Dietary interventions for bipolar and major depression A modified diet including high omega-3 and low omega-6 fatty acids has shown “exciting” findings in a small study looking at adjunct treatments to control mood swings in bipolar patients. Researchers at Penn State College of Medicine randomized 41 patients, some to receive a high omega-3, low omega-6 diet, and some to receive a control diet of usual US levels of these fatty acids. All were receiving “usual” care for bipolar disorder, anxiety, and/or migraine headaches. The study aimed to investigate interventions that could support pharmacological treatments because these may not give complete mood stability to many patients, especially those with complex situations and multiple comorbidities. Diet changes help control mood swings The ... Read More
After decades of increasing life expectancy, recent years have seen a higher death rate among some groups of Americans, attributed to increases in suicide and drug and alcohol abuse. The causes of these so-called “deaths of despair” are still debated, but may include job loss, economic downgrading, and lack of safety net programs, such as job retraining. A recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry looks at deaths of despair among health workers, a relatively highly educated and well-paid group of professions. One clear finding is that people who reported that they attend a “religious service or meeting” at least once a week may have a lower chance of dying of suicide, drug overdose or cirrhosis of the liver. “Religious participation ... Read More
Mindfulness practices are a staple of non-medication approaches to managing chronic illness and maintaining mental and physical health, but they have sometimes been considered unscientific, unproven, or just not “modern”. However, more and more experience and research is backing up the claims of mindfulness practitioners. A recent study looking a mood homeostasis, or balance, found that people who utilize strategies such as, among others, mindfulness practices are less likely to experience depression.1 Advice about use of mindfulness as part of a healthy life is found in such mainstream sources as Harvard Medical School’s Health Publishing website, and the National Health Service in the U.K., which has an extensive site for individuals seeking information about mental health and well-being. Mindfulness Apps ... Read More
Healthy lifestyle is a matter of establishing healthy habits and breaking unhealthy habits. We can’t make a decision each and every day to have the oatmeal for breakfast instead of donuts. The idea is to get in the habit of reaching for the oatmeal without having to think it through. Especially at this time of year, many people are thinking about making resolutions and carrying through on them, hoping that this time, the old habits can be broken and the new, better habits can take over. But how, really, do habits get set, and how can they be changed? Wendy Wood, a psychology professor at the University of Southern California, has been studying habits and habit forming, and she shares ... Read More
MoodSurfing is dedicated to educating people about healthy ways to live with mental illness and to develop mental and physical wellness. In addition to that, we’d like to foster dialogue among people who share these interests. What works in the battle against mental illness? What helps folks with bipolar live better? What keeps depression at bay and lets one live a fuller, more fulfilling life? Please share your own ideas and responses so that we can all learn from each other. Conversation and exchange are the best ways to learn new skills, not just explaining what the skill is, but sharing with each other how it worked, what you tried and what you realized while trying a new approach to ... Read More
How to develop resilience to face difficult times Resilience is a process that people can learn and activate to help recover from personal or community disaster, trauma or loss. While it has sometimes been described as a trait that some people have and others don’t, it is better understood as a skill, or series of skills, that we can all build or improve upon in times of need. We can learn to increase our own resilience for a better recovery, no matter what our past experience has been. The capacity for resilience is inherent in all people, and it can be promoted and developed in individuals and communities. For example, some would look at a community that has experienced a ... Read More
Welcome to MoodSurfing.com, the site that highlights strategies for living creatively with moods and coping with depression. This site is for people with bipolar, depression, cyclothymia, and others who experience powerful moods and want to figure out how to integrate these experiences into successful lives.
Although most of us are mental health clinicians of one kind or another, this site is not about providing people with medical or clinical advice (see below). We hope that we can help you cope with depression, maybe even allow you to live well with moods.
If you like what you see here, be sure to sign up to get updated with new posts.
We have done a series of interviews with people who have interesting things to say about different aspects of living creatively with moods. You can find those under the heading “Conversations.”
This site is not designed to and does not provide medical advice, professional diagnosis, opinion, treatment or services to you or to any other individual. Through this site and linkages to other sites, Moodsurfing provides general information for educational purposes only. The information provided in this site, or through linkages to other sites, is not a substitute for medical or professional care, and you should not use the information in place of a visit, call consultation or the advice of your physician or other healthcare provider. Moodsurfing is not liable or responsible for any advice, course of treatment, diagnosis or any other information, services or product you obtain through this site.
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Medical information changes constantly. Therefore the information on this site or on the linked websites should not be considered current, complete or exhaustive, nor should you rely on such information to recommend a course of treatment for you or any other individual. Reliance on any information provided on this site or any linked websites is solely at your own risk.
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