A Systematic Review of Biopsychosocial Training Programs for the Self-Management of Emotional Stress

Potential Applications for the Military

By: Cindy Crawford, Dawn Wallerstedt, Raheleh Khorsan, Shawn Clausen, Wayne B Jonas, Joan Walter
Publication Name: Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Year: 2013

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Combat-exposed troops and their family members are at risk for stress reactions and related disorders. Multimodal biopsychosocial training programs incorporating complementary and alternative self-management techniques have the potential to reduce stress related symptoms and dysfunction. Such training can preempt or attenuate the post traumatic stress response and may be effectively incorporated into the training cycle for deploying and redeploying troops and their families. A large systematic review was conducted to survey the literature on multi modal training programs for the self-management of emotional stress. This report is an overview of the randomized controlled trials (RCTs) identified in this systematic review. Select programs such as Mindfulness- Based Stress Reduction, Cognitive Behavioral Stress Management, Autogenic Training, Relaxation Response Training, and other meditation and mind-body skills practices are highlighted, and the feasibility of their implementation within military settings is addressed.