Yoga, meditation aid in depression?

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Question from SueAnne: Do you think yoga and meditation would be good for depression sufferers?
Answers - Rosalind Kleban, L.C.S.W. I think that when people are diagnosed and are having trouble with the diagnosis as we expect for most people, there are any number of interventions and activities that people can try. Certainly meditation, yoga, and relaxation are useful for many people. I do get concerned, however, when patients think they SHOULD do yoga or they SHOULD do meditation. In such cases, they may feel guilty that they're not using these therapies, or they try some of them and find that they're not helpful, and then feel somehow that they themselves have failed. If these activities are helpful and beneficial, that's wonderful. But there shouldn't be any pressure to either participate or feel that they HAVE to be helpful.
Diane Thompson I agree. The stress and anxiety that come with this diagnosis can be overwhelming, and it's natural to search for ways to help alleviate distress. I recommend doing what's worked in the past, but I also stress the importance of being GENTLE with oneself during diagnosis and treatment.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Overcoming Depression featured Rosalind Kleban, M.S.W., Diane S. Thompson, M.D., and Jennifer Griggs, M.D., M.P.H. answering your questions about medication and lifestyle changes that can ease depression along with to put hope, fun, and pleasure back into your life during and after breast cancer treatment.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in March 2003.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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