A Short Story in 30 Tweets

Yesterday was Bell Lets Talk day, which is a campaign hosted by Bell Canada to reduce stigma and raise money for mental health initiatives. It is quite popular (though not without its criticism) and though Bell does need to do a better job of supporting its own people, overall I do think that the campaign does more good than harm. Yesterday I posted a series of numbered tweets with the #BellLetsTalk hashtag in order to do my part for the cause and to make a point about the need for more leadership and commitment from our governments to improve access to mental health care for Ontarians and all Canadians. I've included my tweets below (which when combined resulted in a total donation of a $1.50, thank you very much!). I've edited them into proper paragraphs and removed hashtags and other annoying Twitter trappings.  

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How Do You Use Social Media?

In an age where Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social networking websites hoover up an inordinate amount of our time, people are increasingly questioning the value of these interactions and their impact on our mental health. Many are wondering about their own use of these tools or see a friend or family member glued to their screen and wonder how this type of 'social interaction' might be impacting their mood. 

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Suicide Prevention in Toronto

There has been a lot of discussion about the Toronto Public Health Board’s recent report to city council on suicide prevention. For some, it may be surprising to learn that suicide is the cause of more deaths in Toronto than motor vehicle accidents and homicide (about three and four times as many, respectively). In 2009, this translated to 243 deaths by suicide in Toronto.

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Identifying Depression

There has been a lot of talk lately on some recent research out of Chicago that suggests that depression can be detected using a blood test. More specifically, researchers have published their findings that suggest that certain genetic markers differ between individuals that meet the researchers’ criteria for major depressive disorder and those that do not. Furthermore, they concluded that markers could also help to delineate whether cognitive behavioural therapy would be helpful for a given person, and could potentially be used to help determine whether treatment is working throughout the treatment process.

These findings have been met with mixed reactions.

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