Mindful Meditation | Varad Program Integrative Psychiatry Clinic For Mental Health And Holistic Wellness Center Bellevue

MINDFUL MEDITATION


What is Meditation?

Meditation is a mind and body practice that has a long history of use for increasing calmness and physical relaxation, improving psychological balance, coping with illness, and enhancing overall health and well-being. Mind and body practices focus on the interactions among the brain, mind, body, and behavior. There are many types of meditation, but most have four elements in common: a quiet location with as few distractions as possible; a specific, comfortable posture (sitting, lying down, walking, or in other positions); a focus of attention (a specially chosen word or set of words, an object, or the sensations of the breath); and an open attitude (letting distractions come and go naturally without judging them).

How does Meditation Work?

A simple meditation can be used to begin the transition from Beta or Alpha to the Theta State by focusing on the breath. The breath and mind work in tandem, so as breath begins to lengthen, brain waves begin to slow down. Read more about Brain waves below.

  • Gamma State: (30 - 100Hz) This is the state of hyperactivity and active learning.
  • Beta State: (13 - 30Hz) This is where we function for most of the day.
  • Alpha State: (9 - 13Hz) Brain waves start to slow down out of thinking mind.
  • Theta State: (4 - 8Hz) We are able to begin meditation.
  • Delta State: (1-3 Hz) Tibetan monks that have been meditating for decades can reach this in an alert, wakened phase, but most of us reach this final state during deep, dreamless sleep.
  • Is Meditation Safe?

    Meditation is generally considered to be safe for healthy people.

    People with physical limitations may not be able to participate in certain meditative practices involving movement. People with physical health conditions should speak with their health care providers before starting a meditative practice, and make their meditation instructor aware of their condition.

    There have been rare reports that meditation could cause or worsen symptoms in people with certain psychiatric problems like anxiety and depression. People with existing mental health conditions should speak with their health care providers before starting a meditative practice, and make their meditation instructor aware of their condition.

    Does Meditation treat certain conditions?

    Many studies have investigated meditation for different conditions, and there’s evidence that it may reduce blood pressure as well as symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and flare-ups in people who have had ulcerative colitis. It may ease symptoms of anxiety and depression, and may help people with insomnia.

    Read more about meditation for these conditions:

  • Pain
  • For High Blood Pressure
  • For Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • For Ulcerative Colitis
  • For Anxiety, Depression, and Insomnia
  • For Smoking Cessation
  • Better mental health + quality of life
  • Reduce anxiety and depression + Enhance mood and self esteem patients with terminal illnesses
  • Reduce menopausal symptoms: hot flashes sleep and mood disturbances stress and muscle and joint pain.
  • Adhd
  • Inflammation + stress induced inflammation
  • What is Meditation Practice Like?

    Meditation Practice is like turning off your senses and slowing down your thoughts. When we meditate, our brains stop processing information as actively as they normally would. We start to show a decrease in beta waves, which indicate that our brains are processing information, even after a single 20-minute meditation session if we’ve never tried it before. Below is an explanation of what happens in the brain during meditation.

    Frontal lobe

    This is the most highly evolved part of the brain, responsible for reasoning, planning, emotions and self-conscious awareness. During meditation, the frontal cortex tends to go offline.

    Parietal lobe

    This part of the brain processes sensory information about the surrounding world, orienting you in time and space. During meditation, activity in the parietal lobe slows down.

    Thalamus

    The gatekeeper for the senses, this organ focuses your attention by funneling some sensory data deeper into the brain and stopping other signals in their tracks. Meditation reduces the flow of incoming information to a trickle.

    Reticular formation

    As the brain’s sentry, this structure receives incoming stimuli and puts the brain on alert, ready to respond. Meditating dials back the arousal signal.