Post Of The Week – Sunday 14th April 2019

1) Sci Show On Genetic Testing

Here’s Hank with an overview of genetic testing, showing what genetic testing can and cannot tell us.


2) Precise brain stimulation boosts memory

This news story from the BBC explains research which has used brain stimulation to boost working memory. The effects are short lived but surprising.


3) The Mind-Gut Connection

The idea that depression and other psychological disorders can be related to the gut has gone from being a piece of wild speculation to a mainstream idea. This podcast from the APA explores this idea.


4) Smoking Cessation In People With Psychiatric Disorder

When we look at methods for reducing addiction, we refer to the fact that tobacco is often used by people with psychological disorders. The argument is that a method of reducing addiction could be effective in itself but will not work on people for whom smoking is a way of dealing with other psychological problems. This article challenges this idea, showing that at least in the short term people with serious mental illness can be helped to quit. In particular, it makes a case for the use of Varenicline even though previous research has suggested that it has side effects for people with psychological disorder.


5) My Name Is Rachel

We study different ways of defining abnormality. We refer at several points in our course  to the idea of stigma. There is a human side to each of these. This BBC radio documentary explores the experience of one person, Rachel Waddingham, who has been diagnosed with several different disorders and has some experience of coerced treatment. It talks to people in various roles in the delivery of mental health care. Please note that Rachel refers to a suicide attempt as part of this programme. Here is a link to Rachel Waddingham’s website.


6) Depression And Owning A Dog

This article looks at how owning a dog can help people with treatment resistant depression. It explains how this positive effect might occur. Like the work we have been doing on mindfulness and biodiversity, it suggests that there is an alternative to traditional ways of treating people.


7) Seasonal Affective Disorder

You can buy lamps to counteract the effect of seasonal affective disorder. This article explains what is known about the effectiveness of these.


8) Candid Camera

Candid Camera was a popular television show in the 1950s and 60s which grew out of interest in the social psychology research which was being conducted at the time. Here is their take on conformity.



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