Pointing the FINGER at a multi-component intervention to prevent cognitive decline and dementia

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Caroline Struthers critically appraises a recent RCT of diet, exercise, cognitive training and vascular risk monitoring to prevent cognitive decline and dementia in at-risk Finnish women.

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Can family-based interventions prevent young people from starting to smoke?

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Sally Adams summarises a recent Cochrane systematic review on family-based interventions for preventing smoking by children and adolescents, which shows the evidence is strongest for high intensity, family-based interventions that are independent of school-based programmes.

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How can commissioners improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people?

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Alison Turner summarises the Department of Health’s Future in Mind report, which builds on the work of the Children & Young People’s Mental Health Taskforce and sets out a vision for increased coordination and collaboration to improve mental health and wellbeing in children and young people.

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Social determinants of mental health: how our societies are making us mentally unwell and what we can do about it

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Mark Horowitz summarises the new WHO and UCL Institute of Health Equity (Michael Marmot) report and research paper on social determinants of mental health. He concludes that it’s time to focus on the root causes of mental distress, namely poverty, unemployment, poor education and social isolation.

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Eating disorders: mapping the (lack of) evidence

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Helen Bould summarises a recent review that maps the evidence for the prevention and treatment of eating disorders in young people. Her conclusion? A call to arms for more better quality research to help people affected by these serious illnesses.

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Exercise for the prevention and treatment of antenatal depression

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Meg Fluharty summarises a recent systematic review looking at exercise for antenatal depression. The review finds preliminary evidence to suggest that exercise may be effective in reducing depression during pregnancy, but the quality of included trials is low to moderate.

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Can schools prevent eating disorders?

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In 2012 there was a call from Parliament to research school interventions to reduce body dissatisfaction. Helen Bould reports on an RCT of school-based prevention programme for eating disorders, which highlights the need for more work in this area.

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Internet-based alcohol and cannabis prevention: Climate Schools and salami slicing

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Matt Field summarises the findings of a recent cluster RCT that uses internet-based prevention (an Australian programme called Climate Schools) to reduce alcohol and cannabis use, truancy, psychological distress and moral disengagement.

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Preventing workplace depression: are there universal interventions that work?

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Mental health in the workplace is an area that we’ve blogged about a few times before. This blog features a recent review by Tan et al on workplace interventions for depression. Mental disorders are the leading cause of sickness absence (Harvey, 2009 and Henderson, 2011), and depression in particular is predicted to be the leading [read the full story…]