Meditation for Prostatitis
What Is Meditation for Prostatitis?
Meditation for prostatitis can help sufferers of chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) by lowering stress and anxiety. Stress and anxiety can trigger tension in the pelvic floor, which is the cause of pain for about 50% of the men with CP/CPPS.
Dealing with a painful chronic condition that is difficult to treat like CP/CPPS can cause stress, anxiety, and depression for men, so meditation and stress management are important parts of any CP/CPPS treatment program. Addressing the mental component of your health is important to your all-over health.
Meditation has no negative side effects, it can be done almost anywhere, and it is free. It does not require any special equipment. It does take commitment and discipline, though, and while you can get benefits right away, it may take some patience in getting used to it. Meditation has been shown to have lasting positive benefits in stress relief that increase with practice.
How Does Meditation Work?
Meditation is an alternative treatment that gets a lot of support from the medical community. Many studies have shown that meditation works to alleviate stress, normalize blood pressure, and boost immunity.
There are several different meditation techniques, but there are common elements that run thought them such has having a quiet mind, being in the present, and an altered state of consciousness. There are two categories of meditation: mindfulness and concentration.
Concentration involves focusing on one object or sound or mantra outside of yourself. Both concentration and mindfulness can be combined as well.
Mindfulness is a state of being engaged in the moment without over thinking or overanalyzing it. This type of meditation is well studied and is especially effective at reducing anxiety, stress, and depression. When you practice mindfulness you strengthen areas of the brain associated with relaxation and weaken those that are involved with stress.
There are many different techniques associated with meditation. Some have you sit in a comfortable position and clear your mind, others are activity oriented, in which you engage in a repetitive activity like gardening, yoga, artwork, or even walking to get into a zone. Meditation can be spiritual and in the form of prayer, or it can involve being more fully aware of the present moment.
Try it Now
1. Find a quiet place and get in to a relaxed position. You can either sit cross legged on the floor or in a straight back chair; whatever is comfortable. If you have a timer, set it for 10 minutes. Most smartphones have a countdown timer. Set it for the time that you wish to practice your meditation.
2. When sitting you should feel like there is a piece of string attached to the top of your head pulling your head up to the sky. Your face should be relaxed and your mouth slightly open; with your tongue lightly pressing against the top of your mouth. Eyelids should be relaxed but not closed. Your eyes should be focused about 3 feet in front of you.
3. Relax your eyes and take a breath through the nose to the slow count of 4. Pause at the end of the breath in; then release the breath out through the mouth to the count of 6. Notice the breath. Focus on the breath and nothing else – what it feels like – the breath of life.
4. When your mind wanders (it will constantly!), bring your thoughts back to your breath. Don’t be frustrated that you can’t focus at first. Monks spend lifetimes trying to perfect meditation! Just do your best to bring your thoughts back to the breath. In time it will get easier as you practice more. Allow thoughts to just “float” in and out of your mind without trying to stop them. Just let them float away.
5. Sit still and quiet and breathe for the period you have set aside for your meditation. The good thing about having a timer is that you don’t have to think about the time! Your timer will remind you when you are finished.
Practice this simple meditation for 10 minutes a day. The best time is on waking as you prepare for the day or late in the evening. In time you will look forward to your daily practice.
Other Treatments Related to Meditation
If you are feeling stressed, depressed, hopeless, or worried about your prostatitis, you can benefit from meditation and other treatments that help support your mental health. Cognitive behavioral therapy can help you change harmful or negative thought patterns into more realistic and productive thoughts. Learning to have a positive outlook will benefit your healing, and meditation can decrease anxiety about the future.
If you think you could benefit from stress management for prostatitis, talk to your doctor. You may want to talk to a therapist and try some stress-relieving techniques such as yoga, tai chi, and exercise. Other alternative treatments like acupuncture or biofeedback can help you relax as well.
The above meditation is from the Shambala Buddhist School. You can learn more about Shambala meditation in the following video from Sakyong Rinpoche.