Health & Wellness

Benefits of Mindfulness Therapy for Mental Health

Benefits of Mindfulness Therapy for Mental Health Posted On
Posted By Emma Aaron

Work-related stress affects professionals from different fields. Healthcare practitioners are definitely not an exception. Many healthcare professionals complain of excessive pressures, time constraints, understaffed hospitals, and a growing healthcare demand, with little to no support from the higher management.

Various studies conducted into the psychological consequences of work-related stress have proposed mindfulness as a viable solution to the problem. Studies reveal that mindfulness practice carries great benefits, including behavioral changes, relationship building, and stress relieving.

Presently, mindfulness is trending in various workplace settings, but, in the healthcare space, specifically, there is not only an even more need but also growing adoption of mindfulness practice.

What is Mindfulness?

The word “mindfulness” by itself gives us an indication of its meaning. It is to concentrate one’s mind on the task at hand and on what’s happening at the moment, with no judgment. Our minds tend to get distracted; we are either anxious about the future or ruminating about something in the past. Spending too much time on random and negative thoughts is exhausting. The ultimate purpose behind mindfulness practice is to help you find a relaxed focus that is anchored in the present moment.

Mindfulness as a Therapy

Therapists nowadays regularly recommend mindfulness therapy to address underlying mental health issues in patients. Therapists who specialize in treating people with burnout, anxiety, stress, and other problems regularly employ mindfulness practices. In the San Francisco Bay Area alone, the search query therapy near me San Francisco CA will yield results for the best wellness centers.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and Mindfulness

CBT and mindfulness are two interrelated treatment options for people who are suffering from mental health issues. The basic premise of CBT treatment is that an individual’s response to a stress-inducing situation is something that can be controlled. It is this feeling of empowerment that proceeds from the knowledge that one can affect his/her own responses that relieve stress. CBT also helps people identify negative thinking and harmful behavior patterns. Combining the practice of mindfulness and CBT therapy gives us Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), which involves core elements of both mindfulness and CBT to treat individuals with mental health issues.

The following are some of the mental health benefits that can be realized from a regular mindfulness practice

Anxiety/Stress 

Chronic stress can damage our immune system and, thereby, make other health issues even worse. Mindfulness can benefit individuals with anxiety issues. Recent psychology studies show that people who were given MBCT treatment worried less and were less likely to be guided by negative perceptions.

Panic Attacks

A panic attack is caused by extreme anxiety and commonly manifests itself physically as well. With mindfulness therapy, you can easily dissociate yourself from a panicked state. Therapists apply scientifically-proven approaches of CBT and MBCT to help people regain control of their minds and body. 

Depression

Depression is one of the most common mental illnesses. People suffering from depression hold negative beliefs and thoughts about themselves. It is not effective to treat depression with pharmaceutical drugs alone because they may lose their efficacy over time. However, research has clearly shown the effectiveness of MBCT in overcoming depression. For instance, this study claims MBCT is as effective as antidepressant medications in dealing with depression. You can also read common symptoms of depression

Relationship Issues

Mindfulness practice can help us in many aspects of our lives, including our relationships. Practicing mindfulness makes us recognize harmful behaviors patterns that are affecting our relationships. It helps us to shift those toxic behavior patterns into constructive responses.   

Burnout

Work-related stress can lead to poor physical as well as mental health. If you are feeling drained and overworked, mindfulness therapy can help you relieve stress and exhaustion. A regular mindfulness practice will help you to identify negative emotions, feel calmer, and stay present.

Obsessive Thinking

Mindfulness practice also reduces obsessive/compulsive thinking. It frees up our minds from constantly dwelling on thoughts. Mindfulness practice is about staying present. When your presence is anchored in the way your breath rises and falls then you will naturally be at peace with yourself.

Grief/Loss

Losing a loved one is a painful and overwhelming experience. Mindfulness practice helps you grieve in a positive way. Mindfulness practice makes you more accepting of the circumstances, which is the only way you can let go of the trauma. Mindfulness therapy will provide you with healthier grief-coping mechanisms that will allow you to let go of the pain.

Conclusion

Being surrounded by work all the time can cause a number of mental health problems, like stress, depression, and burnout. Practicing mindfulness and mindfulness-based approaches will help you relax at the moment, let go of compulsive thinking, and allow you to treat mental health issues more holistically. Both CBT and Mindfulness-based approaches tackle many health problems that cannot be dealt with by pharmaceutical drugs alone.

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