Did You Know?
Brief therapy reduces drinkingAugust 24, 2020
Alcohol consumption in pregnancy can cause harm. And for those who need support to stop drinking in pregnancy, there are effective interventions. For example, when practitioners delivered a single 25-minute session to pregnant women and their partners, alcohol use was reduced fivefold — from five days a month to one. For more information, see Vol. 5, No. 2 of the Children’s Mental Health Research Quarterly.
Study highlights a strongly underserved populationAugust 17, 2020
Young lives deserve early investmentsAugust 10, 2020
The 1.8 billion youth between the ages of 10 and 24 in the world are being celebrated on Aug. 12, as part of the United Nations’ International Youth Day. On this celebratory occasion, the Children’s Health Policy Centre would like to remind everyone that most mental disorders start in childhood, then persist into adulthood. These include anxiety and behaviour disorders. Given this situation, effective prevention and treatment options need to be offered early in the lifespan — for all children in need. For more information, see Vol. 3, No. 1 of the Children’s Mental Health Research Quarterly.
More practitioners need CBT trainingAugust 3, 2020
Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a highly effective treatment for childhood obsessive-compulsive disorder. This treatment involves gradually exposing children to feared situations while they practise managing their distress. Despite strong research evidence that this treatment is effective, it is still not widely available. More practitioners therefore need to be trained and supported to offer CBT. For more information, see Vol. 1, No. 3 of the Children’s Mental Health Research Quarterly.
Nurses have expertise to deliver program for young momsJuly 26, 2020
It might seem that people such as community workers or peer-support counsellors could deliver Nurse-Family Partnership successfully. But in US studies comparing these kinds of workers with nurses, the results were not as good. In particular, child outcomes did not improve as much as they did with nurses, and more mothers dropped out of the program early. So, the program’s developers concluded that public health nurses are essential for effective delivery.
Family ties prevent substance misuseJuly 20, 2020
Families play a major role in protecting young people from problematic substance use. In particular, children typically use less alcohol and cannabis when parents have strong connections with their children, provide high levels of support and supervision, and encourage meaningful participation in the family. For more information, see Vol. 12, No. 1 of the Children’s Mental Health Research Quarterly. (2018)
Most study participants reported abuse or neglectJuly 13, 2020
More than half of participants in the BC Healthy Connections Project reported experiencing moderate-to-severe neglect, physical abuse, emotional abuse and/or sexual abuse when they were children, at age 16 years or younger. Half (50%) also reported intimate partner violence within the past year.
Medications can help; so would more researchJuly 6, 2020
Many young people are prescribed medications for ADHD, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia — often with good effect. The appropriate medications can help young people to function better at home, at school and in the community. Yet more research is needed on the long-term effects — and side effects — of the psychiatric medications used to treat children, particularly research that is free from drug company involvement. For more information, see Vol. 1, No. 4 of the Children’s Mental Health Research Quarterly.
Most study participants coped with multiple adversitiesJune 29, 2020
Some 89% of participants in the BC Healthy Connections Project had experienced three or more forms of disadvantage, with 77% experiencing four or more and 56% experiencing five or more. These experiences include: parenting at a young age; living on low income; having limited education; preparing for single parenting; experiencing housing instability; having challenges with anxiety or depression; having challenges with substance use; having a history of being maltreated as a child; and experiencing intimate partner violence.
Aid parents in supporting kidsJune 22, 2020
Exposure to intimate partner violence is one of the most common forms of child maltreatment. Recent studies suggest that one of the best ways to help children in this situation is to help the abused caregiver, for example, to obtain safe housing and to learn strategies to address children’s emotional and behavioural challenges. For more information, see Vol. 6, No. 4 of the Children’s Mental Health Research Quarterly.