“Madhouse Genetics” AND More on Best 5 Friday Reads

Hello and welcome to another edition of Best 5 Reads. Lets begin!

1) Madhouse Genetics

What the archives of mental-health asylums reveal about the history of human heredity and the evolution of genetics.

2) Mental health apps: What to tell patients

Have your patients asked you about smartphone apps? If they haven’t yet, they may soon, as interest in apps for mental health continues to expand. There are now >10,000 mental health–related smartphone apps.1 The rapid rise of these apps is partly due to their potential to transform a patient’s smartphone into a monitoring and therapeutic platform, capable of capturing mental health symptoms in real time and delivering on-the-go therapy. Setting aside questions about the potential of mobile health, 2 urgent questions remain for the busy psychiatrist in clinical practice: What is the current evidence base for mental health apps, and what should you tell your patients about them?

3) Suicide Prevention with Professor Rory O’Connor

Suicide is a complex topic with no easy answers but it affects everyone and the research shows that men are three times as likely to kill themselves as women. We talk about his model of suicidal behaviour, factors that can turn suicidal ideation into action, and interventions that could save a life.

Many people who develop suicidal ideation feel entrapped and defeated with a ‘tunnel vision’. There are eight main factors, ones that I wasn’t taught at medical school, that healthcare professionals can ask about to assess if ideation can turn to action. If you are working in those situations then get to know them – they are a good example of how it can takes 10-15 years or more for research to get into clinical practice. And for everyone, not just those working in healthcare services, there are plenty of thoughts on how we can help ourselves, our family, and our friends and colleagues. Just asking someone if they are suicidal could help that person.

4) ‘I feel I might die any waking moment’: can I escape the grip of PTSD?

Years after a violent attack left me with post-traumatic stress disorder, I needed to calm my racing mind

5) Computerized Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Used Alone Is Safe, Effective, and Well Liked

Does computerized CBT work when it is used alone? Dr Peter Yellowlees discusses promising results from a randomized clinical trial.

Thank you and see you tomorrow for some weekend quotes.

Best Regards,



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