Meditation May Help Reduce Depression Symptoms

By Staff Writer

Depression is often a difficult condition to treat. Antidepressants and counseling may provide assistance, but some individuals get little benefit from these services. Patients struggling with depression may benefit from looking into rehab facilities that offer mindfulness meditation classes, as a new study has found that the practice helps reduce the symptoms of depression.

In fact, the researchers from Canada’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health found that mindfulness meditation can deliver results similar to those of antidepressants. After studying two groups of depressed patients – one taking antidepressants, the other taking meditation classes – the team found that about 30 percent of patients in both groups experienced a relapse.

The researchers said that antidepressants are ineffective in many individuals. Additionally, a large portion of patients who are prescribed the medications stop taking them due to the side effects. Practicing meditation could provide a safe, side effect-free option for dealing with this condition.

“The real world implications of these findings bear directly on the front line treatment of depression. For that sizeable group of patients who are unwilling or unable to tolerate maintenance antidepressant treatment, [meditation] offers equal protection from relapse,” said Dr. Zindel Segal.