by Michael D. Anestis, M.S. (until Saturday)
Hey folks. PBB is obviously still in a bit of a holding pattern here as we have a lot of other work that we need to attend to as we settle in up north. That being said, here are a couple of interesting links I thought you might want to read and discuss.
This first link is from the New York Times and discusses some outcomes associated with 9/11 and some of the intervention efforts of folks within the field (based upon a series of articles about to be published in American Psychologist). The main point of the article is that some things that happened after the attacks were unexpected. For instance, many individuals exposed to trauma did not develop any discernable mental illness. Secondly, folks who were asked to speak about their trauma experienced worse outcomes. The thing is...neither of those things are unexpected to individuals who are up to date in scientific literature. There is plenty of research demonstrating the resiliance of individuals exposed to trauma, both with respect to children and adults. Additionally, there is plenty of research demonstrating that Critical Incident Stress Debriefing (CISD) - a formerly (and sadly to some extent still) common treatment that involves having individuals immediately discuss their trauma in detail after exposure to the event - is iatrogenic, and actually increases the likelihood of individuals developing PTSD. All this being said, some fantastic folks are quoted in the article and they do provide some useful information. Additionally, to be fair, the data on CISD in 2001 was not anything near what it is today, so things were quite a bit more surprising then than they are now. It's a good read for sure.
This second link is from ESPN. Brandon Marshall, a prolific wide receiver in the NFL who currently plays for the Miami Dolphins revealed recently that he has been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) and that he received treatment at McLean Hospital, a phenomenal treatment center that has been associated with some of the biggest names in BPD treatment. It's fantastic not only to see a celebrity who sought treatment from the right place providing a hopeful story, but particularly to see a male discussing BPD, as men and women actually exhibit similar rates of the disorder despite the tendency for many to associate it only with women. Interesting stuff and a courageous decision by Mr.Marshall.
To learn more about these or other topics discussed on PBB, we recommend that you consult our online store for scientifically-based psychological resources.
Mike Anestis completed his doctoral training in clincial psychology at Florida State University and will graduate with his Ph.D. in early August 2011. He is an incoming post-doctoral fellow with the Military Suicide Research Consortium.