Alternative therapy: yoga, an ancient technique in the treatment of panic and anxiety disorder

Yoga as an integrated form of exercise can be used for the treatment of panic and anxiety disorder in combination with standard treatment.

Panic Anxiety Disorder is a mental condition characterized by unexpected and recurring panic attacks. from sudden periods of intense fear that cause palpitations, sweating, shaking, shortness of breath, numbness, or the feeling that something really bad is going to happen.

Yoga, the ancient practice of the technique to harmonize the internal and external well-being of the body, through the control of breathing, meditation, body movement and gestures … has been better known by people in the Western world and in some parts of Asia because of the health benefits reported by various reputable research institutes and supported by health advocates.

In the study of a total of 20 subjects diagnosed with panic disorder, randomly assigned to both experimental groups: Group 1 (G1-Yoga: 10 subjects) attended yoga classes and Group 2 (G2-CBT + Yoga: 10 subjects) participated in a combined intervention of yoga practice followed by a cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) session, the researchers presented the following results:

1. Both groups showed a statistical analysis in the reduction of anxiety levels associated with panic disorder, beliefs related to panic and body sensations related to panic.

2. The combination of yoga and CBT (G2) showed better reductions in all the parameters observed compared to only the yoga group.

Dr. Vorkapic CF, the lead author, after taking other confidants into account, said: “… improvements in different parameters of mental health after practicing contemplative techniques alone or in combination with psychotherapy” and “(Comprehension) uniting psychological and physiological variables could help to better elucidate the mechanisms through which mind-body practices work to improve mental health. “

Another, in a review of the published literature on quality of life in panic disorder from 1980 to 2010 in the MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and PubMed databases, indicated that yoga intervention in combination with standard treatment can improve outcomes. substantial deterioration of quality of life in panic disorder, improve mental and physical health … and can be used as a subsequent treatment to improve quality of life (QOL) in this group of patients.

Lead author Dr. Davidoff J went even further in suggesting, “to understand the nature of comorbidities in panic disorder (PD), as well as to determine whether additional interventions that have been studied in other psychiatric disorders, such as exercise, meditation, yoga, humor, massage, and nutritional supplements can be used to improve the quality of life in PD at normal community levels.

Interestingly, in the review of the literature published in PubMed in English up to December 2012 to assess the effect of complementary and alternative therapies in panic and anxiety disorder, the researchers also found that

1. Data based on illustrated that the evidence base for depression is significantly higher than anxiety disorder

2. Yoga was considered the level 3 treatment line for panic and anxiety disorder patients due to the quality of the available evidence.

Taken together, there is no doubt that yoga can be considered as a complementary exercise in combination with standard therapy for the treatment of panic and anxiety disorder.

Written by Kyle J Norton

September 6, 2020
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