Depression, Anxiety, Chronic Pain – Possible Relief

September 7, 2016 | posted in: Exercise, Fitness Tip of the Week | by

If you suffer or know someone who suffers from depression, anxiety or chronic pain, it may seem like there is little to do but “suffer” through. Here is one new option that might provide some relief. It has been shown that meditation practices, such as Yoga, Qi Gong, and Tai Chi, may protect your brain from illnesses such as depressions, anxiety and chronic pain. Here’s the details behind that statement:

“At the APS 2015 annual meeting in Palm Springs, California, M. Catherine Bushnell, PhD, presented research showing that mind-body practices may be helpful to this population.

Bushnell, of the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, said in an APS news release, ‘Imaging studies in multiple types of chronic pain patients show their brains differ from healthy control subjects. Studies of people with depression show they also have reduced gray matter, and this could contribute to the gray matter changes in pain patients who are depressed. Our research shows that gray matter loss is directly related to the pain when we take depression into account.’

She added, ‘Brain anatomy changes may contribute to mood disorders and other affective and cognitive comorbidities of chronic pain. The encouraging news for people with chronic pain is mind-body practices seem to exert a protective effect on brain gray matter that counteracts the neuroanatomical effects of chronic pain.’” (Archer, 2015).

How To:

That may seem like a lofty goal to just start meditating. Some ideas are to look for short instructional video on media sites such as YouTube. If you’d like a moving meditation there are some great short videos (7-10 minutes) for Qi Gong led by Lee Holden. Here’s one example:

https://youtu.be/g-jSBBwr8Ko

Might as well try it to see if it helps! As always, contact me with any questions.

Healthy, happy living!

About FLEX Training: FLEX Training is a San Diego gym offering personal training and small group training located in the East Village of downtown San Diego at 740 13th Street, San Diego, CA 92101.

Our personal trainers tailor dynamic, functional exercise programs to meet all fitness levels. We don’t pre-script workouts, we assess how you’re feeling, how you’re moving on a day by day basis and then build routines from there to help you meet your fitness goals.
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Sources:

Archer, Shirley, JD, MA; Mind-Body Practices, Chronic Pain and the Brain. IDEA Health & Fitness Association. Last Accesses 7 September 2016.

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