If you are thinking MBCT may be helpful for someone you are planning to refer to our services, please bear in mind that service-users/patients will usually receive a generic initial assessment that will consider a range of treatment options. Where possible, we aim to offer service-users choice from a selection of potentially helpful interventions.

Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is recommended by NICE guidelines as a prophylactic intervention for adults who are currently well but have experienced three or more previous episodes of depression. There is also growing evidence that it can be helpful for some people who have a history of depression and are currently depressed, though this may depend on whether they have sufficient concentration and motivation to be able to participate.

There is also an increasing body of evidence that MBCT, or variants of it, can be helpful for a range of other conditions including stress, chronic pain and certain anxiety disorders.

Some of our children’s services are taking a lead on developing and evaluating mindfulness-based interventions for children and adolescents.

Beyond this there are likely to be individual reasons why MBCT may or may not be currently suitable for a particular individual. For example, MBCT is less likely to be appropriate for someone with current substance misuse problems or recent/unresolved psychological trauma or bereavement.

Sometimes there may be other inventions that are likely to be as helpful or more helpful than MBCT in the first instance. In such circumstances, service-users/patients may be offered the option of attending an MBCT course after they have completed the intervention that was thought to be initially more helpful.