About the Study

OPT Study

Oxford Postnatal Treatment Study

What it's all about


The Oxford Postnatal Treatment (OPT) study involves treatment for mothers who have a young baby of approximately 5-8 months old, and have been feeling depressed or low in themselves for a few months. The study is being run by the University of Oxford and is taking place across Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. The OPT study is offering treatment to mothers in their own home.


Possible Benefits

All mothers taking part in the study receive a treatment called Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), which is widely used in the NHS and is effective in helping people deal with their negative thoughts and feelings. In addition to the CBT, the home visits include one of two further potentially helpful treatments: one is a form of relaxation training to help reduce stress called Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR); and the other is support for mothers in their care and communication with their babies called Watch and Discover.




Treatments involved:

All mothers in the study receive:

CBT is based on the idea that the way you feel is affected by your thoughts and beliefs, and by what you do. Through tried and tested techniques, CBT can help you to make changes, lift your mood and to cope better.

Plus, either:

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

PMR aims to help you reduce physical tension and give you a way of dealing with everyday stresses. It is designed to help you to notice muscle groups that may be tight and will teach you how to relax them.



Watch and Discover

Watch and Discover involves making short films of you and your baby, playing with toys or

doing everyday things. Viewing these films together with the therapist can help you understand your baby’s communication and

behaviour better.





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Tel: +44 (0)1865 223930

E: info@opt-study.org

Rec Ref. 10/H0505/55 Copyright © Oxford Postnatal Treatment Study 2013