Posts Tagged ‘Veterans with PTSD’

Veterans who learn TM find relief from PTSD. New study shows symptoms had reduced by 80% to below the clinical level in one month

January 11, 2018

SUMMARY: A study published in Military Medicine showed that after 30 days of practicing the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique, 80% of the 46 veterans and active-duty personnel no longer had PTSD. All participants had been clinically diagnosed with PTSD using a standard assessment. By comparison, standard treatments for PTSD—prolonged exposure therapy, cognitive processing therapy, and medication—are only partially successful: approximately two-thirds of patients receiving cognitive processing therapy or prolonged exposure still have PTSD after treatment.¹

PTSD Graph (figure 1)

Participants in the study went from an average PCL-5 pretest score of 51.52 (with a score of 33 or above indicating PTSD) to an average posttest score of 23.43 after 30 days of practicing Transcendental Meditation (TM).

Veterans of the war in Vietnam, the Gulf War, Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) found significant relief from their symptoms as a result of practicing the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique, according to a new study published in Military Medicine. (PDF

The 41 veterans and 5 active-duty soldiers in the study had been diagnosed with clinical levels of PTSD, as measured by the PTSD Checklist-Civilian (PCL-5). After one month, 87% had a clinically significant decrease of more than 10 points. The reduction was so great that 37 participants (80%) had their symptoms reduced to below the clinical level, meaning that they were no longer considered to have a disorder.

The effect size, which is a measure of the magnitude of a treatment, was 1.91. This is unusually high, with a value of .8 considered to be a strong effect. In addition, the very low p-value (p < 0.0001) indicates these results were probably not due to chance. The study included a 90-day posttest; PTSD symptoms continued to improve.

“It’s remarkable that after just one month we would see such a pronounced decrease in symptoms, with four out of five veterans no longer considered to have a serious problem with PTSD,” said lead author Robert Herron.

More effective than standard treatment

By way of comparison, the standard treatment, which entails veterans attending counseling and re-experiencing their trauma as part of the therapy, is typically only partially successful, with approximately two-thirds still suffering from PTSD after being treated.

“Transcendental Meditation is very easy to do and results come quickly,” said James Grant, Director of Programs for TM for Veterans, which provided partial funding for this study. “TM promotes self sufficiency – it’s a tool that the veteran can use for life, on his or her own.”

In addition, research has shown that Transcendental Meditation has a positive benefit for many of the conditions associated with PTSD, such as high anxiety, insomnia, depression, and high blood pressure.

“Because it works on the neurophysiological level to reduce stress, it has broader impact than cognitively-based therapies,” he said.

Veterans able to help themselves

An interesting facet of the study was that the veterans were recruited through media advertising rather than through a veterans hospital.

“The importance of this study is that it shows that veterans are able to help themselves,” said lead author Robert Herron. “After learning about the opportunity to participate in the study, they went to local Transcendental Meditation centers to be instructed in the practice.”

Dr. Herron said that because of their huge caseload, the Veterans Administration hasn’t been able to help all veterans in a timely manner. And veterans are often in desperate need of help.

Veteran practicing Transcendental Meditation #1.png

Veteran practicing Transcendental Meditation

“The veterans involved were pleased that they were able to do this on their own, and no doubt the VA hospitals appreciate that there are therapeutic approaches that can be undertaken without the costly intensive care of a therapist that treatment typically entails,” he said.

Dr. Grant said some veterans are reluctant to go to counseling because of the perceived stigma, but that there’s no stigma associated with meditation, which is widely practiced by healthy people.

Practiced 20 minutes twice a day

The participants learned the standard Transcendental Meditation technique, which is practiced 20 minutes twice a day. The study found that the veterans who practiced twice a day as recommended had greater benefits than those who practiced once a day.

This approach to meditation, which was introduced in the West by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi beginning in the late 1950s, has been widely researched over the past 50 years, with over 400 peer-reviewed studies. It is unique in that it doesn’t entail contemplation or concentration and is easy to learn and effortless to practice.

“Researchers have been calling for new approaches to PTSD treatments, and Transcendental Meditation seems to be particularly effective,” Dr. Grant said. “Veterans who elect to learn Transcendental Meditation themselves can find significant reductions in PTSD. The results are promising and suggest that this is a treatment modality that deserves more rigorous study as a potential treatment for PTSD.”

DoD supports research on TM

The current study follows four previous studies on veterans that suggested a benefit for PTSD. Because of these promising findings, the U.S. Department of Defense has supported a randomized controlled trial involving 210 veterans that is now nearing completion.

“The evidence is mounting that Transcendental Meditation is an effective treatment for PTSD,” said Colonel Brian Rees, MD, coauthor of the current study. Dr. Rees was the lead researcher on two earlier studies on Congolese refugees suffering from PTSD, and found a significant benefit after just 10 days of TM practice.

Watch a video conference held at the US Institute of Peace on Dec 2016, Exploring the Science of Meditation on Trauma, Stress, and the Brain: Military Panel, where leading experts in the field of military and veteran health discussed the benefits of utilizing TM in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.

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Funding for veterans to learn the Transcendental Meditation technique in this study was provided by the Wege Foundation of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Watch veterans describe their PTS symptoms and how TM changed their lives in this video made by the David Lynch Foundation: Real PTS Relief for our Veterans.

A more recent DLF video, Training from the Inside: Treating PTS with Transcendental Meditation, appears in a report on the study published in Issue 20 of Enjoy TM News: Military Medicine: New Study Shows Veterans Gain Dramatic Relief from PTSD Symptoms | 80 percent dropped below the PTSD threshold after just 30 days of TM practice.

Peter Swan, host of Maharishi’s Global Family Chat, interviewed Robert Herron about his study (Jan 15, 2018): Transcendental Meditation Reduces PTSD Symptoms.

1. Steenkamp MM, Litz BT, Hoge CW, Marmar CR: Psychotherapy for military-related PTSD: A review of randomized clinical trials. Journal of the American Medical Association 2015; 314(5): 489–500. (PDF)

2. Robert E Herron, Ph.D., MBA, Brian Rees, M.D., MPH, MC, USAR (Ret.): The Transcendental Meditation Program’s Impact on the Symptoms of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder of Veterans: An Uncontrolled Pilot Study. Military Medicine, 29 December 2017.

Source: EurekAlert!: Veterans who learn Transcendental Meditation find relief from PTSD, new study shows.

 

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Highlights of David Lynch Foundation honoring legendary manager and producer George Shapiro at first annual Night of Comedy

July 12, 2012

Los Angeles: June 30, 2012: The David Lynch Foundation hosted its first annual “Night of Comedy” to honor legendary manager and producer (and 30-year meditator) George Shapiro. Proceeds went to support TM programs for at-risk youth, veterans with PTSD, and women and girls who have been victims of violence and abuse. Headliners included Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Russell Brand, Garry Shandling and Sarah Silverman. Over 500 people attended. Thanks to all who participated and attended! Here is a quick edit of a fun 15-minute highlight reel from that very blissful evening. – Bob Roth, executive director, David Lynch Foundation.

Related coverage: Blue Carpet Interviews before the David Lynch Foundation Fundraiser Honoring George Shapiro  |  Chicago Tribune: A standup hero: Comedians fete Shapiro  |  Los Angeles Times Ministry of Gossip reports on the David Lynch Foundation’s Night of Comedy honoring George Shapiro  |  VIEW EVENT PHOTOS ON FACEBOOK

Watch this great interview of George Shapiro posted on Emmy TV Legends in the Archive of American Television. He shares great stories of comics he represented, including Andy Kaufman and Jerry Seinfeld. http://www.emmytvlegends.org/interviews/people/george-shapiro

The former Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr reunion for David Lynch’s benefit concert airs on New York’s THIRTEEN, Sunday, April 29

April 12, 2012

MEDIA ADVISORY

Former Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr
reunite for David Lynch Foundation benefit concert—

To be broadcast on New York’s THIRTEEN
on Sunday, April 29

There will be a special “Change Begins Within” Concert Screening at the Stephen Sondheim Center for Performing Arts this Sunday, April 22, 2012, 7:30 pm in the Fairfield Arts & Convention Center. Two free screenings have been added Friday, April 27, and Sunday, April 29, 7:30 pm.

Former Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr reunited on an American stage for the only time in the past 20 years during this historic 2009 Radio City Music Hall benefit concert, which will be broadcast on New York City’s channel THIRTEEN on Sunday, April 29, at 10:30 pm (check local listings for broadcast times and dates in your area).

The Beatle reunion highlights the 90-minute “Change Begins Within” concert to benefit the David Lynch Foundation, a charity set up in 2005 by the iconic filmmaker David Lynch to fund Transcendental Meditation programs for at-risk youth, veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder, and women who suffer from domestic abuse and violence.

McCartney performs a set of Beatles, Wings and solo classics; Starr sings his own set of Beatle and solo hits; and McCartney and Starr join together on stage for a finale of “With A Little Help from My Friends,” Paul’s rarely performed “Cosmically Conscious,” and Beatle fan favorite “I Saw Her Standing There.”

Also appearing on the broadcast are comedian Jerry Seinfeld as well as musicians Sheryl Crow (“My Sweet Lord”), Eddie Vedder and Ben Harper (“Under Pressure”), Moby and Betty LaVette (“Natural Blues”), Paul Horn, newly-elected Rock-and-Roll-Hall of Famer Donovan  and Jim James (“Hurdy Gurdy Man”).

The concert was co-produced by Hoosick Falls Productions and David Lynch Foundation Television with executive producer George Verschoor.

VIEW EVENT HIGHLIGHTS

Press contact: Elizabeth Freund, Elizabeth@BeautifulDayMedia.com, 718-522-5858, for more information or to arrange an interview with David Lynch.

FACTS

The David Lynch Foundation has provided scholarships for more than 200,000 students and veterans to learn to meditate.

Transcendental Meditation is a simple, easily learned technique, practiced for 15 to 20 minutes twice daily, sitting comfortably with the eyes closed. According to research funded by the National Institutes of Health and published in peer-reviewed scientific journals, the technique reduces stress and stress-related disorders, including PTSD, anxiety, depression, cardiovascular disease, and substance abuse.

Prominent meditators include Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Russell Brand, Ellen DeGeneres, Clint Eastwood, Mehmet Oz, Martin Scorsese, Jerry Seinfeld, Russell Simmons, and Oprah Winfrey.

DAVID LYNCH FOUNDATION

654 Madison Avenue, Suite 805, New York, NY 10065 • 212-644-9880 • www.DavidLynchFoundation.orginfo@DavidLynchFoundation.org

– ENDS –

PERSONAL NOTE

To find out more about that event visit David Lynch Foundation Television (DLF.TV) to see a brief overview of the pre-concert Change Begins Within Press Conference Highlights that took place at Radio City Music Hall on April 3, 2009. Then watch the Paul McCartney & Ringo Starr Concert Highlights from Radio City Music Hall on April 4, 2009. Also see David Lynch interviews Paul McCartney about meeting Maharishi and his first meditation, which was recorded for DLF before the concert.

As far as I know there won’t be any DVDs of this PBS special available for purchase.* It will play in different markets across the country during May, June and July. So you may want to set your DVR to save a copy when it broadcasts in your area. You’ll want to see it, and share it with your friends, over and over again. It was the most intensely joyful and fun-filled concert I had ever attended. All of the musicians and the audience were deliriously happy! And it was for a very worthy cause. There was an avalanche of news coverage! Here is an article in April 13, 2009 Issue of The New Yorker by Nancy Franklin: All Together Now.

*A DVD of the concert was eventually released September 1, 2017: Change Begins Within A Benefit Concert for The David Lynch Foundation.

Free Your Mind Project Show Discusses the David Lynch Foundation’s Commitment to 10,000 Vets

January 15, 2012

David Lynch Foundation’s Commitment to 10,000 Vets and 8 Easy Ways Make Your New Year’s Resolutions Work for Real Happiness

Here’s another Free Your Mind Projects On Air Radio Show on Transcendental Meditation and the David Lynch Foundation’s work with Veterans. Guests include longtime Teacher of Transcendental Meditation, Denny Goodman, and Veteran Infantryman David George. You can hear them on the 3rd and 4th segments of this 55:24 minute show. Information about this FYMP show is copied below from their post.

We have had the honor of inviting the people over at the David Lynch Foundation onto our show again. Thanks to Ken Chawkin and Lynn Kaplan, who both set us up with one of their great Transcendental Meditation (TM) teachers, Denny Goodman, and also a US veteran, David George, who has been to hell and back. Listen as they talk about how TM has helped soldiers recover from PTSD, and how they are committed to helping 10,000 Vets across the country. We also have a clip of our interview with David Lynch at his past event. Also thanks to our guest host from LA County Department of Mental Health, PIO Kathleen Piche´, for getting us in touch with TM!

This is the video that we talk about on the show, which has David and his mother talking about his ups and downs and finally his recovery.

Please note, our guest stated the way to make this kind of therapy available for all Veterans across the country who may be coming back with conditions such as PTSD (that’s about 500,000 vets!), is to have them tell the Veteran’s Administration they want this for everyone. Please, if you know a Vet, let them know this is available and to reach out to the VA and the David Lynch Foundation. Thank you.

Here is the link for Operation Warrior Wellness, the David Lynch Foundation division that is offering Transcendental Meditation to Veterans: http://www.operationwarriorwellness.org/contact-us.html.

You can find the printed version of previous Free Your Mind Projects Radio Show Guest Dr. William Arroyo from LACDMH and Project ABC’s “8 Easy Ways to do Your New Year’s Resolutions” on our Free Your Mind Blog.

I checked their blog posts and found 3 so far on Transcendental Meditation. Click here, scroll down and you’ll see 3 entries on the 7th of Oct, Nov, and Dec. Also listen to a previous show: Bob Roth, Executive Director, David Lynch Foundation, Discusses Transcendental Meditation On Free Your Mind Projects Radio Show.


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