To reduce stress and anxiety, write your happy thoughts down

https://theconversation.com/to-reduce-stress-and-anxiety-write-your-happy-thoughts-down-99349

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Differential efficacy of written emotional disclosure for subgroups of fibromyalgia patients.

Br J Health Psychol. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2009 Oct 8.
Published in final edited form as:

Objectives

To identify differential health benefits of written emotional disclosure (ED).

Methods

Pain-coping style and demographic characteristics were examined as potential moderators of ED treatment efficacy in a randomized controlled trial with female fibromyalgia patients.

Results

Of three pain-coping styles, only patients classified as interpersonally distressed (ID) experienced significant treatment effects on psychological well-being, pain, and fatigue. Treatment effects on psychological well-being were also significantly greater for patients with a high level of education.

Conclusions

Patients with an ID-coping style and/or high education appear to benefit most from ED.

Beyond the classroom: Writing as therapy

Pages 93-104 | Published online: 09 May 2011

The focus of this article is on the use of therapeutic writing methods in high school English classes. The genres include essay, autobiography, and poetry. Classroom assignments and student work are included with the delineation of specific techniques. A review of the theory and practice of writing is therapy is provided. Implications for further practice and research, including ethical issues, are also addressed.

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/08893675.2011.574355

Lessons from writing sessions: a school-based randomized trial with adolescent orphans in Rwanda.

Eur J Psychotraumatol. 2014 Dec 22;5:24917. doi: 10.3402/ejpt.v5.24917. eCollection 2014.

Treatments for adolescents affected by long-term loss in low- and middle-income countries are lacking. As school-based interventions are cost-efficient and easy to disseminate, an evaluation of this treatment setting for adolescents is worthwhile.

OBJECTIVE:

Examining the effect of a school-based unstructured emotional writing intervention (sensu Pennebaker, group 1) about the loss of a parent to reduce adaptation problems to loss, compared to writing about a hobby (group 2), and non-writing (group 3).

METHOD:

We randomly assigned 14-18-year-old Rwandan orphans to one of the three conditions (n=23 per condition). Before and after the intervention, subjects completed the Prolonged Grief Questionnaire for Adolescents and the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview for Children and Adolescents, Part A, on depression as self-report measures of long-term effects of early parental loss.

RESULTS:

Repeated measures analyses of variance showed no differential effect for any of the three conditions but revealed a significant effect of time at posttest regarding grief severity. Reduction of grief symptoms was significantly higher in subjects with elevated grief. Depressive symptoms showed no significant change from pre- to posttest in the emotional writing condition, whereas they significantly decreased in the control condition.

CONCLUSIONS:

RESULTS imply that unstructured, brief emotional writing might not be indicated in adolescents affected by early parental loss who show severe and long-term distress; a more structured approach seems recommendable.

 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25537814

Emotional expression and physical health: revising traumatic memories or fostering self-regulation?

J Pers Soc Psychol. 1996 Sep;71(3):588-602.

Greenberg MA1, Wortman CB, Stone AA.

Health benefits derived from personal trauma disclosure are well established. This study examined whether disclosing emotions generated by imaginative immersion in a novel traumatic event would similarly enhance health and adjustment. College women, preselected for trauma presence, were randomly assigned to write about real traumas, imaginary traumas, or trivial events. Yoked real-trauma and imaginary-trauma participants wrote about real-trauma participants’ experiences. Imaginary-trauma participants were significantly less depressed than real-trauma participants at immediate posttest, but they were similarly angry, fearful, and happy. Compared with control group participants, both trauma groups made significantly fewer illness visits at 1-month follow-up; however, real-trauma participants reported more fatigue and avoidance than did the other groups. Imaginary-trauma group effects could reflect catharsis, emotional regulation, or construction of resilient possible selves.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8831163

Adapting narrative exposure therapy for Chinese earthquake survivors: a pilot randomised controlled feasibility study.

BMC Psychiatry. 2014 Oct 3;14:262. doi: 10.1186/s12888-014-0262-3.

Zang Y1,2, Hunt N3, Cox T4,5.

Narrative exposure therapy (NET) is a brief, manualised treatment for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It has been shown to have therapeutic benefits for a wide range of individuals and settings. This study, following our previous work applying the original NET in earthquake survivors, aimed to revise NET to be adaptable for treating PTSD after a natural disaster.

METHODS:

A randomised waiting-list controlled study was conducted with 30 adult participants with PTSD who were randomly allocated to NET (n = 10), revised NET (NET-R; n = 10) or a waiting list condition (WL; n = 10). Participants in NET and NET-R received treatment immediately; those in the WL condition received NET-R treatment after a waiting period. All groups were assessed on PTSD, general distress, anxiety, depression, social support, coping and posttraumatic change before and after treatment and three-month follow-up.

RESULTS:

Compared with WL, both NET and NET-R groups showed significant reductions in PTSD and related symptoms. Significant increases were found in posttraumatic growth, active coping and perceived social support. The WL group showed similar improvements after treatment. Further reductions on PTSD symptoms were found at three months, showing that NET-R is as effective as the original NET in treating post-earthquake traumatic symptoms in adult Chinese earthquake survivors.

CONCLUSIONS:

NET-R is a feasible and cost-effective intervention for Chinese earthquake survivors. Further studies are needed to replicate these findings in other survivor populations, and with larger samples and over longer periods. This study highlighted the value of oral narrative approach, which is well-accepted and useful in the context of single natural disaster and lower- income area.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4189751/