Motivational interviewing to improve well-being for young people with psychosis

Poster B19, Friday, October 21, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Le Baron

Maria Meliante1, Maddalena Fontanella1,2, Mariella Sarno1,2, Anna Meneghelli1; 1Department of Mental Health, Center for early detection and intervention in psychosis–Programma2000- ASST Grande Ospedale Metropolitano Niguarda Milan, Italy, 2Scuola ASIPSE Milano

Purpose. Many health problems in people experiencing psychosis are related to lifestyle variables such as diet, physical activity and smoking. Changing such behaviors is difficult, as it requires time, considerable effort and motivation. We tested motivation-targeted group interventions and self–efficacy at the aim of encouraging a healthy lifestyle in an Italian program for young people with early psychosis, called “Vite Sane e Attive”. Materials and Methods. Twenty patients (mean age 23.13) with a First-Episode Psychosis (FEP) were enrolled. Group activities are focused on change, following motivational interviewing procedures. These are divided into four steps: 1) Creation of a helping relationship through empathic listening. 2) Orientation on a strategic focus: it identifies a particular topic of change that, through negotiation, is proposed to the person, becoming the subject of the conversation. 3) Prompting motivation towards change through cognitive restructuration of dysfunctional beliefs about a healthy lifestyle: ambivalence about changing one’s own behavior is detected and normalized. The patient is encouraged to construct Decisional Balances. 4) Maintenance of the change through problem solving and technical management of possible temptations. Results. After a one-year observation we found a BMI reduction and the improvement of eating habits, that became healthier. 80% of patients started a new physical activity. Different physical activity levels correlate with different levels of motivation. Conclusion. Education to a healthy lifestyle alone is not enough to produce a significant change. Specific strategies with motivational interventions are needed to guide change, improve motivation and maintain the outcomes.

Topic Area: First Episode Psychosis

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