Manchester BABCP conference: Jamie Pennebaker, expressive writing & emotional suppression (sixth post)
Last updated on 9th September 2010
This year's annual British CBT conference jamboree has been a bit unusual for me. I've been coming to these British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) conferences for years now, and routinely I would start with one of the full day pre-conference workshops before launching into the three days of conference proper. I was booked into Emily Holmes's "Mental imagery in cognitive-behaviour therapy: PTSD and beyond" workshop, but then poor Catero my wife hurt her back at the weekend and so plans were changed and I delayed coming down from Edinburgh. Recovery proceeds and here I am - a day & a half "late" and checking my mobile for news from home - but here for the first afternoon of the three day conference proper.
Here are half a dozen recent research studies on mindfulness, values & meaning - fuller details, links and abstracts for all studies are listed further down this page. Hofmann and colleagues' meta-analysis on "The effect of mindfulness-based therapy on anxiety and depression" found encouraging effect sizes for mindfulness training and concluded "These results suggest that mindfulness-based therapy is a promising intervention for treating anxiety and mood problems in clinical populations". Meanwhile Barnhofer & Chittka underlined the toxicity of ruminative brooding with their demonstration that the well-demonstrated link between neurotic temperament and depression is mediated by "Tendencies to respond to mild low mood with ruminative thinking". They conclude that "The results suggest that neuroticism predisposes individuals to depression by generally increasing the likelihood of ruminative responses to low mood&quo
Third and last day of the full conference. In fact we finish at lunch time today. Up, then an interesting conversation about bipolar disorder at breakfast. It's fun how I can chat with almost any of the well over 1,000 conference participants and almost certainly we'll have a whole lot of helpful shared experiences and insights to explore. Then off to an in-conference workshop on Positive psychology based interventions. Sadly there's a notice on the seminar room door saying the workshop has been cancelled due to illness. Oh dear, I hope the would-be presenter Ilona Boniwell (or any ill members of her family) get well soon. What a pity. It's been a feature of this year's BABCP conference that a number of research papers on positive psychology interventions have begun to emerge. So, flipping through the conference programme, presentations that appear to overlap into this area include: Developing the role of psychological wellbeing practitioners; If it feels go
Here are six recently published research papers. Barnhofer and colleagues report on encouraging results using mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) for sufferers from chronic-recurrent depression while they are still depressed. The three major studies published already have used MBCT for recurrent depression while the sufferers are reasonably well. The next step will clearly be a fuller randomized controlled trial. Heeren and colleagues report on the how MBCT acts to reduce overgeneral autobiographical memoriy in formerly depressed patients.
Archer and colleagues describe the successful development and assessment of a group-based cognitive behavioural intervention for sleep problems. Participants' satisfaction ratings with the training were very high and there were very encouraging reductions in their sleep problems and depressive symptoms. Morin and coworkers also report on CBT for sleep problems, this time singly or combined with sleep medication. They concluded that "In patients with persistent insomnia, the addition of medication to CBT produced added benefits during acute therapy, but long-term outcome was optimized when medication is discontinued during maintenance CBT."
Here are a couple of very interesting, helpful websites that I've been reminded of recently. They illustrate in a fun way the diversity and possibilities of the internet.