Holistic Health Show with Carl Helvie logoA study presented at the American Psychosomatic Meeting in San Francisco concluded that mindfulness-based meditation could lessen some symptoms associated with cancer for teenagers.

Researchers asked 13 teenagers with cancer to complete questionnaires covering mood (positive and negative emotions, anxiety and depression), sleep and quality of life. The group was divided into two. The research group was given eight mindfulness-based meditation sessions and the other group of five were put on a wait list.

The eight sessions were 90 minutes long and took place weekly. After the eight sessions both groups filled out the same questionnaire a second time. Researchers said, “We analyzed differences in mood, sleep and quality of life scores for each participant and then between each group to evaluate if mindfulness sessions had a greater impact than the passage of time only.

Findings showed that teens participating in the mindfulness meditation sessions had lower scores on depression after eight weeks and girls from this group reported sleeping better. Researchers also found that girls developed meditation skills better than boys. Researchers concluded, “Our results suggest that mindfulness meditation sessions could be helpful in improving mood and sleep in teenagers with cancer, as previous oncology research suggests with adults.”

However, results were not large enough to make definitive conclusions.