What is purpose in life? It means having a central, organizing life aim, an overall sense of direction in one's life, and a belief that one’s life activities are valuable and important — making a positive mark on the world. Research indicates that having a purpose in life is good for mental health. For example, having greater purpose in life was significantly associated with lower levels of depression and anxiety.
This is how Former First Lady of the United States Rosalynn Carter opened her remarks to the American Psychiatric Association (APA) on May 16, 1979. Nearly 45 years later, it might seem odd to younger generations that mental health was ever treated as a taboo topic. For many, COVID-19 accelerated an irreversible transition to speaking openly about mental health and substance use disorders – but historically, the topic has been treated quite differently by the press, in the workplace, and by legislators.
- By John A. Fromson, M.D.
Holiday-related alcohol consumption is a widespread cultural phenomenon with peaks during celebratory seasons. According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), there is a noticeable increase in alcohol consumption during holidays, such as Christmas and New Year's. The allure of festive drinks and social gatherings often leads to more frequent and heavier drinking.
Mild cognitive impairment is a common condition in older adults, but a recent survey finds that a large majority of Americans know little or nothing about it.
- By Umar Latif, M.D., FAPA
As a psychiatrist and a proud supporter of those who have served our nation, over the last 15 years I have had the privilege to develop and oversee programs nationally that increase access to psychiatric care for active-duty service members and veterans. In this role, I have come to believe strongly in the need to increase cultural competence for civilian healthcare professionals who provide care to service members, veterans, their families and caregivers.