Monday, July 20, 2009

The Importance of 'Play' and Recovery

Fun, meaningful, playful activities are proving to be of growing importance to mental health recovery. Physical activity serves as a form of active meditation, which allows for introspection and self-reflection. Self meditation is reminiscent of a form of treatment for mental illnesses often referred to as dialectic behavioral treatment (DBT).

Self-reflective importance aside, recent research has indicated modern man’s minds evolved moving 12 miles per day. This physical activity is now believed to re-from brain derived nuertropic factor, the chemical responsible for creating and repairing brain cells.

Where it was once believed that one’s brain cells was a static number, and if you do something damaging to destroy said brain cells they were gone for good, now it is believed that a regiment of elongated physical activity produces brain derived nuertropic factor, which in turn can lead to the creation of more brain cells.

This holds incredible implications for substance abuse mental health consumers and mental healthcare consumers in general and begins to explain why practitioners are so ardent about stressing physical activity. I will be researching this more and posting an article about it shortly!

For more links to publications, check out MHCD’s Research and Evaluation Publications.

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