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Effect of “Om” chanting on anxiety in bus drivers

Harshali B Rankhambe, Sonali Pande.

Background: Anxiety and stress have been implicated as contributors to many chronic diseases and to decreased quality of life. The job of operating public transit vehicles is among the most stressful and unhealthy of modern occupations. Bus driving is particularly a stressful job, which has high psychological demands. Of many efforts that are underway to find non-pharmacologic therapies to relieve stress and anxiety, yoga is one option and the results of which are promising. Om recitation is an important and very simple yogic practice. The present study was undertaken to study the benefits of Om chanting on anxiety levels in bus drivers.

Aim and Objective: The objective of the study was to study the effect of Om chanting on anxiety levels in bus drivers.

Materials and Methods: To assess the anxiety levels, a total of 100 bus drivers were selected for the study and divided into two groups; intervention group and control group. Intervention group practiced Om chanting for a total of 4 weeks of study duration while the control group comprised those who did not practice Om chanting. Hamilton anxiety rating scale was used to evaluate anxiety levels. To assess anxiety levels, both the groups were asked to fill a questionnaire before and after the duration of study of 4 weeks. The results were interpreted by unpaired t-test.

Results: Anxiety levels showed highly significant reduction after the practice of chanting Om for 4 weeks in the intervention group. There is no significant difference in the anxiety scores of controls before the start of study and at the end of 4 weeks.

Conclusion: A simple practice of chanting Om works as an effective tool to reduce the anxiety levels in bus drivers.

Key words: Anxiety; Om Chanting; Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale

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