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  1. At Anshin, we are dedicated to providing you and your family with high-quality healthcare services in a warm and welcoming environment. Our team of experienced and compassionate healthcare professionals is committed to your well-being, ensuring that you receive the best possible care. We believe that good health is the cornerstone of a fulfilling life. Our journey began with a vision to create a healthcare center where compassion, expertise, and innovation converge to provide the best possible care to our community. Our commitment is to be more than just a healthcare provider; we aim to be your healthcare partner. We understand that every individual is unique, and so are their healthcare needs. With this in mind, we strive to offer personalized, patient-centered care that addresses your specific concerns and goals. Our team of dedicated healthcare professionals is the heart of Anshin Health Center. From our experienced physicians to our mental health specialists and support staff, we have assembled a group of individuals who share a common passion for improving lives through healthcare. Our healthcare providers are not only highly qualified but also deeply compassionate. We take the time to listen, understand, and collaborate with you to develop the most effective healthcare plans. Your well-being is our top priority, and we are here to support you every step of the way. At Anshin Health Center, we offer a comprehensive range of healthcare services delivered by a team of dedicated professionals, including physicians, psychologists, and psychiatrists. Our goal is to address your physical and mental health needs with expertise, compassion, and a patient-centered approach. PHYSICIAN SERVICES Our team of experienced physicians is here to provide you with top-notch primary care and specialty medical services, ensuring your overall physical well-being. Our physician services include: Primary Care: Regular check-ups, preventive care, and treatment for common illnesses. Chronic Disease Management: Personalized plans to manage chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension, and asthma. PSYCHOLOGIST SERVICES Our licensed psychologists offer a range of mental health services to help you navigate life's challenges, improve your emotional well-being, and enhance your overall quality of life. Our psychologist services include: Individual Therapy: Confidential one-on-one sessions to address a variety of emotional and psychological concerns. Couples and Family Counseling: Support and guidance for improving relationships and resolving conflicts. Stress and Anxiety Management: Techniques and strategies to cope with stress and anxiety. Depression and Mood Disorders: Assessment and treatment for depression and mood-related issues. PSYCHIATRIST SERVICES Our board-certified psychiatrists specialize in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of mental health conditions. They collaborate closely with our psychologists to provide comprehensive care. Our psychiatrist services include: Psychiatric Evaluation: Thorough assessment to diagnose and determine the most appropriate treatment plan. Medication Management: Prescription and monitoring of psychiatric medications when necessary. Therapeutic Interventions: Psychological therapies, including cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical-behavior therapy (DBT). Mood and Anxiety Disorders: Treatment for conditions like bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and anxiety disorders. Address: 94 Palomino Avenue, Little Seoul Phone: 916-4659 Email: [email protected] Website: www.anshin.com Want to become a member of our team? Apply now at www.gtaw/link/apply-anshin
  2. Whilest this suggestion, yes, is about the economy, it is also majorly a suggestion into the way we all roleplay, I think we need to make our characters human. This suggestion is based on the idea that you need support from scripts in order to have a realistic roleplay environment. Personally, I think failure to actually roleplay eating, or roleplaying eating with just a /me and no food item, are both power gaming moves. The current economy of GTA:W is a strange one, it's a normal, if not very functional and somewhat prosperous economy in comparison to the majority of roleplay servers, however, we can do better. I believe that we can develop this economy to a point where firstly, we will be roleplaying in a much more dynamic and realistic environment. What we need to do, is bring value to labour, implement script systems that support the economy both directly and indirectly. How? I have multiple ideas, and if people actually see that we can actually have a much more realistic economy, and with seeing, actually care and want a better economy we could combine forces and write a sort of list of things that need to be implemented OOCly so that the economy can prosper, IC is a different matter. Our goal as roleplayers is to create and play a character, an entirely different person, an entirely different self. As humans, we have elements of necessity that define us as universally as people. If we look at Maslow's hierarchy of needs, we can see that the foundation of human need, are physiological, food, water, shelter and rest. This is the foundation of mankind, this is the base of what makes you, you. In order for us to really connect with our characters, we need to be with our characters through the regular bullshit that we do in real life, this is not because we need to roleplay 24/7, it's because we need to need in order for any economy to prosper. Suggestion: Supply & Demand Firstly we need to implement a need system, something that I think would work very well is a system similar to the system in the game Scum; Throughout the day, you need to eat and drink, the more you eat, the more you need to shit, the more you drink, the more you need to piss. Kind of like a weight scale. Secondly, we need to implement a working and clear addiction system, from nicotine to fentanyl, there should be a clear addiction process. If you start smoking cigarettes, it might take you a real month to develop an addiction, however, once you have that addiction, it will seriously hinder your day to day if you neglect it. Thirdly, we need to implement a health system, more in-depth than a simple bar, because our health is not based on a simple bar. If you are shot, the health issue isn't the fact you got shot, the health issue is the fact that you now have a hole in your body gushing blood. I think disease is something very important as well, from things like the flu to cancer. When all of these things are in place, food will become a necessity, which means that food production will become a necessity. Considering the population of the player base, there should be limits to the amount we can actually produce unless people want to take the mega capitalist approach and start corporations, which is totally fine and an IC thing, which could be apposed by political regimes suchas communist/socialist movements. There needs to be struggling, there needs to be frustration. You shouldn't play for 2 months and have a million in the bank. For the people who do want to play for 2 weeks and have a million in the bank, then fair enough, but have valid and realistic reasoning for that, not just because it's fun to drive fast cars. And to get there, shouldn't be as easy as it is. DEATH I spoke about this before and no one really agreed with me, so maybe we should come up with a system together that could actually work as a death system. I don't think the PK CK system works, I think there needs to be risk in the day to day that you may very well be CKed, which brings real meaning to your characters life.
  3. Behind the Diagnosis... Schizophrenia Miia Novak, Psy.D Schizophrenia is a scary, daunting word. When we hear it, most people immediately fall onto the assumption of a sufferer having lost their marbles. However, that is not the case. When it comes to schizophrenia, there is a lot of misconceptions about what it truly is. It is a scary and frightening condition in its own right, as it can manifest and develop equally amongst men and women. About 1 in 100 people will have one episode of schizophrenia, with two thirds of these developing further episodes at some point. At least 26 million people worldwide are living with schizophrenia, 2.6 million being Americans, according to the World Health Organization - with many more indirectly affected by it. In this series, I’m going to be divulging into the inner workings of various mental conditions that are very much present in everyday life. We’ll be looking into the mind of those affected by such conditions, as well as the treatments available today with the wonders of modern medicine, therapy and support. We’ll also be debunking the myths and misconceptions behind these disorders, which negatively impact the support people suffering from these conditions get, affecting their path to helping combat their condition, or cause them to not seek support at all. This week, Behind the Diagnosis of Schizophrenia. The Symptoms of Schizophrenia. When it comes to symptoms of schizophrenia, there is actually quite a few. Schizophrenia changes how a person thinks and behaves. The condition may develop slowly. The first signs can be hard to identify as they often develop during the teenage years. With young people, some symptoms can be mistaken for normal adolescent behavior. For example, becoming socially withdrawn and unresponsive or changes in sleeping patterns. Many believe it is just one ‘symptom’ with underlying behaviors. This is simply not true. As a matter of fact, in the world of psychiatry, it is accepted there is actually and called Positive and Negative symptoms of schizophrenia. One might ask, how could there possibly be a positive and negative to such a condition? Well, it basically means what you would see in a normal person, would be considered abnormal. It breaks it down, and groups the symptoms to make it easier to understand the inner workings behind schizophrenia on a simpler level. So, what would these positive and negative symptoms look like? Well, for starters; Hallucinations are positive. Hallucinations are when you see, smell, hear, taste or even feel things that do not exist. The most common being the hearing of voices. For a person experiencing a schizophrenic episode, these hallucinations can and are very real to the person. Even though the people around them can’t hear, or experience the same sensation, the person affected takes it as fact. Psychiatrists and mental health professionals have done research into the hallucination factor. Brain-scanning shows there is a change in the speech area in that sector of our brain to those hearing voices for example. The brain mistakes the thoughts for real voices, as if they truly are hearing voices as fact. Often enough, it is not always experienced as a ‘one on one’ talk so to say - the voices can originate from different places, for example the television or car radio. Some people describe the voices they hear as friendly or even pleasant, however more often they’re rude, critical and abusive to others. Hallucinations like this also factor into the next symptom; Delusions are positive. By definition, a delusion is a belief held with a very strong conviction despite contradicting reality, even if this belief is based on strange or unrealistic views. It can affect the way a person suffering from schizophrenia behaves. Delusions can also begin suddenly, or develop over weeks, months or even years. Schizophrenics may develop a delusion to explain the hallucination they are experiencing. For example, one might describe their actions of hearing voices as someone trying to monitor them, such as the police or media. They may experience a paranoid delusion, one where they believe they are being harassed or persecuted over their choices. May believe they are being followed during their daily life, or being plotted against which often tends to be a family member or friend. Other such delusions might be believing the media, newspapers and TV are relaying and communicating messages to you personally. These delusions are present in a lot of cases of schizophrenia, however many do say it is not as prevalent to them personally, like the extreme cases provided above. Changes in behavior and thoughts This is another ‘positive’ symptom that’s listed. What this means is, a person’s behavior may become more disorganized and unpredictable in what they do. Their appearance may seem unusual to others they come across. People with schizophrenia may also behave inappropriately to their surroundings, they become agitated or shout or swear for no apparent reason. May also believe that their thoughts are not their own, or being controlled by someone else, or even disappearing as if someone removed a certain thought from their mind. Negative symptoms of schizophrenia often appear several years before the first acute episode. Normally psychiatrists and mental health professionals call this the ‘prodromal period’ of schizophrenia. These symptoms usually appear to gradually and slowly get worse as time progresses. This might include the person becoming more socially withdrawn, lose interest in appearance or personal hygiene. However, these symptoms can be very difficult to tell if they are related to the development of schizophrenia, it could possibly be caused by something else. Other symptoms that people living with the condition they said affected them was the likes of losing interest in activities and life itself, like forming relationships. This could also contribute to another condition known as depression which is why it can be hard to tell. Lack of concentration and changes to their sleeping patterns is another. Such symptoms can and do lead to problems with friends and family. It can be mistaken for deliberate rudeness, for instance. The First Episode When dealing with schizophrenia, what often follows at some point in the condition’s lifetime is psychosis. When it’s time comes around, the very first episode of acute psychosis can be extremely difficult to cope with - for the person who is affected with the condition and for their family and friends. It’s frightening for those exposed to it, and can last for several weeks. People often have episodes of schizophrenia when their symptoms are severe. This is acute schizophrenia. They can then go through periods with few or no symptoms. Thoughts can still be confused or muddled. Even when there are no obvious external symptoms. Drastic changes in their behavior can occur, becoming extremely upset, anxious, angry or confused with those around them. They may grow wary and suspicious of friends and family. They may not think they need help, or find it very hard to persuade them to visit a professional. Losing touch with reality is a big symptom in an episode of psychosis. Disturbed thoughts become the forefront of psychosis, they may believe an organization or someone is out to get them. This ties in with the delusions spoken about earlier, however more rampant during an episode. Misconceptions about schizophrenia When it comes to the topic of schizophrenia, there is quite a lot of misinformation regarding it. It’s more misinformed than any other mental health condition out there. A diagnosis of schizophrenia does not mean the person affected has a ‘split personality’ or mean that the person will be calm for one minute, and out of control the next. That is not what schizophrenia as a whole does. It often gets confused with psychopathic tendencies, or bi-polar disorder. Stories, movies and other forms of media often tend to present people with schizophrenia as dangerous and unhinged, even though most people diagnosed with the condition do not commit any violent crimes. Another misconception is that those affected upon who hear voices are dangerous and tell the person to commit a violent crime. This is not the case, in fact the voices are more likely to suggest they harm themselves than someone else and actually do have a choice in what the voices say to them. Another misconception being that schizophrenia only involves delusions and hallucinations. This is incorrect. Psychosis is unusual and frightening, and its popular culture in media so it naturally associates schizophrenia with delusions and hallucinations more than any other symptom. This causes the misinformation with the positive and negative symptoms. Another big myth and misconception is that schizophrenia cannot be treated. Again, untrue. In older movies, or older generations in general, people suffering from the condition were taken away to institutions and left there for the rest of their lives in isolation. This obviously caused the condition to worsen and made people believe it was lost hope. It was often seen as receiving a life sentence in prison. Although it’s true it cannot be cured, it can be successfully treated with rehabilitation, psycho-social therapies and medication. Proper treatment however requires the person to come to terms with the condition, and seek the help they need, Institutions are there to help one another, not lock them away like the olden times. With the proper treatment from said professionals and institutions.. People with schizophrenia can start being themselves again and become completely healthy. Getting Help If you or someone you know and care for, are experiencing the symptoms of schizophrenia - you may wish to contact your GP or reach out to psychiatric professionals who can steer the affected in the right direction. If you do not feel comfortable approaching it that way, speaking to social services or a local community health team can also support you. As you need urgent support, or feel like harming yourself or anyone else for that matter, head to the nearest hospital emergency department, or dial 911. As scary as the condition might sound, getting the help you or someone you know, needs, is the first step to overcoming it. Next week, Behind the Diagnosis will focus on the topic of Borderline Personality Disorder Saints News
  4. The Importance Of Prioritizing Mental Health Miia R. Novak, Psy.D When we work on improving our wellbeing, we often focus on cleaning up our eating habits or getting into shape. However, improving how we think or feel is just as important as working on our bodies, so it's important to start thinking about the different ways we can prioritize our mental health. Everyone says they’d like to take care of their wellbeing, but often forget that their mental health is also an important factor in reaching it. We put such high importance on excellent physical health, so why do we not do the same when it comes to mental health? It’s no secret that there is a stigma against mental health. Sometimes it’s easier to sweep problems under the rug rather than facing them head-on. Sometimes people feel ashamed to speak to someone. In the long run, though, that does nothing but cause more pain. For us to perform at our best, to be the person we want to be, we have to understand that taking care of ourselves mentally is a must. Allowing room in our lives for self-care, relaxation and self-forgiveness means that you can avoid the mental burnout that comes with life and its harshness it can throw at you. In this article, we’re going to explore the different aspects one could and should follow when it comes to their mental health. Tips on how to help prioritize and guide the stressors of everyday life and strengthening your mental health along the way. First and foremost, Accept that it is OK with not being OK. One crucial step towards prioritizing and taking care of your mental health is to understand that it is okay to not be okay. In today’s day and age, we all know how easy it is to have any negative thoughts and feelings shoved to the back of our minds and try to distract ourselves in order not to think about them. We need to realize that it is perfectly okay to feel upset or sad or anxious and that it is perfectly okay to talk about it with someone. No one expects you to be happy at all times; it is certainly unrealistic to even fathom that. We all have bad days. So get the help and finding someone to talk to about it does not mean there is something wrong with you. It is a step that is above and beyond, a huge leap towards making things okay again. Be aware of that little voice inside you; does it work for or against you. An important aspect of taking care of your mental health is to reconsider the way you talk to yourself - your inner voice. Everyone you know, at work, school or the coffee shop all have this voice in their head with which they converse. You talk to yourself nearly all the time. Unfortunately, for some, that voice can be negative. If that voice of yours is the case, it has a very harmful effect on how you process and on your mental health in general. Take for instance if you were to seek out a friend for advice. It would be shocking if your friend turned around and blamed you for all your problems. You’d have none of it. Somehow though, if that voice in your head said so, most find it acceptable. So by merely noticing that little voice, and changing those words to positivity - it can make a massive leap towards improving your mental health. Understand that being able to say ‘No’ can be a good thing. Most stress in life comes from one’s urge to take on tasks they cannot juggle effectively, creating this stressful feeling we’ve all endured at one point in our life. Saying no to something can feel like you’re letting someone down, but that simple word can make a huge difference if you feel like stress is a core problem. Saying no can be especially hard for those who want to help or love to be needed, but in the long run, it is a good way to reduce that stress in your life. Resist the urge to take on someone else’s responsibility. Make time for yourself. There is a significant importance to having ‘me’ time and engaging with it as best you can. You need to take care of yourself if you want to able able to succeed. Self-care is different for everybody. What might work great for someone may not necessarily be the best option for you. Find an activity, exercise, or game that you enjoy and that makes you feel good about yourself. Hopefully, something that provides you with some relaxation and allows you to quiet your mind. Engaging in these activities allows us to remember that life isn’t just about the daily stress and that something as small as doing so will help you in the long run. Don’t allow your schedule to kick out that self-care continuously. Life does happen and has responsibilities but that does not mean we can’t find some time out for the care we deserve. Get some sleep. We all had a moment in our lives where we’d sacrifice sleep to get work done or to spend time socializing with others. However, the lack of sleep can wreak havoc on your mental wellbeing. Research shows that if you do not get a sufficient amount of sleep that it can very well start affecting your mental wellbeing. Getting that sleep is very important. Socialize! Getting together for a few drinks with friends is another great way to strengthen your mental wellbeing. By interacting with friends, co-workers or family, it can affect our way of thinking and direct the ‘voice’ spoken about earlier. Going to the cinema, out to get coffee and food, or just relaxing at home with a few friends makes great strides and not many realize that. Speak to a professional. One of the most important things, however, is to speak to someone whom you can relay anything that you feel is wrong in your life to. Be that a psychologist, like myself, or a councilor at work. They are there to help you through any thoughts you may have on whatever it is that affects your mental wellbeing. They are trained to deal in a variety of scenarios. Do not be afraid of seeking one, there is nothing wrong with reaching out to someone for help when you might need it the most. Do not suffer in silence, speak up when you feel down. It is okay to not be okay. Let yourself be heard. Saints News #ForSaintsBySaints
  5. #WorldMentalHealthDay Suicide Prevention By Miia R. Novak, Psy.D World Mental Health Day takes place today - 10th October and this year’s theme is ‘Suicide Prevention’. Earlier this year, I wrote an article on Suicide Prevention following a devastating incident that took someone’s life (Understanding Suicide) - Today is the day incidents like that are brought to public light, and the measures to stop suicide are talked about.. Today is the day in which people should ‘go loud’, on the topic and make their voices heard. The day provides an opportunity for you to add to the wider conversation that will be occurring on social media, television and elsewhere. Remaining quiet is not the way to go. Talk about it, check in with others and look after one another. You are not alone. Suicide has a prevalent appearance in Los Santos, from friends to family to colleagues, it's likely most of us have lost someone to suicide. In the US, nearly 40,000 people die from suicide every year, being listed as the tenth leading cause of death. In the world, 800,000 lives are taken due to suicide every year. This equates to about one death every 40 seconds. Between 15-29-year-olds, suicide is listed as the second leading cause of death among that demographic. The statistics surrounding suicide as a whole are quite staggering and dangerous. The main thing with suicide is that sufferers may not speak out about what it is they are truly feeling, which makes tackling such an issue harder. If you know someone who is suffering, or if you are suffering with such thoughts yourself - be heard, reach out to someone who will listen and guide you. Psychologists like myself are here to listen, and to give our guidance on the issue at hand. There are many organisations such as the Crisis Text Line, Suicide Prevention/Stop Suicide site and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline who all deal with urgent situations like this. Shine a Light on the topic. If you do feel like there is more going on inside yours, or someone you know’s head - Remember the steps; W - watch out for signs of distress and uncharacteristic behavior A - ask “are you having suicidal thoughts?” I - it will pass – assure your loved one that, with help, their suicidal feelings will pass with time. T - talk to others, encourage the affected to seek help from a GP or health professional.
  6. Mental Health & FaceBrowser How Social Media Affects Us By Miia R. Novak, Psy.D In today’s society, social media has become one of the biggest factors in our lives. Since its debut in the early noughties, it’s been growing exponentially large in its scope and interactions with our daily lives. It makes communication between one another a lot easier. It makes job opportunities more accessible. It does a lot of things, however, it also has a massive downside that gets blind-sighted a lot in general. Usually, when it comes to social media by right it’s designed to be helpful, let you contact friends and family from the comfort of your couch. However, in recent years, it’s become a platform to broadcast negative, angry thoughts instantaneously to masses of people. With social media being just that, said thoughts are archived pretty much for the whole world to see for an indefinite period - often being picked up as fact if echoed enough. Another issue is the cyberbullying and negative consequences that occur alongside the platform that can bring out the worst in someone. Our native social media platform established here in Los Santos is Facebrowser - The platform serving as a means of communication between the people of Los Santos as a whole, and beyond the hills of Blaine County. Following its complete overhaul earlier in the year, the platform has boomed with new users registering since. As it stands right now, the platform has 3660 registered users, with 3622 of those users being active at some point in the last 3 months. On top of that, a staggering 48,000 posts and 44,000 comments have been made since its overhaul. But within these statistics, lies a more dangerous statistic that can, and does cause problems with a lot of these registered users. Some go unnoticed, others speak out about it on the very platform that creates it - that is the effect social media can have on one’s psychological health. The argued benefits and consequences of social media concerning mental health In recent years, there has been a ton of research studies into the connections between mental health and the use of a platform such as Facebrowser. To date, that research has provided varying, mixed results. Listed below are what is argued to be a benefit to one’s mental health, however, also are the consequences. Several studies do emphasize the negative aspects of using a site like Facebrower. They note that there is often an increase in anxiety, depression, ADHD, addiction and eating disorders among users. The Benefits: Social connections and intimacy in this virtual setting, via Direct Messages and IMs - in moderation can reduce depression and anxiety. Social Media/Facebrowser in this case, can be helpful for people who may be suffering from social anxiety, creating social relationships online instead of face-to-face, provided they don’t excessively rely on it and replace offline contact. The connected nature associated with Facebrowser can make people feel less alone, offering a greater satisfaction with their life. Facebrowser does offer support groups for certain groups of people. However, in recent times there has been a debate on certain groups being created that do more harm than good for a person. The Negative Aspects: Cyberbullying increases the risk of depression and social anxiety. It affects all ages. Comparisons between a user and others can cause depression in someone. Envy and jealousy can all factor into this. Social media can cause an increase in ADHD symptoms to those who may have it. Body exposure on Facebrowser and social media, in general, can lead to cases of eating disorders due to the body image disturbance associated with such photos or videos. This has more of an impact on adolescent age groups, but it can affect any gender or age. While it is not technically included as of yet as an addiction on the same level as alcohol or substance abuse, researchers have already coined it as an addiction. Social Media Addiction can cause neurological complications in certain individuals and social problems. This, however, was typically found to only affect excessive use and borderline addiction cases. You mention addiction… But can someone be addicted to Facebrowser/Social Media? As mentioned earlier, Social Media Addiction is not technically noted as such right now, however, it is internationally coined by the mental health community to be as addicting as any other form. Excessive use of a platform like Facebrowser can be quite detrimental to a person’s mental health and their social relationships with others. People who delay or disrupt sleep to engage with people on Facebrowser are not getting the rest and sleep they require. The lack of sleep can result in behavioural changes if done so over some time. Excessive use and time spent on a platform like Facebrowser can also retract an individual from other social interactions or responsibilities. Couples, families, and workplace relationships can suffer when someone might be excessively too focused on social media. It causes complications, disturbances and problems as a person might be too reliant on a platform like it. Detracting themselves from face to face interactions completely, and excessively using the platform can deteriorate relationships elsewhere off the platform creating a lack of meaningful relationships and connections offline. So how does Facebrowser affect us? As with any other social media platform, Facebrowser is designed to invite people to engage with one another. It allows you to stay in touch with friends, or with people you physically cannot keep in touch with. While activities like that may contribute to a sense of connection and wellbeing, certain ways were made evident that cause complex and potentially harmful experiences. Research warns us of the risks relating to cyberbullying and excessive use of Facebrowser, or the pursuit of Facebrowser activities that come to replace or heavily distort a person’s other form of social interaction offline. One such being the pursuit of ‘likes’ or ‘reactions’ a post can receive. For a person who delights themselves in sharing with others on the platform, an absence or a limited number of these ‘likes’ or ‘reactions’ can be discouraging. If the person depends on these likes for validation, or the post is met with negative comments, that person might end up in a depressive or anxious state. Similarly, it can happen with users who make a habit of comparing their posts with another person in terms of popularity. If they didn’t receive it, it might prove ill - making them feel more isolated. The more friends, or likes you have on social media doesn’t equate to being more social with those friends. This is what people perceive but often forget, feeling like the number of friends or likes helps with loneliness or isolation. Facebrowser communication is very limited in terms of what you can see and do on that screen. The lack of non-verbal cues, like gestures and facial expressions that we need to process in face-to-face conversations, are completely absent. This opens a door to where a person can carefully, or not so carefully, craft the image they wish to portray of themselves to the wider platform. Creating a false image of themselves as a person that they portray - can cause reliant on the platform. It may lead to absence in face-to-face conversations offline, as they’d like to keep that image. There’s a lot of factors that can cause issues. The platform can often find itself home to online ‘trolls’ and other factors that tot up the issues. These ‘trolls’ can often cause problems on posts where they post - often making the user feel regret or depressive over posting a certain status, be it an update, a video or a picture. While people say to ‘shrug it off.’ not many people know-how - and take it beyond a message on the screen. Other instances in which it can cause problems on one’s mental state is when it affects a large community as a whole - as seen recently this weekend. One user consistently uploaded photos of individuals, or crowds attending venues - violating their privacy and posted them under the daring status’. These sort of instances affect the mental state of a large community and often can lead to problems like witch-hunts. This, in turn, can often lead people to seek out people they believe to be similar in nature, pointing and calling out someone who has nothing associated with the incident and be dragged into it. This can cause a toll on one’s mental state. So that’s how it can affect us in ways, how do I not get affected? With Social Media pretty much being a stable of everyday life these days, it might feel hard to shake it. But one of the most sought after ways to not get affected would be simply to take a break or close the tab. Make plans with real friends, and head somewhere. Virtual friends do not have the same effect as time with real friends outside the platform. Studies do show and are known to help boost one’s psychological well-being by taking these breaks from platforms like Facebrowser. Moderation is key. But do not rely on it. In instances where you might find yourself requiring an emotional lift, do not seek them from a platform like Facebrowser as a whole. It can often be a bad idea, as you may not know who or what the person who comments back will say or even lack thereof - which can cause that emotion to drop once more. So, if you find yourself sucked into the realm that is Facebrowser, and do not like the path it’s taking your psychological well-being and overall outlook of yourself… do yourself a favour, and close that social’s tab and go hang with friends outside the door, and sip a cup of tea.
  7. Understanding Suicide Examining its Modus Operandi and the Prevention Measures By Miia R. Novak, Psy.D This article may have content that is distressing to some readers. Topics being discussed include suicide. Suicide has a prevalent appearance in Los Santos, from friends to family to colleagues, it's likely we've all met someone who has committed suicide. Following the distressing news that came out last night, it's time to talk about it. In today’s society, there is one very serious problem that exists and lurks in the shadows. It’s a problem that does not often get recognition until it is too late. It’s a problem that is only spoken about when someone falls victim to it. It’s time we openly talk about the very serious impact that suicide has on us, and the mental health challenges that are engrossed with suicide. Suicide is a problem that needs to be tackled before it takes hold of someone. The issue being, it is a topic that is not entirely discussed until an incident happens. It’s a difficult topic for many people to discuss, naturally enough and thus don’t consider it until they know someone close such as a friend or family member is tackling it, or ultimately have attempted it. There are startling statistics behind suicide. In the US, nearly 40,000 people die from suicide every year, being listed as the tenth leading cause of death. In the world, 800,000 lives are taken due to suicide every year. This equates to about one death every 40 seconds. Between 15-29-year-olds, suicide is listed as the second leading cause of death between that age group. Monday, Tuesday and Sunday are the days with the highest number of self-harm incidents, the peak time being midnight. The statistics for the number of cases only grows higher by the year. In my line of work, I often stumble across cases of suicide or suicidal thoughts being discussed in sessions. However, most of the time I deal with such incidents on the scenes and out of office. Working alongside the folks in the Crisis Negotiation Team in the Los Santos Police Department - I’m often asked to assist them in suicidal person cases if it is brought to their attention and is called out - trying to dissuade the person from following through with it. While we try to respond to most those cases, some of them go unheard of until it's too late. Below I’ll discuss the various measures one can take to prevent suicide, and state what it is that causes such feelings to begin with. What are the signs one notice if they felt suicidal? When it comes to what someone would feel if they felt suicidal can differ from one person to the next due to the nature of it depending on certain circumstances. However, listed will be the warning signs in which are most common with suicidal cases; Feeling hopeless. This is one of the main factors to feeling suicidal. Feelings of purposelessness. Anxiety, or agitation. Withdrawal from social interactions, like meeting with friends or attending gatherings. Impulsiveness and recklessness. Severe mood changes; including depression. Feeling of being trapped in one’s mind. Increased use of alcohol or drugs. All these signs can highlight what could eventually develop into suicidal thoughts. As I mentioned in my article about depression; it can often factor in and be a sign of what could be suicidal thoughts. If those are the signs, then where do the suicidal thoughts come from? When it comes to suicidal thoughts, it’s challenging to understand the mindset of an individual who is suffering from suicidal ideation. A lot of people never seriously consider ending their own lives, so understanding that mindset is hard. The most recognized ideation through with suicidal thoughts that is accepted is the ultimate lack of hope and perception engraved in the person’s mind. The individual develops a sort of tunnel vision, believing that their life cannot ever improve from this point on. People suffering from suicidal thoughts, or ideation about it do not know how to seek help. While it’s typical in suicide-related cases that it’s prolonged suffering, it’s important to remember that sufferers are not always merely trying to escape the pain. Most suicidal people believe that there is no good reason to continue. It’s this mindset that drives the ideation to reality. So understanding where suicidal thoughts come from is necessary, if one was to help sufferers move past this dark point in their life. The thoughts can come from anywhere. Stressors are the main ones that can cause a sudden change in thought. As mentioned, it is hard to pinpoint exactly the cause, however, if, in doubt, mental health professionals are there to help understand the causes more clearly. Most people that suggest suicide, or thoughts about it do not want to die. They simply wish for the pain they are experiencing to end. Even in instances where no one could have predicted a suicide, that such thoughts can be changed through encouragement to seek help, talking to someone. Those who talk about suicide may attempt it in the future. So you mustn’t dismiss their thoughts on it. It’s a serious issue. Many people who are lost to suicide had confided in somebody a time before their death. Offering your support or assisting someone to seek help can help save their life. The main thing with suicide is that sufferers may not speak out about what it is they are truly feeling. So if you suspect that there might be more going on with someone; try and understand them. Below is a list of ways to approach a person who might be experiencing such thoughts. I understand where the thoughts come from, so what can I do? The importance of therapy. When it comes to suicide prevention, the best approach to it is to seek help from a mental health professional. Typically when you go about this, there are one or two ways professionals will deal with it. One by targeting the conditions that underlie the person’s thoughts - such as depression for example, or they will target a person’s suicidal ideations directly if possible. Two types of suicide prevention therapy strategies that are used too are Dialectical Behavior Therapy, and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (Which I spoke in greater detail on my Depression article.) - DBT helps the person making changes to their lifestyle to minimize the ideations of suicide. Whereas CBT teaches the prevention skills and encourages the person in pursuing these prevention methods. Aside from seeking professional help, there are strategies you can use if you notice a family member, a friend or even yourself exhibit the signs. They might desperately need your help, so do not ignore them if they express such thoughts. Express to the person that they are not alone. Tell them and explain you are there for them and will continue to be there for them. Do not make them feel like they are alone in their thoughts. Sincerely ask some questions. Don’t bluntly state what is wrong. Explain why you are asking the questions too, don’t make them feel like they are being probed and interrogated over feeling this way. Do not passively explain to the person to just call a prevention hotline for example. Lead them instead. Sincerely suggest resources to them that might help, such as speaking to a professional. Lead them to speaking to a hotline, but do not ask them outright to as they may feel pushed. Help the affected person keep track of appointments if pursuing professional help. Keep them to their schedule, and on the right track even if they don’t feel suicidal anymore. Make sure they know you are there for them throughout it all. I know someone who has spoken of suicide/given the notion of attempting it. What can I do? First and foremost, it is best if you get a list of various hotlines that can help deal with these situations should it escalate. Organisations such as the Crisis Text Line, Suicide Prevention/Stop Suicide site and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline all deal with urgent situations. Specifically, in Los Santos, therapists can be contacted if the person was willing to speak with the professional. Suggesting to see a professional might help diffuse their thoughts on continuing, however, don’t push them into seeking therapy either. Lead them to it. Another approach would be to see if you could convince them to take a screening test. It’ll give them a self-report questionnaire and it can help identify exactly the signs in which are making them feel suicidal. But keep in mind. Warning signs of suicide are not always obvious. Ask, Care, Treat. Ask if they are feeling suicidal, let them know you care and try to get the assistance or Treatment as soon as you can. Their life counts. Remember, suicide is not your fault. Saints News
  8. Short description: Introduce Clinics and Medical Centers as businesses to provide healthcare to Los Santos, the same as any other business such as a clothes store or 24/7. This suggestion was made with Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and Gun Shot Wound (GSWs) in mind which are scripted to be recognised by the server. We could also provide frequent updates to treat for a variety of other medical conditions such as Asthma, Cardiac Arrest...etc. by using a guide of common medical conditions to role-play in GTA World. Check out 'Medical conditions and how to role-play them' by clicking HERE. Detailed description: Clinics and small Medical Centers would be available to players hoping to run a healthcare business. For the time being there should probably only be one or two on the map to encourage customers to use the same business and allow it to grow. Healthcare services The Clinics and Medical Centers would provide the following scripted services: Diagnostics for medical conditions (Such as STDs) Treatment for medical conditions (Such as STDs) Drugs Surgery Dressings and antiseptic Others (This is set by the business owner with help from GTA World staff.) And more... (suggest below) Health insurance Buying a healthcare service If you suspect you have an illness or you've been injured, you can make your own way to the Clinic/Medical Center or call an ambulance from FD (in life threatening emergencies). You must enter a marker inside the medical center to purchase a service from the front desk (other markers will be placed in several Doctor's rooms so that the same services can be purchased there also). The following options on a menu will pop-up: See a Doctor for diagnostics Treatment for your illness Purchase health insurance See a Doctor for diagnostics The script will come back to you after a moment telling you what medical complication you have. If a Doctor's present, you must roleplay going to the Doctor's room for diagnostics. If you are for example on a gurney brought in by an ambulance, the ambulance staff will take you there to be diagnosed and treated already, bypassing front desk. More than one condition could be diagnosed. For example: You have the following Sexually Transmitted Disease: Chlamydia, this must be treated with antibiotics. You have sustained the following Gun Shot Wounds to your; left leg and left arm, these must be treated immediately by going into surgery. You have sustained the following Laceration to your; right arm, this should be treated with dressings and antiseptic to avoid infections. And more... (suggest below) You will then pay a small fee for being diagnosed. If you choose to be treated you will have to purchase treatment. You can also refuse treatment by leaving but you must role-play the consequences if your condition is severe. At any time you can type /diagnosis to see a list of your conditions and their status. (Untreated, treated, cured...etc.) E.g. Chlamydia - Untreated Gun Shot Wound - Treated Treatment for your condition If a Doctor's present, you must roleplay going to the Doctor's room for treatment. If you are for example on a gurney brought in by an ambulance, the ambulance staff will take you there to be treated already, bypassing front desk. You will then select the treatment that's been suggested to you for your condition. For example: Antibotics (E.g. Azithromycin) for your; Chlamydia. Take 4 over a period of 2 days to become cured. Surgery for your; Gun Shot Wounds (GSWs). Dressings and antiseptic for your; Laceration (caused by being stabbed/cut) Other (The business owner would choose what other treatments you can buy with the help of GTA World Staff.) And more... (suggest below) Drugs You can purchase drugs for your inventory that you will have to take in order to cure yourself There's a chance that the drugs may fail and you will have to come back to the medical center to purchase more or different ones The drugs will come in different forms such as tablets, injection...etc. Some are stronger than others. Surgery If you purchase surgery, your controls/commands will be disabled for a few minutes and your camera will be teleported to the surgery room (like the tutorial) with your character in a laying animation, while you undergo treatment. You're able to see the chat during this time so you can see a Doctor's /me and /do, before they then /release you. If no Doctor is present (e.g. they had to quit the game) then it will automatically end after 1 minute. Once released you will be able to move around freely again, with full HP. Dressings and antiseptic You can purchase dressings and antiseptic for your inventory that you can apply by accessing your inventory (you could also roleplay having a Nurse do this). You can stock pile them to have at home so you don't need to visit a Clinic/Medical Center. You will be charged per item of drug you purchase, or for one session of surgery, or for dressings and antiseptic, or for what ever treatment you choose. Prices will vary (dressing/antiseptic for example will be cheap, surgery quite expensive). Purchase health insurance You can also purchase a health insurance package. You will pay health insurance weekly, meaning when you are diagnosed and treated you do not have to pay for the service on the spot (which will cost considerably more than several weeks of insurance payments.) but it will merely be covered for by your insurance. Properties In order for a healthcare service to be bought, customers must go to a Clinic or Medical Center. These can be purchased as businesses. Businesses that choose to purchase a property should roleplay it properly. Large medical centers should be able to provide a variety of services (most will be roleplayed until scripts for further conditions come along), as opposed to small clinics that can only provide limited services. Examples are seen below: Central Los Santos Medical Center A healthcare business will be able to purchase, for example, Central Los Santos Medical Center. This property is extremely expensive but it has the opportunity to provide a huge variety of services and a larger income than other centers. It also has parking for customers, ambulances, helicopters, an emergency room and more. The Bay Care Center A healthcare business could also purchase the much smaller clinic, The Bay Care Center. By comparison this property is cheap, providing limited services. It does have a small area for parking and for ambulances but not much more. While it can provide drugs, dressings/antiseptic and some diagnostics, it can't provide surgery. A full list of varying Medical Centers and Clinics, such as the one seen below, can be found here. The Los Santos Fire Department, Ambulances and Vehicles Businesses will be able to purchase vehicles like any other business, including non-emergency patient transport ambulances. For example, to transport a patient home after receiving treatment or a regular patient who's undergoing treatment such as someone who's roleplaying having treatment for cancer. In an emergency patients must call the Fire Department on 911 to be taken to a Medical Center for further diagnostics and treatment. For example, if a patient is ejecting blood due to having an STD, they must call an emergency ambulance. The LSFD will be able to provide treatment for such conditions like STDs, but they'd still need to visit a Clinic/Medical Center for further evaluation, treatment and hopefully a cure. The LSFD will always be able to provide a preliminary diagnosis and a range of treatment (BLS, ILS...etc.) on scene through their roleplay, but they will most likely transport the patient to the hospital for scripted diagnosis and treatment. They can also dismiss a patient on scene if their condition isn't transport worthy and give advice (such as to buy some dressings or antiseptic to apply later), allowing ambulances to be freed up for other emergencies. An example of the process: A simplified example of a process for treating STD. Someone has contracted an STD during sex They're unaware of their condition until one day they begin to eject fluids from their genitalia At first they decide to call a Taxi to visit the Medical Center, but they collapse and bleed (Losing HP) Someone else calls the LSFD on 911 The LSFD show up with an ambulance The LSFD provide treatment by stopping the bleeding and giving drugs to fight the symptoms and stabilise them They're transported in the LSFD ambulance to the Medical Center At the Medical Center they're taken to a Doctor's room, handing over care from the LSFD to the Medical Center The Doctor will /me Performs a diagnosis of the patient. What does she find? The patient selects diagnosis in the menu, before then showing the results and replying with /me is suffering from an STD. The Doctor will then /me begins to setup and administer Drugname through an injection The patient then selects that drug in the marker. For now this is simplified to categories such as antibiotics, antidotes...etc. so the player can understand. The Doctor will then /me Finishes administering Drugname through injection They will then carry on their roleplay until the patient has received treatment for the STD They are released After a few days they will receive a message telling them if they are cured or not of their condition. If they are not, they will have to go back to the medical center to repeat the process or try something different. At any point they can check the status of their condition with /diagnosis Items and commands to add: A menu to purchase services /release /diagnosis How would your suggestion improve the server? A complete process for medical conditions; Cause, symptoms, transport, diagnosis, treatment, cure. Currently we only have cause, symptoms and transport, leaving medical roleplay unfinished. Provide roleplay at hospitals and medical centers; Currently these buildings are mostly abandoned, with the exception of when an ambulance shows up and drops someone off - only for them to then run off and carry on as if nothing happened. Character development; This will encourage people to roleplay medical conditions over a period of time, and have something that will affect their future role-play. E.g. being cautious of unsafe sex or travelling in areas where shootings are common. A proper treatment process for STDs. More user-friendly roleplay for the LSFD and patients. Currently what happens is purely roleplay imagination and most people zone-out or become bored with complex medical roleplay (patients and LSFD members). More excuse to have a variety of medical conditions. Currently most people only have Gun Shot Wounds or wounds caused by Traffic Collisions, both must be roleplayed - whereas an Asthma attack for someone who has Ashtma is merely optionable (and believe me, we rarely get this roleplay in the LSFD.) Additional information: This suggestion is limited as a full-scale healthcare system isn't sustainable at this stage. As will all my suggestions there's a lot of detailed information here, but I am open to different ideas and input so please comment below! What I would ultimately like to see; a way we can make medical roleplay VARIED and FUN for EVERYBODY (whether it be this suggestion or something else.)
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