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Title: The effects of mindfulness on paranoia, worry, rumination, and self-knowledge organisation
Author: Pinto, Anna
ISNI:       0000 0004 8499 7273
Awarding Body: Royal Holloway, University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2017
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Paranoia, one of the positive symptoms of psychosis, is also highly prevalent and distressing in non-clinical populations which suggests that clinical paranoia exists on a continuum with non-clinical paranoia. Psychological interventions are therefore needed for distressing nonclinical paranoia and as an analogue for clinical paranoia. Mindfulness interventions that use Insight Meditation (IM), which focuses on observation and acceptance of internal experiences in a non-judgemental way while maintaining a focus on breathing, have shown promising effects in psychosis. Two preliminary studies suggest that Loving Kindness Meditation (LKM), which focuses on increasing social connection and kindness toward oneself and others, is effective for negative symptoms of psychosis. However, little is known about the effects of mindfulness interventions on non-clinical paranoia and its associated processes. Moreover, no study to date has compared IM to LKM in clinical or non-clinical paranoia. The current study used a randomised design to compare the effects of IM and LKM on paranoia outcomes (i.e. frequency of paranoid thoughts, associated distress, and state paranoia), on processes associated with paranoia (i.e. worry, rumination, repetitive negative thinking), and on a selfrelated process that is proposed to be relevant to paranoia, that is self-knowledge compartmentalisation. One hundred individuals from a non-clinical population who scored high on measures of trait paranoia and paranoia distress were randomised to practise either IM or LKM for 14 days. Outcomes were measured pre-intervention, post-intervention, and at 1-month follow-up. No significant differences were found between LKM and IM on the examined outcomes. Both mindfulness conditions showed highly significant improvements on all the outcomes from baseline to post-intervention, with the effects remaining highly significant at 1-month follow-up. The effect sizes were large for paranoia outcomes, medium for worry, rumination and repetitive negative thinking, and small for self-knowledge compartmentalisation. The findings demonstrate the potential of IM and LKM as psychological interventions for distressing non-clinical paranoia. They also highlight the importance of verifying their effectiveness for persecutory delusions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: mindfulness ; paranoia ; worry ; rumination ; self