Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Concise Review

Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Epidemiology, Causes and Diagnosis This is the first in a series of blog posts on ADHD. In it I concisely review the epidemiology, causes and diagnosis of this condition. Future blog posts will review the effectiveness and … Continue reading

Mixed Findings on Acupuncture for Smoking, Addiction and Insomnia

Acupuncture is not effective for smoking cessation Acupuncture is widely used to treat individuals who wish to stop smoking however findings of most controlled trials on acupuncture for smoking cessation have been negative or equivocal. Three meta-analyses of sham-controlled studies … Continue reading

Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) for Depressed Mood

Introduction Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) also called microcurrent electrical stimulation or cranioelectrotherapy stimulation (CES), is a technique that applies extremely weak electrical current to the head and neck to treat mental health problems. In a recent blog post I … Continue reading

Acupuncture in Mental Health Care: A Concise Review

Challenges in acupuncture research Acupuncture is widely used in Asian and Western countries to treat diverse mental health problems. Evaluating the clinical efficacy of acupuncture in depressed mood and other mental health problems poses many methodological challenges because of differences … Continue reading

Energetic Therapies in Mental Health Care

Energetic Therapies in Mental Health Care: A Short Introduction This blog post is intended as a short introduction to diverse ‘energetic’ therapies and their uses in mental health care. Future posts will review the evidence for individual energetic therapies in … Continue reading

Cranioelectrotherapy Stimulation (CES): An Emerging Therapy in Mental Health Care

How cranioelectrotherapy stimulation works Cranioelectrotherapy stimulation (CES) also called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) or microcurrent electrical stimulation, is based on the application of extremely weak electrical current to the head and neck to treat anxiety, depressed mood, insomnia, and … Continue reading

Regular exercise is beneficial for depressed mood and anxiety and reduces risk of dementia

How exercise works to improve depressed mood Many studies show that infrequent physical activity increases the risk of developing depressed mood. Physical exercise increases the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and may enhance neural plasticity and new synapse formation. … Continue reading

DHEA improves depressed mood but not symptoms of cognitive impairment or schizophrenia

What it is and how it works in the brain Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is a precursor of testosterone and other hormones. The sulfated form of DHEA—DHEA-S—is the most abundant steroid in the body. DHEA is an important neuroactive steroid and modulates … Continue reading

Huperzine: A Chinese Herbal for Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and Dementia

What it is and how it works Huperzine-A is an alkaloid compound derived from the herb Huperzia serrata and is an ingredient of herbal formulas used in Chinese medicine to treat Alzheimer disease and age-related cognitive decline. Animal studies show … Continue reading

Virtual Reality Graded Exposure Therapy (VRGET) for PTSD and Phobias

Virtual Reality Graded Exposure Therapy (VRGET)–What it is and how it works VRGET is a technology-based exposure therapy with important implications for the management of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as severe phobias that are difficult to treat using … Continue reading