Have you ever experienced sensory overload? This could look like feeling overstimulated by sounds, sensations, lights, and people. Overstimulation occurs when your senses take in so much information that your brain can’t keep up. In return you can be left with feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and exhausted. Something that could really help you with overstimulation is REST, and we’re not talking about putting on your favorite Netflix show or drinking a glass of vino.
Floatation REST (Reduced Environmental Stimulation Therapy) is a method of therapy that involves floating inside a quiet and dark tank filled with epsom salt and heated to a comfortable temperature. Another name for this experience is called sensory deprivation, and it is being shown that more and more people are experiencing amazing benefits from partaking in it!
Benefits of Floating
Stress, anxiety, and depression relief: Until you’ve actually been inside a float tank, you’ve probably never experienced anything quite like it! Reduced stress might just be one of the best benefits that float tanks provide. A 2018 study actually shows that one single hour of floatation REST was capable of significantly reducing anxiety and improving the mood of 50 participants. These participants had stress and anxiety related disorders that ranged from PTSD, to panic disorder.
One of the ways that floating actually treats anxiety and depression is by slowing down the brain. Slowing down the brain results in synchronization of both halves which makes for decreased anxiety.
Reduces chronic pain: Dealing with a chronic issue can be debilitating, especially when there seems to be no cure or remedy for your specific situation. The good news is that if you deal with pain, tension headaches, or muscle aches, several studies have confirmed that float tanks can help!
For those who suffer with chronic pain such as fibromyalgia, floating tanks have been proven to be useful to help the pain and other side effects that come along with it. Just one hour in a float tank can help to promote deep rest, improve focus, and aid insomnia.
Boosts creativity: Depriving your senses and eliminating distractions forces you to go inwards. While floating has a number of health benefits, it can also help to inspire the creative side of you as well. Floating in a tank can actually impact your brain in such a positive way by helping you enter the theta state. This state in your bran is experienced while in a place of deep relaxation. This usually occurs before entering the sleep state, so it only lasts for a few minutes. It is quite possible that being in a float tank can extend the amount of time your brain stays in the theta state.
Theta state has been actually shown to enhance creativity. So whether you’re a musician, artist, actor, or simply want to get in touch with more of your creative side – a float tank might be a great place to start.
Improves cardiovascular health: If you haven’t already been convinced enough about why floatation therapy is so beneficial, it can also positively impact heart health! Research shows that floating can reduce blood pressure, slow the heart rate, and decrease stress which all benefit your heart.
In the United States, heart disease is the number one cause of death and can affect a variety of different people. Stress is a major contributing factor for the heart, especially chronic and long-term amounts of it. Many people turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms to deal with their daily stressors, which doesn’t help the situation. If more people tried healthy self-care practices instead such as meditation, breath work, movement, and floating, then we might see a healthy impact in society as a whole.
Wellness isn’t just about eating the right foods and working out, it’s also about allowing yourself to relax and eliminating stressors. Stress has a much bigger impact on the body and our health than you may realize. That is why doing things to calm your nervous system and benefit your mental health are so important. Float tanks are a fantastic way to prioritize your inner world and mental wellbeing. With regular use you will begin to notice just how much more calm, grounded, and relaxed you will feel!
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