This Week In The Bmj

Dolphins help treat depression

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.331.7527.0-a (Published 24 November 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:0-a

Dolphins can help alleviate symptoms of depression after two weeks of treatment. In a single blind trial, Antonioli and Reveley (p 1231) randomised 30 people with mild or moderate depression without psychotic features to an outdoor nature programme featuring water activities—with or without bottlenose dolphins. Participants who got to play with the dolphins showed significantly greater reduction in the mean severity of depressive symptoms than those who only enjoyed other aspects of nature. None of the participants took any antidepressant or anxiolytic drugs for the four weeks before or during the study.


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