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Recent research: 2 studies on child adversity-adult illness links, 2 on prevalence, & 2 on how adversity may lead to resilience

Here are seven recent research studies - largely about the effects of early life adversity on adult psychological health (although I've slipped in one I find important on the prevalence & effects of subsyndromal/subclinical symptoms).  The last two papers touch on the truth or falsity of Nietsche's famous saying "What does not destroy me makes me stronger".

Recent research: mindfulness (mechanisms & practice), prevalence (abuse & suicidality), health anxiety imagery & CBT for kids

Here are half a dozen recent research studies - two on aspects of mindfulness, two on sobering prevalence rates, one on imagery in health anxiety, and one on CBT with children.  Fuller details, links and abstracts for all studies are listed further down this page.  Willem Kuyken and colleagues looked at "How does mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) work?" in helping recurrent depression sufferers.  They came up with some fascinating and provocative findings.  For example it appears that MBCT acts differently from standard CBT, although they are both helpful in reducing risk of depressive relapse.  Standard CBT (and maintenance antidepressants too) reduce cognitive reactivity to experiences of induced low mood, and this appears important in how they lessen relapse risk.  MBCT however seems to act not by reducing cognitive reactivity so much as by decoupling the reactivity from a tendency then to slide into depression.  It appears this decoupling is mediate

Our life stories: needs, beliefs & behaviours - part two, "beliefs"

I posted yesterday on the first, "Needs" section of the "Needs, beliefs, behaviours" diagram (below).  Today I want to say a little about the second section of the diagram - "Beliefs".


This diagram is downloadable both as a Powerpoint slide and as a PDF file

Our life stories: needs, beliefs & behaviours - part one, "needs"

This is the first of a series of four brief posts giving more information about a model I use a lot, especially when working with people who are trying to change long term personality patterns.  The ideas aren't at all original, although this particular way of presenting them is my own.  So the first step in the model is "needs".  This is illustrated in the following diagram:


This diagram is downloadable both as a Powerpoint slide and as a PDF file

Improving treatments for complex PTSD and for survivors of child abuse (second post)

I wrote yesterday about Marylene Cloitre et al's fine recent research study "Treatment for PTSD Related to Childhood Abuse: A Randomized Controlled Trial." I ended the post with the paragraph: For me, her work is both exciting and also raises a whole series of questions.  These include 1.) Would her skills-based plus trauma processing approach be relevant for others suffering from particularly severe forms of PTSD (e.g.

Improving treatments for complex PTSD and for survivors of child abuse (first post)

I've just come across a very interesting research study published in this month's American Journal of Psychiatry:  Cloitre, M., K. C. Stovall-McClough, et al. (2010). "Treatment for PTSD Related to Childhood Abuse: A Randomized Controlled Trial." Am J Psychiatry 167(8): 915-924.  The abstract reads:  "Objective: Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) related to childhood abuse is associated with features of affect regulation and interpersonal disturbances that substantially contribute to impairment.

Our life stories: needs, beliefs & behaviours

This post describes the "Needs, beliefs & behaviours" diagrams, best viewable on screen in PDF format (slides 1 & 2 and slides 3 & 4), but also downloadable in Powerpoint format (slides 1 & 2 and slides 3 & 4).  The post below is downloadable as a Word format handout. 

Recent research: two studies on panic, two on attention training for anxiety disorders, and three on the effects of child abuse

Here are seven recent papers on panic, attention training, and the effects of childhood sexual abuse (all details & abstracts to these studies are listed further down this blog post).  Pfaltz & colleagues report on a novel ambulatory respiratory monitoring system that seems to demonstrate that panic sufferers are not routinely suffering from breathing abnormalities (e.g. hyperventilation) when they go about their daily lives.  The CBT theory of panic disorder would go along with this - panic being seen as due, in part, to catastrophizing about the meaning of experienced physical sensations rather than due to simply having unusual physical sensations.  Shelby et al's paper extends this understanding concluding that with sufferers from non-cardiac chest pain (NCCP) "Chest pain and anxiety were directly related to greater disability and indirectly related to physical and psychosocial disability via pain catastrophizing.

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