Mindfulness deemed as effective as anti-depressants

A mindfulness-based therapy in which patients are encouraged to understand that negative thoughts may come and go, could be just as effective as anti-depressant medication.

A report published in The Lancet tested Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) against anti‐depressant medication. A total of 212 people at risk of further depression were split in to two groups, with one on a course of MBCT, while gradually decreasing anti-depressant medication, and another group on a full course of medication, with no MBCT. Patients in the first group were taught guided meditation and mindfulness skills, and were encouraged to focus on the present and to recognise and respond to early warning signs. Researchers found the relapse rate similar in both groups, suggesting MBCT could be a new choice for many people suffering with depression. Mindfulness is already encouraged by many doctors. Experts warn that many patients still need drug therapy, and stress that anti-depressant medication should only be reduced if advised by a medical professional.
Summarised based on BBC News (www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-32380183)

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