Mindfulness for Children May Prevent Anxiety and Mental Illness

Posted on August 3, 2016

Anxiety disorders are among the most common psychiatric conditions for children and teens. While antidepressants are frequently used to treat youth with anxiety disorders, sometimes, antidepressants may be poorly tolerated in children who are at high risk of developing bipolar disorder.

The study, published in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, looked at brain imaging in youth before and after mindfulness-based therapy and saw changes in brain regions that control emotional processing.

Jeffrey Strawn, M.D., a co-principal investigator on the study, explains important activity in the brains of children receiving this therapy:

“Our preliminary observation that the mindfulness therapy increases activity in the part of the brain known as the cingulate, which processes cognitive and emotional information, is noteworthy. This study, taken together with previous research, raises the possibility that treatment-related increases in brain activity [of the anterior cingulate cortex] during emotional processing may improve emotional processing in anxious youth who are at risk for developing bipolar disorder.”

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Category(s):Anxiety, Mindfulness

Source material from Brain Blogger

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