Mindfulness Programs May Ease Symptoms in Children and Adolescents, Study Says

Mindfulness Programs May Ease Symptoms in Children and Adolescents, Study Says
Mindfulness-based programs may help improve symptom burden, disability and anxiety in children and adolescents with fibromyalgia (FM), a new study says. In the study “Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Adolescents With Functional Somatic Syndromes: A Pilot Cohort Study,” published in the Journal of Pediatrics, researchers investigated the benefits induced by two months of mindfulness training in younger FM patients. “Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) involves meditation training, patient education, yoga exercises, and group support,” researchers wrote in the report. “The standard 8-week MBSR [program] for adults consists of weekly instructor-led group sessions (2.5 hours long with meditation practice, discussions, and skill-building activities), a full-day retreat, and 45-60 minutes of practice daily.” Previous studies have shown that adults who practice mindfulness meditation experience less pain, anxiety and depression, and have better physical function. In children and adolescents, those exercises also may help reduce perceived stress and improve psychological health. To determine whether mindfulness could be beneficial for FM children, the study enrolled 18 patients (aged 10 to 18 years) in a MBSR program for two months. Both children and parents completed several questionnaires, such as the Functional Disability Inventory (FDI), the Fibromyalgia/Symptom Impact Questionnaire-Revised (FIQR/SIQR), the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory, the Multidimensional Anxiety Scale (MASC2), and the Perceived Stress Scale, at study’s start, and then at two and 12 months after the program. Participants also were int
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