Effect of Mahamantra Chanting on Autonomic and Cognitive Functions-An Interventional Study
Dr. Padmavathi Ramaswamy,
Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Ramachandra Institute of Higher Education (SRIHER), Chennai-600116, Tamil Nadu, India.
Introduction: Stress is a major health issue which leads to several potential negative health and well-being outcomes. Early interventions like yoga, meditation and music can reduce stress induced morbidity and mortality. â€śChanting is considered as one form of bakthi yoga which improves concentration and memory, relieves stress and depression and helps one to get rid of anxietyâ€ť says Upanishad.
Aim: To find the effect of Mahamantra chanting in reducing stress among women nursing professionals.
Materials and Methods: In this study, subjects (n=30) with moderate to severe stress levels (PSS=14) were recruited and grouped into mahamantra (n=15) and control groups (n=15). Physiological parameters like Heart Rate Variability (HRV), serum cortisol levels and cognitive functions using Auditory (ART) and Visual Reaction Time (VRT) were measured. Mahamantra intervention was given (n=15) to one group while the control group (n=15) did not participate in the mahamantra chanting.
Results: This study showed significant increase in parasympathetic tone (LF/HF ratio) (p<0.05), shortened ART (p=0.05), VRT (p=0.01) and significant decreased serum cortisol levels (p=0.05) among subjects who underwent Mahamantra intervention.
Conclusion: The study results highlight the beneficial effects of simple mahamantra chanting intervention in reducing stress among nursing professionals with moderate to severe stress.