This poster was presented at the 30th annual Psych Congress, held Sept. 16-19, 2017, in New Orleans, Louisiana.
OBJECTIVE: Cognitive and physical functioning difficulties are strongly associated with multiple psychiatric disorders and cause significant disability. To examine the efficacy of a multi-pronged wellness intervention in improving depressive, anxious, cognitive, and physical symptoms in 25 individuals who self-identified as suffering from a psychiatric disorder. Twenty-three of these twenty-five individuals were taking psychotropic medications.
METHOD: 25 adults signed informed consent and underwent of a 30-day, multi-pronged, highly prescriptive and trackable intervention called the WILD 5 Wellness Program. This program consists of 30-day daily activities focusing on exercise, mindfulness, sleep hygiene, improved social connectedness, and improved nutrition. Multiple scales were administered at the beginning and the end of the study to assess mood, anxiety, and well-being. The pre-post data were analyzed utilizing the StatPlus statistical analysis software. Cognitive and Physical Functioning Questionnaire (CPFQ), a well-validated scale for assessing cognitive and physical functioning, was analyzed to examine changes in cognitive and physical functioning.
RESULTS: CPFQ, a 'gold' standard instrument to measure cognitive and physical functioning was utilized. The baseline score was 27.2 with a 30-day score of 17.7 (p=0.00004), an improvement of 34%. Each of the seven items (motivation/interest/enthusiasm; wakefulness/alertness; energy; focus/sustained attention; remember/recall information/ find words; sharpness/mental acuity) in this scale also improved numerically, with statistical significance of p<.001 or better. Both mental illness and mental wellness symptoms were tracked, and pre-post analysis for change and statistical significance was performed. The Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), a scale measuring depression severity, had a baseline score of 10.8, and after the 30-day wellness intervention it dropped to 5.1 (p<0.0001). This represents a mean improvement of 52% in depressive symptomatology. The Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD-7), a widely-accepted scale measuring anxiety symptoms, changed from a baseline score of 7.3 to 4.8 (p=0.0001), achieving a 34% improvement in anxiety symptoms. The WHO-5 Wellbeing Index (WHO-5), an internationally accepted scale for the measurement of wellness, had a baseline score of 8.1, which after the 30-day WILD 5 Wellness Program improved to a score of 13.2, demonstrating a mean improvement of 62% improvement (p=0.0001).
CONCLUSION: The WILD 5 Wellness Program, was effective in decreasing symptoms of cognitive and physical dysfunction in these individuals. Measures of depression (PHQ-9) and anxiety (GAD-7) also showed statistical improvement. The positive effects were noted across the spectrum of symptoms. Disability in all three domains of functioning - work/school, social life, and family life were also noted. Wellness programs such as the WILD 5 Wellness Program should be considered as a treatment option to help reduce cognitive and physical symptoms, as well as disabilities in individuals suffering from a psychiatric disorder.