Psychosomatic and physical responses to a multi-component stress management program among teaching professionals: A randomized study of cognitive behavioral intervention (CB) with complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) approach

Doreen W.H. Au, Wing Hong Hector Tsang, Janet L.C. Lee, Christie H.T. Leung, Jennie Y.T. Lo, Pui Ching Shirley Ngai, W. M. Cheung

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The present study aims to assess psychosomatic and physical responses to a multi-component stress management program with the use of CAM and CB approaches among teaching professionals in Hong Kong. Method: A random controlled trial (RCT) was used to compare between CB group (n = 26) and the CAM-CB group (n = 30). Interventions were administered for 1.5 h once a week for eight consecutive weeks. A self-administered questionnaire including perceived stress scale (PSS) and frequency of psychosomatic symptoms were measured at baseline (T1), immediate after the program (T2), and 4 weeks after the program (T3). Physical parameters were measured at T1 and T2. Results: A reduction of 23% in PSS was observed in the CB group, while the CAM-CB group yielded 18% reductions in PSS from T1 to T3 [F(2,108) = 3.099; p = .049]. No significant interactions were observed in the frequency of psychosomatic symptoms and physical parameters. However, a significant downward time trend was observed (p < .001) and larger percentage changes in physical responses were shown in the CAM-CB group than CB group. Conclusion: Clinical evidence of both the CAM-CB and CB program has been demonstrated in the current study and both approaches are easy to be self-implemented. The CAM technique might serve as an alternative choice for self-administered stress management to replace the additional time needed for professional follow-up contacts. It might further improve some physical responses such as handgrip strength and resting heart rate, which are associated with better psychosomatic health and better occupational stress management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-16
Number of pages7
JournalBehaviour Research and Therapy
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2016


  • Cognitive behavioral intervention
  • Complementary and alternative medicine
  • Mental health
  • Physical responses
  • Psychosomatic symptoms
  • Stress
  • Teacher

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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