By Sophia Vinogradov, MD
Over the last decade or so, our field has experienced a radical shift in our understanding of schizophrenia and other serious psychotic disorders, such as schizoaffective disorder and bipolar disorder with psychosis. We now understand that these are neurocognitive disorders (ie, how neural systems in the brain represent and process information). We also understand that they are neurodevelopmental disorders with genetic components and antecedents during gestation. The developmental course unfolds with increasing signs, symptoms, and cognitive dysfunction, until the onset of the first episode of psychosis during adolescence or early adulthood. Cognitive deficits are more significant determinants of functional outcome than are symptoms, although most current psychiatric treatments focus only (or mostly) on symptom management.
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By Nev Jones, Ph.D.
In an important and provocative study reported in this issue of Psychiatric Services, Cook and colleagues detail findings stemming from a rigorous and well-powered investigation of self-directed care for adults with serious mental illness living in Texas. The investigators found significant improvements in multiple key domains, including recovery, self-esteem, coping, autonomy support, and employment and education, all at no additional cost.
Full Article Here
Corinita Reyes has been knocking down barriers for most of her young life.
“My mother had me at age 17 and my biological father wanted a son, not a daughter, so I never met him,” Corinita said. “At the age of 10, many life changes happened at once from moving out of a community where I felt at home, to losing a father figure, to my mother’s boyfriend moving in with us and taking the role of my stepdad.”
Corinita, now 27, described how she struggled with these changes, but buried those struggles deep inside, sharing them with no one.
Full Article here
Charlie is a well-spoken psychologist from England who specializes in Compassion for Voices and Compassion Focused Therapy for Psychosis.
Please see the interview Psychosis Summit did with him last year:
This is his office website: http://compassionatementalhealth.co.uk/speaker/charlie_heriot_maitland
Here is a link to a 5 minute film on Compassion for Voices:
SBPR is co-sponsoring an all day workshop at Stanford for voice hearers, family members, and clinicians on Oct 13.
There will also be a Psychosis Education Day at Stanford on Oct 19 .
Register today for NAMI’s Ask the Expert Webinar: Skills You Can Use to Support a Loved One Experiencing Psychosis on Friday, March 22 from 4:00–5:30 p.m. EST
Speaker: Dr. Kate Hardy, Clin.Psych.D
This webinar will explain how Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for psychosis (CBTp) can effectively support loved ones experiencing psychosis. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for psychosis (CBTp) is an evidence-based intervention recommended as a complementary treatment for psychosis. This webinar will provide an overview of this therapy, discuss its key skills and explore how family members may draw upon these skills to support their loved one.
To read more and register here
If you missed it search for it in the NAMI Ask the Expert archive here
produced by Tom Jennings • Joaquin Sapien, In partnership with: ProPublica
Thousands of New Yorkers with severe mental illnesses won the chance to live independently in supported housing, following a 2014 federal court order. FRONTLINE and ProPublica investigate what’s happened to people moved from adult homes into apartments and find more than two dozen cases in which the system failed, sometimes with deadly consequences.
See full film here
Beyond Trauma: A Multiple Pathways Approach to Auditory Hallucinations in Clinical and Nonclinical Populations
By Tanya Marie Luhrmann, Ben Alderson-Day, Vaughan Bell, Josef J Bless, Philip Corlett, Kenneth Hugdahl, Nev Jones, Frank Larøi, Peter Moseley, Ramachandran Padmavati,
Emmanuelle Peters, Albert R Powers, Flavie Waters
That trauma can play a significant role in the onset and maintenance of voice-hearing is one of the most striking and important developments in the recent study of psychosis. Yet the finding that trauma increases the risk for hallucination and for psychosis is quite different from the claim that trauma is necessary for either to occur. Trauma is often but not always associated with voice-hearing in populations with psychosis; voice-hearing is sometimes associated with willful training and cultivation in nonclinical populations. This article uses ethnographic data among other data to explore the possibility of multiple pathways to voice-hearing for clinical and nonclinical individuals whose voices are not due to known etiological factors such as drugs, sensory deprivation, epilepsy, and so forth. We suggest that trauma sometimes plays a major role in hallucinations, sometimes a minor role, and sometimes no role at all. Our work also finds seemingly distinct phenomenological patterns for voice-hearing, which may reflect the different salience of trauma for those who hear voices.
Link to Full Article
Ever since her teenage years, Sederia Lewis heard voices. Despite common perceptions about voices, hers encouraged her to reach for her goals, and to overcome obstacles in her life. Despite her own positive experiences with the voices, telling others about them led to numerous trips to therapists and psychiatrists, as well as medications to lessen their presence in her life. Though some of this work was helpful to her, she mostly learned to not tell people about what she was hearing. At the same time, she didn’t gain the tools to make sense of her life, or to move forward. Eventually she began to find her way by connecting with peer groups, and then the hearing voices network. In her first hearing voices group facilitator training, she discovered that she was not alone in hearing voices, and that hearing voices could be seen as a source of strength.
In 2014, to further explore her experiences with voices, Sederia helped to start the first hearing voices group in Berkeley. As her participation in this group, and others continued, Sederia found she was able to make healthier choices in all areas of her life. As she built new habits of living, developed greater inner strength, as well as a community of mutual support, she found the voices stopped. In one sense, they have been replaced with voices from the group she facilitates, which has flourished now with an average of 15 participants per group.
Much of the behind the scenes work for this group, and others like it requires significant support. The Bay Area Hearing Voices Network, is a local 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to developing awareness around voices, visions, unusual beliefs and extreme states, and depends on volunteers to function. Our groups are part of the international hearing voices network, which seeks build community and change perceptions of the experience of hearing voices. But to sustain and build communities like the one that Sederia leads, we are asking for your financial assistance. As little as $1 will keep our website up for a week, $40 for a year, and $150 could pay for a speaker at a local organization. If we can reach our goal of $25,000, we can improve our website, and apply for grants to expand the services we provide. With your help, we will expand opportunities for people to understand these experiences, so that like Sederia, when a supportive voice leaves us, we will always have a place to go where we can find another.
What is it like hearing voices that others can't? For Jeannie Bass, hearing voices is her daily reality. The medical term is "auditory hallucinations." Jeannie is a leader in the Hearing Voices Movement, which aims to re-frame and destigmatize the extreme mental experiences that society labels as "crazy."
To see video see link