Mindfulness in the sexual health and psychological well-being of professionals and caregivers of people at risk of social exclusion
The term mindfulness refers to the ability to become aware of the here and now in the present moment, directing attention to a current internal or external event.
Laura C. Sánchez Sánchez, researcher at CIMCYC, has studied the effect of a Mindfulness-based program (MBSR) on the sexual health and psychological well-being of professionals and volunteers of Doctors of the World (the spanish no-gubernamental organization “Médicos del Mundo”) who take care of vulnerable populations, such as people in prostitution, women victims of forced prostitution, people with the human immunodeficiency virus, etc. This program was chosen because working with sex education for these vulnerable groups of people requires empathy, full awareness and compassion.
For this study, the entire population of an NGO in southern Spain was chosen, since it receives a large number of people at risk of social exclusion A quasi-experimental study (without a control group) was conducted with pre and post-test measurements, where 7 instruments were applied before and after the intervention: (a) Mindfulness Scale (MAAS); (b) Body Connection Scale; (c) Compassion Questionnaire (SCS); (d) Ryff's Psychological Well-Being Scale; e) Hurlbert Index of Sexual Fantasy; f) Wilson’s Sexual Fantasy Scale; and g) Hudson’s Index of Sexual Satisfaction (ISS).
The results showed that most of the post-test scores were better compared to the pre-test, except for the Body Dissociation subscale, where the score was lower, which also reveals an improvement in body awareness.
Therefore, the application of the Mindfulness program was able to increase the degree of sexual satisfaction, decrease body dissociation, favor mindfulness and self-compassion in people who treat groups in a situation of social exclusion, which may allow a higher quality approach to them.
-Laura C. Sánchez Sánchez: @email
Sánchez-Sánchez, L. C., & Valderrama Rodríguez, M. F. (2022). Mindfulness en la salud sexual y bienestar psicológico de profesionales y cuidadores/as de personas en riesgo de exclusión social. Revista Internacional de Andrología, 20(1), 54–61. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.androl.2020.10.003