16 November 2016

Impact of Mental Health on the Canadian Economy

There was a report released in early September that said that the Canadian Economy loses $50 Billion annaully due to mental health.

The losses are from employees missing work due to mental health or showing up but are still suffering from mental health impacting their productivity. They even separated out the mental health concerns and their costs
The Conference Board of Canada said in the report that depression costs the economy at least $32.3 billion annually, while anxiety costs another $17.3 billion a year.
The Mental Health Commission of Canada which oversees the delivery of Mental Health First Aid shares these numbers:

  • 23% of workers experience physical health problems caused by stress, anxiety, and major depression
  • 1 in 5 workers experience fatigue, sleeping problems, headaches and anxiety
  • 20% of all sick leaves are related to mental health

09 November 2016

Sex Before Kissing?

In a survey of 600 Australian young women aged 15-19 titled: "Don't send me that pic" came a lot of information about how teenage girls are dealing with their porn-informed boy-friends.

You can read the full report here, or an opionated summary of the findings here.

But if I may share one paragraph that stands out to me as we have a societal shift from "selfie before hi" and "sex before kissing"
When asked, “How do you know a guy likes you?,” an 8th grade girl replied: “He still wants to talk to you after you [give him oral sex].” A male high school student said to a girl: “If you [give me oral sex] I’ll give you a kiss.” Girls are expected to provide sex acts for tokens of affection, and are coached through it by porn-taught boys. A 15-year-old girl said she didn’t enjoy sex at all, but that getting it out of the way quickly was the only way her boyfriend would stop pressuring her and watch a movie.
Now of course I realize not all teen boys are like this, but it is a growing trend. Definitely calls for shift in understanding sexual health.

02 November 2016

Difference between being Rude, Mean and a Bully

A fellow Author, Signe Whitson, in the Notes on Parenting community wrote an excellent piece on the difference between being Rude, Mean, and a Bully. Because usually all those terms get lumped together with Bully.

I'll share the primary definitions, but read the full article on Huffington Post for more insight.

Rude = Inadvertently saying or doing something that hurts someone else.

Mean = Purposefully saying or doing something to hurt someone once (or maybe twice)

Bullying = Intentionally aggressive behavior, repeated over time, that involves an imbalance of power.

01 October 2016

Book Review: Creative Interventions with Traumatized Children

Title: Creative Interventions with Traumatized Children
Author: Cathy A. Malchiodi
Publisher: The Guilford Press (New York)
Audience: Therapists, Counsellors, Psychotherapists, Social Workers
Subject: Creative therapeutic interventions when working with traumatized children.
Summary: Malchiodi did not write the book, instead she worked with 15 contributors to compile this book. After establishing the theory, the book is broken into three sections: Interventions with Individuals, Interventions with Families and Groups; lastly, Intervention as Prevention. For me this isn't a book that I recommened to read cover to cover. It is more of a book that you pick up and find the chapter that fits your current needs. It helps to think outside of the box for interventions. I own the first edition, but there is a second edition.
Score: 8/10 - This is a must own for clinicians working with traumatized children.
Amazon: $43.62

24 September 2016

Book Review: What's The Big Deal About Pornography? A guide for the internet generation

Title: What's The Big Deal About Pornography? A guide for the internet generation
Author: Jill C. Manning, PhD
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
Audience: Teenagers, Young Adults, Parents of Teens and Young Adults
Subject: Pornogaphy use
Summary: Manning defines what pornography is and than it's impact on the brain, and than the inlfuence on intimate relationships. The highlight (for me) is the comparison to a Friends episode where two main male characters have their perceptions changed on how a pizza delivery woman should interact with them after watching pornography. There are tools and recommendations for parents on how to talk to their teens about pornography and how to safe gaurd against it.
Score: 9/10
Amazon: $12.87 on Kindle

18 September 2016

Warning Signs of Suicide

Suicide is the tenth highest reason for death amongst Canadians, according to Statistics Canada. The highest rate of suicide is amongst Canadian adults aged 40-54, with about 17 suicides per 100,000. 

That number may be a surprise to some, because we focus so much on preventing suicide amongst teenagers. And the focus is understandable; we expect our youths to live long full lives. Suicide is the second cause of death for those aged 15-19, but at a rate of 9, nearly half of our middle-aged Canadians.

While it is important to be aware of the signs of suicide, it is not just applicable to teenagers, but for all Canadians.

The new acronym that Mental Health Clinicians are using as a tool to assess for suicide is: “IS PATH WARM.”

Let’s look at what each letter stands for:

Ideation – Warning signs that are being communicated about the idea of suicide by threating to hurt/take own life, looking for ways to hurt/kill self, or talking or writing about it.

Substance Use – An increase use, or excessive use of drugs and/or alcohol.

Purposelessness – Losing the sense of purpose or reason for living.

Anxiety – The anxiety, or agitation, begins to interfere in daily life, such as being unable to fall or stay asleep.

Trapped – Feeling stuck and that there is no way out.

Hopelessness – A loss of hope for the future

Withdrawal – Withdrawing from friends, family, and usual activities.

Anger – Uncontrollable anger, rage and/or revenge.

Recklessness – Participating in life-risky activities without thinking

Mood Changes – Increased, unexplained dramatic changes in mood.

Discussing suicide is heavy and discouraging. It is important to listen and respond with empathy.

Recently the author of Love Warrior, Glennon Doyle Melton, tackled the topic of suicide with a message of hope: “Pain comes and goes like clouds. Love is the Sun. If you’re struggling right now, tell the monster to shut the hell up and listen to me for a minute: You are loved.

“No matter who you’ve hurt, you deserve forgiveness and you belong to us. There is a place for you here that was created for you before the world began that no one else on Earth can fill.

“You are a child of God and everything you have ever been or are or will become has already been approved. Please, please stay. Stay. First the pain, then the rising. You must stay for the rising.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with suicide, visit suicideprevention.ca to find help or support.

17 September 2016

Book Review: Stand For The Family

Title: Stand For The Family
Author: Sharon Slater
Publisher: Inglestone (Gilbert)
Audience: Advocates for traditional family
Subject: The role and purpose for supporting traditional families
Summary: This is a conservative organizations, Family Watch International (who Slater is the president of), flagship book as they supply evidence and stories for supporting the traditional family while arguing against dismantling it. The book covers a range of highly political and sensitive topics such as motherhood, parental rights, life, gender, and marriage through a right-wing lense.
Score: 6/10
Amazon: $9.99 on Kindle