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The New Psychology of Depression

We live in a world filled with material wealth, live longer and healthier lives, and yet anxiety, stress, unhappiness, and depression have never been more common. What are the driving forces behind these interlinked global epidemics?

In this series, Professor Mark Williams (Wellcome Trust Principal Research Fellow at Oxford University) and Dr Danny Penman discuss the recent scientific advances that have radically altered our understanding of depression and related disorders. Also discussed is the latest treatments and therapies that are offering hope to those suffering from depression.

Professor Williams co-developed Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), a treatment for anxiety, stress and depression that is at least as effective as drugs at preventing new episodes of depression. It's now one of the preferred treatments for depression recommended by the UK's National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. The same technique, based upon an ancient form of meditation, can also help us cope more effectively with the relentless demands of our increasingly frantic world. Professor Williams and Dr Penman co-authored the bestselling book Mindfulness: Finding Peace in a Frantic World.

# Episode Title Description People Date Media Files
1 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ What is depression? Depression is expected to impose the second biggest health burden globally by 2020; greater even than heart disease, arthritis and many forms of cancer. Professor Mark Williams and Dr Danny Penman discuss the driving forces behind this startling trend. Mark Williams, Danny Penman 21 Oct 2011
  • (36.34 MB)
2 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ How is depression treated? Doctors and psychiatrists once believed that patterns of thinking played little or no role in depression, but this is now known to be wrong. Professor Williams and Dr Danny Penman discuss how the treatment of depression has evolved in recent years. Mark Williams, Danny Penman 21 Oct 2011
  • (32.46 MB)
3 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Can treatments such as Cognitive Therapy help? Depression tends to return even if it has been successfully treated. Scientists now understand why this happens and have developed therapies that reduce the risks of relapse and help lift the burden of depression should it return. Mark Williams, Danny Penman 07 Nov 2011
  • (37.81 MB)
4 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy: A new approach to treating depression Mindfulness therapy is an extremely effective treatment preventing relapse in depression. But what does it entail and how does it work? Mark Williams, Danny Penman 14 Nov 2011
  • (42.77 MB)
5 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy on trial Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) is especially good for people who have suffered the most debilitating forms of depression. The evidence for its effectiveness is overwhelming and continues to grow. Mark Williams, Danny Penman 28 Nov 2011
  • (28.17 MB)
6 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Mindfulness and the brain In this final episode Professor Mark Williams and Danny Penman discuss how imaging studies show that Mindfulness may have numerous profoundly positive effects on the brain. Mark Williams, Danny Penman 05 Dec 2011
  • (31.93 MB)
7 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Introduction to Mindfulness Professor Mark Williams introduces Mindfulness in the first of four short videos in this series. Mark Williams 06 Dec 2011
  • (22.32 MB)
8 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ The Science of Mindfulness Professor Mark Williams examines the neuroscience of mindfulness in the second of four short videos. Mark Williams 06 Dec 2011
  • (27.39 MB)
9 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Supporting Mindfulness Professor Mark Williams explains how you can support the work of the Oxford Mindfulness Centre in the third of four short videos. Mark Williams 06 Dec 2011
  • (25.44 MB)
10 Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales; http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/uk/ Guided Meditation Professor Mark Williams offers a brief guided meditation in the last of four short videos in this series. Mark Williams 06 Dec 2011
  • (26.65 MB)