Asperger’s syndrome is a complicated and multifaceted diagnosis. People with Asperger’s experience a variety of strengths, weaknesses, and mental and physical issues. Floatation therapy, a form of Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy (REST), provides benefits for people with Asperger’s, either alone or in combination with other forms of therapy.
Remove Mental Clutter
Traditional interventions for Asperger’s include decluttering surroundings of physical objects. Keeping everything in its place with plenty of open space is soothing to a person affected by Asperger’s.
Floating takes this concept one step further: it removes excess mental stimuli, so the mind can relax. Water at body temperature blurs the line between where one’s body ends and the water begins. Lack of light and a sound-proof tank eliminate visual and auditory stimuli.
Another traditional intervention to ease Asperger’s is the use of a thought box. When the person has an unrelated or inappropriate thought about the subject at hand, they are advised to write it down and place it in a box to be forgotten. Floatation therapy allows the person to think about anything they choose without consequences. For some, it is the opposite of the thought box method, providing release from controlled thinking. For others, floating is an appropriate time to think about items in their thought box.
Any sound can be distracting or aggravating to someone with Asperger’s. Extreme measures are taken to limit noise, such as tennis balls placed on the bottom of chairs. Floatation tanks are sound proof and provide those with Asperger’s extensive time with absolutely no auditory interruptions. Subjects have noted creating beautiful auditory experiences in their mind, only possible with the absence of external sound.
Focus on Positive
People are bombarded with stimuli throughout the day. Most of these stimuli are positive, yet the brain hones in on the negative more intently. This is especially true for anyone with Asperger’s.
Time spent in floatation therapy allows the brain to disconnect and recharge. With regularity, results last beyond time spent in the water, and people remain calmer and more relaxed.
Improved Activity Regulation
The relaxation and calm experienced during and after floating have the ability to improve activity regulation. Floating improves the control of impulsive movement and manages restlessness. The reasons for this are not fully understood, although it is likely due to the cognitive improvements on concentration and organization of thought patterns.
If you or someone you know is diagnosed with Asperger’s, consider floatation therapy as a means to improve quality of life and ability to interact effectively with others. Set up your first appointment today at Northwest Float Center.