Mind-body technique healed 80 percent from trauma!

A recent novel pilot study appeared in my inbox recently.

It addressed a topic that I don’t often write about, but I should…

Mind-body medicine.

While some may find this flaky, in my view, there’s never been a better time to discuss its potential benefits.

Especially for one mental health condition that can be quite hard to manage…

A common condition

Researchers looked at a mind-body approach for combatting symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among cardiac arrest survivors. (If you don’t already know, cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death in the U.S.)

In fact, more than 350,000 Americans experience an episode outside of the hospital setting؅—90 percent of which are fatal.

And studies show that one in three survivors report symptoms that meet PTSD criteria after being discharged from the hospital.

Common symptoms of PTSD include:

  • Feeling tense, on guard, or on edge
  • Having difficulty concentrating
  • Experiencing difficulty falling or staying asleep
  • Feeling irritable and having angry or aggressive outbursts
  • Engaging in risky, reckless, or destructive behavior

Does that sound like you, or anyone you know? It sure does to me!

And that’s exactly why this study resonated with me.

Because we have ALL faced some kind of traumatic event in our lives—some more directly and intimately than others.

Not to mention, the past few years have been especially hard…

We’re in the midst of political turmoil, wars, inflation, and a pandemic that not only isolated us, but divided us. Is it any wonder we’re struggling?

Therefore, we could all benefit from the power of mind-body medicine, not only those suffering a cardiovascular event.

Mindfulness and education

PTSD symptoms have a huge emotional impact, that’s no surprise.

But its symptoms are also associated with increased death and cardiovascular risk.

To address and hopefully minimize symptoms, this new study combined mindfulness and exposure intervention.

More specifically, researchers used a brief treatment known as Acceptance and Mindfulness-Based Exposure Therapy (AMBET). It included eight, 90-minute sessions each week, delivered remotely due to COVID-19.

Exposure therapy included revisiting the traumatic even through discussion, guided imagery, and other techniques in order to confront and process associated memories.

Mindfulness was used to help normalize the physiological stress response that links PTSD symptoms and cardiovascular risk.

Ultimately, after just eight weeks, 80 percent of participants no longer met the criteria for PTSD. Subjects also exhibited improved cardiovascular health behaviors, like increased physical activity and improved sleep habits.

I’d say that’s pretty impressive! And it surely gives me hope that mind-body approaches can work for anyone experiencing mental, emotional, and even physical turmoil.

Motto of today… meditate and educate more, react less!

Source:

“Mindfulness-based intervention shows promise for PTSD in cardiac arrest survivors.” ScienceDaily, 11/29/2023. (sciencedaily.com/releases/2023/11/231129112414.htm)


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