Improving Deaf people’s access to mental health services

As many as two in three Deaf people in the UK struggle with mental health problems, but most find it too difficult to access psychological therapy.

Guidance for commissioners of primary care mental health services for deaf people from the Joint Commissioning Panel for Mental Health (JCPMH) and Deaf health charity SignHealth, calls for improvement to deaf people’s access to mental health services.

Despite having poorer mental health than the rest of the population, the 60,000 people across the UK who use sign language as their main language often come up against barriers when seeking mental health services.

The guide’s recommendations for commissioners of primary mental health services could make a dramatic change to the mental health of many Deaf people.

Anxiety and panic agarophobia scores in patients with BPPV

Kahraman, S.S. et al. (2017) Acta Oto-Laryngologica. 137(5) pp. 485-489

Objective: Recent studies have shown that people with dizziness report some psychological problems such as panic and agoraphobia and anxiety. The aim of this study was to evaluate anxiety and panic agorophobia levels in patients with benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) on initial presentation and at the follow-up visit and compare the scores with the control group.

Conclusion: Patients with BPPV experienced short but intense anxiety and/or panic disorder, especially at the initial visit, but most patients recovered without medication with successful treatment.

Read the abstract here

Comparison of tinnitus and psychological aspects between the younger and older adult patients

Park, S.Y. et al. (2017) Auris Nasus Larynx. 44(2) pp. 147–151

Objective: To explore the differences in various tinnitus-related features and psychological aspects between the younger and older adult patients with tinnitus.

Conclusion: The older patients seemed to be more receptive to tinnitus. The majority of older tinnitus patients had concomitant hearing loss, and thus hearing rehabilitation should be considered preferentially for tinnitus management in this age group. Subjective tinnitus severity, depressive symptoms, and the stress levels were similar between the younger and older tinnitus patients. Therefore, treatment could be planned based upon the comprehensive understanding of the tinnitus characteristics and psychological aspects in each patient irrespective of age.

Read the full abstract here

Suicidal Ideation Among Patients with Chronic Tinnitus

Fox-Thomas, L. Hearing Journal July 2016. 69(7). pp. 10,11
Image source: Keiichi Yasu – Flickr // CC BY-SA 2.0

While there is limited data indicating no direct relationship between tinnitus and suicide, it is not uncommon to see tinnitus patients reporting suicidal thoughts in clinical practice (Jacobson. J Am Acad Audiol 2001;12:493). This research investigated the prevalence of suicidal ideation in patients with chronic tinnitus. Findings may support development of clinical protocols and additional training in mental health for students and clinicians who are actively working with this potentially vulnerable population.

Read the full article here