Study Finds Mindfulness to Be a Powerful Healing Tool for Veterans

Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Medical Center created mindfulness program and study to help veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

A recent study conducted at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center showed that mindfulness meditation can be used to help alleviate some of the symptoms of PTSD. Over 9 weeks, a group of veterans learned relaxing breathing and meditation techniques that they could practice at home. In a follow-up two months after the course, the researchers found that nearly half of the veterans showed clinically significant reductions in their disorders, and many others in the study were grateful for having a toolbox of new coping methods.

The StarTribune wrote a piece on this study, including talking to a veteran who suffered from severe PTSD, who, in a last hope for healing, took part in the study.

Mindfulness meditation is becoming an increasingly popular form of treatment for veterans with PTSD. There are various programs being created specifically designed for veterans, including adventure trips run by a San Francisco-based program, Honoring the Path of the Warrior, which provides an unusual mix of adrenaline-junkie fun and secular training in mindful breathing, acceptance, and compassion. You can read more about a group of veteran’s rafting trip in “Healing Waters,” from the February issue of Mindful.