Navigation Links
Major impacts of climate change expected on mental health
Date:12/3/2009

Leading mental health researchers are warning that some of the most important health consequences of climate change will be on mental health, yet this issue is unlikely to be given much attention at the UN climate change conference in Copenhagen next week.

Dr Lisa Page and Dr Louise Howard from the Institute of Psychiatry (IoP) at King's College London reviewed a range of recent research by scientists into the potential mental health impacts of climate change.

In an article published in Psychological Medicine online, the two mental health experts conclude that climate change has the potential to have significant negative effects on global mental health. These effects will be felt most by those with pre-existing serious mental illness, but that there is also likely to be an increase in the overall burden of mental disorder worldwide.

The scientists urge for the lack of research into the mechanisms that cause the effects of climate change on mental disorder to be addressed, so that mental health policy makers can plan for the significant impacts of climate change on mental health that are to be expected.

Dr Page, lead author of the article and Clinical Lecturer in Liaison Psychiatry at the IoP, comments: 'Climate change is assuming centre stage with the upcoming UN conference in Copenhagen. While delegates will discuss the effects of climate change and possible responses by the international governments, we fear that the effects of climate change on mental health will be largely ignored, posing a tremendous risk to the mental health of millions of people in the not-too-distant future.'

Dr Page and Dr Howard identified the following ways in which climate change is likely to impact mental health:

  • Natural disasters, such as floods, cyclones and droughts, are predicted to increase as a consequence of climate change. Adverse psychiatric outcomes are well documented in the aftermaths of natural disasters and include post-traumatic stress disorder, major depression and somatoform disorders.

  • The needs of people will chronic mental illness have often been overlooked following disaster in favour of trauma-focused psychological interventions and yet the mentally ill occupy multiply vulnerabilities for increased mortality and morbidity at such times.

  • As global temperatures increase, people with mental illness are particularly vulnerable to heat-related death. Contributing risk factors such as psychotropic medication, pre-existing respiratory and cardiovascular disease and substance misuse, are all highly prevalent in people with serious mental illness. In addition, maladaptive coping mechanisms and poor quality housing are likely to further increase vulnerability, and death by suicide may also increase above a certain temperature threshold.

  • Adverse impacts such as psychological distress, anxiety and traumatic stress resulting from emerging infectious disease outbreaks are also likely to increase if the predicted outbreaks of serious infectious diseases become reality.

  • Coastal change and increased flooding is expected to lead to forced mass migration and displacement, which will undoubtedly lead to more mental illness in affected population.

  • Urbanisation, a phenomenon which will be partially beneficial, for example by increasing opportunities for work and better access to health services, is associated with an increased incidence of schizophrenia in developed countries. In many low- and middle-income countries, mental health provision is already hugely inadequate and is unlikely to be prioritised should further economic collapse occur secondary to climate change.

  • The knowledge of man-made climate change could in itself have adverse effects on individual psychological well-being.


'/>"/>

Contact: Melanie Haberstroh
melanie.haberstroh@kcl.ac.uk
44-020-784-83076
King's College London
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Majority of 2.4 Million U.S. Children With ADHD Not Diagnosed or Consistently Treated, According to New Gold Standard Study by Cincinnati Childrens Researchers
2. Laboratory at UI plays major role in diagnosing cancer
3. Draxis Health selected by Johnson and Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc. for major contract manufacturing relationship
4. DaVita Acquires Majority Stake in HomeChoice Partners, Inc.
5. Major Pharma Clinical Case Studies From Amgen, AstraZeneca, GSK, Intermune, Cephalon Inc, Sunesis Pharmaceuticals and Dartmouth Medical School During Fall Clinical Focused Programs
6. Major grant advances UWs clinical and translational research enterprise
7. Major differences revealed in how local authorities in the UK support disabled people
8. Watson Wyatt Identifies Major Benefit Trends During Open Enrollment Season
9. Worldwide Probiotic Drink, Yakult(R), Launches in Its First Major U.S. Market
10. Ericom Provides Significant Cost-Savings for Major New York City Healthcare Organization
11. Eckert Seamans Announces Major Expansion in Philadelphia, West Chester and Harrisburg
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:9/24/2017)... ... September 25, 2017 , ... The Venetian on Grace ... on October 1st. And, throughout the month of October, the resort will be ... Hurricane Irma and Maria have passed and damage to the Venetian was very minimal ...
(Date:9/24/2017)... ... ... “The Messiah 8 with the 3rd Anti Christ”: a forceful and dynamic narrative ... 3rd Anti Christ” is the creation of published author, Albert Velazquez. , ... life,” Velazquez states, “I always come to the same conclusion: God loves working in ...
(Date:9/23/2017)... ... 23, 2017 , ... A September 5 article ... director of Chicago’s Center for Lifestyle Medicine at Northwestern Medicine. While explaining Dr. ... that the center routinely recommends weight loss surgeries for patients who meet the ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... ... September 22, 2017 , ... On Sunday, September 24, hundreds will gather ... Florence Joyner, still considered the fastest woman of all time. Flo Jo passed ... Joyner, will sing the National Anthem. Mary was a contestant on the 2012 ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... ... September 22, 2017 , ... After a long health ... a new lease on life with assistance from CreditAssociates. CreditAssociates provides debt relief ... with unsecured debt. The senior is one of the satisfied clients who expressed ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/18/2017)... R.I. , Sept. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... the fields of bioinformatics and immune engineering, ... a protective avian influenza A (H7N9) vaccine. ... distantly related to seasonal influenza and presents ... rely on prior exposure to be effective. ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... , Sept. 12, 2017  ValGenesis Inc., the ... (VLMS), is pleased to announce the appointment of ... of its Board of Directors and Chairman of ... enables life science companies to manage their entire ... of paper in this process. Furthermore, ValGenesis VLMS ...
(Date:9/7/2017)... 7, 2017  Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: ... streamline operations to more efficiently focus resources on ... structure. Global workforce reductions, including those from a ... impact approximately 3,500 positions. With ... savings of approximately $500 million that will begin ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: