Recent researches

Collection of important research articles found in the web.

Successful insomnia treatment may require nothing more than a placebo

posted Mar 17, 2017, 5:16 AM by kumar k

A new study indicates that successful treatment for insomnia may not actually require complicated neurofeedback (direct training of brain functions). Rather, it appears patients who simply believe they're getting neurofeedback training appear to get the same benefits.

Insomnia affects between 10 and 35% of the population worldwide. However, despite the burden of insomnia on our society, only few studies have addressed this issue non-pharmacologically. Researchers here recruited thirty patients with primary insomnia, who underwent neurofeedback treatment and placebo-feedback treatment over several weeks.

In the study researchers sought to test whether earlier findings on the positive effect of neurofeedback on sleep quality and memory could also be replicated in a double-blind placebo-controlled study. Patients spent nine nights and twelve sessions of neurofeedback and twelve sessions of placebo-feedback training (sham) in researchers' laboratory.

Researchers found both neurofeedback and placebo-feedback to be equally effective as reflected in subjective measures of sleep complaints, suggesting that the observed improvements were due to unspecific factors such as experiencing trust and receiving care and empathy from experimenters. In addition, these improvements were not reflected in objective EEG-derived measures of sleep quality.

Researchers conclude that for the treatment of primary insomnia, neurofeedback does not have a specific efficacy beyond unspecific placebo effects. They did not find an advantage of neurofeedback over placebo-feedback. Read more

How much sleep do we really need?

posted Feb 20, 2015, 9:00 PM by kumar k

An expert panel that examined data from 320 studies is recommending new guidelines on how much sleep people should get. The guidelines are based on age, ranging from newborns (who need 14 to 17 hours of sleep per day) to adults aged 65 and up (7 to 8 hours per day).
These are the sleep-time recommendations from the National Sleep Foundation expert panel:

* Newborns (0-3 months): Sleep range narrowed to 14-17 hours each day (previously it was 12-18).
* Infants (4-11 months): Sleep range widened two hours to 12-15 hours (previously it was 14-15).
* Toddlers (1-2 years): Sleep range widened by one hour to 11-14 hours (previously it was 12-14).
* Preschoolers (3-5): Sleep range widened by one hour to 10-13 hours (previously it was 11-13).
* School age children (6-13): Sleep range widened by one hour to 9-11 hours (previously it was 10-11).
* Teenagers (14-17): Sleep range widened by one hour to 8-10 hours (previously it was 8.5-9.5).
* Younger adults (18-25): Sleep range is 7-9 hours (new age category).
* Adults (26-64): Sleep range did not change and remains 7-9 hours.
* Older adults (65+): Sleep range is 7-8 hours (new age category).

Brain scans predict effectiveness of talk therapy to treat depression

posted Feb 20, 2015, 8:59 PM by kumar k

Researchers have shown that brain scans can predict which patients with clinical depression are most likely to benefit from a specific kind of talk therapy. The study is the first to use a technique known as resting-state functional brain connectivity MRI to identify differences in brain wiring that predict therapeutic responses to talk therapy. Read more

Feelings of loneliness, depression linked to binge-watching television

posted Jan 30, 2015, 9:43 PM by kumar k

The findings also showed that those who lacked the ability to control themselves were more likely to binge-watch. These viewers were unable to stop clicking "Next" even when they were aware that they had other tasks to complete.
Little empirical research has been done on binge-watching since it is such a new behavior. Psychological factors such as loneliness, depression, and self-regulation deficiency have been known as important indicators of binge behavior in general. For example, people engage in addictive behaviors to temporarily forget the reality that involves loneliness and depression. Also, an individual's lack of self-regulation is likely to influence the level of his or her addictive behavior. Therefore, this study tried to understand binge-watching behavior from this set of known factors.
"Even though some people argue that binge-watching is a harmless addiction, findings from our study suggest that binge-watching should no longer be viewed this way," Sung said. "Physical fatigue and problems such as obesity and other health problems are related to binge-watching and they are a cause for concern. When binge-watching becomes rampant, viewers may start to neglect their work and their relationships with others. Even though people know they should not, they have difficulty resisting the desire to watch episodes continuously. Our research is a step toward exploring binge-watching as an important media and social phenomenon." Read more

Diet, nutrition essential for mental health

posted Jan 30, 2015, 9:42 PM by kumar k

Evidence is rapidly growing showing vital relationships between both diet quality and potential nutritional deficiencies and mental health, a new international collaborative study has revealed.
Findings of the review revealed that in addition to dietary improvement, evidence now supports the contention that nutrient-based prescription has the potential to assist in the management of mental disorders at the individual and population level.
A systematic review published in late 2014 has also confirmed a relationship between 'unhealthy' dietary patterns and poorer mental health in children and adolescents. Given the early age of onset for depression and anxiety, these data point to dietary improvement as a way of preventing the initial incidence of common mental disorders. Read more

Drug addiction draws more negative feelings than mental illness

posted Oct 12, 2014, 12:51 AM by kumar k

Drug addiction draws more negative feelings than mental illness While both are treatable health conditions, stigma of drug addiction much more pronounced, seen as 'moral failing.'

People are significantly more likely to have negative attitudes toward those suffering from drug addiction than those with mental illness, and don't support insurance, housing, and employment policies that benefit those dependent on drugs, new Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health research suggests. Read more

Talk therapy – not medication – best for social anxiety disorder, large study finds

posted Sep 28, 2014, 4:40 AM by kumar k

While antidepressants are the most commonly used treatment for social anxiety disorder, new research suggests that cognitive behavioral therapy is more effective and, unlike medication, can have lasting effects long after treatment has stopped. Read more

Deep and meaningful relationships play a vital role in overall well-being.

posted Sep 7, 2014, 5:36 AM by kumar k

Past research has shown that individuals with supportive and rewarding relationships have better mental health, higher levels of subjective well-being and lower rates of morbidity and mortality. A paper published in Personality and Social Psychology Review provides an important perspective on thriving through relationships, emphasizes two types of support that relationships provide, and illuminates aspects where further study is necessary.
According to the researchers, thriving involves 5 components of well-being; hedonic well-being (happiness, life satisfaction), eudaimonic well-being (having purpose and meaning in life, progressing toward meaningful life goals), psychological well-being (positive self-regard, absence of mental health symptoms/disorders), social well-being (deep and meaningful human connections, faith in others and humanity, positive interpersonal expectancies), and physical well-being (healthy weight and activity levels, health status above expected baselines).
Relationships provide 2 types of support: source of strength (SOS) support, and relational catalyst (RC) support
Support-providers must be sensitive and responsive - there are characteristics in a support-provider that can lead to doing more harm than good
Future research should focus more on social support in non-adverse life circumstances. Read more

Stigma as a barrier to mental health care

posted Sep 7, 2014, 5:33 AM by kumar k

Despite the availability of effective evidence-based treatment, about 40 percent of individuals with serious mental illness do not receive care and many who begin an intervention fail to complete it. A new report investigates stigma as a significant barrier to care for many individuals with mental illness. Public stigma emerges when pervasive stereotypes -- that people with mental illness are dangerous or unpredictable, for example -- lead to prejudice against those who suffer from mental illness.
"The prejudice and discrimination of mental illness is as disabling as the illness itself. It undermines people attaining their personal goals and dissuades them from pursuing effective treatments," says psychological scientist Patrick W. Corrigan of the Illinois Institute of Technology, lead author on the report.
 Read more

Excessive drinking is the fourth leading cause of preventable death

posted Jul 23, 2014, 11:46 PM by kumar k

Excessive alcohol consumption, including binge drinking, is responsible for 10 percent of deaths among working-age adults in the United States, according to a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. full report

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