Mindfulness-based programs have proven effective not only in increasing mindfulness, but in helping participants successfully experience their clinical work: productive therapy, counseling, residential, and aftercare.
In the field of mindfulness, there are more than one hundred meditation and mindfulness techniques, theoretical practices, and relaxation and spiritual meditation teachings. Only certain types of mindfulness practices have been successful with mental health, alcohol and other drugs, and gambling addiction diagnoses; these include but are not limited to body scan meditation, mindfulness movement exercise, and mindfulness breathing.
The neuroscience research of mindfulness meditation is one of the major research fields in psychology and neurobiology. Its goal is to better understand the neural systems that are utilized in order to achieve meditative states and also to determine the effects that regular practices of mindfulness has on brain function and structure (Treadway and Lazar, 2009). There are two major types of neurological effects that can be investigated using mindfulness meditation.
The first is state effects. State effects are recognized by the meditator who has been using meditation along side relative meditative practices such as appropriate foods, sitting positions (asana), and emotional practices. Being aware of the subtlety of state effects can be beneficial for clinicians in helping to determine how mindfulness can be best utilized to help patients suffering chronic stress, trauma, complicated grief, painful memories, and bursts of emotions. The second effect is trait-like and occurs step-by-step, long-term as a consequence of sustained meditation practice and persists through the day (Treadway and Lazar, 2009).
The goal of psychotherapy and therapeutic intervention in relapse prevention research is to understand the mechanism that triggers relapse.