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Meditation in Prison Improves Sleep, Temper, Anxiety

09 Aug

Researchers from the Departments of Sociology and Criminal Justice at Old Dominion University at Norfolk, Virginia, examined the impact of a structured meditation program intervention on female detainees, comparing an experimental group and a control group for medical symptoms, emotions, and behaviors before and after the intervention.

A 2 1/2-hour meditation session was held once a week for 7 weeks. Study participants completed a medical symptoms checklist before the program began and after it ended.

At the post-test period, the experimental group experienced fewer sleeping difficulties, less desire to throw things or hit people, and less nail or cuticle biting; additionally, they were more hopeful about their future; and felt less guilt.

Meditation was beneficial for this population and may be a cost-effective tool for inmates and administrators. Meditation effects, especially among inmates, merit further research attention.

Citation: Sumter MT, Monk-Turner E, Turner C.  The benefits of meditation practice in the correctional settingJournal of Correctional Health Care. 2009 Jan; 15 (1): pages 47-57. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award and was released in paperback January of 2006.