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Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide, Kay Redfield Jamison, Ph.D., New York: Knopf, 1999. (Hardback, 432 pages, $26.00)
As many readers know, Kay Redfield Jamison, Ph.D. is a gifted writer as well as a prominent scientist, professor, and clinician. She has a deep understanding — both professional and personal — of mood disorders and how lethal they can be. Years ago, like many people who suffer terribly from these illnesses, Dr. Jamison attempted suicide. Now she has written a landmark book, Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide, intended for lay readers as well as for health-care professionals and policymakers.
The book has received significant praise from reviewers. The Baltimore Sun wrote, "Jamison's excellent book is essential reading for all health care providers, for patients and families of those suffering from mental illnesses and for anyone trying to comprehend a relative's or friend's suicide." The New York Times described Night Falls Fast as "at once the most relentless and the most sympathetic book [Jamison] has produced, written with an edifying urgency that surpasses her previous volumes." Paul L. Wachtel of the Washington Post wrote, "Kay Redfield Jamison brings us face to face with the suicidal mind in a manner so intense and penetrating that, paradoxically, the immersion in despair she offers is a source of great pleasure."
Night Falls Fast is divided into four sections, each with several chapters. The first section gives background information, covering the history of suicide, certain considerations in research, and the magnitude of the problem. The next section discusses the psychological disease patterns that underlie suicide attempts, the methods used, and the places where they occur. The third section treats the biology of suicide [including genetic and neurological factors], giving clear, recent information about neurotransmitters [brain messenger chemicals], neurons [nerve cells], synapses [gaps between neurons, across which neurotransmitters carry information], and antidepressants, for example. The last section concerns the prevention of suicide and the effects of suicide on the people left behind. The sections end with related essays such as the one about the explorer Meriwether Lewis, who had a familial and personal history of depression and who apparently committed suicide (after several previous attempts.)
In a way too rarely seen in print, Dr. Jamison's skilled and heartfelt writing gives life to potentially dry information about the rates of suicide, attempted suicide, and "copycat" suicide among young people in America. Keeping these tragedies out of the public eye or minimizing their emotional impact does nothing to prevent them. Dr. Jamison's frank discussion of her bipolar disorder, near-fatal suicide attempt, and longstanding successful treatment may — especially in light of her remarkable accomplishments — inspire people considering suicide to wait and to seek appropriate help.
Dr. Jamison gives us a wake-up call to a gram reality: suicide is widespread and could touch any one of us at any time. But despite its subject, Night Falls Fast is a powerful, beautifully crafted book that will both inform and transform its readers.
by Louise Riemer
DRADA Book Committee.
Smooth Sailing: Winter 2000
Note: Barbara Pilvin and David Seaman contributed to this review.
You can order the book Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide from DRADA at a reduced price.
President of Organization Guidance Group, LLC (OGG)
Mr. Rumbarger’s professional path has spanned almost forty (40) years of continuous employment in association management and includes service as chief executive of state, national and international organizations.
Before founding Organization Guidance Group (OGG), Chuck founded and subsequently sold Association Executives Resource Group, Inc. and Association Management Group, Inc., both leading firms in their fields.
Seven times requalified as a Certified Association Executive, Chuck has served or consulted with more than one thousand non-profit organizations.
Elected by his peers as chief elected officer of the Greater Washington Society of Association Executives and the American Society of Association Executives Foundation, he has received his professions highest recognition, ASAE’s Key Award and he is one of only nine (9) individuals ever to have a Foundation Fund created in his name.
Now giving half of his time to organizations serving children and the association management profession without compensation, Chuck continues to work with a wide variety of non-profit organizations world wide.
Chuck’s current consulting and teaching includes:
…..and much more.
Born in Pennsylvania, schooled in Ohio, Chuck is a graduate of Miami University (Ohio), an Air Force veteran and an avid outdoorsman, living in Potomac, Maryland with his school sweetheart, Phyllis (Maurer) Rumbarger.
RECENT FINDINGS IN THE GENETICS OF BIPOLAR DISORDER, A report on a presentation 1 given by J. Raymond DePaulo, Jr., M.D., 2 Smooth Sailing, Spring 1996
In the attempt to locate a gene or genes for bipolar disorder, chromosome 18 has become a focus for researchers. A study implicating chromosome 18 by Dr. Wade Berrettini and his collaborators at Jefferson Medical School and the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) has attracted researchers to replicate his findings. Several research groups have had equivocal results with chromosome 18, most of which remain unpublished.
On the other hand, a newly published collaborative study by Colin Stine and a group of other investigators from Johns Hopkins, Stanford University, and the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory not only supports the contention that a gene for bipolar disorder is located on chromosome 18, but also demonstrates a difference in the transmission of the illness from mothers versus fathers. Working with families in which several members have bipolar disorder, the Johns Hopkins group found no evidence of linkage to chromosome 18 in families with apparent maternal transmission and solid evidence of linkage to chromosome 18 in families with apparent paternal transmission.
This separation of families by "parent of origin" was suggested by an earlier article by Dr. Francis J. McMahon and colleagues, from the Johns Hopkins group. In the families they studied, maternal transmission was more common than paternal transmission, so Dr. McMahon encouraged researchers to look for a different mechanism of inheritance. Dr. Elliott Gershon and the collaborators from the NIMH/Jefferson study have now reevaluated the findings for the families in which linkage to chromosome 18 was first reported. They found more transmission through mothers than through fathers, and there was no evidence of linkage to chromosome 18 in the families with only maternal transmission.
This further analysis of data has substantially strengthened their statistical evidence for linkage to chromosome 18. Thus, we now have a confirmed report about the location of a gene for bipolar disorder. Although the evidence suggests that the gene (or genes) on chromosome 18 may be of major importance, its (or their) precise location still needs to be determined. Also, the parent-of-origin difference in transmission encourages additional study to find the mechanism of inheritance operating in most families affected by bipolar disorder, where transmission is predominantly or exclusively maternal.
These new findings are important because they establish that genetic studies in psychiatry are reproducible. Unfortunately for patients and family members, no blood test nor genetically inspired treatment for bipolar disorder is yet on the horizon. Further studies are needed to narrow the region of linkage so that gene isolation will be feasible.
Reference provided by Dr. DePaulo
Stine OC, Xu J, Koskela R, McMahon FJ, Gschwend M, Friddle C, Clark CD, McInnis MG, Simpson SG, Breschel TS, Vishio E, Riskin K, Feilotter H, Chen E, Shen S, Folstein S, Myers DA, Botstein D, Marr TG, DePaulo JR: Evidence for linkage of bipolar disorder to chromosome 18 with a parent-or-origin effect. Am J Hum Genet 57:1384-1394, 1995.
1 Presented at a symposium March 9,1996
2 Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, and Director, Affective Disorders Clinic, Johns Hopkins University School Of Medicine.
by Anne Heasty, M.S.
Smooth Sailing: Spring 1996
For information about the Johns Hopkins genetic study of manic depression: www.med.jhu.edu/bipolar/
JOHN KEATS a report on a presentation 1 by Kay Redfield Jamison, Ph.D., 2 Smooth Sailing, Spring 1995
One of the highlights of each DRADA symposium is a talk by Dr. Kay Redfield Jamison on the interplay between affective disorders and the creative imagination. Dr. Jamison studies the life and work of various creative artists for whom there is evidence of a mood disorder. She is coauthor of Manic-Depressive Illness, perhaps the premier medical text in the field of affective disorders, and author of Touched With Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament. [Both books are available by mail from DRADA.]
At previous symposia, Dr. Jamison has discussed the role of affective disorders in the life and work of authors such as Robert Louis Stevenson and Edgar Allan Poe. Nineteenth-century English poet John Keats was her subject this year, the bicentennial of his birth. Despite his untimely death from tuberculosis at age 25, Keats produced some of the greatest poetry in our language or any other. As seems common among artists with symptoms of manic-depressive illness, he did much of his finest work in a great burst of creative activity (during nine months in 1819).
It is evident from Keats's notes and letters that he was subject to violent mood swings. "I am in that temper," he once wrote, "that if I were under water I would scarcely kick to come to the top." But he fought against his illness: "I shall get over my indolent fits."
Trained as a surgeon, Keats embellished his surgery lecture notes with many impromptu sketches in the margins—evidence of his wide-ranging interests, and also of his mercurial nature. Inability to maintain a steady mood characterized his life; though by this own description he was sometimes "lax, unemployed and unmeridian'd," his doctor once diagnosed him as suffering "the too great excitement of poetry."
Keats had already lost both his father and mother by his early adolescence. Financial problems were never absent; his later years were scarred by his own tubercular illness and by that of his brother. Keats was nurse to his brother during his brother's final illness and death—just as the English artist Severn was nurse to Keats in Rome during Keats's final illness. But however hard Keats found his life, he welcomed its challenges. He believed that "real grievances are dis-placers of passion," and faced his very real problems, his suffering and death, with courage and dignity.
"Difficulties nerve the Spirit of Man," he said; they focus the mind on concerns of life rather than letting it wander to darker thoughts. Keats often sank into a "profound disquiet which he could not or would not explain," in the words of a friend, caused by the "motion of the inland sea he loved so well."
Although Dr. Jamison's annual presentations are (to some lay members of the audience, at least) a welcome break from the scientific presentations at the symposium, during the question period someone asked about the relevance of her line of research: Is there any value in examining the illness of artists, past or present?
In answering, Dr. Jamison suggested that someone with a unitary (and relatively fixed) view of human existence may simply not appreciate how arbitrary a construction is reason itself; that ceaseless change is always at work in the universe; and, finally, that reason alone cannot explain the full range of human experience. If we concede that reason is insufficient, then it follows that other means of under-standing are both necessary and desirable. Perhaps the creative artist can serve as an agent of change by receiving and then transmitting human experience in a special way. If an artist cycles in mood more in a short time than others may in a lifetime, Dr. Jamison said, perhaps the proximity of the highs and lows brings to him or her associations that would not otherwise occur. Perhaps another definition of art might be the expression of compressed awareness.
As Keats said,
For Poesy alone can tell her dreams, With the fine spell of words alone can save Imagination from the sable charm And dumb enchantment. . . . Whether the dream now purposed to rehearse Be poet's or fanatic's will be known When this warm scribe my hand is in the grave.
1 Presented at the DRADA/Johns Hopkins symposium, Baltimore, Maryland, April 1997
What to do If a Friend is Depressed:
A Guide for Students
You know that these school years can be complicated and demanding. Deep down, you are not quite sure of who you are, what you want to be, or whether the choices you make from day to day are the best decisions.
Sometimes the many changes and pressures you are facing threaten to overwhelm you. So, it isn't surprising that from time to time you or one of your friends feels "down" or discouraged.
But what about those times when a friend's activity and outlook on life stay "down" for weeks and begin to affect your relationship? If you know someone like this, your friend might be suffering from depression. As a friend, you can help.
â€¦Find Out More About Depression
What is depression?
Depression is more than the blues or the blahs; it is more than the normal, everyday ups and downs.
When that "down" mood, along with other symptoms, lasts for more than a couple of weeks, the condition may be clinical depression. Clinical depression is a serious health problem that affects the total person. In addition to feelings, it can change behavior, physical health and appearance, academic performance, social activity and the ability to handle everyday decisions and pressures.
What causes clinical depression?
We do not yet know all the causes of depression, but there seem to be biological and emotional factors that may increase the likelihood that an individual will develop a depressive disorder.
Research over the past decade strongly suggests a genetic link to depressive disorders; depression can run in families. Difficult life experiences and certain personal patterns such as difficulty handling stress, low self-esteem, or extreme pessimism about the future can increase the chances of becoming depressed.
How common is it?
Clinical depression is a lot more common than most people think. It will affect more than 19 million Americans this year.
One-fourth of all women and one-eighth of all men will suffer at least one episode or occurrence of depression during their lifetimes. Depression affects people of all ages but is less common for teenagers than for adults. Approximately 3 to 5 percent of the teen population experiences clinical depression every year. That means among 25 friends, 1 could be clinically depressed.
Is it serious?
Depression can be very serious.
It has been linked to poor school performance, truancy, alcohol and drug abuse, running away, and feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness. In the past 25 years, the rate of suicide among teenagers and young adults has increased dramatically. Suicide is often linked to depression.
Are all depressive disorders alike?
There are various forms or types of depression.
Some people experience only one episode of depression in their whole life, but many have several recurrences. Some depressive episodes begin suddenly for no apparent reason, while others can be associated with a life situation or stress. Sometimes people who are depressed cannot perform even the simplest daily activities — like getting out of bed or getting dressed; others go through the motions, but it is clear they are not acting or thinking as usual. Some people suffer from bipolar depression in which their moods cycle between two extremes — from the depths of desperation to frenzied talking or activity or grandiose ideas about their own competence.
Can it be treated?
Yes, depression is treatable. Between 80 and 90 percent of people with depression — even the most serious forms — can be helped.
There are a variety of antidepressant medications and psychotherapies that can be used to treat depressive disorders. Some people with milder forms may do well with psychotherapy alone. People with moderate to severe depression most often benefit from antidepressants. Most do best with combined treatment: medication to gain relatively quick symptom relief and psychotherapy to learn more effective ways to deal with lifeâ€™s problems, including depression.
The most important step toward overcoming depression — and sometimes the most difficult — is asking for help.
Why donâ€™t people get the help they need?
Often people donâ€™t know they are depressed, so they donâ€™t ask for or get the right help. Teenagers and adults share a problem — they often fail to recognize the symptoms of depression in themselves or in other people.
...Be Able To Tell Fact From Fiction
Myths about depression often separate people from the effective treatments now available. Friends need to know the facts. Some of the most common myths are these:
Myth: Itâ€™s normal for teenagers to be moody; Teens donâ€™t suffer from "real" depression.
Fact: Depression can affect people at any age or of any race, ethnic, or economic group.
Myth: Teens who claim to be depressed are weak and just need to pull themselves together. Thereâ€™s nothing anyone else can do to help.
Fact: Depression is not a weakness, but a serious health disorder.
Both young people and adults who are depressed need professional treatment. A trained therapist or counselor can help them learn more positive ways to think about themselves, change behavior, cope with problems, or handle relationships. A physician can prescribe medications to help relieve the symptoms of depression. For many people, a combination of psychotherapy and medication is beneficial.
Myth: Talking about depression only makes it worse.
Fact: Talking through feelings may help a friend recognize the need for professional help. By showing friendship and concern and giving uncritical support, you can encourage your friend to talk to his or her parents or another trusted adult, like a teacher or coach, about getting treatment. If your friend is reluctant to ask for help, you can talk to an adult — thatâ€™s what a real friend will do.
Myth: Telling an adult that a friend might be depressed is betraying a trust. If someone wants help, he or she will get it.
Fact: Depression, which saps energy and self-esteem, interferes with a personâ€™s ability or wish to get help. And many parents may not understand the seriousness of depression or of thoughts of death or suicide. It is an act of true friendship to share your concerns with a school guidance counselor, a favorite teacher, your own parents, or another trusted adult.
...Know the Symptoms
The first step toward defeating depression is to define it. But people who are depressed often have a hard time thinking clearly or recognizing their own symptoms. They may need your help. Check the following to see if a friend or friends have had any of these symptoms persisting longer than two weeks.
Do they express feelings of
Do they seem
Do they complain of
Has their behavior changed suddenly so that
Have they talked about
...Find Someone Who Can Help
If you answered yes to several of the items, a friend may need help. Donâ€™t assume that someone else is taking care of the problem. Negative thinking, inappropriate behavior or physical changes need to be reversed as quickly as possible. Not only does treatment lessen the severity of depression, treatment also may reduce the length of time (duration) your friend is depressed and may prevent additional bouts of depression.
If a friend shows many symptoms of depression, you can listen and encourage him or her to ask a parent or teacher about treatments. If your friend doesnâ€™t seek help quickly, talk to an adult you trust and respect — especially if your friend mentions death or suicide.
There are many places in the community where people with depressive disorders can be diagnosed and treated. Help is available from family doctors, mental health specialists in community mental health centers or private clinics, and from other health professionals.
For Additional Information About Depression Write To:
6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 8184, MSC 9663
Bethesda, MD 20892-9663
For free brochures on depression and its treatment, call: 1-800-421-4211.
For More Information About NIMH
The Office of Communications and Public Liaison carries out educational activities and publishes and distributes research reports, press releases, fact sheets, and publications intended for researchers, health care providers, and the general public. A publications list may be obtained by contacting:
Office of Communications and Public Liaison, NIMH
Information Resources and Inquiries Branch
6001 Executive Blvd., Room 8184, MSC 9663
Bethesda, MD 20892-9663
Mental Health FAX 4U: 301-443-5158
NIMH home page address:
NIH Publication No. 94-3824
Last updated: 11/01/1999
For more detailed information on depression, be sure to visit our Reference Shelf. Supplemental information can be found in our First Person Experiences, Books, and Videos sections.
Return to Information about Depression and Bipolar Disorder (Manic-Depressive illness) in Adolescents
DRADA Board of Directors
Cara S. Kaufman
First Vice President
Barbara Wolff, R.N.
Second Vice President
Terezie Bohrer, MSW, B.S., R.N.
Barbara W. Cahn, Ph.D.
Marion G. Ehrlich, J.D.
David M. Goldstein, M.D.
Mary Jean Herron
Kay Redfield Jamison, Ph.D.
Paramjit Joshi, M.D.
Suzanne F. Luetkemeyer
Joyce S. McCrystle
Francis M. Mondimore, M.D.
Robert M. Paul
Theresa Kollman Potter, Esq. M.Ed.
Glenn R. Schiraldi, Ph.D.
J. Raymond DePaulo, Jr., M.D.
Charles E. (Ted) Peck
Catherine Pollock, Executive Director
Paula Dugas, Administrator
Sallie Mink, Director of Education
Wendy Resnick, Director of Support Services
Elizabeth Likens, Director of Development
Jennifer Ecton, Program Coordinator
Vicki Hoagland, Office Volunteer
Robert Johnston, Office Volunteer
Evelyn McCann, Office Volunteer
Ivy Lazo, Peer Support Intern
Recommended Books on Depression and Bipolar Disorder
The books listed here have been chosen and reviewed by a DRADA Information Committee composed of professionals and volunteers. The book reviews have been printed in DRADA's publication, Smooth Sailing.
Recommended Books Listed in Chronological Order Based on Date of Publication
Depression and Anxiety, The Johns Hopkins White Papers 2005, Karen Swartz, M.D. (ed.). New York: Medletter Associates, 2005. (Paperback, 64 pages, $24.95.) Can be ordered online at www.HopkinsWhitePapers.com or www.HopkinsAfter50.com.
Summary: The 2005 edition of Depression and Anxiety provides updated versions of much of the excellent material of earlier editions, supplemented with reports on recent research findings and discussions of newly addressed topics. This publication is particularly appropriate for the layperson who wants an authoritative summary of the most up-to-date scientific information available.
The Peace of Mind Prescription: An Authoritative Guide to Finding the Most Effective Treatment for Anxiety and Depression, Charney, Dennis S., M.D., and Nemeroff, Charles B., M.D., Ph.D. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 2004. Hardback, 259 pages.
Summary: Thorough description of most major anxiety and mood disorders, their symptoms, causes and treatments. Helps patients ask the right questions and become more active participants in their own care.
Raising a Moody Child: How to Cope with Depression and Bipolar Disorder, Fristad, Mary A., Ph.D., and Arnold, Jill S., Ph.D. New York: Guilford Press, 2004. Hardback, 260 pages.
Summary: A helpful book for parents who have a teen or younger child with emotional or behavioral problems, which provides information on depression or bipolar disorder as it manifests itself in those ages.
Exuberance: The Passion for Life, Jamison, Kay Redfield, Ph.D. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2004. Hardback, 405 pages.
Summary: Kay Jamisonâ€™s exploration into the long neglected emotion of human condition. Exuberance is defined by the author as a â€śmood or temperament of joyfulness, ebullience and high spirits, a state of overflowing energy and delight.â€ť Other books by Kay Jamison reviewed on this site include: An Unquiet Mind, Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide, Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament.
Understanding Depression: What We Know and What You Can Do About It, DePaulo, J. Raymond, Jr., M.D., and Horvitz, Leslie Alan. New York: John Wiley & Sons, 2002. Hardback, 304 pages; also in paperback.
Summary: A comprehensive primer for patients, family members, and others seeking clear and up-to-date information about the illnesses of clinical depression (unipolar depression), and bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness), and related disorders by the Director of the Department of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins. In his interview he attributes the inspiration for the book to a visit to a DRADA support group. He stresses the need to recognize and communicate what is still not known about the illness as well as what is known. The book includes discussion of genetic and hormonal research.
The Years of Silence Are Past: My Fatherâ€™s Life with Bipolar Disorder, Hinshaw, Stephen P. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002. Hardback, 227 pages.
Summary: An accomplished psychologist writes about his memories of his father, a prominent philosopher who suffered from bipolar disorder. Written in an insightful and sympathetic way, this book has been recommended by the reviewer for patients and family members.
Adult Bipolar Disorders: Understanding Your Diagnosis & Getting Help, Waltz, Mitzi. Sebastopol, Calif.: Oâ€™Reilly & Associates, 2002. Paperback, 371 pages.
Summary: This book addresses information on bipolar disorders: definitions, diagnosis, medication, and talk therapies, included are sections on going to college, working, and whether to â€ścome outâ€ť at work, the Americans with Disabilities Act, medical leave (including the Family and Medical Leave Act), and legal and financial planning. Of particular note to readers are chapters on complementary therapies and health care insurance.
The Bipolar Disorder Survival Guide: What You and Your Family Need to Know, Miklowitz, David J. Ph.D. New York: Guilford Press, 2002. Paperback, 322 pages.
Summary: This 322 page guide is designed to help patients with bipolar disorder cope with their illness.
Living Longer DEPRESSION FREE: A Family Guide to Recognizing, Treating, and Preventing Depression in Later Life, Miller, Mark D., M.D., and Reynolds III, Charles F., M.D. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002. Paperback, 184 pages.
Summary: Focuses on depression and bipolar disorders in the older generation. Valuable resource for any older person struggling with a depressive illness, as well as their family, friends, and caregivers.
Adolescent Depression: A Guide for Parents, Mondimore, Francis Mark, M.D. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002. Paperback, 287 pages; also in hardback.
Summary: A comprehensive, clearly written guide for parents and those working with teenagers about the signs and symptoms of clinical depression, how medications work, benefits of talk therapy, and other interventions. Differentiates bewildering moods and behaviors of depressed teenagers from problems incurred as â€śpart of growing up.â€ť
More Than Moody: Recognizing and Treating Adolescent Depression, Koplewicz, Harold S., M.D. New York: G. P. Putnamâ€™s Sons, 2002. Hardback, 303 pages.
Summary: Using case studies, Dr. Koplewicz walks the reader through the various manifestations of adolescent depression detailing symptoms that are not normal and need to be investigated by parents, diagnosis, treatment and response to treatment.
Overcoming Teen Depression: A Guide for Parents, Kaufman, Miriam, B.S.C.N., M.D., FRCP. Buffalo, N.Y.: Firefly Books, 2001. Paperback, 262 pages.
Summary: Gives a comprehensive overview of the depressive illness, emphasizing the medical components. The tone of the book is hopeful, emphasizing the parents can help their teens get better by seeking a diagnosis, finding appropriate treatment and providing support in many ways.
I Am Not Sick, I Donâ€™t Need Help!, Amador, Xavier with Johansen, Anna-Lisa. Peconic, NY: Vida Press, 2000. Paperback, 197 pages.
Summary: Advises a lay person how to communicate and cope with a family member so as to aid and support continuation of treatment. Explains the process of calling the doctor, a mobile crisis team, the police and filing civil commitments.
Night Falls Fast: Understanding Suicide, Jamison, Kay Redfield, Ph.D. New York: Knopf, 1999. Hardback, 432 pages; also in paperback.
Summary: Covers general information about suicide, its history, the psychological patterns that underlie suicide attempts, suicideâ€™s biological component, and suicide prevention. Also includes stories about persons who have attempted or committed suicide.
Electroshock: Restoring the Mind, Fink, Max, M.D. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999. Hardback, 157 pages.
Summary: Thoroughly covers modern electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), dispelling common misconceptions and fears and detailing its benefits.
How You Can Survive when Theyâ€™re Depressed: Living and Coping with Depression Fallout. Sheffield, Anne. New York: Random House, 1999. (Paperback, 306 pages)
Summary: Offers good sensible advice on self-help for those living with a person who has depressive illness.
Bipolar Disorder: A Guide for Patients and Families, Mondimore, Francis Mark, M.D. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1999. Paperback, 277 pages.
Summary: In Bipolar Disorder, Dr. Mondimore has focused on information that patients and families really want and need about the illness more commonly known as manic depression. The comprehensive and authoritative coverage in the 277 page book ranges from brain imaging to practical ways to reduce the risk of relapse.
Personal History, Graham, Katharine. New York: Vintage Books. 1998, Paperback, 642 pages.
Summary: This Pulitzer Prize-winning book is an introspective account of the life of an exceptional woman, former publisher of the Washington Post. The review describes her frank discussion of her husbandâ€™s bipolar illness.
The Perspectives of Psychiatry, McHugh, Paul R., M.D., and Slavney, Phillip R., M.D., 2nd ed. Baltimore, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998. Paperback, 299 pages.
Summary: Dr. McHugh, former chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and Dr. Slavney provide four conceptual approaches to psychiatry illnesses, as described in the review.
An Unquiet Mind, Jamison, Kay Redfield, Ph.D. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1995. Hardback, 224 pages; also in paperback.
Summary: Dr. Jamison, an acclaimed author and educator of scholarly books about depression and bipolar disorder, describes for the first time, her own struggles with bipolar illness. She describes with candor and wit how her bipolar illness shaped her personal and work life. The review includes quotes from the book, describing her feelings of depression.
Undercurrents: A Therapistâ€™s Reckoning with Her Own Depression, Manning, Martha. San Francisc HarperCollins, 1994. Hardback, 197 pages; also in paperback: Undercurrents: A Life Beneath the Surface.
Summary: The author uses episodes from her own personal and professional life to portray the course of her severe depression, including her successful treatment with electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).
Depression: The Mood Disease, Mondimore, Francis Mark, M.D. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1990; revised 1993. Hardback, 256 pages; also in paperback.
Summary: Focuses on scientific knowledge about mood disorders in easy-to-understand style. Illustrates the difficulty and importance of accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Winter Blues: Seasonal Affective Disorder: What It Is and How to Overcome It, Rosenthal, Norman E. M.D. New York: Guilford Publications, Inc., 1993. Paperback, 325 pages.
Summary: This expertâ€™s book is an invaluable resource for seasonal affective disorder (SAD) patients. Covers light treatment, medication, psychotherapy, diet, and exercise.
Touched With Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament, Jamison, Key Redfied, Ph.D. New York: The Free Press, 1993. Hardback, 370 pages; also in paperback.
Summary: Presents evidence for a link between the illness and artistic creativity, featuring quotations from the artists' writings. Also covers biochemical and genetic information. Beautifully written.
Darkness Visible, Styron, William. New York: Random House, 1990. Hardback, 84 pages; also in paperback.
Summary: When this Pulitzer-Prize winning author wrote about his personal experience with depression, this small, powerful book became a national best seller. Speaker at the DRADA/Johns Hopkins Mood Disorders Symposium in 1989 and again in 2002, Styronâ€™s words are chilling, yet hopeful.
The Manual for Mood Disorder Support Groups, Resnick, Wendy Miller, R.N., M.S., C.S. Baltimore: DRADA, 2004. Spiralbound, paperback, 88 pages.
Summary: Comprehensive guide which provides a time-tested framework for developing, facilitation, and maintaining a mutual-help support group. Answers frequently asked questions about starting a group. Deals with problems and offers solutions to difficulties that may arise in many types of group settings.