Detailed guides to painful problems, treatments & more

Mindfulness backfire

 •  • by Paul Ingraham
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Weekly nuggets of pain science news and insight, usually 100-300 words, with the occasional longer post. The blog is the “director’s commentary” on the core content of a library of major articles and books about common painful problems and popular treatments. See the blog archives or updates for the whole site.

A new study shows that mindfulness training actually made teens’ mental health … worse?! 😬 Jules Evans:

Anyone hoping to ‘solve’ the mental health crisis should think very carefully: am I going to make it worse? Unfortunately, every decade a new intervention becomes the hot new thing, the magic bullet that is going to save the world, and the people promoting it become wide-eyed evangelists. ‘We are saving the world! We are doing such important work!’ Such is their enthusiasm, they never stop to ask, ‘is it possible this intervention will harm some people?’

When you look at the history of mental health, it is littered with failed interventions that turned out to do more harm than good.

Much like the history of all kind of health. Most treatment ideas don’t pan out. They never have, and they never will, because it’s much easier to find ones that are more popular and profitable than actually helpful. And quite a few of those are even worse than ineffective.