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Rumination in depression: Exploring the experience

Pearson, Martin; (2004) Rumination in depression: Exploring the experience. Doctoral thesis (D.Clin.Psy), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Since Nolen-Hoeksema developed her response styles theory, in which she suggested that a tendency to ruminate in response to depressed mood negatively influences the course of depression, there has been increasing interest in the role of rumination in depression. Although there appears to be a consensus in the literature that rumination involves repetitive or recurring thoughts focusing on a common theme, and that it occurs both in a range of psychological disorders and in non-clinical populations, an agreed definition seems to be lacking. Although there seems to be general agreement that rumination is an important process in depression, the literature suggests considerable doubt as to what should be included in this construct, what the process of rumination is like, and its role in depression. This study explores the experience of rumination in chronically depressed people and looks at the extent to which this is consistent with ideas about rumination in the literature. There are a number of different models that attempt to explain the process of rumination. These suggest self-regulatory, goal oriented functions; a role for metacognitive beliefs; and cognitive avoidance functions. However, there seems to be general agreement that rumination is ultimately unhelpful and counter-productive. The findings indicate particular support for the self-regulatory, goal oriented model, and some support for the other models. New information about rumination, limitations of the study, and implications for therapeutic interventions are discussed, and useful avenues for further research suggested.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: D.Clin.Psy
Title: Rumination in depression: Exploring the experience
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
Keywords: Psychology; Depression
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10099497
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