BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies is calling for submissions to our collection on animal-assisted interventions for mental health.
The symbiotically mutual co-existence of humans and animals has been documented through history. In recent years, animal-assisted interventions are increasingly recognized for enhancing human health and well-being. The Delta Society, a foundation with a mission to improve human-animal health connection, states that animal-assisted therapy aims to promote improvement in human physical, social, emotional and/or cognitive functioning. Although dogs are the most common type of animal used, the use of horses, cats, donkeys, guinea pigs and African gray parrots in animal-assisted interventions is increasingly common. Among others, the use of animal-assisted interventions results in significant improvement in studies examining blood pressure, loneliness, symptoms of clinical depression, anxiety and PTSD in humans.
First documented around 12,000 years ago, the therapeutic benefits of human-animal bond have remained a subject of notable research, support and implementation. BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies has launched this collection in support of disseminating evidence-based research on this emerging and important topic. We are particularly interested in research looking at the effects of animal-assisted interventions for anxiety and PTSD. We welcome studies from a range of disciplines and research topics including, but not limited to:
- Effectiveness and use of animal-assisted interventions for mental health
- Mechanisms of action of animal-assisted interventions in improvement of mental health
- Issues and challenges surrounding implementation or studies of animal-assisted interventions
- Attitudes and perceptions on the use of animal-assisted interventions as therapy
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