Effects of traditional Chinese exercises on mental health in individuals with drug rehabilitee: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Author: Yulong Zhang1, Shenghua Lu2,3
Affiliation: <sup>1</sup> Hunan Judicial Police Vocational College, Changsha, China. <sup>2</sup> College of Sports Science, Jishou University, Jishou, China. <sup>3</sup> Hunan Academy of Education Sciences, Changsha, China.
Conference/Journal: Front Public Health
Date published: 2022 Aug 4
Other: Volume ID: 10 , Pages: 944636 , Special Notes: doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2022.944636. , Word Count: 293

The intent of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to examine the effects of Traditional Chinese Exercise (TCE) on mental health and drug cravings in drug rehabilitees.

Six electronic databases (PubMed, Web of Science, MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsycArticles, and CNKI) were searched to identify the potential literature from inception to March 2022. The controlled studies with a pro-posttest design that investigated the effects of TCE on mental health (depression, anxiety, drug craving, and sleep quality) were included. The effect sizes were calculated using the random-effect models with a 95% confidence interval. The Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) scale was employed to evaluate study quality.

A total of 10 studies (740 participants, mean age 35 years old) were included in this study. The pooled results showed that TCE produced significant improvements in depression (SMD = 0.65, 95% CI 0.29 to 1.02, p < 0.01), anxiety (SMD = 0.98, 95% CI 0.44 to 1.53, p < 0.01), and drug craving (SMD = 0.87, 95% CI 0.54 to 1.21, p < 0.01) compared to the control group. The subgroup analysis results showed that TCE resulted in significant improvements in depression compared to active intervention (SMD = 0.33, 95% CI 0.07 to 0.60) or passive intervention (SMD = 1.07, 95% CI 0.40 to 1.74). A significant improvement in depression was observed in both male and female drug rehabilitee (p < 0.05). Moreover, Tai Chi (SMD = 0.69, 95% CI 0.19 to 1.18) or Qigong (SMD = 0.49, 95% CI 0.24 to 0.74) exercise, 3-4 times per week (SMD = 1.06, 95% CI 0.39 to 1.74) or ≥5 times (SMD = 0.39, 95% CI 0.12 to 0.66), >45 min (SMD = 0.62, 95% CI 0.09 to 1.15) or ≤ 45 min (SMD = 0.68, 95% CI 0.10 to 1.27), and for a duration of 12 weeks (SMD = 0.84, 95% CI 0.15 to 1.54) produced significant improvement in depression.

This current study suggests that TCE (Tai Chi, Qigong) may have benefits in alleviating depression, anxiety, and drug cravings in drug rehabilitees. Further studies are required to verify our results through the implementation of well-designed experimental protocols.

Keywords: Qigong; Tai Chi; anxiety; depression; drug addiction.

PMID: 35991075 PMCID: PMC9386426 DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2022.944636