The Transcendental Meditation technique may be an effective and safe non-pharmaceutical aid for treating ADHD, according to a promising new study.
The pilot study followed a group of middle school students with ADHD who were meditating twice a day in school.
After three months, researchers found over 50 percent reduction in stress and anxiety and improvements in ADHD symptoms.
Effect exceeds expectations
“The effect was much greater than we expected,” said Sarina J. Grosswald, Ed.D., a George Washington University-trained cognitive learning specialist and lead researcher on the study. “The children also showed improvements in attention, working memory, organization, and behavior regulation.”
Grosswald said that after the in-school meditation routine began, “teachers reported they were able to teach more, and students were able to learn more because they were less stressed and anxious.”
Stress interferes with the ability to learn
Prior research shows ADHD children have slower brain development and a reduced ability to cope with stress. “Stress interferes with the ability to learn—it shuts down the brain,” said William Stixrud, Ph.D., a Silver Spring, Maryland, clinical neuropsychologist and co-author of the study.
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