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Our catalogue of research studies, including those in progress and those recently completed at the Spectrum Centre

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Current Research

Integrated Bipolar Parenting Intervention (IBPI) Study

The aim of this study is to assess whether providing online parenting support (IBPI) for parents with bipolar disorder leads to their children having fewer behavioural and emotional problems. Researchers also want to know whether the online support helps parents feel less stressed and more confident about their parenting and have fewer mood problems. If successful, the IBPI can be made widely available for parents with bipolar disorder.

Read more about Integrated Bipolar Parenting Intervention
Parent and child silhouetted against beach sunset

Improving Peer Online Forums (IPOF) Study

Individuals with mental health issues are increasingly turning online for support, yet how online support works and the impact of going online for support is not well understood. The aim of this project is to improve the uptake, safety and usefulness of these communities by developing a theory as to how these online forums work, for why, why and in what contexts.

Read more about Improving Peer Online Forums
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The Library of Lived Experience for Mental Health in the North

Living libraries help to facilitate conversations between people with lived experience of mental health difficulties (books) to share their expertise with others facing similar difficulties, carers and healthcare staff (readers). The aim of this study is to develop a programme theory about the likely impacts of the living library and the mechanisms by which it can help people to share their lived experiences. An implementation plan will be co-designed with individuals with lived experience of mental health issues and previous living libraries, which will lay out how to run a living library for mental health in the North.

Living Library
Black bookshelf with rows of books

Mouth Matters in Mental Health: Feasibility trial

People with severe mental illness often have problems with their teeth and gums and are more likely to have missing, filled, and decayed teeth than people without severe mental illness. Having poor oral health impacts a lot of everyday activities like eating, speaking and smiling. However, very few people with SMI attend regular dental appointments. The Mouth Matters in Mental Health feasibility trial wants to help people with severe mental illness to access dental care by involving link workers who will help people to book, plan, and attend regular dental appointments and support patients to apply for financial support.

Dentist and patient in surgery

The Right to Smile Consensus Statement – UKRI Closing the Gap

People experiencing severe mental ill health are at increased risk of problems with their teeth and gums. They also experience difficulties accessing early and effective dental care. The Right to Smile Consensus Statement outlines 11 five year targets for addressing these inequalities. It advocates that poor oral health should not be an inevitable consequence of severe mental ill health.

Right to Smile logo image

The Mental Imagery for Suicidality in Students Trial (MISST)

One of Spectrum's recently completed projects, the Mental Imagery for Suicidality in Students Trial (MISST) aimed to explore the feasibility of evaluating a new talking therapy for reducing suicidal thoughts in university students.

The Mental Imagery for Suicidality in Students Trial (MISST)
Image logo for the MISST trial

REACT – NIHR CLAHRC North West Coast

Here at Spectrum we have developed an online Relatives Education and Coping Toolkit (REACT) to support relatives of people who have had experiences of psychosis and bipolar disorder.

The toolkit was developed collaboratively with relatives, clinicians and researchers to provide information and emotional support to carers as recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

The aim of the project is to explore how REACT can move from being a research project, to becoming part of a clinical service that is available widely for relatives as part of their routine NHS care. This will be achieved by working in collaboration and developing networks with key stakeholders, clinicians and Commissioners to explore most viable ways of offering and implementing REACT within NHS Trusts and CCG areas. Learning from this project will be widely shared, and will provide information about best ways to narrow the research practice gap and ensure that treatment that can improve the health and wellbeing of people are implemented and accessible within NHS Trusts.

As part of this project a free knowledge exchange event was held in Manchester on the 9th July 2019 titled ‘Mental health carers: The Way Forward’.

For more information about the project please contact Fiona Lobban

Recovery focused CBT for older adults with bipolar disorder (RfCBT-OA)

Bipolar disorder (BD) persists into older adulthood and there is evidence that a proportion of individuals will experience late onset BD which begins after 50 years of age.

There has been very little research or service development for older adults with BD, particularly with respect to psychological therapies.

There is evidence for the effectiveness of such interventions for BD in adults of working age. A recent study from our group at the Spectrum Centre has shown a recovery focused CBT intervention (RfCBT) for individuals with BD (below 65 years) is beneficial in terms of both functional and symptomatic outcomes (Jones et al, 2014). This therapy has now been adapted through rigorous literature review and extensive service user involvement to meet the needs of an older adult population.

The aim of this study is to explore how interested people are in this new type of therapy, what aspects of the therapy are most useful, and the impact it might have on a range of outcomes including recovery, quality of life, functioning and symptoms.

Initially, participants will be asked about their experience of mood fluctuations, including questions about symptoms, quality of life and coping style. Participants are then be randomly allocated to either receive an individual, six month (up to 14 session), recovery focused psychological therapy with a trained clinician or to continue with treatment a usual. All participants will be followed up at 3 monthly intervals for the 12 month study period.

We are looking for approximately 50 people to take part in the study who live in the Northwest, have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder and are over the age of 60.

If you're interested in learning more about the study or taking part please contact Elizabeth Tyler:
Email - | Telephone - 07967 837938

Recently Completed Research

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Past Research Projects

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