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These research summaries and updates are written by our student members based on their own interests and relevance to our audiences' interests. Through regular updates and engaging summaries, we hope to increase student engagement and academic discussions in the fields of art, psychology, and mental health


Walking In Gallery
Treating Psychosis: Can Art Therapy Effectively Reduce Problematic Symptoms Associated with Psychosis?  
By Emily Weekes
Primarily based on Chaidemenaki and Giannouli (2023) - No-man land art voices: A quasi-experimental pilot study on the effects of art therapy on psychotic patients of a Psychiatric Day Hospital in Greece.
Talking During Recess

Depression and Trauma: How Art Therapy can be combined with Play and Talking Therapies   
By Jaimie Leung
Primarily based on Woollett et al., (2020) - Trauma-informed art and play therapy: Pilot study outcomes for children and mothers in domestic violence shelters in the United States and South Africa 
Art Class

What Makes An Art Piece More Enjoyable? 
By Leila Lai
Primarily based on Vessel et al. (2023) - Self-Relevance Predicts the Aesthetic Appeal of Real and Synthetic Artworks Generated via Neural Style Transfer
Photography Gear

Capturing Recovery: The Role of Photographic Methods in Mental Health Research
By Clover Zhang 
Primarily based on Milasan et al. (2020) - The big picture of recovery: a systematic review on the evidence of photography-based methods in researching recovery from mental distress
Sketching Artist

Is Art Therapy an Effective Treatment for Eating Disorders?
By Emily Weekes 
Primarily based on Griffin et al. (2023)
Art therapy and eating disorders: A mixed methods feasibility study
Playing Music for Baby

Research Talk Summary - Sing for me Mama 

By Clover Zhange
Based on Dr. Nina Polytimou's Talk - Musical Interactions and their impact on Language and socio-emotional development


New research investigates the effectiveness of perinatal mental health services


King's College London-- Howard, et al.
DOI: 10.3310/CCHT9881
29 July 2022

Women who had been diagnosed with depression in early pregnancy were invited to participate in a behavioural therapy (CBT)-based self-help tailored for women in pregnancy. Findings suggested that tailored guided self-help may be more cost-effective. It is demonstrated that women who received the tailored intervention had a decrease in depressive symptoms, compared to those receiving standard care.

Gaming does not appear harmful to mental health, unless the gamer can't stop


University of Oxford-- Vuorre et al.
DOI: 10.1098/rsos.220411
27 July 2022

While previous studies on gaming often analyse diary entries written by gamers, this study collects gaming data directly from 40,000 gamers among major gaming platforms such as Animal Crossing and Apex Legends. The findings revealed that the quality of gaming (but not the duration) affected the mental well-being of gamers. In specific, gamers who gamed for fun benefited from gaming while those who gamed because they feel obliged to felt worse after gaming. This study opened the window to better understand the link between gaming and mental health.

Genetic study provides evidence that alcohol accelerates biological aging


University of Oxford-- Topiwala et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41380-022-01690-9
26 July 2022

In order to study the relationship between alcohol consumption and biological ageing, researchers employed a genetic approach named Mendelian Randomisation (MR) on the data collected from 245,000 participants in the UK Biobank. The results suggested that drinking more than 17 units per week could reduce the length of telomere, a DNA sequence responsible for the protection of chromosomes (thus usually considered an indicator of biological ageing). Although the findings did not directly imply a causal relationship between alcohol consumption and ageing, the study highlighted a strong association between alcohol consumption and biological ageing.

Define affordability to ensure artists have access to studios, new report says


King's College London-- Scott
21 July 2022

Thirty senior representatives from Greater London Authority, local authorities, and arts organisations were consulted for the ‘Artists’ Workspace consultation report’ by Dr Scott. Some big challenges for providing affordable artist workspaces were identified, which included building stronger connections with the local communities that studios locate in. The report provides valuable insights for stakeholders to achieve the aim of securing affordable artist workspaces in London.

King's multi-media project showcases young people's hopes and fears for the future


King's College London-- Williams & Tembo
20 July 2022

The Utopic Now! project, launched in 2019, has enabled young people in London to explore their hopes and fears in life via plays about the future guided by a multidisciplinary team of experts. The Covid pandemic led to a parallel project named Dystopia Now!-- a project offering young people a chance to share their experience during the pandemic in a virtual format (Minecraft). Both projects are included in the book, COVID-19 and Co-production in Health and Social Care Research, Policy, and Practice (Volume 2).

No evidence that depression is caused by low serotonin levels, finds comprehensive review


University College London-- Moncrieff et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41380-022-01661-0
20 July 2022

Despite the widely-believed notion of 'depression is caused by a chemical imbalance', the recent review on the efficacy of antidepressants suggested otherwise. The study reviewed different claims supporting the efficacy of antidepressants, from research focusing on gene variation associated with serotonin levels to experimental manipulation of serotonin levels. While the findings suggested that the cause of depression is not simply a chemical imbalance, they highlighted the significance of stressful events on the onset of depression.

Covid infection doubles risk of mental health and financial problems in older adults


University College London-- Iob et al.
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2200816119
18 July 2022

Data from 5,146 adults between the ages of 52 and 74 were collected to analyse the immediate and long-run effects of Covid-19 on aspects such as mental health and wellbeing. The results demonstrated that between June and July 2020, 49% of older adults with a potential Covid-19 infection had clinically significant depressive symptoms, compared with 22% of those without infection. This finding suggest the long-lasting psychological impact of Covid-19 and provided implications for policymakers to pay extra attention to vulnerable groups.

Early life infection increases sensitivity to pain in newborn babies


University of Oxford-- Cobo et al.
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-022-31505-y
14 July 2022

Researchers looked into the relationship between early life inflammation and sensitivity of the sensory nervous system using EEG and EMG. The results showed that the heightened sensitivity towards tactile and uncomfortable stimulation remains after neonatal inflammation, suggesting that early-life immune dysfunction could affect pain sensitivity in adulthood.

NGOs must rapidly evolve to stay relevant, say NGO leaders


University of Oxford-- Leedham et al.
14 July 2022

Using surveys and interviews, researchers from the University of Oxford explored the concerns and challenges faced by international non-governmental organisations (INGOs). The leaders of INGOs mentioned how immediate large-scale changes are needed for organisations to cope with the humanitarian needs stemming from the fast-changing national relations (e.g. Russian-Ukraine crisis). Also, INGOs would have to get rid of the limits posed by the expectations and demands of donors as well as internal affairs.

School-based mindfulness training programme fails to improve young people’s mental health


University of Oxford and University of Cambridge-- Kuyken et al.
DOI: 10.1136/ebmental-2021-300396
13 July 2022

The largest research project on mindfulness training in schools, MY Resilience In ADolescence (MYRIAD) study programme, tested the effectiveness of such training among 28,000 children (aged 11-14) over the past eight years. The study did not find a significant effect on students' mental well-being but short-term benefits on school culture and reduced teachers' burnout rate.

Adolescents more vulnerable to cannabis addiction but no other mental health risks


University College London-- Lawn et al.
DOI: 10.1177/02698811221108956
1 July 2022

The findings suggested that adolescents who consume cannabis have no difference in the risk of having higher levels of subclinical depression or anxiety, compared to adults who use cannabis, nor were they more vulnerable than adult users to the associations with psychotic-like symptoms. However, another finding is that adolescents might be more vulnerable to cannabis addiction due to factors such as an increased disruption to relationships with others.

Functional Somatic Symptoms and Emotion Regulation in Children & Adolescents


Johannes Gutenberg University-- Jungmann et al.
DOI: 10.32872/cpe.4299
30 June 2022

Functional Somatic Symptoms (FSS) refer to symptoms that do not have sufficient organic explanation and are common in childhood and adolescence. The study asked children and their parents to complete questionnaires on children’s FSS and adaptive and maladaptive emotion regulation. The results show that rumination (constant, repetitive thoughts about a problem or situation) and alexithymia (inability to identify and describe emotions) are significant predictors of FSS in children and adolescents.


Arts for Mental Health is a platform and community for students to share credible resources. Contents and activities provided by us are not substitutes for professional treatment. Please seek professional help if needed. Contents on the 'Article' and 'Research' Page and subapges page are all student work. Though all articles are peer-reviewed by students and our team strives to provide the most accurate and up-to-date information, we cannot guarantee they are 100% perfect and accurate. You are advised to use the reference lists provided under each article for more information.

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