Exercise and Depression – An Adjunct to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Exercise not only benefits physical health, but it has been scientifically proven to alleviate symptoms of depression. A study comparing high-intensity exercise prior to receiving cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) found that those who performed the exercise showed improved outcomes compared with a control group that did not take part in the intervention.
Exercise as an adjunct to cognitive behavioral therapy has been studied extensively, with some finding that it primes the treatment for greater effectiveness. Although these studies were small, they suggest that if exercise can be sequenced before or after therapy, it could help reduce depressive symptoms.
Exercise before or after therapy has been found to reduce anxiety levels, with some studies suggesting it may be more effective than psychotherapy alone. This trend of using exercise as an adjunct therapy is relatively recent.
One study revealed that combining exercise with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) improved quality of life and reduced anxiety for people suffering from depression. Although this research was only a pilot trial, with a relatively small sample size, its results were encouraging.
Another study demonstrated that CBT significantly enhanced the quality of life for people suffering from chronic pain. It resulted in decreased pain intensity and related thoughts, as well as significant improvements to sleep patterns.
Other studies have demonstrated that exercise can assist those living with depression in managing symptoms more effectively and improving their quality of life. It’s a non-invasive, low cost treatment option that people can easily incorporate into their lifestyles.
Exercise’s beneficial effects on psychological and physical factors have been extensively researched, with evidence showing that those who engage in regular physical activity experience improvements to depression and anxiety symptoms. Furthermore, regular physical activity reduces the risk of chronic diseases like cardiovascular disease or hypertension.
Exercise has been found to help reduce symptoms in people with depression, but there are limitations to this research. Many individuals struggle to engage in exercise due to fear of injury or experiencing negative side effects from physical activity. Ultimately, research needs to address how best to provide support and encouragement for those looking for relief from depression.
Researchers are exploring ways to make exercising more appealing and easier for those suffering from depression. One such strategy involves including social support as part of the program – this could be done by including loved ones or friends in on the workouts and providing incentives to encourage them to participate.
Self-monitoring may be another helpful strategy for those suffering from depression to incorporate exercise into their routine. It provides them with a better insight into their emotions and thoughts surrounding exercising, as well as helping them identify areas where additional support may be necessary during their workout session.
No matter the method, exercise can have a beneficial impact on mental health and may even be more enjoyable than other forms of therapy. Furthermore, it’s more cost-effective and convenient than other types of therapies with few side effects. Furthermore, exercise can be combined with other types of therapies, including medication, to further maximize its effects on mental health.