Transforming trauma: a qualitative feasibility study of integrative restoration (iRest) yoga Nidra on combat-related post-traumatic stress disorder.
ABSTRACT This eight-week study examined the feasibility of offering weekly classes in Integrative Restoration (iRest), a form of mindfulness meditation, to military combat veterans at a community mental health agency in the San Francisco Bay Area. Participants were 16 male combat veterans (15 Vietnam War and 1 Iraq War) of mixed ethnicity, aged 41 to 66 years, suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The 11 participants who completed the study reported reduced rage, anxiety, and emotional reactivity, and increased feelings of relaxation, peace, self-awareness, and self-efficacy, despite challenges with mental focus, intrusive memories, and other concerns. All participants reported they would have attended ongoing iRest classes at the agency approximately once per week.
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ABSTRACT: Background: Mind-body practices are increasingly used to provide stress reduction for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Mind-body practice encompasses activities with the intent to use the mind to impact physical functioning and improve health. Methods: This is a literature review using PubMed, PsycINFO, and Published International Literature on Traumatic Stress to identify the effects of mind-body intervention modalities, such as yoga, tai chi, qigong, mindfulness-based stress reduction, meditation, and deep breathing, as interventions for PTSD. Results: The literature search identified 92 articles, only 16 of which were suitable for inclusion in this review. We reviewed only original, full text articles that met the inclusion criteria. Most of the studies have small sample size, but findings from the 16 publications reviewed here suggest that mind-body practices are associated with positive impacts on PTSD symptoms. Mind-body practices incorporate numerous therapeutic effects on stress responses, including reductions in anxiety, depression, and anger, and increases in pain tolerance, self-esteem, energy levels, ability to relax, and ability to cope with stressful situations. In general, mind-body practices were found to be a viable intervention to improve the constellation of PTSD symptoms such as intrusive memories, avoidance, and increased emotional arousal. Conclusions: Mind-body practices are increasingly used in the treatment of PTSD and are associated with positive impacts on stress-induced illnesses such as depression and PTSD in most existing studies. Knowledge about the diverse modalities of mind-body practices may provide clinicians and patients with the opportunity to explore an individualized and effective treatment plan enhanced by mind-body interventions as part of ongoing self-care.Journal of Investigative Medicine 04/2013; 61(5). DOI:10.231/JIM.0b013e3182906862 · 1.69 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is associated with reduced depressive symptoms, quality of life improvements, behavioral activation, and increased acceptance among veterans. This study was conducted to increase the reach and impact of a veterans' MBSR program by identifying barriers to enrollment and participation to inform modifications in program delivery. Verify or challenge suspected barriers, and identify previously unrecognized barriers, to enrollment and participation in MBSR among veterans. A retrospective qualitative analysis of semistructured interviews. VA Puget Sound Health Care System (Seattle, WA). 68 interviewed, and 48 coded and analyzed before reaching saturation. Content analysis of semistructured interviews. Of the participants who enrolled, most (78%) completed the program and described MBSR positively. Veterans identified insufficient or inaccurate information, scheduling issues, and an aversion to groups as barriers to enrollment. Participants who discontinued the program cited logistics (e.g., scheduling and medical issues), negative reactions to instructors or group members, difficulty understanding the MBSR practice purposes, and struggling to find time for the practices as barriers to completion. Other challenges (cohort dynamics, teacher impact on group structure and focus, instructor lack of military service, and physical and psychological challenges) did not impede participation; we interpreted these as growth-facilitating challenges. Common conditions among veterans (chronic pain, posttraumatic stress disorder, and depression) were not described as barriers to enrollment or completion. Women-only MBSR groups and tele-health MBSR groups could improve accessibility to MBSR for veterans by addressing barriers such as commute anxiety, time restrictions, and an aversion to mixed gender groups among women. Educating MBSR teachers about veteran culture and health challenges faced by veterans, adding psychoeducation materials that relate mindfulness practice to conditions common among veterans, and improving visual aids for mindful movement exercises in the workbook could better accommodate veterans who participate in MBSR.Journal of alternative and complementary medicine (New York, N.Y.) 07/2015; 21(7). DOI:10.1089/acm.2014.0324 · 1.59 Impact Factor