For people with chronic pain, it can sometimes feel like there is simply no relief available. Many chronic pain patients, however, have never heard of flotation therapy, a treatment that can be a real revelation and result in much improved quality of life. For conditions ranging from fibromyalgia to arthritis and chronic fatigue syndrome, flotation therapy can provide real pain reduction and many find it to be an integral part of a comprehensive pain management plan.
One of the most important things that flotation therapy can do for a body in constant pain is to reduce muscle tensions. Floating in a flotation tank is absolutely effortless as the 1000 pounds of Epsom salt that are dissolved in the body temperature water support your body and allow muscle spasms to release. This release alone can help relieve a lot of pain. In addition to relaxing muscle spasms, flotation therapy can increase blood flow to the joints and soft tissues.
Another reason that flotation therapy can be beneficial for people dealing with chronic pain is because it can cause the brain to release a flood of endorphins. These endorphins are natural pain relievers, and they also boost mood. This influx of pleasure hormones can ease many types of pain, even aches that may not have been receptive to any other treatments.
Particular Benefits for Fibromyalgia
While flotation therapy can be beneficial for people with many types of chronic pain, there have been particularly close studies of the effects of flotation on fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia sufferers may have whole body pain and fatigue as well as mood symptoms like depression and anxiety. The anti-gravity effects of flotation therapy can reduce the stress placed on muscles and joints of fibromyalgia patients, providing unprecedented pain relief.
One surprising pain relief link in the fibromyalgia-flotation puzzle is the question of magnesium deficiency. There are medical hypotheses that suggest fibromyalgia patients might have a magnesium deficiency that makes their bodies more sensitive and hyper-reactive to pain. Epsom salts, which are dissolved in high concentrations in flotation therapy water, are chemically magnesium sulfate. It is postulated that people with fibromyalgia absorb magnesium ions from the water, resulting in decreased pain.
Why Mood Matters
When it comes to relieving chronic pain, the depressed and anxious mood that plagues many pain patients can be a barrier to successful treatment. Not only do the endorphins released during flotation therapy reduce pain, their positive impact on mood can have long lasting effects on how patients view their overall prognosis. Improved mood from flotation therapy is linked to better results in a comprehensive pain management program that integrates flotation therapy as just one component. Relief can exist for chronic pain, and it can be as simple as Epsom salts and water.
For more information about relieving your pain from floating, continue to read our blog or contact us for more information.