Santa Clara University

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The Faculty-Staff Newsletter, e-mail edition
Santa Clara University, November 1, 2006, Vol. 7, No. 4

Conference focuses on mental disorders of the new millennium

Although many mental health concerns of this century originated ages ago, today’s culture and advances in technology can proliferate and exacerbate conditions in ways that were unavailable in earlier times. “In the past, there were more obstacles to access,” Plante says. “That’s less true today. The Internet gives immediate, constant access to things like pornography, gambling, or violence. And our culture seems to support certain kinds of disorders, like body dysmorphic disorder, people having surgery after surgery to get themselves to look a certain way. It’s not just for celebrities anymore.”

Authors of several of the book’s chapters will sit on thematic panels to discuss issues of the day. “At the end of each presentation, everyone will talk about ‘what now?’ How can we prevent or minimize or treat these conditions? Is there any way to turn this around?” Plante says. “Rarely does somebody ever just ‘snap.’ There’s usually some evidence of risk factors and warning signs. If we’re aware of those, we’re more likely to say, ‘Something is not right here.’ That can be very helpful in preventing something from getting out of control.”

Please visit the conference Web site for more information or to register for the conference.