265 episodes

The show on how we think, feel and behave. Claudia Hammond delves into the evidence on mental health, psychology and neuroscience.

All in the Mind BBC Radio 4

    • Health & Fitness
    • 4.3 • 399 Ratings

The show on how we think, feel and behave. Claudia Hammond delves into the evidence on mental health, psychology and neuroscience.

    The psychology of hope

    The psychology of hope

    In this episode of All in the Mind, we’re at the 2024 Northern Ireland Science Festival where we’re discussing the psychology of hope.
    With a live audience in Belfast’s Metropolitan Arts Centre, Claudia Hammond is joined by a panel of experts well-versed in the topic of hope: Dr Karen Kirby, senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Ulster; Dr Kevin Mitchell, associate professor of genetics and neuroscience at Trinity College Dublin; and author Sinéad Moriarty.
    We take a look at the role of hope in medical scenarios, if we can learn to be hopeful, and how we can hold onto hope in the modern world. And we take questions from our audience – including whether or not we should all just lower our expectations.
    Presenter: Claudia Hammond
    Producers: Lucy Taylor and Sophie Ormiston
    Audio supervisors: Andrew Saunderson and Bill Maul
    Production coordinator: Siobhan Maguire
    Editor: Holly Squire

    • 27 min
    Seasonality, learning to hope, and the gender citation gap

    Seasonality, learning to hope, and the gender citation gap

    Are you looking forward to the lighter evenings of summer? Perhaps you're already feeling different as the seasons change and the green shoots of spring arrive? This week on All in the Mind we're taking a look at how the seasons affect our moods, thoughts and behaviours. Claudia Hammond speaks to Michael Varnum from Arizona State University about what the research says. Cognitive neuroscientist Sophie Scott, joins Claudia in the studio to ask what it means for the science of psychology if the seasons have such a profound effect.
    And we hear from a project in Northern Ireland that teaches people to have hope. Marie Dunne was inspired to set up the project, called Resilio, after witnessing the success of a programme designed to teach hope in schools. Based on that programme Resilio developed their own hope courses for adults. We hear from people who have benefitted from those courses, and from people who run them, about how to find hope.
    Finally, Sophie Scott discusses a new study which found that male psychology scholars were less likely to think of female scholars when asked to name eminent researchers in that field. Could it explain the gender cap in citation rates?
    Presenter: Claudia Hammond
    Producers: Lorna Stewart & Lucy Taylor
    Studio Manager: Tim Heffer
    Production Coordinator: Siobhan Maguire
    Editor: Holly Squire

    • 28 min
    How nightmares link to real-life fears, and new research tackling post-cardiac arrest PTSD

    How nightmares link to real-life fears, and new research tackling post-cardiac arrest PTSD

    If you've been cured of a phobia, say of spiders, and finally made your peace with the hairy-legged beasties in real life - why might you then start having vivid nightmares about them?
    Following an email plea for an explanation of this mystery Claudia Hammond enlists Dr Lampros Perogamvros, a psychiatrist from the University of Geneva who’s done extensive research around dreams and nightmares, to help answer listener Lesley's query.
    Meanwhile a new study by researchers at the USA's Columbia University is looking into the benefits of treating post-cardiac arrest PTSD with mindfulness. Claudia speaks to research scientist Dr Maja Bergman about how she was motivated to start the project by her own experience of a sudden cardiac arrest, in her thirties. We also hear from survivors via the support group Sudden Cardiac Arrest UK, about their experiences and recoveries.
    Joining Claudia in the studio to discuss these stories and more is Dr Peter Olusoga, a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at Sheffield Hallam University - who also has thoughts to share on new research into athletes shouting at umpires, and what affects our levels of impatience.
    Presenter: Claudia Hammond
    Producer: Lucy Taylor
    Studio Manager: Tim Heffer
    Production Coordinator: Siobhan Maguire
    Editor: Holly Squire

    • 31 min
    The science behind screentime, the effect of live music, and can you imagine sounds in your head?

    The science behind screentime, the effect of live music, and can you imagine sounds in your head?

    These days we see a lot of negative stories related to screen time – how we’re addicted to our phones and social media is damaging our mental health. But is our panic about screens justified? Pete Etchells, professor of psychology and science communication at Bath Spa University, talks Claudia Hammond through the latest evidence in this field – and it turns out it’s all a lot more complicated than we think.
    Many of us will often get catchy tunes stuck in our head, or have an inner monologue narrating our experiences. But this isn’t the case for everyone – some people have what they describe as a silent inner world. This inability to hear sounds in your head has been named anauralia, which PhD student Sang Hyun Kim experiences, and he describes his inner life to Claudia. We also hear from Professor of Psychology Tony Lambert, who has been running studies into anauralia at the University of Auckland.
    And Claudia is joined in the studio by Catherine Loveday, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the University of Westminster, who has also recently published a study on anauralia – and puts Claudia’s auditory imagery skills to the test. And Catherine also talks us through a new study on how live music can amplify emotional responses in the brain.
    Presenter: Claudia Hammond
    Producer: Sophie Ormiston
    Studio Manager: Tim Heffer
    Production Coordinator: Siobhan Maguire
    Editor: Holly Squire

    • 27 min
    What's going on with girls' mental health?

    What's going on with girls' mental health?

    When it comes to mental health, what's going on with young people - particularly, teenage girls?
    There's been a lot of coverage in the media recently regarding mental health difficulties facing boys, not least around the struggle to get to grips with 'modern masculinity'; undoubtedly, it's a tough time to be a young man.
    But looking at figures for mental health problems in children and teens, there's clearly something going on with girls too. For some years now, research has shown that more girls are experiencing problems than boys, with a troubling spike in difficulties showing up in the late teens. In some years, twice as many girls as boys have what the research calls “probable mental health disorders” - with rates of eating disorders charting four times higher and rates of self-harm up to seven times higher in girls than in boys.
    All sorts of factors can affect those figures, from whether people are prepared to discuss how they feel, to how those feelings are labelled.
    But these don’t explain why statistics over recent years continue to show a disparity between boys and girls.
    On today's programme, Claudia explores the issue with help from a variety of guests, visiting King's College London's (KCL) Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience to speak to Gemma Knowles, a lecturer in epidemiology and youth mental health; Craig Morgan, professor of social epidemiology and co-director of ESRC Centre for Society and Mental Health; and Valeria Mondelli, a clinical professor of psychoneuroimmunology - about their work with young people in the UK and beyond, trying to uncover the deeper causes and to find new solutions.
    She also hears from some of the young people involved in a major study into mental health, conducted by the team at KCL and spanning nearly a decade.
    Claudia is joined by Dr Linda Blair, a clinical psychologist, who brings her own professional experience to bear discussing the trends and challenges of youth mental health.
    Organisations offering information and support relating to mental health can be found at BBC Action Line: bbc.co.uk/actionline
    Presenter: Claudia Hammond
    Producer: Lucy Taylor
    Studio Manager: Emma Harth
    Production Coordinator: Siobhan Maguire
    Editor: Holly Squire

    • 29 min
    Eating to improve memory, and a new play about mental health services

    Eating to improve memory, and a new play about mental health services

    Does what we eat have an impact on our mood and memory? And should we be thinking about brain health when we make diet choices? Claudia Hammond speaks to Dr Ellen Smith from Northumbria University about the latest food supplement taking TikTok by storm; Lion's Mane mushrooms. We are used to foods being promoted for their physical health benefits, but this one is being claimed to reduce brain fog, improve memory and fend off Alzheimer's disease. Claudia asks what the science says and discusses with studio guest Dr Sarah King from the University of Sussex whether and what we should be eating to boost our cognition.
    And Claudia's off to see a new play; This Might Not Be It is currently on at the Bush Theatre, London. It tells the story of two administrators in an NHS mental health clinic and addresses the challenge of staying optimistic in a system that is struggling. Claudia is accompanied by mental health campaigner James Downs, and speaks to the writer of the play, Sophia Chetin-Leuner. Studio guest Sarah King discusses why drama is so powerful in helping us connect with people's stories.
    Presenter: Claudia Hammond
    Producer: Lorna Stewart
    Production Coordinator: Siobhan Maguire
    Studio Manager: Tim Heffer
    Editor: Holly Squire

    • 27 min

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5
399 Ratings

399 Ratings

Taos poetry ,

The role of spiritual development in mental health

I really like these All in the mind podcasts and find them very helpful to my self and my husband who have both suffered from anxiety and depression. However, I have noticed over time that there is a real predominance of the rational in your approaches and much less consideration of the aesthetic, creative and in particular, the spiritual. I would be really interested in a podcast which looked at the role of spiritual relationships in relation to good mental health. This has certainly helped me and I have found the work of Richard Rohr particularly helpful.

Patmartin ,

Do Lonely Brains See the World Differently Episode

Despite the title it was anything but. It was all about how scientific papers are reviewed and published.

Why the misleading episode title?

eyeontheball28 ,

Seek and You Will Find

Just stumbled upon this BBC Sounds programme. As a person who has suffered with clinical depression for most of my life and it's perpetuation by recent cancer, I need all the help I can to stop this drastic decline and Claudia's podcasts are a step in the right direction. The Clarke Carlisle episode 'from Salford'', is as therapeutic as it is educational. I've subscribed.

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