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Western medicine has adopted and used mindfulness treatments for decades, as early as the 1990s. The public has little awareness of meditation or mindfulness, even though today’s mental health treatment continues its usage. Even with today’s advanced therapeutic treatments, holistic health practice continues to grow.

Meditation involves the discipline of sitting still while training your brain on specific objects or goals, or sometimes purposefully not, and trying to clear your mind entirely. This helps to train the brain to improve well-being, which can result in increased happiness in everyday life.


How Meditation Affects Mental Health

Negative cycles, which combine physical symptoms and behaviors, are the result of mental health problems.

A physical problem, such as poor serotonin production or rapid serotonin uptake, can make a person feel bad. That can mean they are feeling down, depressed, anxious, tired, or even upset. This all can lead to changes in behavior. Those behavior patterns, over time, which are usually negative, can contribute to lower serotonin production. This results in the worsening of the mental health disorder.

The combination of physical problems contributes to behavioral problems, which can lead to even more physical problems, which is why most mental health treatments include a combination of treatments. Typically, at minimum, these treatments consist of cognitive behavioral therapy first along with a medication therapy as secondary.

Behavioral Therapy and medication should never be replaced with meditation, although they can still positively affect mental health treatment.

Study Spotlight

A study from Cambridge and Harvard University showed that the average person spends 46.9% of the time with their mind wandering about stressful information. This shows that most of us spend a significant amount of time overthinking and worrying about the future or the past. This can potentially be worse for someone who suffers from depression or anxiety.

Meditation actively reduces cortisol levels in the body, and it physically relieves feelings of stress. Studies have proven this, especially in meditations centered around mindfulness. After the session, long-term practitioners witness other benefits, such as a reduction in body temperature, lowered brain activity, and lowered blood pressure.

Those who suffer from anxiety and depression have a significant focus on negative, worrying, and stressful events. These feelings can be mitigated with meditation. Meditation helps train the brain to give attention away from the thought while meditative. Over time, with continued practice, it will become an everyday occurrence, and people will begin to focus on other things, becoming less consumed by negative experiences overall.

Building discipline to meditate properly improves many skills which apply to several other aspects of life. Sitting down for sixty to ninety minutes daily to focus on your meditation skills helps improve discipline. This increased skill of disciplined learning can help you continue an exercise routine and keep your home clean.

Emotional Regulation

Emotional Regulation is essential for successful coping. Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) actively improves Emotional Regulation, and meditation and therapy are also beneficial for those who suffer from disorders like depression, bipolar, anxiety, dual, or split personality. Long-term medication is helpful as well.

Meditation before bed gives you time to reduce worry and relax, and it helps create a sense of calmness. Meditation, with practice, can help reduce your body temperature, heart rate, and even your cortisol production. All these effects can improve sleep by allowing you first to relax and then allowing your body and mind to sleep much more deeply. Allowing time for meditation also helps remove distractions earlier before bedtime, such as screens and other external stimuli that can negatively impact the quality of your sleep.

The key to meditation, however, is the benefits only applied when individuals meditate as a regular, daily practice. When individuals stop, the benefits quickly diminish.

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