Mind–Body Skills Groups for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Palestinian Adults in Gaza

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Abstract

A mind–body skills group (MBSG) program was evaluated to determine its effect on symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, and quality of life in adults in Gaza. The 10-session mind–body skills groups (MBSGs) included meditation, guided imagery, breathing techniques, autogenic training, biofeedback, genograms, and self-expression through words, drawings, and movement. Data were analyzed from 92 adults meeting criteria for PTSD. Significant improvements in PTSD, depression, and anxiety symptoms and significant improvements in quality of life (QOL) were observed immediately following participation in the program. At 10-month follow-up, the improvements in the PTSD, depression, anxiety, overall QOL and health scores, and the physical health and social relationship domains of QOL were fully maintained. Improvement was partially maintained for the psychological QOL domain but was not maintained for the environment domain. MBSGs are easily taught to health professionals and can reduce PTSD, depression, and anxiety symptoms, and improve QOL in adults affected by war and political violence.

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