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Health school-based mindfulness interventions for improving mental health: a systematic review and thematic synthesis of qualitative studiesSapthiang, Supakyada; Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; University of Derby; University of Essex; Awake to Wisdom Centre for Meditation and Mindfulness Research, Ragusa, Italy (Springer Science and Business Media LLC, 2019-06-05)School-based mindfulness interventions have recently shown promise for treating and preventing mental health issues in young people. However, the literature lacks a high-level perspective of the impact of mindfulness on young people’s mental health according to their own first-hand accounts. Therefore, the objective of this study was to conduct the first systematic review and thematic synthesis to rigorously evaluate the qualitative evidence pertaining to students’ experiences of school-based MBIs. The following electronic databases were searched for qualitative school-based mindfulness intervention papers published up until the end of March 2019: PubMed, Web of Science, Scopus, ProQuest, and Google Scholar. An assessment of study quality was undertaken using the Critical Appraisal Skills Programme qualitative checklist. The initial literature search returned 4102 papers and seven studies met all of the inclusion criteria. The thematic synthesis identified four major themes of (i) using attentional processes to regulate emotions and cognitions, (ii) stress reduction, (iii) improved coping and social skills, and (iv) calming and/or relaxation. Findings show that school-based MBIs are experienced by students as having a range of benefits to mental health, including in both preventative and treatment contexts. However, efforts should be made to improve methodological quality, including taking steps to minimise recall bias and provide a greater degree of transparency regarding how students are selected to attend qualitative interviews or focus groups.
The mental health needs of child and adolescent refugees and asylum seekers entering Europe.Sapthiang, s; Shonin, E; Griffiths, M; Van Gordon, William; University of Derby; University of Essex.; Awake to Wisdom Centre for Meditation and Mindfulness Research, Ragusa, Italy; Nottingham Trent University. (2019-02-01)Children and adolescents constitute more than half of the global refugee population, and almost one‑third of first‑time asylum seekers in the European Union (EU) during 2015 were under 18 years of age. Syria, in particular, accounts for a substantial proportion of young refugees and asylum seekers because the ongoing civil war has led to almost 5 million Syrians fleeing their country and becoming refugees during the past 7 years. Being a child or adolescent refugee or asylum seeker carries an increased risk of developing mental illness, and such displaced young people are known to experience problems in accessing health‑care support. The present article draws on examples from Syria in order to (i) Highlight mental health issues that typically arise in children and adolescent refugees and asylum seekers entering Europe and (ii) discuss how changes to health systems and policies in European countries receiving refugees and asylum seekers can be better aligned with global efforts to improve the mental health of young displaced immigrants. In general, research findings indicate that there is a need for better awareness, intra‑agency collaboration, and cultural sensitivity toward the mental health needs of this immigrant population. Furthermore, there is also a need for EU countries to better respond to posttraumatic stress disorder and other typical refugee and asylum seeker mental health problems by more closely aligning national policies with global initiatives to improve the mental health of young displaced immigrants.
Ontological addiction theory: Attachment to me, mine, and I.Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; Diouri, Sofiane; Garcia-Campayo, Javier; Kotera, Yasuhiro; Griffiths, Mark D.; University of Derby; Centre for Psychological Research, University of Derby, Derby, UK; Awake to Wisdom Centre for Meditation and Mindfulness Research, Ragusa, Italy; Awake to Wisdom Centre for Meditation and Mindfulness Research, Ragusa, Italy; et al. (Akadémiai Kiadó, 2018-06-07)Background: Ontological addiction theory (OAT) is a novel metaphysical model of psychopathology and posits that human beings are prone to forming implausible beliefs concerning the way they think they exist, and that these beliefs can become addictive leading to functional impairments and mental illness. The theoretical underpinnings of OAT derive from the Buddhist philosophical perspective that all phenomena, including the self, do not manifest inherently or independently. Aims and methods: This paper outlines the theoretical foundations of OAT along with indicative supportive empirical evidence from studies evaluating meditation awareness training as well as studies investigating non-attachment, emptiness, compassion, and loving-kindness. Results: OAT provides a novel perspective on addiction, the factors that underlie mental illness, and how beliefs concerning selfhood are shaped and reified. Conclusion: In addition to continuing to test the underlying assumptions of OAT, future empirical research needs to determine how ontological addiction fits with extant theories of self, reality, and suffering, as well with more established models of addiction.