How can we help people with learning disabilities engage more in meaningful activities?

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Nick Burton reviews a US study of people with learning disabilities living in community group homes, who help show how well they engage in meaningful social and non-social activities.

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Compulsory community treatment results in no significant difference in service use, social functioning or quality of life

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Rebecca Syed appraises and summarises an updated Cochrane review of compulsory community treatment and involuntary outpatient treatment for people with severe mental disorders. The review finds just 3 trials, which show that CCT results in no significant difference in service use, social functioning or quality of life.

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Engaging inpatients with mental health rehabilitation activities

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Elly O’Brien reports on a recent RCT of a staff training intervention for inpatients in mental health rehabilitation, which is designed to increase patients’ engagement in activities.

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Psychotherapy for social functioning in depression: insufficient good quality research into an overlooked issue

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Social functioning is defined as the degree to which a person is able to fulfill different roles in social environments, such as home, work or relationships (Bosc, 2000). There is consistent evidence that depressed patients display considerable social functioning impairments, which add significantly to the burden of depression. In a recent article published in Psychological [read the full story…]

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

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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…]

NICE publish first clinical guideline on social anxiety disorder

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I wonder if the timing of this publication was planned to be so close to the release of DSM-5, but this debut guidance on social phobia (now known as social anxiety disorder) is certainly going to ruffle some feathers. It fuels the discussion about the medicalisation of human personality traits and some will see it [read the full story…]

The difference of a few weeks in the womb: do early-term infants have poorer developmental outcomes?

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Human pregnancy is considered to be full-term when it lasts between 37-42 weeks. Anything shorter is considered to be a pre-term birth and anything longer is considered post-term. Longer pregnancies can be a risk to both the mother and infant and so labour tends to be induced if a pregnancy goes on past 42 weeks. [read the full story…]

New systematic review looking at emotional perception and social functioning in schizophrenia

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People with schizophrenia often find it hard to do many of the day-to-day things that everyone else takes for granted. Simple tasks like eating healthily and washing can be challenging and more complex needs like developing relationships with other people and finding and holding down a job can seem like mountains to climb. Researchers refer [read the full story…]

Proactive care from practice nurses improves social functioning for people with severe and recurrent depression

Mental health professionals often fail to ask about domestic abuse during suicide risk assessments.

The mental health charity Mind have published the findings of a three year study which explores whether regular proactive reviews delivered by nurses in GP practices results in better mental health and social outcomes for people living with depression.  The study was a randomised controlled trial carried out by a research team at University College London. [read the full story…]