Yoga has been around for thousands of years and is a practice that restores balance within the body. Today, many people have made yoga part of their routine due to the positive impact of yoga for mental health on their lives.
Physically, yoga can increase flexibility and strength. It can tone muscles and improve your circulatory health. It can be beneficial in weight loss as well as boosting balance, respiration, and energy. Yoga is so powerful that this list is long.
But yoga doesn’t just stop with your physical health. As the body begins its transformation, so does the mind. Let’s explore the benefits of yoga for mental health below:
What is Yoga?
Yoga works to keep the mind and body in balance. It moves through tranquil poses, encouraging the body to find serenity and focus while maintaining deep, steady breathing. Many find that while they are physically getting fit and becoming stronger, they are also bringing a sense of peace to the body. In turn, this relaxes the mind.
Yoga is slow-moving and intentional with the ability to improve overall health. In our ever-busy and loud world, it can reduce stress and restore well-being.
In more recent years, yoga has been found to be highly effective in a therapeutic setting when it comes to overcoming mental health issues. As a widely-used modality, there are plenty of benefits to doing yoga for mental health. Below are a few of them.
Improve Your Mood
When practicing yoga for mental health, certain feel-good hormones and chemicals become elevated throughout the brain and body – including gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA).
This neurotransmitter in the brain impacts the way you feel. For instance, if you don’t have enough GABA floating around, anxiety, depression, and negative mood swings may abound. With an ample amount of GABA, you will feel better and have a more positive outlook on life.
Yoga is an easy way to ensure that your mood is uplifted.
Boost Brain Function
Brain function is important if you want to have mental clarity. As you embark on a journey to better your mental health, having a clear mind can help you tackle the tasks at hand. Working through therapy, developing a plan for healing, and learning how to use your coping skills are all part of finding success with your mental health. This clarity aids in that.
What’s more, by using this increased awareness you are able to stay present and practice mindfulness better than ever before. Certain mental health disorders, such as anxiety, require you to remain in the moment to reduce its powerful grip.
Reduce Stress and Anxiety
Stress is another key player when it comes to anxiety. The greater the stress, the higher the anxiety. So, it only makes sense that reducing stress will reduce anxiety. And guess what? It just so happens that practicing yoga for mental health is a great way to reduce stress.
With the movements and breathwork involved as well as stimulation to the parasympathetic nervous system, the body is able to relax and the symptoms of anxiety are reduced.
This can be beneficial when you are currently experiencing anxiety as well as a means of reducing its chance of occurrence altogether.
Minimize Symptoms of PTSD
Those who suffer from PTSD know just how quickly reality can spin out of control. It can be tough to keep a foot on the ground in order to distinguish between what is real and what is not. And having a tool that increases awareness and regulates emotions can be beneficial. This is where yoga comes in.
Practicing yoga allows individuals to slow down and reflect rather than react when faced with triggers. The slow movements and holding of various postures increase a sense of calm and grounding. This leaves them better able to handle any perceived stress.
Depression can deflate one’s mood and lead to a poor quality of life. But the regular practice of yoga can restore balance and bring a sense of peace to a life that seems overcrowded, busy, or out of control.
Yoga builds confidence. It reduces the heart rate and blood pressure, it eases anxiety, and it slows breathing. It also empowers you to get up and move through your day. For some, dealing with depression is isolating. Yoga not only has an impact on the body physically and mentally, but it can bring a bit of healthy social engagement, too.
The lower levels of cortisol that result from yoga can make more traditional treatment methods more effective.
Improve Your Sleep Quality
Sleep is vital for overall health and well-being. Without it, chances for depression and anxiety will increase in addition to an increased risk of obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and more.
Yoga promotes healthy, good, quality sleep by increasing your melatonin levels. This is the hormone that regulates both sleep and wakefulness. You will fall asleep faster, sleep longer, and feel more rested upon waking.
Boost Your Confidence and Mental Strength
When you feel good and confident, you won’t let your mind hold you back. With the regular practice of yoga, you will not only strengthen your body, but you will strengthen your mind, too.
A positive mindset is a powerful one. Since yoga reinforces your ability to control your body, you learn that you have self-control. And you begin to understand that when you put your mind to something, you can do it.
Yoga is frequently used as part of the treatment for mental health. And the confidence that it brings empowers clients to excel through their treatment.
Treat Your Mental Health to Yoga at Amend Treatment
Yoga is one of the many commonly used modalities you will find at Amend Treatment. When used with the most advanced therapeutic techniques, it can boost the mental, emotional, and physical aspects of our client’s overall health.
Whether you have been practicing yoga for years or you have never given it a try, the benefits are there for everyone. When you are ready to take advantage of them – and all the benefits they bring – then contact us. We are here for you.