Sleep Soundly Thanks to Less Stress & Anxiety

One hour of NeuroPraxis a day can have positive effects on stress and anxiety so you can rest well. This study demonstrated that 11 weeks of a one-hour long Neurosculpting® meditation session can improve sleep in college-aged students. Additionally, Neurosculpting® meditation has a temporary effect on resting heart rate (reducing) and heart rate variability.

“Neurosculpting® is a mental training process that quiets our fight-or-flight center and activates our prefrontal cortex…..” (Wimberger, 2014, pg. xxvii). Neurosculpting® also “…engages left-and-right brain…” (Wimberger, 2014, xix). Neurosculpting® is not only a meditation practice but also a lifestyle choice that includes learning a “brain supportive” diet and recognizing opportunities for neuroplasticity in our day-to-day lives.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine if 11 weeks of Neurosculpting® Meditation practice (one time per week for one hour) improved sleep, decreased anxiety, decreased stress or decreased depression in college-aged students.

Subjects: Undergraduate students at Quinnipiac University who were enrolled in FLW 103: Introduction to Meditation (Fall 2017) were asked to participate in the study. Twenty-nine students enrolled and fifteen students agreed to participate (9 females and 6 males).

Methods: All subjects signed informed consent prior to participating in the study. Subjects were evaluated at the beginning of the semester and again at the end of the semester using two survey tools: The Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS). During each meditation session, heart rate (HR) and heart rate variability (HRV) were measured using a smartphone app, fingertip sensor, and HRV monitor. Subjects received 60 minutes of Neurosculpting® Meditation, one time per week, for 11 consecutive weeks. All components of the program were provided by a Certified Neurosculpting® Meditation Teacher.

Results: The average score for the DASS decreased from 22.07 to 20.07 over the 11 weeks (p =.54) and the average PSQI score decreased from 6.37 to 5.93 (p = .08). Within each session, average HR decreased and average HRV increased. However, neither variable showed significant changes from the beginning to the end of the semester.

Conclusion: This study demonstrated that 11 weeks of one-hour long Neurosculpting® meditation sessions can improve sleep in college-aged students. Additionally, Neurosculpting® meditation has a temporary effect on resting heart rate (reducing) and heart rate variability (increasing).

Over twenty percent of college students report experiencing sleep difficulties (ACHA-NCHA, Fall, 2015). In addition, 50% of college students report daytime sleepiness (Oginaka & Pokorski, 2006), 70% report getting less than eight hours of sleep per night and 60% are considered to have poor quality sleep (Lund et al, 2010). Poor quality sleep and sleep deprivation can lead to decreased grade point averages, impaired academic performance, impaired ability to drive safely and, in a small percentage of students, suicidal thoughts (Hersher & Chervin, 2014). In this study, 93.3% of participants exhibited poor sleep quality (as measured by the PSQI) at the pre-test.

However, at the post-test, this number decreased to 66.6%, indicating that a weekly meditation practice may have improved sleep quality. These results confirm what other authors have found, that meditation may improve sleep quality (Gong et al, 2016; Wimbush et al, 2007; Gross et al, 2011). Given the prevalence of sleep disturbances in college students and the plethora of detrimental consequences, any program that improves sleep even a slight amount is beneficial.

Initially, students begin by learning the 5-step Neurosculpting® meditation process and practicing meditation. As students continue to study and grow, topics like brain function, neuroplasticity and nutrition are woven into the live practices, CD’s and books.

The end result is a life-changing practice that calms the nervous system, supports the brain and ultimately gives rise to a better way of handling daily stressors and anxiety. This practice appears ideal for college students struggling with stress, anxiety, depression and sleeplessness.

To that end, this study was performed to assess the impact of Neurosculpting® on stress, anxiety, depression, sleep and heart rate variability of one group of college students. For the full study and findings: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1IBz1xdbEcwDxY9LJ-bbYmT7uSObDU4ce/view

Study By: Kelley, K, Pata, R, Acevedo, S, Bayne, C , Thompson, L & Wimberger, L. (2020). Effects of Neurosculpting® Meditation on Depression, Anxiety, Sleep and Heart Rate Variability. APTA Combined Sections Meeting, Denver, CO. 2/15 – 2/20/2020. PLATFORM