Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy in Adults with ADHD
A study published in January 2019 compared a 'treatment as usual' (TAU) group of adults with ADHD to a group receiving mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT). They looked at an 8 week group program including meditation, psychoeducation and group discussion. This was compared to people getting TAU, which in general meant medication.
ADHD symptoms before and after treatment wererated by blinded clinicians. Secondary outcomes included self-reported ADHD symptoms, executive functioning, mindfulness skills, self-compassion, positive mental health and general functioning. Outcomes were assessed prior to treatment, post-treatment, 3- and 6-month follow-up.
The results showed that those who did the MBCT hada significant reduction of clinician-rated ADHD symptoms after post-treatment. The benefits were maintained until 6-month follow-up. More MBCT + TAU (27%) than TAU participants (4%) showed a ⩽30% reduction of ADHD symptoms which was remarkable. MBCT + TAU patients compared with TAU patients also reported significant improvements in ADHD symptoms, mindfulness skills, self-compassion and positive mental health at post-treatment, which were maintained until 6-month follow-up. Although patients in MBCT + TAU compared with TAU reported no improvement in executive functioning at post-treatment, they did report improvement at 6-month follow-up which was a surprising and positive finding. It is possible that as mindfulness skills increased, overtime the executive ability of the adult with ADHD developed.
Janssen, L., Kan, C. C., Carpentier, P. J., Sizoo, B., Hepark, S., Schellekens, M. P. J., . . . Speckens, A. E. M. (2019). Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy v. treatment as usual in adults with ADHD: A multicentre, single-blind, randomised controlled trial. Psychological Medicine, 49(1), 55-65. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0033291718000429