More positive results from research studies.
The latest edition of Scientific American Mind features two separate articles which highlight the positive benefits of Mindfulness practice. In 'Rethinking Relief' Stephani Sutherland cites the research done by Daniel C Cherkin and his team at the Group Health Research Institute in Seattle. This team tested three treatments for chronic low back pain in 342 young and middle aged adults; Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, and standard pain care. They found that compared with participants who received standard pain care, more patients receiving MBSR or CBT showed a significant drop in 'pain bothersomeness' after 26 weeks. In addition the MBSR and CBT groups improved more in their functional abilities.
Sutherland seems in no doubt that "Mindfulness, yoga, biofeedback and acupuncture may all help to ease chronic pain by changing a patient's relationship to pain rather than lowering the intensity of the physical sensation." One clue as to how this works is found in the treatment given to one male patient who was prescribed a guided relaxation regimen by his psychologist who told him 'Your anxiety makes the pain worse. If we can focus on tools to stop the anxiety, that can help shrink the pain.'
In another article entitled 'The Self-Compassion Solution', Marina Krakovsky writes that '....Psychologists are learning how being kind to yourself can bolster resilience, buffer against stress and improve relationships.' She reports on a particular case study and describes the individual concerned as '....one of a growing number of people to discover that practicing self-compassion can be a surprisingly effective alternative to the crippling yet common habit of shame-laden self-criticism.'
Time and again we hear of these 'new' findings from recent research, all clearly indicating the efficacy of Mindfulness practice. It is joyful, peaceful and beneficial for physical and mental health. It has worked for over two thousand years, it continues to work and we see its benefits every day here at Equanimity. If you are wondering if it could help you please get in touch.