These websites are great starting points if you’re looking for a broad range of reliable mental health information.
These popular consumer sites aggregate a variety of mental health information, including news, articles, blogs, opinion pieces and more. Both have a large community of users. While neither is a good source for objective medical advice, many people who wish to engage in conversations about mental health find them to be helpful.
There is an abundance of information that practitioners need to be aware of when approaching each mental illness. Psychiatrists David Goldbloom and Jon Davine compiled all the essential information into a handbook to help family doctors provide the best evidence-based care for their patients with mental illness. The result was Psychiatry in Primary Care: A Concise Canadian Pocket Guide. This is the online version of much of this information.
It includes practical information about each illness, including approaches to diagnosis, screening tools, treatment recommendations with links to full clinical guidelines, information on individual treatments, and many additional resources.
This website, by psychiatrist Heather Ashton, is a fantastic resource on benzodiazepines and in particular benzo addiction. If you’ve been unable to wean off benzos, her site contains detailed information and protocols for how to properly wean off them and limit withdrawal.
Canadian psychiatrist Annick Vincent has created a great resource for a wide range of information on ADHD (available in French and English).
Your doctors and your pharmacist should be your primary sources of information on medications, as they can take into account your unique health profile. For less personalized information, there are good sources available. In particular, both of these consumer-oriented sites contain detailed information on most medications (and many natural supplements). That includes approved and off-label uses, dosages, how often different side effects occur, warnings about potential serious consequences.
Both also include tools to identify potential medication (sometimes called “drug-drug”) interactions, which can be useful when considering adding a new medication or supplement to your existing regimen. Potential interactions, no matter the severity, need to be interpreted by your doctor, taking into account your overall health history, current symptoms, and previous treatment responses. Don’t entirely rule-out any medication based only on a potential interaction flagged by a site like this.
If you’ve got a good understanding of neuroscience and are really interested in psychopharmacology, the books by Stephen Stahl are an invaluable resource for prescribers. They’re also available in their entirety online, though an annual subscription fee applies.
You learned about Google Scholar in the Paging Dr. Google chapter of the book. Unlike regular Google web search, it searches articles published in academic journals, conferences, and similar publications, including much of the PubMed database of biomedical literature. Full-text copies of many items are available online, with citations and abstracts for the rest. For each item, you can find out what earlier items it refers to, as well as what later items refer to it. This helps you get a sense of the context and importance of them item you’re looking at.
If you’re after a high-quality and reliable examination of clinical evidence needed to make important decisions, Cochrane is the place to start. They’ve analyzed all the relevant research, methodologies and results, to provide you with a concise summary. Its strength is that recommendations are only made if sufficiently high-quality evidence supports them. This can be subtly nuanced. Remember too the oft-quoted aphorism “the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.”Lies, Damn Lies and Evidence, the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine can help you explore further.