Though there are many types of therapy and other treatment options with proven efficacy for those struggling with depression and other mental health concerns, few people receive professional care, and fewer still may be exposed to types of help that provide long-term, meaningful recovery. Meditation has been identified by scores of experts and industry organizations as a valid and potentially helpful mode of treatment for a range of mental health issues, yet a significantly low number of people take part in such practices at the direction of their psychotherapist or other professional. A report recently issued in the United Kingdom has outlined the fact that despite authoritative guidance on prescribing meditation-based treatments as a result of extensive studies on the subject, not many medical and mental health professionals have adopted the unconventional approach.
As meditation stems largely from the same cultural and medical traditions that played significant roles in inspiring the modern form of cognitive behavioral or “talk” therapy, some professionals might not be surprised to learn about the practice’s great potential. But others may see meditation as a less serious or ineffective approach to treatment, or may find it difficult to locate the resources and experts necessary to help guide their clients towards meditative work. The report stresses the need for the therapy and mental health industries to pay closer attention to opportunities involving meditation, as it posits that a great deal of the twelve billion US dollars spent on depression in the UK each year could be saved if the practice is given more consideration.
While meditation is indicated for its potential efficacy in treating some mental health concerns, it is especially highlighted for its ability to prevent future relapses and other long-term issues which may not be addressed by psychiatric medications and other treatments.
© Copyright 2010 by By Noah Rubinstein, LMFT, LMHC, therapist in Olympia, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to GoodTherapy.org.
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