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Mental Health Archive
Is online gambling harming you?
Online gambling is a popular and growing business, but for millions of Americans, what begins as occasional fun can lead to devastating problems. Trouble with gambling often builds gradually and severe gambling problems share risk factors with substance-related disorders.
For mellow movement that helps your heart, try tai chi
Tai chi is a gentle, adaptable practice that features flowing movements combined with breathing and cognitive focus. It may be especially helpful for people who are recovering from a heart attack or other medical problems or who have heart failure. Tai chi also can be a gateway to other types of physical activity because the practice may improve balance, reduce the risk of falls, and even help ease lower back pain—a common reason for avoiding exercise.
Lending a helping hand
People who devote time to helping others are often happier than those who don't. Serving others also helps brain health by increasing social connections, which can protect against loneliness and depression, and improving executive function skills like planning, attention, and remembering tasks. Common ways to help others include volunteering, mentoring, random acts of kindness, and seeing life from another person's perspective.
Can you feel younger than your age?
Research has found that people with more positive attitudes about growing old tend to live longer than those with negative thoughts about aging. They also have a lower risk for diabetes, stroke, cancer, and heart disease and better cognitive functioning. People can maintain a healthy mindset about aging by adopting certain lifestyle habits, such as reducing anxiety, finding purpose in life, seeking challenges, socializing more, and rejecting negative stereotypes about aging.
Steps to spot the signs of hoarding
Hoarding disorder is a mental health condition characterized by an inability to discard certain belongings to the point of unhealthy accumulation. While the types of hoarded items vary and might be useless to others—old clothes, boxes, papers, junk mail, or even spoiled food or garbage—the person hoarding the items is convinced they'll be needed one day. The mere idea of parting with them is extremely distressing. In time, stuff fills the home in mounds of disorganized clutter that jams rooms and hallways and threatens safety. Beyond clutter, signs of hoarding disorder include impaired behavior, such as social isolation, sleep loss, or indecision.
Talk therapy for depression may help lower heart disease risk
For people with depression, successful treatment with talk therapy may lower the risk for heart disease, perhaps by helping them adopt healthier habits, according to a 2023 study.
Bonds that transcend age
Intergenerational friendships typically involve an older adult and someone who's 15, 20, or more years younger. Studies suggest people can benefit physically and psychologically from such friendships. Friends of diverse ages can expose people to different experiences, attitudes, and approaches. To create intergenerational friendships, people can use a shared workplace or activity as a springboard for deeper connection. They should show genuine interest in the other person's life and experiences.
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