1st Edition

Prevention in Mental Health Care Time for a new approach

By Dorien Nieman Copyright 2017
    194 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    194 Pages 13 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    Prevention in Mental Health Care: Time for a new approach focuses on the limitations in current psychiatric practice and research. Many professionals working in mental health care, as well as patients with psychiatric symptoms, are dissatisfied with what is currently offered by the discipline, with respect to the diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders.

    This book discusses possibilities and opportunities for change, and is the first to combine recent scientific research results with insights from philosophy and art. Illustrating these points with elaborate case studies, Prevention in Mental Health Care promotes a deeper understanding and a new model of mental health care, with an emphasis on prevention and natural recovery. 

    Prevention in Mental Health Care will be of use to qualified or trainee practitioners, clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, occupational therapists and nurses working with the current classification systems and treatment methods in psychiatry. Furthermore, the book will appeal to students, lecturers and researchers, as well as those with a general interest in mental health care.

    Introduction  Part I: Limitations in current psychiatric practice and research  1. Categorical classification  2. Scientific research and its omissions  3. The nature of social contact  4. Mystic experiences  5. The mind-brain problem  Part II: Possibilities and opportunities for change in psychiatry  6. Transdiagnostic phenomenological symptom-dimensions  7. Biological markers in psychiatric disorders  8. From clinical staging and profiling to prevention in psychiatry   9. Evidence for preventive treatment in psychiatry  10. The stress-relaxation continuum  11. Redefinition of health and illness in psychiatry  12. The authentic self  Part III: Case examples  13. Thomas  14. Lizzie  15. Martin  Conclusions and future directions


    Dorien Nieman is associate professor and Head of the Cognition lab at the Department of Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands, where she has worked since 1996. She has (co)authored more than 80 articles in (inter)national journals, several book-chapters and a book on topics such as psychotherapy, biomarkers, prediction and prevention of psychiatric disorders.

    'Until recently, prevention in mental health was regarded as something for the future and, without clear biological markers, probably a fool’s gold. Well, the future has arrived! This scholarly and well-argued book by Dorien Nieman covers the philosophical, scientific and pragmatic aspects of this new science. We learn from the history of public health that much disease was preventable without necessarily understanding all the biological and environmental risk factors, so long as we apply basic principles and pragmatic thinking alongside the available science.

    This book is testimony to that and sketches out what a prevention paradigm might look like and illustrates with great examples. It is an outstanding contribution and will be widely read.' - Max Birchwood, Research Director, YouthSpace & Professor of Youth Mental Health, University of Warwick 

    'In this excellent book, Dorien Nieman reflects on the essential problems of contemporary psychiatry, eloquently bringing together philosophical, clinical and neuroscientific expertise. Dorien Nieman pleas scientifically for a dimensional perspective in psychiatry. Dimensions may be more difficult to grasp, but are more apt to reality. Clinically, she pleas for a more individual approach. We need to see the persons again behind diagnoses. Nieman illustrates nicely how these paradigm shifts may advance our troubled discipline. Psychiatry is notoriously difficult and fatiguing since we have to think and reflect continually on the possibilities and boundaries of our discipline. Dorien Nieman testifies with this book of her capacity of critical contemplation and is an example to all of us clinicians, philosophers and neuroscientists.' - Damiaan Denys, Professor of Psychiatry, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

    'How can mental health transform itself so that these benefits can flow to people with mental illness and to society more broadly? Dorien Nieman addresses these issues in her ambitious new book on prevention and early intervention. She captures the views of many philosophers and shows how psychiatry, above all other medical disciplines, can realize a level of personalized medicine much greater than any other, in her discussion of the "authentic self".' – Patrick McGorry, Professor of Youth Mental Health, University of Melbourne and Executive Director of Orygen Youth Health, Australia (from the foreword)

    ‘Dorien Nieman belongs to the rare experts in psychiatric research who venture to publish not only scholarly articles but an erudite book as well. Whereas many focus on narrow research questions, Nieman does not eschew the basic topics of her field. Prevention in Mental Health Care: Time for a new approach is brave, comprehensive and profound. The volume candidly faces the vexed issues of psychiatric research and clinical practice. It does so in a critical yet inoffensive way, while also proposing possible solutions.’ - Professor Trudy Dehue, Philosopher and sociologist of science (more specifically, psychiatry and psychology), University of Groningen

    "Prevention in Mental Health Care: Time for a new approach by Professor Dorien Nieman attempts to find a way that is empirically valid and practically useful. The first part of the book comprises short chapters concerning the limitations of current psychiatric practice and research, the second part addresses opportunities for change, and the third describes three illustrative cases in detail. In total, this book spans less than 200 pages, but the writing is succinct and attention-holding." Alex Langford, The Lancet Psychiatry

    'Prevention in Mental Health Care provides key insights into redesigning mental health services. It describes current limitations and shows the promise and potential impact of emerging neurocognitive enhancements to mental health assessment and treatment.' Patrick J. Fowler, APA PsycCRITIQUES