13-06-2022 | ORIGINAL PAPER
Virtual Group–Based Mindfulness Intervention for Autistic Adults: a Feasibility Study
Gepubliceerd in: Mindfulness | Uitgave 7/2022Log in om toegang te krijgen
Although mindfulness-based interventions have been shown to be helpful in reducing psychological distress in autistic adults, limited research has explored virtual delivery in the autism community. We designed an adapted virtual group–based mindfulness intervention, based on input from autistic adults, and evaluated its feasibility in terms of demand, acceptability, implementation, practicality, adaptation, and limited efficacy testing.
Informed by an online needs assessment survey of 77 autistic adults, 37 individuals completed a six-week autism informed manualized course delivered virtually. Participants completed pre, post, and 12-week follow up, and also provided qualitative feedback.
There was a demand for the course, adaptations were successful, and participants indicated good acceptability of the intervention. Open-ended feedback highlighted advantages and challenges with the technology, the benefits of connecting with other autistic adults, and unique aspects of the mindfulness instruction. Participants reported reduced levels of distress which were maintained at three-month follow-up, and increased mindfulness, and self-compassion.
Autism-informed adaptations to standard mindfulness-based interventions can lead to self-reported improvements in mindfulness, self-compassion, and distress by autistic adults. Continued research with outcome measures tailored toward autistic adults will be important, during and post-pandemic.