According to the American Psychiatric Association depression is among the most common mental health diagnoses in America. Symptoms include depressed mood, loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities, weight loss or gain, trouble sleeping, fatigue, feelings of worthlessness, trouble concentrating and constant thoughts of death or dying. The criterion for diagnosis is met if you suffer from five or more symptoms within a 2-week period. Medications can help to reduce symptoms however most lose their effectiveness over time. Mindfulness based treatment approaches for depression have been gaining traction and recent research is showing that they are more effective in reducing the rate of recurrence than psychiatric medication. Mindfulness is the ability to observe your thoughts, emotions and physical sensations as they present themselves into your awareness. Unlike medications, mindfulness based treatment for depression has no side effects. Specific interventions, such as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, MBCT, can target the symptoms of depression and teach the individual how to engage with these symptoms in a different way. Not only do mindfully based treatment techniques reduce the symptoms and likelihood of recurrence of depression, these techniques also promote wellbeing in the individual and can and help them better manage difficult life circumstances. Because research shows that mindfulness based treatment for depression has a lasting impact, it is our duty to incorporate these techniques into our practice so that we can better serve the needs of our community and address the suffering of individuals. Learn more about mindfulness-based treatment by checking out our other info tabs.