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PTSD: Is meditation useful?

When you hear the term Post-traumatic stress disorder, Or PTSD, you might consider a returning combat veteran who has a flashback in combat. However, PTSD is not something that only veterans experience. The Department of Veterans Affairs’ PTSD National Center estimates that 7 or 8 out of 100 people (or 7% to 8% of the population) will suffer from PTSD at some point in their lives.Many have found it meditation Useful for PTSD care.

What is PTSD?

PTSD mental health Problems that occur after experiencing traumatic events such as being in a car accident, overcoming a natural disaster, being a victim of a violent crime, or participating in a battle.Most people are of some sort stress I feel struggling with post-traumatic reactions and agitation, edges, or sleep. However, in most cases, the symptoms will relieve over time. But for some people, they can continue to interfere with their daily lives.


“This event may have happened physiologically and psychologically long ago, but it’s as if it’s still happening to the person at that moment,” said clinical psychologist Dr. Autumn Gallegos Greenwich. I will. Psychiatry At the University of Rochester Medical Center. “The body reacts as if it were at risk,” and it continues these symptoms.

4 mains Symptoms of PTSD include:

  • Relive the event
  • Avoid places, situations, or people that remind you of an event
  • I feel more negative than before and struggle to be happy and have positive emotions. Many people with PTSD say they feel numb.
  • A feeling of edge. This symptom, called “hypervigilance,” means that it is difficult to relax, is astonishing, and can be more angry and moody than before.

Can PTSD be treated?


“In the past, we Treat PTSD, It was thought to be a chronic disorder that you have to learn to live with and manage your symptoms, “said Paula, Executive Director of the PTSD National Center and Professor of Psychiatry at Geisel School. Dr. P. Schner says. Doctor of Medicine in Dartmouth. “We now know that many people recover well from PTSD, especially with the right treatment, and it’s common to try more than one.”

Treatment includes long-term exposure therapy that works with the therapist to expose oneself to thoughts, feelings, and situations that have been avoided in a safe way, and cognitive processing therapy that learns to identify and change negative thoughts. May occur. .. They are very effective in helping to overcome PTSD. The National Center for PTSD has decision-making tools to help you find the right approach.

How can meditation help?

Meditation is a mental and physical exercise that combines concentration with physical, breathing, thinking, and perception of the surrounding senses, paying close attention to the present moment. Helps you focus, Reduce stress, And add to the calm. Meditation itself is not a cure for PTSD, but it can be very helpful when used in conjunction with one of the above treatment programs or as an ongoing practice to manage stress after treatment. ..

“Training attention is the first step,” says Galegos Greenwich, who is studying how mental and physical exercises affect post-traumatic stress. Stress symptoms.. “In mindfulness meditation, you focus on the current moment. Not everything you feel is comfortable. Maybe you hear the traffic. Maybe your body is uncomfortable. Mindful In Ness meditation, you realize how you feel, stay in that stationary position, allow that sensation to be there, and you don’t have to change or fight anything. “

“My patients practicing meditation and other types of mindfulness practices often report less irritability, anger, and less control,” said the psychiatrist of the VA Palo Alto Health System in California. Says the doctor Shaili Jain, MD. National Center for PTSD. “They can slow down their reaction, give them a little more control, more presence, and be more careful than responsive.”


Although not much research has been done, meditation improves the symptoms of PTSD, depression.. “As a clinician, I see meditation as a very powerful complement. Treatment“Jane says. “Sure, there seems to be no downside or downside to PTSD meditation.”

If you have PTSD, how can you find a meditation program that will help you? Gallegos Greenwich suggests searching for the terms “trauma-based meditation” or “trauma-sensitive meditation.” “For people with PTSD, part of their recovery is learning to feel control again, so you want to work in a program that doesn’t claim your closure. Eye Or sit down in a particular way. “


If you are Treatment, Schnurr suggests asking the therapist to recommend meditation classes and apps that may be useful to you. “Many Veterans Affairs facilities offer meditation classes to support the care of veterans,” she says.


VA also offers a free mindfulness coach app to help you adopt simple mindfulness exercises that are available to everyone as well as veterans. Other expert-recommended apps include Headspace, Calm, and Ten Percent Happier.

It only takes 5 minutes a day to incorporate meditation into your daily life and it makes a big difference. “That’s not the case Antibiotics It’s used to treat the infection until it’s over, “says Schnurr. “This is the ongoing wellness practice that many people use in their daily lives, with or without PTSD.”

PTSD: Is meditation useful?

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