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Health - Psychology - 24.10.2022
Get enough sleep and live longer!
People who follow sleep duration recommendations are likely to live longer, according to a study by researcher Julie Carrier, professor in the Psychology Department, and her colleagues. Are you an adult aged between 18 and 64 who sleeps 7-9 hours a day? Or are you over 65 and sleep 7-8 hours a day? Following these Canadian recommendations on sleep duration could increase your life expectancy.

Life Sciences - Psychology - 20.10.2022
Genes that influence dyslexia
Genes that influence dyslexia
A large-scale gene study identifies series of DNA variants linked to dyslexia An international team of scientists, including researchers at the University of Edinburgh and the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen (Netherlands), has for the first time pinpointed a large number of genes that are reliably associated with dyslexia.

Psychology - 18.10.2022
Opinion: Social media - how to protect your mental health
Opinion: Social media - how to protect your mental health
Writing in The Conversation, Dr Ruth Plackett (UCL Epidemiology & Health) synthesises the results of research looking into how to best protect one's mental health while navigating the volatile social media landscape. The recent inquest into the death of British teenager Molly Russell in 2017 has concluded that the 14-year-old "died from an act of self harm while suffering from depression and the negative effects of online content".

Psychology - 18.10.2022
Transparent face masks restore emotional understanding, but not empathy
Transparent face masks restore emotional understanding, but not empathy
Mask-wearing has become the norm for many since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite their effectiveness in preventing the spread of viruses, opaque masks impair our ability to understand and convey emotions, a group of McGill researchers has found. McGill researchers Jelena Ristic , Full Professor in the Department of Psychology, and Sarah McCrackin , Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Psychology, discuss whether transparent masks reduce the negative impacts on social communication.

Health - Psychology - 18.10.2022
COVID-19 effects on cognition
COVID-19 effects on cognition
A new long-term study led by neuroscientists at Western University shows short-term symptoms from COVID-19, like laboured breathing, fever, and dry cough, may just be the proverbial tip of the iceberg. The findings, published by Cell Reports Medicine , reveal short and possible long-term cognitive impairments among people who had COVID-19.

Psychology - Environment - 17.10.2022
Birdsong is good for mental health
Birdsong is good for mental health
Study investigates the influence of birdsong on mood, paranoia, and cognition When you next hear cheerful twittering of birds, you should stop and listen. Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and the Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf have shown that birdsong reduces anxiety and irrational thoughts.

Psychology - Health - 14.10.2022
Talk therapy could improve mental health of people with dementia
People living with dementia may benefit from talking therapies available on the NHS, if they suffer from anxiety or depression, finds a new study led by UCL researchers. Mental health problems such as depression and anxiety are very common in people with dementia, and previous studies estimate that 38% of people with mild dementia are affected by the conditions.

Psychology - Health - 14.10.2022
Pioneering clinical trial to test virtual reality psychotherapy for young people with depression
Pioneering clinical trial to test virtual reality psychotherapy for young people with depression
Some studies reveal worrying numbers of young people with symptoms of depression. For this reason, a clinical trial coordinated by Guillem Feixas, professor at the Faculty of Psychology and the Institute of Neurosciences ( UBNeuro ) of the UB, and Adrián Montesano, lecturer and researcher at the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences at the Open University of Catalonia , is trying to find new tools to improve psychological treatment for this population.

Psychology - 14.10.2022
Too much motivation affects our decision-making
Too much motivation affects our decision-making
A team from the UNIGE, in collaboration with EPFL, reveals how motivation influences the neural circuits of perception and impacts decision-making. In a good or a bad mood, focused or distracted, in dire or no need: our internal states directly influence our perceptions and decision-making. While the role of motivation on the performance of behavioural tasks has been known for more than a century - thanks to the work of psychologists Robert Yerkes and John Dilligham Dodson - its precise effect on the brain remains unclear.

Environment - Psychology - 13.10.2022
Birdsong is good for mental health
Birdsong is good for mental health
Study examines influence of birdsong on mood, paranoia and cognition If you hear chirpy birdsong coming soon, you should stop and listen. Because birdsong has been shown to alleviate anxiety and irrational thoughts. This is what researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf have discovered.

Social Sciences - Psychology - 12.10.2022
Assessments of thinking skills may misrepresent poor, inner-city children in the US
Assessments of thinking skills may misrepresent poor, inner-city children in the US
Some of the assessment tools which measure children's thinking skills in the US may have provided inaccurate information about poor, urban students because they are modelled on wealthier - mostly white - populations. There is a big question around how we measure executive functions: are we actually using the right tools?

Psychology - Life Sciences - 11.10.2022
Preventing dementia: meditation still under investigation
Preventing dementia: meditation still under investigation
Following a meditation programme for 18 months can improve attention and socio-emotional regulation capacities for people over 65, finds a new study co-led by a UCL researcher. But the researchers did not identify any significant impact of meditation on the volume and functioning of the brain structures studied, in comparison to control groups, so the potential to prevent dementia remains unclear, they report in JAMA Neurology .

Psychology - Life Sciences - 10.10.2022
Preventing dementia in seniors: meditation still under investigation
Meditation as a tool to prevent dementia and improve the mental health and well-being of elderly people is one of the avenues explored by the European Medit-Ageing research program, coordinated by Inserm. As part of this program, researchers from Inserm and Université de Caen Normandie, in collaboration with French and European teams, observed the impact of 18 months of meditation training on certain brain structures involved in regulating attention and emotions in healthy people over 65.

Psychology - 10.10.2022
Depressed people are just more realistic, right? Not so, says Berkeley study
Are depressed people simply more realistic in judging how much they control their lives, while others view the world through rose-colored lenses, living under the illusion that they have more control than they do? That's the general idea behind -depressive realism,- a theory that has held sway in science and popular culture for more than four decades.

Health - Psychology - 07.10.2022
’Mmm... carrots!’ How to teach toddlers to love vegetables
Parents of small children can usually get away with serving apple sauce, especially if it's the chunk-free variety. Try putting something green on their plate, however, and those little teeth invariably clamp shut. Teaching toddlers and pre-schoolers a healthy diet is not easy. But children are not preordained to dislike vegetables, say PhD candidates Anouk van den Brand and Britt van Belkom.

Health - Psychology - 06.10.2022
Schizophrenia may increase dementia risk by 2.5 times
People with psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia are 2.5 times more likely than those without a psychotic disorder to eventually develop dementia, according to a review of evidence led by UCL researchers. The new systematic review and meta-analysis, published in Psychological Medicine , found that psychotic disorders may have a stronger link with dementia than other mental health disorders like depression or anxiety.

Psychology - Health - 06.10.2022
New function of the cerebellum
New function of the cerebellum
The cerebellum is known primarily for regulation of movement. Researchers at the University of Basel have now discovered that the cerebellum also plays an important role in remembering emotional experiences. The study appears in the journal PNAS. October 2022 Both positive and negative emotional experiences are stored particularly well in memory.

Social Sciences - Psychology - 05.10.2022
Eliminating sexual violence could reduce teenage mental ill health
Eliminating sexual violence could reduce teenage mental ill health
The prevalence of serious mental health problems among 17-year-olds could drop by as much as 16.8% for girls and 8.4% for boys if they were not subjected to sexual violence, such as sexual assault and harassment, according to estimates from UCL researchers. The new research, published today in The Lancet Psychiatry , uses information from 9,971 young people born across the UK in 2000-02, who are being followed by the Millennium Cohort Study.

Psychology - 04.10.2022
The right computer password can offer a mental health 'booster'
The right computer password can offer a mental health ’booster’
Arts & Humanities Erik Rolfsen The characters you type out over and over again into your digital devices may impact your mental health more than you might expect. A new UBC and NYU Shanghai research study has found self-affirming written passwords - such as "MusicCalmsMeDown@123"- can offer a boost to one's mental health.

Health - Psychology - 03.10.2022
New study on biological detectability of depression.
New study on biological detectability of depression.
More than 5% of all Austrians suffer from depression. However, little is known about the biological basis of this disease. In a new study, scientists led by Alexander Karabatsiakis from the Institute of Psychology at the University of Innsbruck have now observed a strong correlation between the severity of depression and the level of the stress hormone cortisol in hair.