Q: My teenage son keeps pestering me for money for a game he's playing on his iPad - which I thought was free. Are these games addictive?
A: The challenges of parenting device literate children in the 21st century!
Many games that are marketed as "free" include in-app purchases, which means the option to pay to advance in the game or to obtain extra skills or abilities.
These purchases are sometimes referred to as "loot boxes" and more generally as "micro-transactions". Each purchase can be quite small, but over time adds up to quite large amounts of money.
Micro-transactions are now recognised as potentially addictive. Much like gambling, they use the science of behavioural reinforcement to train people to keep engaging with their products - but unlike gambling, they can target young people and their parents' wallets.
Of course, that's not to say that all games with loot boxes or similar are bad, nor is it to say that all young people will fall prey to such tactics - but we recognise with other potentially addictive products we need to be thoughtful about age as a risk factor.
So like most things in this area, make sure you have good oversight of your young person's device use and familiarise yourself with your child's device's parental control settings.
But most importantly take the time to talk to them about what all of this means. Empower them with information and help them to understand why these games can feel so compelling.
Q: I've felt quite low with winter arriving, is this normal?
A: For many people, it can be, and when the changes in mood associated with the seasons are severe enough to interfere with day-to-day functioning it is considered to be a mood disorder - perhaps the most appropriate use of an acronym in all of psychiatry - SAD or seasonal affective disorder.
It seems that some people are more impacted by the impact of light on their mood, and for some, it may also have a biological explanation, in that a deficiency of Vitamin D - which our body produces with the assistance of sunlight - can negatively impact our mood.
Regardless of whether you just feel a little down - or struggle with debilitating depression - with the arrival of shorter days, get outside and spend some time in the sun.
There is also light therapy. Although the lamps are expensive, waking to UV light can help us cope better in the winter months. And as I've suggested before, melatonin - the body's sleep hormone - available on prescription for most, can help too.
But especially important if you work in an office - and find yourself working through your lunch break - get outside, take in some fresh air, and bathe in the sun.
Q: I've been told I self-sabotage good things in my life. What does this mean?
A: I'm not a fan of the term because it doesn't actually describe the problem very clearly.
In reality, it's a very small percentage of people that will set about deliberately sabotaging themselves.
When we talk about self-sabotage we tend to think about things like addiction, anger in relationships, fear of intimacy, affairs - acts that are undoubtedly destructive but are more often than not behaviours people do to feel better, albeit only fleetingly.
And many behaviours that seem completely nonsensical to an outside observer make sense once you understand better the motivations of the person.
For instance, take addictions. The short term "help", whether that be feeling good, or the removal of feeling bad, is incredibly rewarding, and the negative consequences are only felt later.
As the old saying goes, "The problem with smoking is one cigarette never killed anybody."
To believe oneself to be self-sabotaging is actually to attack and criticise yourself. To think of ourselves as bad, broken or mad. What is more helpful is to better understand the patterns of behaviour and the very sensible (in the short term) reasons why we do things that may seem so obvious to others.