coherent and comprehensive manner. The common pathways in reward circuitry that affect memory and learning, motivation, control, and decision making are also involved in the addictive process. It is hoped through these publications; the cycle of addiction can be better understood and managed. Citizens of this century have an ever-widening variety of mind-altering substances to use, but doing so still leads to a few basic sorts of problems with behavior, cognition, and physiological symptoms. These behaviors and alcohol abuse are discussed in this chapter.

  • The Healing Power Of The Mind
    We experience illness on a physical level, but in order to be healed, we must understand where the true healing begins: with-in our hearts and minds. The purpose of this document is to explain methods to transform the minds of self-pity and anger, to work creatively with adversity, and to make our lives meaningful, no matter what state of health we are in. We hope this challenges us to open our hearts with compassion and wisdom. Spiritual cure is an understanding which allows us to begin to see illness and disease in a broader perspective. It directs the attention of mind to the special wisdom of cures that cause permanent healing to take place. Spiritual practices are not magical or miraculous but rather help a person to understand the real causes of health and happiness.

  • Anxiety Disorders
    Anxiety disorders are common in women, and cause substantial impairment in all spheres of functioning. Many effective treatment modalities offer hope and help to most sufferers and by asking specific questions to determine whether an anxiety disorder is a possibility, physicians will be able to make the appropriate diagnosis. Women are particularly vulnerable to such disorders, experiencing them twice as frequently as men. Situations related to gender, such as childbirth and domestic violence may increase the frequency of these problems. The purpose of this document is to outline a general framework for healthcare providers to diagnose and treat various types of anxiety disorders in women.

  • Postpartum Psychiatric Disorders
    Despite societal expectations that having a baby should be a completely joyful experience, many women are ambivalent about the birth experience. Some women are not prepared for the postpartum blues, nor are they aware of the risk of postpartum depression or psychosis. Women who unexpectedly develop postpartum blues may find her experiencing guilt, concern, or fear that having the baby was a mistake. These fears may worsen if the women's partner is not supportive and if there are no close relatives or friends to give emotional and physical assistance after delivery. The purpose of this document is to discuss the postpartum psychiatric disorders and to help primary care physicians to recognize and manage the emotional and psychiatric problems that can occur in the postpartum period.

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