Yoga For Depression And Anxiety (OCD)

By Patricia | December 12, 2008
Yoga For Depression And Anxiety (OCD)

Can Yoga Overcome Mental Illnesses Like OCD, Depression And Anxiety

Yoga is a therapeutic discipline which aims to create a balance, a harmony between one’s mind and body. It can prove to be especially effective while battling depression and anxiety and mental disorders like OCD.

Millions of people suffer from depression and anxiety – sometimes it is a result of a harried lifestyle, at others a result of some medical condition (for example cancer treatment or post-natal depression). All the same if you don’t deal with the problem head on, it snow balls into something darker, even leading to a complete breakdown. Stress and depression feed on negativity. As you continuously stress and obsesses over a problem, it engulfs you. When left unattended it manifests in several physical symptoms - high blood pressure, chest pain, etc.  Regularly practice of yoga can help you keep such conditions at bay.

The easiest way to beat depression and anxiety is to breathe properly, or rather correctly. We tend to use on a small percent of our lung capacity as we go about our everyday lives. In addition to this when you suffer an anxiety attack, you breathing pattern becomes even more jagged, greatly affecting the flow of oxygen to your body.  Yoga puts a heavy emphasis on breathing deeply and improving body posture. Deep breathing ensures your body gets a sufficient amount of oxygen; this in turn improves circulation and immunity. It also gives the body a boost of energy enabling you to recover from fatigue and lethargy that are brought on by depression. Deep breathing also helps calm the mind. It enhances brain functions and enables it to react in a calm and efficient manner.  Yoga also corrects body posture. When you slouch, you put added pressure on your lungs, which in turn affects proper breathing pattern. In addition yoga allows the body to relax. When you feel an anxiety attack coming on, try a few cycles of sun salutations or even just breathing exercising, and notice the immediate, calming effect on the body.

Yoga is also very effective in countering conditions like OCD. While the exercises strengthen and relax the body (and mentioned above), it is the meditative aspect of yoga that plays a strong role as well. Meditation is a mental discipline that involves focusing the mind’s attention to one sole point of reference. Generally the mind is constantly active; cluttered with thoughts and ideas. Using meditative techniques, the mind learns how to control its own environment, cut out the noise, and focus on the task at hand; in this case, conquering the OCD. It allows you to put into practice all the action you need to perform to defeat the OCD.

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