Meditation has long been used for centuries to increase calmness, establish relaxation, and restore psychological balance. Today, men who learn meditation’s relaxation techniques find it helps to relieve the anxiety and stress that often accompanies bladder leakage.
Before dismissing meditation as a touchy-feely ‘60s flashback fad, it’s important to recognize there are real health benefits to be gained from meditation. In fact, modern science is catching up to the 2,000-year-old practice to demonstrate its actual effectiveness in improving our mind and body functions:
• Individuals who meditated for 30 minutes a day for eight weeks had measurable changes in gray-matter density in the parts of the brain associated with memory, empathy, stress, and a sense of self,* which may explain why meditation helps reduce anxiety, stress, and depression.
• Meditation can reduce blood pressure in patients with coronary artery disease and may help reduce the chance of heart attacks.**
• Meditation can decrease psychological distress, reduce the risk of hypertension, and improve mood.***
• The National Institutes of Health suggests meditation can be a useful complementary therapy for treating chronic pain and insomnia.
Meditation is not a religion or a philosophy. It’s simply a wellness practice that relaxes the body and calms the mind. The techniques for meditation can vary but all share a few common elements. They include finding a quiet space, assuming a comfortable posture, building an awareness of your breathing, and maintaining focused attention.
Many hospitals and community centers offer classes in meditation to help you learn the basics. Practiced regularly—once a day for 20 minutes—meditation will help you relax, preparing you to confidently manage your leakage more easily and successfully!
*Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging, 2012.
**American Heart Association, Circulation 2009.
***American Journal of Hypertension, 2009.
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