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Meditation and Mindfulness are practices that call to attention our current thoughts, feelings and opinions. Theravada Buddhism which helped establish the practice of Mindfulness was established over 3000 years ago. Modern science is increasingly assessing the benefits of Mindfulness. Those suffering from Co-occurring disorders or dual diagnosis may find much needed help through practicing Mindfulness.

 Mindfulness helps lessen the feelings of anxiety and depression and helps lessen the severity of triggers and cravings that often lead to relapsing on drugs or alcohol.

The following research article in Addiction, published by the Society for the Study of Addiction finds merit in Mindfulness for those suffering from co-occurring disorders (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2905496/);

“A recent consensus definition of mindfulness emphasizes two complementary elements:
1) the placement of attention on the immediate experience; and, 2) adopting an open, curious, accepting attitude toward that experience. Taken together, these data provide a rationale for the hypothesis that MT (Mindfulness) may target shared underlying mechanisms in MDD (Major Depressive Disorder) and SUDs (Substance Use Disorders) in a dually diagnosed population.”

This research article suggests that Mindfulness helps the practicing individual not “ruminate” on feelings of depression, but rather practice healthy coping skills. When healthy coping skills are learned and practiced, the recovering individual is less likely to choose relapsing.

At AToN Center, we teach Mindfulness and Buddhist practice in conjunction with other evidenced based coping skills to help those suffering from dual diagnosis or co-occurring disorders live healthy, happy lives.

Chris McDuffie, MA CADC II
Chemical Dependency Counselor
AToN Center 888-535-1516