Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Mindfulness interventions for depression and anxiety
Mark A. Lau, PhD, RPsych, Clinical associate professor, Department of psychiatry, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Andrea D. Grabovac, MD, FRCPC, Clinical assistant professor, Department of psychiatry, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) was originally developed to help prevent depressive relapse. MBCT also can reduce depression and anxiety symptoms. More recently, MBCT was shown to help individuals discontinue antidepressants after recovering from depression. Regular mindfulness meditation has been shown to result in structural brain changes that may help explain how the practice effectively addresses psychiatric symptoms. With appropriate training, psychiatrists can help patients reap the benefits of this cognitive treatment.
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