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02-05-2020 | ORIGINAL PAPER | Uitgave 7/2020 Open Access

Mindfulness 7/2020

Loving-Kindness Meditation Promotes Mental Health in University Students

Tijdschrift:
Mindfulness > Uitgave 7/2020
Auteurs:
Christina Totzeck, Tobias Teismann, Stefan G. Hofmann, Ruth von Brachel, Verena Pflug, Andre Wannemüller, Jürgen Margraf
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Abstract

Objectives

Loving-kindness meditation (LKM) has been shown to improve wellbeing and positive emotions in clinical and non-clinical populations. The main goal of the present study was to examine whether LKM might be an effective intervention to promote positive mental health using the Positive Mental Health Scale (PMH) and to decrease depression, anxiety, and stress in university students.

Methods

The sample (n = 110) consisted of university students in Germany. One half of them (n = 55) underwent LKM intervention. They were compared with a matched control group (n = 55) which did not receive treatment. All participants completed positive and negative mental health measures at baseline and 1-year follow-up assessments. LKM participants additionally completed the same measures before and after treatment. Multiple analyses of variance were conducted to test for short- and long-term effects of LKM on positive and negative mental health measures.

Results

A significant short-term effect of LKM on anxiety and PMH was found. Long-term analyses revealed a significant decrease of depression, anxiety, and stress for LKM completers, and a significant increase of depression, anxiety, and stress for the control group.

Conclusions

The results suggest that LKM enhances mental health in university students.

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