Written by Clifton B. Parker.
Breathing meditation is a powerful ally for military veterans recovering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to Stanford research recently published in the Journal of Traumatic Stress.
For several years, Emma Seppala, associate director of Stanford’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education and lead author of the article, has been studying the effects of breathing-based meditation practices on veterans suffering from PTSD.
“This is the first randomized controlled study on a form of meditation or yoga for veterans with PTSD that has shown such long-term, lasting effects,” she said in an interview.
PTSD, which affects about one in five veterans, is typically triggered by the experience of a terrifying or life-threatening event. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares, severe anxiety and uncontrollable thoughts and emotions. Returning vets suffering from PTSD have extremely high suicide rates, Seppala said.
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