Risk Assessment

In my professional role I have had to assess the risk of suicide for over twenty years. A holistic understanding of the young person is required in terms of their personal life, education progress and life at home, in addtion to the features of depression and anxiety disorders. In the forensic setting there is additiona emphasis on the risk a young person might posse to others in terms of offending behaviours.



On phrenology and neurobollocks

Recently I was reading a blog entitled www. wiring the brain.com by Professor Kevin Mitchell of Trinity College, Dublin.

In the Victorian era the study of the skull contours was linked to theories of the emotional life and character of that person, giving way to a language of understanding the mind.

After Freud there was a great expansion in our language in understanding the mind in the modern age in relation to the great social and technological changes.

Back to School

In the United Kingdom all children are back in school after about six months absence during the Coronavirus pandemic. It is good to see that children and teachers are back. In the last few months there have been concerns of young people getting more stressed and being more susceptible to depression.

Education is the gateway to our future in an uncertain world. However we need to learn and develop our skills in order to go out into the world and meet its challenges.

Our children, families and society need to have hope for a good future.

The Crippling Nature of Anxiety and the Danger of Anger

We have all been under pressure during the Coronavirus pandemic that causes the potentially fatal disease covid-19.

Just under 1 million people have died from this disease and we hear of a resurgence of the virus within different national populations. The disruption to life around the world has been profound, with the impact of bereavements, poverty, economic hardship, people not being able to work in certain sectors like the airline industry and children not being able to go to school for several months.

The Suicidal Context for Families

After a person has committed suicide, everything stops. We can no longer see them and our relationship with their relatives transforms somewhat. We share their pain and suffering, which they carry on long after the coroner's inquest into their lives.

Relatives will feel anger and sadness, which never seems to end. They have to face life without their lives one, often not knowing what they left. Other family members and friends may find this loss is too much.

There is always hope and there is always a way back in life, even in this present age.

Surviving Coronavirus and the impact on working with Young People

After about four and half months of working as a Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist I have relocated my home office at work, In the last few months we have had to set up home offices and work remotely during the viral pandemic. Although the Health Secretary in the UK stated last weeek that GPs should resort exclusively to video consultations, I disagree. 

COVID-19 and Youth Depression

In December 2019 the infection of SARS-Cov-2 , transmitted from bats and pangolins to man in Wuhan, China, was accounting for sickness. This illness had presented with fever and cough and then after 7-21 days with a severe illness affecting the lungs and breathing characterised by the cytokine storm, in which the body's response to inflammation causes a sudden, further decline in the patient's condition.

Designing a good clinical study of Depression

In practice less than half of young people affected by severe depression in the the UK get seen and most of these young people have to wait  few months for therapy. This not an acceptable situation.

Neuro-imaging cannot reveal a characteristic representation of the depressed brain for all young people with depression. Although the diagnosis of depression can be made clinically there are other factors at play within the individual like the presence of other physical or mental health problems and adverse or challenging social circumstances.