Alternative treatment therapies for substance abuse problems are becoming increasingly popular, with many of them helping curb substance abuse. Alternative methods like mindfulness techniques have helped addicts manage their craving for illicit substances.
A recent study by the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) suggested that mindfulness techniques like meditation may reduce the chance of relapse for certain people who are struggling with addiction to stimulants, like cocaine and methamphetamine.
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The latest study, published online in the journal Mindfulness in August 2016, predicted that mindfulness techniques benefit those adults who are dependent on stimulants and were diagnosed with depression or anxiety. These psychiatric conditions are common among people with substance abuse problems.
The researchers conducted the study on a group of 63 adults who were dependent on stimulants and received behavioral treatment for their addiction for 12 weeks. After completion of four weeks of the treatment, the group was divided into two sections – one received mindfulness training designed for addiction treatment and the other group received only health education.
After completing their 12-week treatment, the UCLA researchers measured the changes in the participants' use of stimulants and their symptoms of depression and anxiety
Mindfulness training resulted in decreased use of stimulants
The study revealed that among the participants with major depression, 87 percent who received mindfulness training were not using stimulants at the end of 12 weeks. Among those who received only health education, 62 percent were not using stimulants.