Book: It’s Not OK to Feel Blue (and other lies)

Book Title:

It’s Not OK to Feel Blue (and other lies): Inspirational people open up about their mental health.

Author(s): Scarlett Curtis.

Year: 2020.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Penguin.

Type(s): Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook, and Kindle.

Synopsis:

Everyone has a mental health. So we asked:

What does yours mean to you?

THE RESULT IS EXTRAORDINARY.

Over 60 people have shared their stories. Powerful, funny, moving, this book is here to tell you:

It’s OK.

Book: Life as a Clinical Psychologist

Book Title:

Life as a clinical psychologist: What is it really like?

Author(s): Paul Jenkins.

Year: 2020.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Critical Publishing.

Type(s): Paperback and Kindle.

Synopsis:

Considering a career as a Clinical Psychologist? This book is an ideal, jargon-free introduction for those wishing to find out more about working in this demanding but rewarding mental health profession.

An accessible text that invites you to think critically about whether becoming a Clinical Psychologist is right for you, questioning and challenging your views and providing an honest perspective of life as a clinical psychologist.

Written from personal experience of over 10 years working in applied psychology, with a unique knowledge of the practice, theory, and application of Clinical Psychology, Paul Jenkins provides a first-hand perspective, blending anecdotes with factual advice on the clinical academic culture. It is also packed with case studies which highlight a range of different career pathways (including in other mental health fields) and includes coverage of post-qualification life to gives the reader a sense of the career you can have after training.

Book: This Book Will Change Your Mind About Mental Health

Book Title:

This Book Will Change Your Mind About Mental Health: A Journey into the Heartland of Psychiatry.

Author(s): Nathan Filer.

Year: 2019.

Edition: First (1st).

Publisher: Faber and Faber.

Type(s): Hardcover, Paperback, Audiobook, and Kindle.

Synopsis:

A journey into the heartland of psychiatry.

This book debunks myths, challenges assumptions and offers fresh insight into what it means to be mentally ill.

And what it means to be human.

This Book Will Change Your Mind About Mental Health was previously published in 2019 in hardback under the title The Heartland.

What is the Value of Mental Health First Aid for the UK Armed Forces?

Research Paper Title

Mental health first aid for the UK Armed Forces.

Background

Education programmes in mental health literacy can address stigma and misunderstanding of mental health.

This study investigated self-rated differences in knowledge, attitudes and confidence around mental health issues following participation in a bespoke Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training course for the Armed Forces.

Methods

The mixed methods approach comprised quantitative surveys and qualitative interviews.

A survey, administered immediately post-training (n = 602) and again at 10-months post-attendance (n = 120), asked participants to rate their knowledge, attitudes and confidence around mental health issues pre- and post-training.

Results

Quantitative findings revealed a significant increase in knowledge, positive attitudes and confidence from the post-training survey which was sustained at 10-months follow-up.

Semi-structured telephone interviews (n = 13) were conducted at follow-up, 6-months post-attendance.

Qualitative findings revealed that participation facilitated an ‘ambassador’ type role for participants.

Conclusions

This study is the first to have investigated the effect of MHFA in an Armed Forces community.

Findings show participants perceived the training to increase knowledge regarding mental health and to enhance confidence and aptitude for identifying and supporting people with mental health problems.

Results suggest that such an intervention can provide support for personnel, veterans and their families, regarding mental health in Armed Forces communities.

Reference

Crone, D.M., Sarkar, M., Curran, T., Baker, C.M., Hill, D., Loughren, E.A., Dickson, T. & Parker, A. (2020) Mental health first aid for the UK Armed Forces. Health Promotion International. 35(1), pp.132-139. doi: 10.1093/heapro/day112.

Could an ‘Apple a Day’ Keep the (Mental Health) Doctor Away?

Research Paper Title

Fruit and vegetables intake in adolescents and mental health: a systematic review.

Background

The proper nutrition is indicated as a factor of a potential importance for the mental health early in life span, and among the potential products, which may influence, there are fruit and vegetables.

Therefore the purpose of this study was to conduct a systematic review of the observational studies analysing the association between the fruit and vegetables intake and the mental health in adolescents.

Methods

On the basis of PubMed and Web of Science databases, the papers presenting human studies and published in English until June 2019, analysing the association between intake of fruit and/ or vegetables, as well as related products (e.g. juices) and the mental health were included to the systematic review, while they analysed a group of adolescents.

Results

Based on the conducted systematic review, 17 studies were indicated as those which assess the influence of fruit and vegetables intake on the mental health in adolescents. For the assessment of mental health, diverse variables were taken into account, including positive (happiness, self-esteem), neutral (health-related quality of life, mental health status), and negative ones (loneliness, general difficulties, feeling worried, anxiety, stress and distress, depressive symptoms, depression, suicidal behaviours).

Conclusions

Based on the conducted systematic review of observational studies, it may be indicated that in a groups of adolescents there was a positive association between intake of fruit and vegetable products and mental health.

Especially beneficial for general mental health in adolescents, were such products as green vegetables, yellow vegetables and fresh fruit.

Reference

Glabska, D., Guzek, D., Groele, B. & Gutkowska, K. (2020) Fruit and vegetables intake in adolescents and mental health: a systematic review. Roxzniki Pantstwowego Zakladu Higieny. 71(1), pp.15-25. doi: 10.32394/rpzh.2019.0097.

Changing Attitudes & Stigma toward Mental Health in Nursing Students

Research Paper Title

Attitudes and stigma toward mental health in nursing students: A systematic review.

Background

This systematic review seeks to ascertain whether mental health-specific education reduces stigmatising attitudes in nursing students.

Methods

A systematic review of the literature was performed.

Results

Thirteen studies met the inclusion criteria.

Most of the results show an improvement in attitudes toward mental health, both in theory and clinical experience, but a greater improvement toward these stigmatising attitudes was observed in clinical placements than in theory.

Conclusions

Mental-health-specific training seems to improve perceptions toward mental health.

Clinical placement underpins theory, leading to a decrease in negative attitudes and stigma regarding mental health.

Reference

Palou, R.G., Vigue, G.P. & Tort-Nasarre, G. (2020) Attitudes and stigma toward mental health in nursing students: A systematic review. Perspectives in Psychiatric Care. 56(2), pp.243-255. doi: 10.1111/ppc.12419. Epub 2019 Jul 28.

How can Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners Meet Rural Mental Health Challenges?

Research Paper Title

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners Meeting Rural Mental Health Challenges.

Background

To describe the current rural mental health system crisis in the United States and how psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners (PMHNPs) can holistically mitigate this systemic issue.

Methods

Respective to the objective, relevant literature is reviewed.

Results

PMHNPs have successfully increased access to care in under-served rural communities by practising at the fullest extent of their scope without mandated supervision, utilising telepsychiatry practice, while expanding PMHNP rural mental health education and research to meet and absolve pressing rural mental health challenges.

Conclusions

Current evidence supports that rural mental health care improves when PMHNPs have full scope of practice, utilise telepsychiatry, engage in related scholarly activity, and have formalised education and training for rural health care delivery, which collectively answer the professional and moral call serving the under-served rural population with mental illness.

Reference

Finley, B.A. (2020) Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioners Meeting Rural Mental Health Challenges. Journal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association. 26(1):97-101. doi: 10.1177/1078390319886357. Epub 2019 Nov 15.

Is there a Gender Difference in Mental Health Literacy that Affects Mental Health Attitude?

Research Paper Title

Mental Health Literacy Affects Mental Health Attitude: Is There a Gender Difference?

Background

In the current study, the researchers aimed to compare the levels of and factors associated with mental health attitude between males and females. Of particular interest was ascertaining the degree to which mental health literacy was related to mental health attitude and whether this relationship would vary by gender.

Methods

A total of 732 participants aged 18 years or more were recruited from attendees at the 2016 Minnesota State Fair. They used the Mental Health Literacy Scale (MHLS) to measure attitude toward and literacy of mental health.

Results

The multivariate analysis reported that males’ mental health attitude was significantly lower than females. Some factors associated with mental health attitude differed by gender as well. Among men, receiving more social support, experiencing higher levels of depression, and being married predicted greater mental health attitude. Among women, older age was associated with lower mental health attitude levels. However, mental health literacy was the strongest factor regardless of gender. Men and women with greater mental health literacy had a more positive mental health attitude.

Conclusions

Provision of tailored mental health literacy education both for males and females could potentially improve the public’s mental health attitude toward mental illness.

Reference

Lee, H.Y., Hwang, J., Ball, J.G., Lee, J., Yu, Y & Albright, D.L. (2020) Mental Health Literacy Affects Mental Health Attitude: Is There a Gender Difference? American Journal of Health Behaviour. 44(3), pp.282-291. doi: 10.5993/AJHB.44.3.1.

Is More Clarification is Needed of Mental Health Practitioner’s Engagement Experiences in Early Intervention Settings?

Research Paper Title

Mental Health Practitioner Experiences of Engaging With Service Users in Community Mental Health Settings: A Systematic Review and Thematic Synthesis of Qualitative Evidence.

What is Known on the Subject?

Engagement is regarded as important and beneficial for service users and mental health services A universal definition of engagement is not yet fully agreed upon.

What this paper adds to existing knowledge?

Based upon their experience, mental health staff use varied engagement approaches to fit with the changeable and unique needs of people who use services (service users). Mental health staff demonstrate qualities such as persistence and adaptability to successfully engage with service users.

What are the implications for practice?

Irrespective of professional background, the role of community mental health staff is not restricted to any single approach. Practical help and social support are as seen as important as clinical treatment to establish successful engagement. Little is known about the engagement experiences of mental health staff working in early intervention settings as most studies in this review focused on the perspectives of staff based in assertive outreach or community mental health teams. There is a need to further understand staff experiences of engagement with service users in early intervention settings. Role descriptions and expectations of community mental health workers should account for the wide-ranging flexible approach required in order to deliver appropriate interventions. This may involve a focus on engagement in training programmes.

Background

Effective mental health care is dependent on engaging service users, but some individuals do not actively attend appointments, and may stop engaging with mental health services. Quantitative studies reveal some salient factors that seem to predict engagement, but these studies miss the nuances of good clinical practice in this area. A number of qualitative studies of health professionals’ experiences and understanding of effective engagement have been published.

This review aimed to systematically identify, evaluate and synthesise results from these studies with a view to informing effective practice in this area.

Methods

Electronic databases MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsychINFO and AMED were searched (PROSPERO systematic review protocol registry (www.crd.york.ac.uk/prospero/; ID CRD42017083976). Of 799 records, ten papers met the inclusion criteria. All papers were subjected to quality appraisal based on the CASP checklist and data systematically extracted. A thematic synthesis of included studies examining mental health practitioners’ experiences of engagement in community mental health settings was conducted.

Results

Mental health practitioners see engaging service users as depending upon complex, multi-dimensional phenomena which should include individualised person-centred approaches as well as practical, social and clinical support. Mental health practitioners demonstrate qualities such as determination and adaptability to establish and maintain engagement with service users.

Conclusions

As a core aspect of nurse education, registered mental health nurses and other professionals would benefit from systematic guidance regarding engagement strategies. Most studies in this review focused on assertive outreach or community mental health teams, more clarification is needed of practitioner’s engagement experiences in early intervention settings.

Reference

Henderson, P., Fisher, N.R., Ball, J. & Sellwood, W. (2020) Mental Health Practitioner Experiences of Engaging With Service Users in Community Mental Health Settings: A Systematic Review and Thematic Synthesis of Qualitative Evidence. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing. doi: 10.1111/jpm.12628. Online ahead of print.

Education & Training should Aim to improve the Recognition & Treatment of Postpartum OCD

Research Paper Title

Advances in the pharmacological management of obsessive-compulsive disorder in the postpartum period.

Background

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a psychiatric disorder characterised by obsessions and compulsions.

Obsessions are defined as intrusive, recurrent and distressing thoughts, images or impulses, whereas compulsions are defined as repetitive behaviours or mental acts.

While there is an associated distress, and indeed oftentimes, the individual’s awareness that these behaviours are excessive and unreasonable, the individual continues to be disabled by an inability to cease their compulsions.

The postpartum period may herald the onset of OCD or precipitate an exacerbation of the preexisting OCD symptoms.

Common OCD symptom clusters occur in the postpartum period, with specific challenges associated with motherhood and lactation.

Areas Covered

This brief review aims to review the extent and nature of publications evaluating pharmacological treatment of OCD in the postpartum period.

Expert Opinion

Education and training should aim to improve the recognition and treatment of postpartum OCD.

Due to the limited nature of studies, more research is required to assess the role of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors in the postpartum period.

Reference

Brakoulias, V., Viswasam, K., Dwyer, A., Raine, K.H. & Starcevic, V. (2020) Advances in the pharmacological management of obsessive-compulsive disorder in the postpartum period. Expert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy. 21(2), pp.163-165. doi: 10.1080/14656566.2019.1700229. Epub 2020 Jan 1.