Blues Begone remains superior to the NHS’s best efforts

December 8, 2014 by  
Filed under Blues Begone, Home

strike nhs

 

I can’t stand by and not argue with the NHS on this. The human cost of depression and anxiety is simply to great for me to say nothing. If you suffer depression and anxiety then please take the time to consider the data and watch my video.

The National Health Service has recently published data on their Improving Access to Psychological Therapies program. The figures are staggering.

The referrals for 2013-14 were:-

1,118,990 human beings in the UK. Of this number:-

217,591 reliably improved although not necessarily clinically improved (cured)

Therefore only 19.4% of those referred were reliably improved. I think that’s rubbish! If I had those figures in my clinic I would consider giving up! Now consider a viable alternative.

Blues Begone

Blues Begone the computerized CBT program does better than the NHS by a long mile. With Blues Begone you never have to see a therapist at all. The whole therapy is done on your own computer and you know what, it’s actually enjoyable! Your Blues Begone talks to you, it learns about you and it remembers what you have done!

NOW compare the NHS data to the Blues Begone clinical data.

Compare this to Blues Begone data

 

To get started on using Blues Begone this week click here and you will receive the DVD as soon as I can ship it to you.

I filmed this talk at the 43rd Congress of the European Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Therapies in Marrakesh, Morocco, September 2013.

Note about terms used

Reliable improvement is often defined by a specific number of points improvement on the questionnaire used to assess the clinical problem. Although that does not mean that the problem has been resolved. As an example using the Beck Depression Inventory a patient might score 30 points indicating severe depression. Reliable improvement is a drop in 10 points but that still leaves the patient on 20 points and in a state of moderate clinical depression.

Cured is defined as the questionnaire scores dropping below the clinical cutoff for the questionnaire.

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The Antidepressant Era: Is England a nation on antidepressant meds?

September 19, 2013 by  
Filed under Antidepressants, Blues Begone

In England a nation on anti-depressatns

Anti-depressant prescribing is far too high

This has been described as the antidepressant era. And you might well wonder if England is a nation on antidepressant meds.

Well, the National institute for Health and Clinical excellence (NICE) have recommended that GP s should only prescribe antidepressant medication for severe cases of depression because it is not cost effective otherwise.

Indeed, the research data do not support the use of antidepressants in mild to moderate cases of depression because they are not very helpful at all.

But clearly GPs feel the need to give a patient something that may have the potential to be useful which has led to this being dubbed the antidepressant era. But of course hope of a treatment through placebo effects is not the best clinical strategy. The NICE guidance is that a talking therapy or a self help tool such as Computerised Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CCBT) be offered.

The Antidepressant Era: How common is depression

I looked into the whole issue of the antidepressant era a bit further so I could lay the bigger picture before you. The lifetime prevalence of mixed anxiety and depression for men,aged between 16 – 74  is estimated to be 9.1% of the population while for women it is 13.6% of the total population (source: Depression: The treatment and management of depression in adults: National Clinical Practice Guideline 90 NICE 2010, p.22).

Yet the level of antidepressant medication prescribing in some cities and towns is far above what might be expected based on these data. GPs are massively over-prescribing antidepressants we know this because the NICE guidance says don’t prescribe unless the depression is severe and we know from the data collected by the National Comorbidity survey that there are many less severely depressed people that prescriptions for anti depressants issued monthly.

Therefore GPs are prescribing antidepressants in preference to the treatment that is supposed to be offered. That is either computerised CBT or talking therapies. I hold the view that GPs are well meaning and committed to the well being of their patients. Therefore they must be over prescribing because they feel they need to, probably through lack of effective alternatives.

The Antidepressant Era: Is the doctor always right?

Is your doctor always right?

Is your doctor always right about the best psychological treatment?

As a member of the general public I rely on my doctor to know what to do if I have a medical problem! I am generally a well informed person (especially about matters psychological) but when it comes to skin problems, or cancer, of heart problems then I am no better informed than the general layman. I reply on my GP. But if the GP cannot offer what is recommended and known to be effective then this reliance is misplaced.

Some primary care trusts in the UK have tiny levels of therapists trained and ready to offer you CBT therapy should you want that as an alternative to antidepressant meds. If you live in one of the poorly provided zones for face to face therapy such as Hillingdon, Croydon, Stockton on Tees, Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale, Luton and many others then you need to take a degree of control over your own mental health issues. There is no alternative if you want to feel better any time soon.

Suppose your GP was doing their best but only had poor options to choose from! In some places in the country there is very little in the way of face to face talking therapies. There are no viable alternatives on offer from the NHS other than a long waiting list. Not a very attractive option when you have a pressing need for help with depression and anxiety.

The Antidepressant Era: Take responsibility for your own mental health

I believe that it is time to take more responsibility for your own mental health care. For cancer I probably say leave it to the doctors and the same with broken bones. But where your own well being, happiness and satisfaction with life are concerned; take more control.

My research, some of which is recently published in the journal Primary Care Today (Autumn 2013, pp28-29 Treating Depression – Are Therapists Out of Date?) shows that when you take control over your own depression or anxiety treatment you can finish with antidepressants, achieve good mental health and remain well.

Data from the article showed that Blues Begone was able to remove  60% of users from the clinical depression category (they were cured) and 50% of users from the clinical anxiety category (cured of anxiety). In addition it helped others make substantial clinical gains.

When we use the broader definition of clinical outcome favoured by the IAPT Talking Therapies organisation then we can state that with Blues Begone 70% of depressed users achieved clinically significant change and 60% of anxious users achieved clinically significant change.

There is a power in committing to and taking control over your own well-being that puts your efforts into stellar orbit. What you can achieve is only limited by your commitment to the process of feeling good again.

The Antidepressant Era: Blues Begone

Blues Begone

Blues Begone is an effective treatment for depression and anxiety

Blues Begone is a computerised CBT program that delivers 30 sessions of CBT therapy to you over a periods of 8 – 12 weeks. Blues Begone is usually delivered on a DVD that holds the program. You install it once and then it starts to learn about you. Blues Begone creates a unique treatment Roadmap to Recovery that takes you all the way from depression to wellness.

All you have to do is a little bit every day. Furthermore Blues Begone is engaging and interesting. See the comments of users who were interviewed after completing the program. They really enjoyed using Blues Begone while at the same time recovering from depression and anxiety.

Blues Begone offers a unique money back guarantee. Feel better or your money back.

Money Back Guarantee
Use this link or the button below to gain access to Blues Begone right now.

Blues-Begone-Instant-Access
 

References used in this article

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23553897

http://www.nice.org.uk/nicemedia/live/12329/45896/45896.pdf

 

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How to overcome depression: It’s like learning to drive a car

April 15, 2013 by  
Filed under Blues Begone

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I was once discussing how to overcome depression with my brilliant colleague, Linda, who said, “Overcoming depression is like learning to drive a car.”

how-to-overcome-depression-car

Blues Begone Active Self Help Clinic

Linda used to run the Blues Begone Active Self Help clinic. Blues Begone is part of the NHS provision in Berkshire. It’s a  home based CBT therapy anxiety and depression treatment which contains an active element that we call active self help. It capitalises on the patient’s unique healing capacity.

During Linda’s time at the clinic she saw over 600 NHS patients. This experience gave her a very good understanding of which people would benefit from Blues Begone and learn how to overcome depression, and which ones would take it but never use it.

Recovery from depression is like learning to drive a car

Linda likened recovery from depression to learning to drive a car. She said, “How good would you get and how fast would you progress if you took a driving lesson every night for 30 minutes?  The constant refreshing of what you learned on the previous lesson, the hours of practise devoted to achieving a goal and the sense of progress would almost guarantee a pass first time.”

how-to-overcome-depression-driving
 

Linda’s experience was that progress and recovery is so much better if patients using Blues Begone completed it within two months rather than dipping in to it now and again and sometimes never completing it. This wisdom Linda gained can also be applied to other goals in life that we want to achieve.

This sounds a amazing but it is true; Linda could predict with near certainty that if someone used Blues Begone and did a little bit of the program most days then they would be depression free within 2 months.  And, our follow up data showed they stayed depression free. Take a look!

Can you imagine what it would  feel like to be depression free two months from now?

How to overcome depression: Remember, life is about learning

Life is about learning. Depression and anxiety include a lot of learned behaviour that both causes and maintains them.  Recognising that and reversing the trend, a little bit at a time, is what Blues Begone does.  And that is why it is so successful.  It teaches you a new way to live that gets rid of bad habits of thought and action. Not too different from driving lessons!

How to get a referral

A GP can refer any patient to Talking Therapies and they can be given Blues Begone. The program is then free to the patient.  I mention this because providing a helpful treatment is not the same as a treatment being helpful.

Start using Blues Begone now!

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Ever wondered ‘how long will I live?’

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Will you live to be 100?

Live-to-be-100Have you ever wondered, ‘how long will I live?’ We all have an attraction to the idea that maybe there is a way to see into the future and even to control the future to some extent. One thing is for sure, we are all living longer and as such are going to have more future about which to speculate. Have you thought about living to a hundred?

When you think about how long you can live you’ll realise that living to 100 is not ‘off the wall’ anymore. Many people will do it, maybe even you. Women live longer than men which is nice for them. But we are all likely to live longer than our ancestors, though quantity isn’t everything, there has to be quality of life as well. In fact, in the end, quality might be the most important element. If you are keen to know,’how long will I live’ and find the thought of living to 100 intriguing, then download the attached report and see your probability of living to 100.

I couldn’t resist finding out the answer to ‘how long will I live?’

I was fascinated to see my likelihood of living to be 100. It is about 10% but if you look at the numbers of people living to be 100 it is increasing a very great deal. By the time I get there it is estimated that there will be over 200,000 women at 100 and about 100,000 men. That is a massive increase of today’s rate.

When you think you want to live a long life remember living a long time is not the only concern…it is how you live.

I often make a distinction between destination and journey. You may have a lot more years but you also want them to contribute to a satisfying and enjoyable journey towards 100.

Taking responsibility for your journey

The truth is we cannot know the answer to the question, ‘how long will I live’ nor can we know what will happen to us on our journey. But that does not prevent us from taking what control we can over aspects of our journey. Every day is full of choices and the way we choose them determines our path.

A few years ago a user of the Blues Begone program said… ‘it is amazing I realized that you are only as depressed as your last thought.’  This is an empowering idea because it reveals some of the profound truth behind CBT therapy, when you change the way you think about yourself then you can change your life trajectory.

It is self evident that you have the potential to have more control over your internal world, if you know how to get it and exercise it. And yet anxiety problems and depression problems, which are both very common reveal a loss of psychological control. So, following this theme of taking what control you can how might we have an enjoyable and meaningful life journey?

Look after your mental health

CBT Therapy_1
As a psychologist this is my primary concern. Without good mood then everything else seems much less valuable. Mood disorders like anxiety and depression are very common and yet they are also very treatable. There are various treatment options available but in general I favour those that create a greater knowledge and sense of control over the whole process. Which is why CBT therapy is my favoured approach for helping people to have a good quality of life, it directly focuses on those profound elements that deliver meaningful life.

Meaning in life

Curiously it is not entirely clear if there is a particular type of thought that shortens your life. You might think catastrophic thoughts or worrying thoughts could potentially shorten you life as they create stress and spoil your present moment. However I am not at all sure the data supports this viewpoint. What does seem to be important is creating and maintaining a sense of meaning in life. It does not seem to matter how you do it but strive to find life a meaningful endeavour. The loss of meaning that accompanies depression is therefore problematic. And this is probably why depression can be a life shortening disorder.

Humans come into this life pre-programmed to find meaning in life. We seek it out and we create it from the things we see and do. If you find yourself without meaning in life then this is likely to be a consequence of some faulty thought processes and can be addressed and worked with. Depression treatment, especially in CBT therapy has powerful tools for doing this (for more information see The Mood Control System.

Excessive fearfulness always seen in anxiety problems can also be adequately treated by a comprehensive anxiety therapy (to start you off you’ll want to watch my film, What is anxiety? How does it affect you? below:

Psychological research has put a lot of resources into figuring out how to be happy and live a worthwhile life. Here are some of the things we know for sure.

Do work you find meaningful

(Bear in mind that no one ever lay on their deathbed and said ‘I wish I had worked harder’)

Make an effort to derive meaning and purpose from your work. If at all possible enjoy what you do, This usually follows from taking a sense of satisfaction from the work. However what it really means is to take a certain amount of responsibility for what you do. It is possible you work in a horrible job that you hate. But this is not conducive to a long and happy life. It is stressful and fills your days with time spent in an environment you dislike. Therefore change it. If necessary invest in yourself and your education or skills to enable to you do something you really find fulfilling. There are many careers in the world that people find engaging and life enhancing, or at the very least interesting and stimulating. These surely are the goals of a working life. But only you can take the necessary steps to ensure it happens. So be responsible for you working life.

A bit of my story

When I was a teenager I took my first job which was an apprenticeship, in a heavy industry. I really disliked the job but what I disliked even more was the sense that the management was responsible for everything and the worker was there to do as much as possible for as little as possible. This was a perspective that both disempowered the worker but also made it hard for people to develop their skills and expertise; although many did, but it made it hard to enjoy the process of being expert and knowledgeable. In essence I don’t think it matters too much what you do but make sure you gain some satisfaction and a sense of mastery from it.

Stay as fit as practical but don’t overdo it!

First things first. A lot of exercise can be bad for you!

I have spoken about studies in the past that have documented the beneficial effects of moderate exercise on longevity. The days of most of us doing manual jobs are gone and if you, like me sit down for most of the day then you like me have a problem. The trouble for me is that what we call exercise now is institutionalized. We use gyms and have workouts when perhaps what we need to do is to incorporate exercise into our daily lives. Walking as much as possible and using our muscles as much as we can within the environment in which we live. In the UK gardening is a great fair weather exercise and combines both movement and interest so it is fantastic.

Find things you can do that are interesting to you as opposed to simply being exercise. Surely if you can engage in a hobby activity that is also exercising then so much the better. The fact is that the alternative of not staying as fit as practical is you lose some of your longevity but as with all things in life moderation is the key. If you enjoy hard exercise like marathons then good for you. But if you’re concerned with the question, ‘how long will I live,’ they will not lengthen your life and may even cause you longer term problems.

Relationships are important

People usually say that the most important things in their lives are relationships with others. We are social animals and what we value is the quality of the time spent with people who mean something to us. If you think about what makes an experience meaningful to you it is likely to be the sense of emotion you get from it. A film that engages your emotions is much more easily remembered than one that does not. The same is true for relationships and the experiences we have when in relationships.

Relationships are the most meaningful processes we have and they enrich our lives. Of course they have to be decent relationships to do that. We don’t want massively stressful ones or ones that are burdensome to us. Therefore following the theme to taking responsibility for our lives see what you can you do today to make your relationship deeper and richer. And if you don’t have one put some effort in engaging another human being in a conversation that is meaningful (not just greetings and stock phrases.)

There is also one important relationship we must not overlook. It is the relationship you have with yourself. Many clients I have seen over the years have been very conflicted within themselves. They may hold two or more positions about what they think about themselves, the world and even their own future. They are both highly competent and yet very self critical causing a lot of anger and internal conflict. If you experience this it is often a precursor to symptoms of depression and anxiety but is entirely amenable to a comprehensive depression treatment or anxiety therapy such as CBT therapy so while it may feel impossible to resolve it’s actually very resolvable. 

Every day you can make choices that change the trajectory of your life’s journey for the better. This is empowering information but only if you take the choices that are presented almost every moment of every day. Taking more control of your life is simply about seeing what is already there and making informed choices rather than letting chance determine what happens next.

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