Yoga Helps Treat Psych Disorders In New Holistic Approach

New research from the Dev Sanskriti University suggests holistic healing techniques such as yoga and herbal medicine can effectively treat psychological disorders such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

The study focused on 60 patients previously diagnosed with the anxiety disorder OCD, of which each received 45 individual therapeutic sessions without the use of pharmaceutical drugs. Instead, each hour-long session was filled with a combination of pranayam, a 20-minute yoga practice, herbal medicines, and recitation of the Gayatri Mantra, a highly revered verse from the Rig Veda text.

Pharmaceutical drugs and behavior modification are currently the most widely used treatments used for OCD, according to Dev Sanskriti University’s Interdisciplinary International Journal. The major disadvantages of these techniques are the drugs’ negative side effects, coupled with the high relapse rate for patients once they go off their medication. The drugs can help reduce symptoms in some people, but their adverse attributes warrant interest in a different approach.

According to the university, their research has led to a more favorable option for patients suffering from OCD:

The “holistic approach produced significant reduction in the level of OCD,” according to the research paper. “The combination of these specific techniques has collective effect on the patients and causes significant reduction in the symptoms of OCD.”

This is encouraging news for the 2 percent of the population worldwide diagnosed with OCD. The disorder is often chronic and disabling, although it is said to be one of the least diagnosed anxiety disorders. The research paper attributes this to the disorder’s complex nature, making it difficult to diagnose before it manifests itself in the form of altered behavior.

“Thus, the holistic approach can provide a new strategy for management of OCD. The findings are an important exploration with wide scope for further research and applications,” according to the research paper.

Researchers Deepak Singh, Pranav Pandya, O.P. Mishra, and Pragya S. Lodhi continue to develop their holistic approach to provide maximum relief to patients.

For more on how yoga can help psychological disorders like anxiety and depression:

How Science Supports Yoga as a Cure for Depression

Yoga can tackle psychological disorders, Ayurveda: The Science of Life

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