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Agoraphobia

“ Who will prefer the jingle of jade pendants if he once has heard stone growing in a cliff? ” - Lao Tzu

The US DSM IV diagnostic system describes the "essential features" of agoraphobia in the following way: "There is intense fear of, or discomfort in, settings from which escape is difficult or embarrassing, or in which help (e.g. to alleviate a panic attack) is not available."  It then adds the following three criteria:

Agoraphobia

I'm gradually adding content to the 'Good Knowledge' database.  I've just put in some information on agoraphobia.  It reads: 

Increasing access to psychological therapies (IAPT) outcomes toolkit

“ There is a crack in everything. That's where the light gets in. ” - Leonard Cohen

The "Improving Access to Psychological Therapies" (IAPT) initiative is very ambitious and exciting.  It states its principal aim is to support English Primary Care Trusts in implementing "National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence" (NICE) guidelines for people suffering from depression and anxiety disorders.  It comments "The Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme began in 2008 and has transformed treatment of adult anxiety disorders and depression in England. Over 900,000 people now access IAPT services each year, and the 'five year forward view for mental health' committed to expanding services further, alongside improving quality."  

Panic, OCD & depersonalization information & assessment

People think angels fly because they have wings.  Angels fly because they take themselves lightly.

- Anonymous

Here are many of the handouts and questionnaires I use currently (autumn '09) when working with people suffering from panic disorder, agoraphobia, OCD or depersonalization/derealization disorder. 

GAD and health anxiety

“ The "real world" is a construct, and some peculiarities of scientific thought become more intelligible when this fact is recognized ... Einstein himself in 1926 told Heisenberg it was nonsense to found a theory on observable facts alone, saying "In reality the very opposite happens. It is theory which decides what we can observe." ” - D. O. Hebb

Here are a series of assessment questionnaires and handouts for Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Health Anxiety Disorder.  Note that the 2010 Increasing Access to Psychological Therapies "IAPT Data Handbook" recommends using the GAD-7 to monitor progress in Generalized Anxiety Disorder and the short 18-item version of the Health Anxiety Questionnaire to monitor Health Anxiety progress. 

GAD, 2 question screen - answering "yes" to either of the two screening questions on this sheet suggests it's worth checking for a diagnosis of full Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) - for example by using the GADQ (see below).

Depression, CBASP & neuroscience

“ What is to give light must endure burning. ” - Victor Frankl

Here is a mixed bag of handouts and questionnaires.  Most are spin-offs from CBASP (pronounced 'seebasp') - the awkwardly named cognitive behavioral analysis system of psychotherapy.  There are also a few handouts which are adapted downloads from the neurosciences site "The brain from top to bottom".   When in 2000, Keller et al reported on the very impressive results obtained by treating chronic depression with a mixture of CBASP and antidepressants, it seemed likely that a big step forward had been taken in improving the lot of chronic depression sufferers.  The "CBASP research results" handout (below) gives the abstracts for 14 research papers that are both relevant to CBASP and also highlight other important related themes like th

Depression information

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing

- Edmund Burke

Here are a few handouts that I've put together over the years to provide background information about depression.  The development/maintenance diagram is probably the handout here that I use most - both to explain issues about depression and also for many other psychological disorders as well. 

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