November 17, 2016 • Volume 9, Issue 51 • Subscribe to Hope & Harmony Headlines
Learning to be positive
But help is at hand: We’ve gathered strategies to help you cope with rumination, catastrophizing, pessimism and critical self-talk in “Practically Positive: Tips for Transforming Your Thinking.”
Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago analyzed 37 studies involving people with bipolar disorder, major depression, social anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Parsing the findings requires a lot of complicated explanation about brain functions and regions.
So let’s boil it down to this verdict from senior author Scott Langenecker, PhD: the negative thinking found in bipolar and other emotional disorders appears due to weak control of the brain’s default-mode network by the superior longitudinal fasciculus, or SLF. (Click here for a more in-depth account.)
But remember that biology is not destiny. There are tools to help you play your best with the hand you’re dealt. And some of them might surprise you.
When Rudy C. is in the grip of bipolar depression, he reminds himself that whatever he’s ruminating on probably isn’t that important in the grand scheme of things.
“It’s not letting things be the end of the world. … I just think, “In five hours or five days is anyone really going to care?’ ” he explains in “Practically Positive.” Read more >>
Research in brief
In other news from University of Illinois at Chicago, two of the university’s researchers have been selected as finalists in the Mood Challenge for ResearchKit. The challenge was to develop an app to assist individuals with mental health challenges. The UIC researchers are working on BiAffect, an app that monitors aspects of mobile device usage such as typing speed to identify depressive and manic episodes in people with bipolar. Read more >>
Another app in the works, this one from the University of Copenhagen, also aims to exploit smartphone use to tell when people with mood disorders are in a depressive, manic, or neutral state. The MONARCA app combines captured data on patterns of movement and social activity with self-reported information on sleep, stress, and emotional status. Read more >>
Holidays cause anxiety for everyone. If you’re living with bipolar disorder, the challenges are very real. Learn 3 practical tips for beating the holiday blues. Watch Gabe Howard’s video blog >>
via bpHope – bp Magazine Community