Article by Michael Barker-Smith
Meditation is a well-known alternative therapy that is used by many people throughout the world for its calming and balancing effects, not to mention promoting a feeling of well being, and self-awareness. However, what many people don’t know is that meditation is also a very effective and a natural approach to treating bipolar depression symptoms in sufferers of the disorder.
For those who are suffering from bipolar disorder, and want a natural remedy, or a complimentary therapy to help lower their dependency, or dosage of medications, meditation can be very effective, and costs next to nothing to participate in. To get the best effect from meditation, bipolar sufferers must create a regular daily routine, and stay committed to it, in order to get to the root of what has caused the depression symptoms in the first place. Meditation does not produce instantaneous results, but will produce noticeable results in sufferers if used daily over a reasonable period of time.
According to university studies mindfulness meditation, when used correctly, produces positive changes that will effect the bipolar, and other depression sufferers long-term in both brain activity, and the immune system. Mindfulness meditation can be safely used by bipolar sufferers, and involves the sufferer giving their attention to the moment, without judging, or taking actions on their thoughts. This teaches sufferers to put things into perspective, and work through problems rather than acting on impulse.
In these studies, it was noted that those who don’t suffer from bipolar, or depression and are feeling optimistic or positive, there was an increased electricity in the left front of the brain. The same results were found in subjects who had depression, and had been using daily session of meditation for over a period of eight weeks. Additionally, there was an increase in antibodies in the blood, much the same as if the person meditating had taken a flu vaccine. Apart from bipolar disorder, studies are being set up to fi nd out the effectiveness of meditation with other disorders, and severe illnesses.
Many people are of the impression that in order to use, and benefit from meditation, they must practice certain religious beliefs. This is not the case, however. Meditation can be used with anyone’s personal beliefs, or even without religious beliefs. The main aim of meditation sessions is to clear the mind, find peace, and promote well being through complete relaxation.
Bipolar disorder patients who have used meditation claim that they have noticed feelings of calmness, a sense of well being, and an increased awareness of things surrounding them. Additionally, those who had used meditation daily over a period of time concluded that they had reduced depression, irritability and anxiety symptoms.
Many medical practitioners recognize meditation as an effective natural treatment for not only the general population, but for those who are suffering from disorders such as bipolar depression. Many doctors prescribe meditation as a complimentary therapy while their patients are on medication, to help them find the underlying reasons for their depressive symptoms.
About the Author
Michael Barker-Smith is the co-founder of http://www.project-meditation.org. The project offers a free audio meditation course that was originally created for 4 compact disks.