New Healing Ideas: Float Therapy & A DIY Version To Try Today

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If you visit my website, you’ll see that my motto is “Enjoy Healing.”

 

After all, the truth is that life is hard enough, and health issues are scary enough, without physicians piling on layers of fear and negativity to the healing process.

Even well-meaninged doctors can destroy a patient’s hope with one single casual negative statement or statistic.

I won’t do that, because to me healing is all about feeling better and better and better. 

 

It is a powerful forward moving process that should be uplifting.

 

So, if lately your health care routines leave you feeling stuck, uninspired, fearful or even simply bored, maybe it’s time to introduce a fun new alternative into your healing journey! 

It’s always a great idea to find a new way to exercise, fun ways to express your inner creativity, to introduce new healthy recipes inspired by seasonally available fruits and vegetables, and to add humor and play into your life. 

Studies since the 1970’s have shown us that laughter literally boosts the immune system, balances stress hormones and even decreases pain.  For example, a recent study published in Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice in January 2018 showed that laughter effectively delayed the onset of diabetic cardiovascular complications.  

But sometimes even new foods, creative expression, play, touch and exercise aren’t enough.  Maybe it’s time to consider a new adjunctive healing therapies… because believe it or not, there is always a new fun way to approach wellness. 

So interspersed with more serious bog posts about the latest medical literature, I also want to have some fun introducing you to some of the more unusual alternative healing modalities that you might want to consider, and I’ll also give you some tips on how to try an at-home versions of each as well!

 

 

 

Today is my first topic in this new series, and it’s on Floating.

 

Floating is a therapy that involves laying for about an hour in a darkened, body temperature tank filled with such a hypertonic magnesium solution that you actually, literally, float without effort.

Never heard of it?

Heard of it but never did it?

In this video I show you exactly what the float tank I tested out looks like and how I felt before and after.

Then I came home and did some exhaustive research into the science behind float therapy, and below this video I share what I found out with you so you can decide for yourself… is a float session something you want to do?

 

 

 

 (click here to watch video on YouTube)

 

 

After my own float session, I searched the medical literature to find there actually are quite a few studies that show that floating in a sensory deprivation tank — a body temperature tank of ultra-concentrated magnesium salts that allow the body to float effortlessly — is helpful in decreasing chronic tension headaches, significantly decreasing anxiety, and treating insomnia. 

 

Here are my favorite studies and what they found:

  • A study published in Biological Psychiatry: Neuroscience and Neuroimaging in June 2018 found that muscle tension was significantly decreased and blood pressure was measurably reduced after float therapy.  
  • Another study published in the BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine Journal in March of 2016 found that anxiety symptoms were significantly reduced to the point that almost 40% of patients with generalized anxiety disorder reached full remission post-treatment.  Generalized anxiety disorder is a very difficult diagnosis to treat, even with powerful pharmacotherapy, so this full remission rate for an alternative holistic therapy is actually really impressive.  That study also found that sleep disturbances were significantly reduced after float therapy. 
  • A study published in Pain Research and Management in 2001 found that float therapy helped chronic and severe pain conditions more than it helped low pain issues, suggesting that the more pain you have, the more relief you can find through floating.
  • Another study published back in 1991 in the International Journal of Pschosomatic Research found that patients who used float therapy sustained longer relief from chronic tension headaches than folks who used progressive muscle relaxation and other control groups did.

 

All in all — yep, floating was more powerfully relaxing than taking a bath at home.

A typical float tank has over 800 pounds of epsom salts in 200 gallons of water to create an exceptionally buoyant hypertonic solution to float effortlessly in.

 

 

 

 

But still, if you don’t live near a float tank facility and/or don’t have the time or funds to do a series of treatments, I do feel there is significant benefit to be gained from a dense epsom salt bath at home.  Magnesium is an essential mineral (required for over 300 different enzymatic reactions) and absolutely crucial for energy production as well as proper function of our heart, our nerves, our brain and our muscles.  And most of us are magnesium deficient.

If you are magnesium deficient, you can be anxious, depressed, low energy, have muscle tension, headaches and insomnia.  You’ll find immediate benefits after just one single Epsom salt soak.

Here’s how:

  • To experience an inexpensive at-home version of float therapy, draw a warm bath just before bedtime, making it close to body temperature (98 degrees) and add several cups of epsom salts to make a hypertonic magnesium solution. 
  • 2 cups of Epsom salts will equal one pound of salt in your bath, so shoot for at least 2 cups of salts per bath. Double that for a more intense session.
  • Darken the room or place a warm washcloth over the eyes and soak for at least 15 minutes and up to 60 minutes, adding warm water when needed to maintain body temperature. 
  • See if you feel more calm, with less muscle tension, and get a better night’s sleep!

 

I’ve gotten some great ideas on future alternative health videos under the video on YouTube — please hop over there to add any ideas you’d like to see and I will add it to the list!

And stay tuned for the next video in my “Testing It Out For You” series…

xoxoxox, Laura