If you suffer from depression or anxiety, floatation therapy can be a helpful treatment for you. Floatation therapy has had proven effects when it comes to elevating people’s moods and relieving anxiety. Floating has been helping people feel better and think more clearly since its development for general use in the 1950’s, but how?
Floatation therapy can help in the treatment of depression in a number of ways.
A depressed brain is a brain that simply isn’t working properly on a chemical level. When you slip into a float pod, however, you take the first step towards a more synchronized brain. Floatation can help your brain to slow down and re-synchronize its two halves. This slowed down brain, which may begin releasing theta waves, acts like a brain in deep meditation, calming your body and mind, and bringing about relaxation. This meditative state can be very powerful in calming and de-stressing patients who suffer from chronic depression.
Physically, it helps to clear cortisol and stress from the body, allowing the body to deeply relax.
Another reason that floatation therapy is helpful in fighting depression is because it causes the brain to release a flood of endorphins. Endorphins are natural pain fighters – opioids made specially by your body – and also called feel good chemicals, as they are also good for lifting your mood and spirits. You might also release endorphins when eating something you love, when exercising or doing something else pleasurable. These feel good hormones produced while relaxing in a floatation pod can help correct a brain deficient in these chemicals.
Along with the positive feelings caused by endorphins, it is not uncommon for those who engage with floatation therapy to feel very peaceful, or even joyful or euphoric. Floatation can result in very clear and creative thoughts, very different from the often cloudy thinking of the depressed brain.
Anxiety is often the bedfellow of depression, and floatation therapy has also been shown to help with this condition. One reason floatation therapy is so helpful for anxiety is because it slows down the more analytical side of your brain, turning off parts of your brain that might keep you worrying or make you suffer from racing thoughts. A slowed down brain is a less anxious brain.
On a mental level, floatation therapy can be a wonderful way to introduce the concept of mindfulness and also meditation. “Mindfulness is the awareness that emerges through paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally to things as they are” (The Mindful Way through Depression). The simple act of observing our thought processes can increase our awareness of our mental activity, and we can become more aware of the specific thoughts, behaviors or choices which may be contributing to your state of being.
The high levels of magnesium (Epsom Salts) are also beneficial to relax the muscles, clearing away physical tension. Magnesium – an essential and important mineral – also plays an important role in anxiety and depression, as it can become easily depleted during times of stress. Research has also shown that magnesium plays a key role in the treatment of depression, as it is commonly depleted in those who suffer depression and effects brain chemistry, particularly serotonin. Magnesium is easily absorbed via the skin and thereby can be utilized by the cells immediately. Magnesium can be beneficial to improving serotonin production and to improving sleep, as well as to enhancing many physiological processes in the body. People often find that after a float, their sleep is improved.
Floatation therapy can be an integral part of a comprehensive care plan. This natural relaxation process can help change your brain so dramatically that it will change your life.
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