The Ethics of Diagnosing President Trump, and Other News

glasses and books in empty studySome mental health professionals have publicly argued that President Donald Trump has a mental health condition. Some armchair diagnosticians have even labeled the president with diagnoses that have little scientific support. Comments on social media often claim Trump is a psychopath or a sociopath, even though these are not mental health conditions listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

A January U.S. News & World Report piece extensively quoted a John D. Gartner, who called Trump a malignant narcissist. Gartner, who previously authored a book on Bill Clinton’s mental health, says malignant narcissism is incurable. While narcissistic personality is listed in the DSM-5, there is no such diagnosis for malignant narcissism.

In response to the flurry of diagnoses, the American Psychiatric Association has urged members to stop diagnosing someone they have neither met nor treated. Analysts are increasingly calling for an end to armchair diagnoses of the president. Such diagnoses violate ethical norms in medicine and mental health. They also further stigmatize mental health conditions.

Those who attempt to diagnose Trump usually do so in response to any behavior they may find negative or unpleasant. By making negative behavior synonymous with mental health issues, armchair diagnosticians may shame people who have mental health conditions.

According to the Goldwater Rule—which was established in the APA’s code of ethics in response to psychiatrists discussing presidential candidate Barry Goldwater’s mental health without evaluating him—it is deemed unethical for psychiatrists to publicly diagnose or give a professional opinion about a public figure’s mental health without official consent.

It’s a Scandal That So Many Mothers With Postnatal Depression Are Abandoned

According to a report from the British Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, 81% of surveyed women experienced at least one symptom of a mental health condition during pregnancy. Just 7% sought treatment for their symptoms. These percentages suggest there is an urgent need to improve access to maternal mental health care, both during and after pregnancy.

‘I am Psyched!’ Tour Shines Light on Black Female Psychologist’s Race Contributions

On February 21, an annual pop-up museum, “I am Psyched: Inspiring Histories, Inspiring Lives: Women of Color in Psychology,” began its tour at Howard University. The multimedia museum highlights the contributions of black women to the field of psychology. It is supported by the American Psychological Association, Howard University, and the National Black Employees Association.

Trump Rescinds Rules on Bathrooms for Transgender Students

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump lifted federal protections for transgender students that granted them access to the bathroom that corresponds with their gender. These protections, which the Obama administration said were in line with nondiscrimination laws, were put into effect last year, but blocked soon after by a nationwide injunction.

B Vitamins May Improve Schizophrenia Symptoms

According to a meta-analysis of previous research, high doses of B-complex vitamins may reduce schizophrenia symptoms when combined with other treatments. Researchers found the vitamins were most effective if taken early on in the development of schizophrenia. However, lower doses of B vitamins were not effective in relieving symptoms.

What ‘This is Us’ Got Right About Panic Attacks—and What You Should Know

About 6 million American adults experience panic attacks in any given year. This week, the network TV series This is Us highlighted the issue, sparking a discussion about what the show did and did not get right about panic attacks and anxiety.

Karen Pence to Raise Awareness About Art Therapy as Second Lady

Karen Pence, a former teacher with a master’s degree in art education, plans to use her high-profile role as the United States second lady to advocate for art therapy. Art therapy uses various creative media to help participants explore and express their emotions. Children who struggle to verbalize their feelings often like the approach, but adults can benefit from art therapy as well.

How a True-Crime Podcast Became a Mental-Health Support Group

My Favorite Murder, a popular true-crime podcast, may also serve as a support system for those with mental health issues. The show’s 100,000+ Facebook fans often follow the open communication style of the podcast and discuss their own mental health issues with other fans. Some show followers say the show helps ease symptoms of anxiety by offering a community of like-minded supporters and encouraging them to seek help.

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  • 6 comments
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  • ADDIE

    ADDIE

    February 24th, 2017 at 10:53 AM

    I don’t care, I’m not a professional, and the new president is not sane

  • Liz

    Liz

    February 26th, 2017 at 1:24 PM

    Mothers who experience depression after having a child are so common and yet they are made to feel like they are outcasts because they don’t fit into the societal norm of what others believe they should or should not be feeling. This is a time of so many emotions and few nights of really good sleep. The thing that these mothers could use more than anything would be compassion and tons of love and support.

  • lora

    lora

    February 27th, 2017 at 3:31 PM

    I may not agree with the politics but at least Karen Pence is using her position to promote a worthwhile platform.

  • Max

    Max

    February 28th, 2017 at 2:44 PM

    I have heard such good things about that podcast, so I’m gonna have to check this one out.
    I am always looking for new things to listen to when I work out so hopefully this can be a new one I can start listening to soon.

  • jav

    jav

    June 19th, 2019 at 3:07 AM

    This really really a usefull website, these information helped me a lot of in my jobs. Thank you so much.

  • Jav

    Jav

    June 19th, 2019 at 3:08 AM

    Enough internet for today, lol, you made my day more bright. Thank for this and thank you.

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