Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy may reduce the demand for primary care visits

shutterstock_on the phone

Can’t get an appointment with your GP? Don’t stress, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy may help by reducing the demand for primary care visits by distressed patients, according to a new study in the Journal of Psychosomatic Research.

[read the full story...]

Bereavement during childhood, but not before birth, is associated with an increased risk of psychosis

shutterstock_180517940

Psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia, are often conceptualised as arising from a complex interplay of genetic and environmental influences (Tandon 2008). The impact of social influences on the risk of psychotic experience is undeniable. Recent reviews of this topic have called for a focus on maternal wellbeing as a means of primary prevention for mental [read the full story...]

Quitting smoking is associated with decreased anxiety, depression and stress, says new systematic review

shutterstock_123404272

It is well known that tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death in the world (WHO, 2011). However, the associations between smoking and mental health are less well established. Smokers often want to quit, but the belief that cigarettes can be used to regulate mood can often deter them, and this is especially true [read the full story...]

Meditation programmes may improve anxiety, depression and pain but better quality research is needed, says systematic review

shutterstock_97304843

There’s little doubt about it – meditation is in vogue. In fairness, it probably always has been. However, clinical and research interest in the effects of meditation programmes on psychological wellbeing has grown considerably in recent years. The development of mindfulness-based interventions has no doubt driven much of this interest. For example, running a PubMed keyword [read the full story...]

Meta-analysis finds that pituitary volume is not affected in people with first episode psychosis or schizophrenia

shutterstock_103381445

* Declaration; I have published articles with two of the authors of this article, including on this topic, and know most of them professionally One influential model of the onset of psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia is the stress-vulnerability model, first put forward by Zubin and Spring in 1977. This model proposes that people at [read the full story...]

#MindfulnessMonday Mindfulness-based stress reduction can alleviate stress and improve quality of life and mental health

shutterstock_49031218

This month in the woodland (and the Twittersphere) we’ve given you #MindfulnessMonday. It’s been our attempt to highlight some of the potential benefits that mindfulness can have on our mental well-being in a variety of different health conditions including breast cancer, depression and anxiety, and psychosis. This last #MindfulnessMonday blog examines the effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Stress [read the full story...]

#MindfulnessMonday – Mindfulness-based stress reduction works for patients with breast cancer

Patients with breast cancer commonly have lots on their mind (psychological distress)

Within the woodland October is a month of themes. Many of you will be familiar with #Stoptober, which always helps any elves who sneak round the the back of the woodshed, to give up smoking. You may be less aware of our #MindfulnessMonday activities that will be sprinkled across the month; showcasing the potential benefits that [read the full story...]

Couple-based interventions may help improve the psychological wellbeing of cancer patients and their partners, but more research is needed

For Better Or Worse

Cancer diagnosis and treatment can have negative consequences for the psychological wellbeing of patients and their caregivers. This blog will summarise a systematic review on whether couple-based interventions make a difference for couples affected by cancer (Regan, 2012). The review tried to answer three questions: What is the efficacy of couple-based interventions on depression, anxiety, [read the full story...]

New evidence update from NICE on common mental disorders

nhs evidence eye

The NICE guideline on common mental disorders (PDF) was published back in May 2011, which means that it only included evidence published up until the end of 2010. This is a fast moving field, so NICE have now put out an evidence update, which focuses on new evidence published from Sept 2010 to Oct 2012. This [read the full story...]

Daily psychological demands are associated with progression of carotid artery atherosclerosis

National Heart Month

As the British Heart Foundation National Heart Month draws to a close Lifestyle Elf and I were discussing their blog on heart attacks not being reduced in people taking vitamins and antioxidants which led to us to thinking about the relationship between stress and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Our colleagues in the Pittsburgh Health Heart Project [read the full story...]