Mental Health Crisis Reviews

Anxiety and Depression on the Rise: ISBN: 978-1-6782-0274-3 / eBook: 978-1-6782-0275-0
Drug Overdoses on the Rise: ISBN: 978-1-6782-0276-7 / eBook: 978-1-6782-0277-4
Eating Disorders on the Rise: ISBN: 978-1-6782-0278-1 / eBook: 978-1-6782-0279-8
Teen Suicide on the Rise: ISBN: 978-1-6782-0280-4 / eBook: 978-1-6782-0281-1
PA School Librarian Association, September 8, 2023

Note: This review is for the titles Eating Disorders and Teen Suicide. This series seeks to shed light on how mental health issues among teens have increased since the pandemic and relate ways to help teenagers facing these issues. Eating Disorders on the Rise first identifies ‘the big three’ eating disorders as anorexia, bulimia, and binge eating. It also describes less common disorders such as orthorexia (‘clean’ or ‘pure’ eating) and avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder. A chapter is devoted to how the social isolation of the pandemic led to increased levels of eating disorders and clarifies problems faced by men and the LGBTQ+ community. Distorted body image, trying to excel in sports, and social media pressure are factors known to harm teenagers. Treatment aids offered include hospitalization and residential care, medication, counseling, and various types of therapy, and all are respected, since eating disorders often persist for a lifetime. Teen Suicide on the Rise shines a spotlight on social media as a risk factor for teen girls, the impact of the pandemic on teen mental health, and LGBTQ+ teens at risk. A chapter is devoted to the impact of suicide on survivors (grief, regret, guilt, and suicidal tendencies) and a final chapter offers treatment options. The stories shared are compelling and the advice to all who work with youth is “talk about suicide and let young people know you care.” A new tool, the Columbia-Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) aka the Columbia Protocol, is under study and appears to identify needs well. Various apps are mentioned as useful for teens, such as the Virtual Hope Box, notOK, and BetterHelp.
THOUGHTS: The books in this series will help teens to understand these issues and gain help for themselves or friends when needed.