Meditation belongs to a group of therapies known as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).

There are various types of meditation. It is generally described as a practice that involves focusing the mind. A combination of physical and mental techniques may be used.

You may choose to practice meditation independently, perhaps with the guidance of a book or video. Or you may prefer to attend meditation classes where you can be taught various techniques directly. Meditation instruction can also be delivered online.

When practised correctly, meditation is said to induce a state of calm and mental clarity. It can help you to feel more resilient and relaxed. Being relaxed and less stressed is thought to make it easier to deal with MS symptoms. Studies have shown that meditation can help improve quality of life, stress, anxiety, depression and various types of pain

There has been some research into meditation and MS to see if it has any long-term effect on the disease course. Studies have also looked to see if the benefits continue if you stop practising meditation The evidence at present is inconclusive. But there are no reported side effects from practising meditation, so it is safe to try to see if it helps you.

Mindfulness is a mediation technique based on the Buddhist meditative tradition.

Find out more

Bowling AC.
Complementary and Alternative Medicine and Multiple Sclerosis. 2nd ed.
New York: Demos Medical Publishing; 2007.
Levin AB, et al.
Can meditation influence quality of life, depression, and disease outcome in multiple sclerosis? Findings from a large international web-based study.
Behavioural Neurology 2014;2014:916519.
Full article (link is external)
Cavalera C, et al.
Online meditation training for people with multiple sclerosis: a randomized controlled trial.
Multiple Sclerosis 2019;25(4):610-617.
Summary (link is external)