Articles

These articles appeared in the Trinidad & Tobago’s national paper “Newsday”.

Yansie has a weekly column in the features section of their Monday paper.

For Crying out Loud

Carnival is in full swing and I am in cold grey England with a heavy heart. I am trying to detach my thoughts from the sun, steelband and soca that I am missing, so the radio is on full volume, the washing machine is humming, and the vibes of old...Read More »


Men’s Health-Seeking Behaviour

I find myself walking past what can only be described as a lively testosterone fuelled men’s only chat. Hands were waving, they were talking over each other, voices rise and fall, and as I get closer, the reason for the animated discussion becomes clearer – they were discussing...Read More »


Leaving no one behind

Every year since 1992 the 3rd December is proclaimed by the United Nations General Secretary as International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD). This year the theme is “Transformation towards sustainable and resilient society for all”, which sounds dynamic, powerful and purposeful. But for...Read More »


My health, my right

As I am writing this I am filled with nostalgia as I reminisce about those scary days of old when just the mere mention of HIV/AIDS would drive us all into a tailspin of panic. I’m talking about those days of the imagery of the tombstone and death that was...Read More »


Sexual Harassment

To solve a problem requires acknowledgement and acceptance of its existence, and because sexual harassment and assaults are far more common than many would believe them to be, the ever-increasing international coverage of the scores of allegations could therefore be a catalyst for the development of concerted responses to this...Read More »


Dealing with rejection

Even though rejection is one of those unfortunate realities of life, there are times when the sting is so sharp that the reaction can be inappropriate and unhealthy, leading one to resort to the public humiliation of the person responsible.

We all hate rejection, and I’m sure...Read More »


Families struggle in aftermath of suicide

Last week bore witness to another tragic death of a young woman who died by suicide. But unfortunately, in the midst of the sad news, both the traditional and social media were awash with servings of speculation, and uncivil negative commentary.

There is no denying that suicide is controversial, and there...Read More »


Keeping well while at work

Mental health influences the way we think, feel, act, and relate to those around us, and that changes over time depending on a complexity of considerations such as environmental, biological or life experiences. The increasing intensification of workloads can influence mental health outcomes, and if you then think...Read More »


Working together to promote equality in access to health care

Listening to some of the narratives about health care provision can be discouraging and disheartening as they give the impression that it is a system in crisis, and one that is failing the citizens. In reality, it’s not all doom and gloom because there are many structures and...Read More »


Drugs, alcoholism impact workplace

In continuing with the World Mental Health Day 2017 theme of “Workplace Mental Health” it is worth shining a light on prevalence of drug dependency and alcoholism in the workplace (and working environments) and acknowledging that it is a serious issue. From an organisational perspective there are the...Read More »


Mental Health in the Workplace

World Mental Health Day will be celebrated tomorrow (10th October), and this year’s theme ‘Mental Health in the Workplace’ is very timely as new research continues to emerge on its human, social and economic costs to organisations.

For clarification, when we speak...Read More »


PTSD does not only affect soldiers

Unfortunately, there will be times when we may experience situations and circumstances which can be incredibly traumatic. For example, the emotional dropout of survivors of physical or emotional abuse, victims of road traffic accidents –may not only affect just the victim and any other person who may have been injured,...Read More »


Facets to disaster preparedness

So far for 2017, the world has seen a plethora of disasters such as the floods in South Sudan, Myanmar and Guinea; earthquakes in Mexico, Philippines and China; drought in Somalia, South Sudan and Nigeria; hurricanes in British Virgin Islands and the Caribbean; dengue outbreaks in Pakistan and Sri Lanka;...Read More »


Depressed relatives need compassion

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, September 18 2017

AS I open my emails there are five messages from the same person with the subject “My family don’t care” all cataloguing what he perceives to be his family’s negative behaviours towards him.

The...Read More »


Cultivating your emotional resilience

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, September 11 2017

WE have all dealt with difficult situations at one time or another which have tested our emotional resilience to breaking point. So developing an ability to recover and bounce back when faced with challenges...Read More »


Mental health interventions for teachers is important

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, September 4 2017

THIS week marks the return to school for students, teachers and support staff and in the leading up to the first day is a time when many will be experiencing mixed emotions.

Some students...Read More »


Challenges of dementia

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, August 28 2017

AS I’m going through my emails I observe that there’s one from Dementia UK, and by sheer co-incidence, as I pressed the delete button I get a twitter alert from the same organisation. I...Read More »


Physical activity and mental wellness

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, August 21 2017

I missed out on Carnival 2017 and ended up with a serious tabanca, which was made worse by friends teasing me with party tickets, knowing full well that I was not in Trinidad and unable to attend the events....Read More »


HIV/AIDS and the workplace

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, August 14 2017

THE revised National Workplace Policy on HIV/AIDS was launched last week by the Minister of Labour and Small Enterprise Development, and it was very timely, especially because of the unfortunate incidents where individuals publicly...Read More »


Controlling Your Anger

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, August 7 2017

According to MIND UK, anger is a healthy human emotion in response to a real or perceived threat of being attacked, deceived, frustrated or treated unfairly. It’s also an emotion that is vital for...Read More »


Male sexual abuse is no laughing matter

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, July 31 2017

FOLLOWING the newspaper article reporting on “Law Student Raped At Knife-point” the social media judges and jury were out in full force with a barrage of negative comments.

The article was written insensitively and...Read More »


Challenges of working in clinical care

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, July 24 2017

WHEN we enter a healthcare institution we expect to receive a high level of service, and anticipate that interactions with the people working there will be positive. Hence, when services are less than expected...Read More »


Seeing the entire person in the patient

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, July 17 2017

HEALTH as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) is “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being”. However, for most people when they think of good health they are referring to an...Read More »


SEA results are not everything

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, July 10 2017

WEDNESDAY was a day of great jubilation for some families and in equal measure it was also a day of sadness and emotional distress. The media were full of stories and photos of successful...Read More »


There is nothing selfish about suicide

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, July 3 2017

FOLLOWING the recent spate of suicides in Trinidad and Tobago, Juliette has asked that I share her story. Let me start by saying that there is nothing selfish about suicide, it is a complex...Read More »


Alcohol misuse, abuse and dependence

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, June 26 2017

I WOULD be very wealthy if I had a pound or dollar for every time someone has said that alcohol does not affect them, that they do not drink heavily, or that they can...Read More »


Coping with grief and loss

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, June 19 2017

WE ALL know that people die, yet when it happens to a loved one, even if the person’s demise was expected the grief still has a profound impact causing considerable pain.

In preparing to...Read More »


Not all voice hearers commit violent acts

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, June 12 2017

LAST week I read the newspaper articles and subsequent online posts about the teenager who had murdered his brother after “hearing voices in his head”.

What was astonishing was the lack of compassion...Read More »


Managing work-related stress is no easy thing

Better minds better living with Dr. Yansie Rolston Monday, June 5 2017

THE fast-paced evolution of technology has revolutionised the world, affecting almost every aspect of our lives for better and for worse. There’s no denying that it has provided solutions which mitigate stressful situations.

Read More »

Living with IBS

Better minds better living with Yansie Rolston Monday, May 29 2017

DISCUSSION about the bowels and toilet habits are often taboo, but living with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) also referred to as Irritable Bowel Disorder (IBD) can be unpleasant and embarrassing due to the pain...Read More »


The importance of sleep

Better minds better living with Yansie Rolston Monday, May 22 2017

RESEARCH is showing that we are heading for a sleep crisis as problems such as insomnia, restless leg syndrome and apnea (pauses in breathing or shallow breathing while sleeping) have been increasing in severity.

Read More »

Food and mood

Better minds better living with Yansie Rolston Monday, May 15 2017

AT long last, mental health is finally becoming more mainstream and we are being made aware of the fact that one in four and in some societies one in three people will be affected...Read More »


Caring for ASD caregivers

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, May 8 2017

IT WAS a pleasure to read the diverse contributions in the Autism Awareness Supplement published in last Thursday’s paper, and I was particularly heartened by Prof Gerard Hutchinson’s article on Emotional Problems in Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD). It...Read More »


Dealing with loneliness and depression

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, May 1 2017

THE phone rings. It’s a casual acquaintance – a friend of a friend, so I debate whether to answer immediately or call back after I have finished eating my lunch. Instinct said answer, so I do. After the...Read More »


Let’s talk openly about mental health

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, April 24 2017

THE international media went into a frenzy last Tuesday following candid mental health interviews by the Royal Highnesses – Prince Harry and Prince William. Prince Harry’s chaotic behaviour during his teen years and early 20’s is well known,...Read More »


Menopause and quality of life

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, April 17 2017

AS I advance in years one of the things I wished the elders had enlightened me on is that menopause – ‘the change’ has such a considered impact on quality of life. I know that those conversations can...Read More »


Why do teen girls go missing?

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, April 10 2017

EVERY time a female teenager is reported missing my heart sinks as I scroll through the deluge of negative comments crafted at the hands of armchair QSM (Qualified by Social Media) social workers and psychologist who, for the...Read More »


Depression: Let’s Talk

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, April 3 2017

AS someone working in the field of mental health I was elated to find out that “Depression: Let’s Talk” was the theme for this year’s World Health Day which is celebrated annually on the April 7. As...Read More »


Panic disorder is not a character defect

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, March 27 2017

A COLLEAGUE described packing her lunch, driving to the venue of an important work seminar, and then being so crippled by a panic attack that she was not able to enter the room. Her co-workers and others were...Read More »


Why doctors’ mental health matters

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, March 20 2017

MEDICAL doctors are great people because they help the sick to get better and reduce mortality rates; their proud families can be heard bragging and boasting about their substantial earning power. But the stark reality is that...Read More »


Invisible women

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, March 13 2017

WALK the streets of downtown Port-of-Spain and you are bound to pass a few unkempt, smelly human figures as you go about your business. So what do you do? More than likely you pick up pace, walk a...Read More »


Making the mind a priority

DR YANSIE ROLSTON Monday, October 10 2016

THE World Health Organisation (WHO) recognises October 10, each year as World Mental Health Day. The theme for this year is Dignity in Mental Health: psychological and mental health first aid for all – which aims to destigmatise mental...Read More »


Engaging with and Valuing all Abilities

Accessibility