Much Needed REST With Sensory Deprivation Tanks

Sensory deprivation tanks are appearing everywhere.  You’ve probably seen them. They are popping up in plaza malls all over the United States. In fact, you may even have one in your neighborhood.

The signs usually have the name FLOAT in them. People walk in and out all day. Once in, they walk past a small lobby, down a short hallway and enter a room that feels like another world.

They shed their clothes, shower and step into a shallow tank full of Epsom salt and warm water. The lights go off and they are submerged in total darkness for 60 to 90 minutes.

The water is so saturated with Epsom salts that they float in the water. What are the benefits? Why would someone float in total darkness for that length of time? And pay to do so?

What you will learn in this article:

  • What Flotation therapy is.
  • How Flotation therapy can improve your mental health

Sensory Deprivation Tanks and Flotation Therapy Helpful Resources:

Hypnotherapy. Many people don’t know how to rest and relax. Their bodies are on high alert. Stress hormones are continually pumping throughout their body, never allowing for real rest. You can maximize your floating experiences by being able to get in the state to rest and relax in the first place. Hypnotherapy can help you develop healthy patterns and behaviors that can reduce the impact stress has on your life. Rest so critical to emotional, mental and physical health.

Self Hypnosis recordings. Many float spas allow you to bring your own music. It takes time and practice to allow yourself to be in total sensory deprivation. Start slowly by listening to self-hypnosis recordings while you float.

What Sensory Deprivation Tanks Are

Flotation therapy is known by many names.  The clinical name is Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy or REST for short. Any time you see the terms Floatation Therapy, Isolation Therapy, or Sensory Deprivation Therapy, they are referring to REST.

In the 19802 and 1990s, Dr. Rod Borrie created a psychotherapeutic practice and research center in New York City made up of float tanks. He guided his patients through their floating sessions with relaxing sounds, verbal suggestions, and therapeutic music.

Based on his research, he declared the float experience to be the “ultimate couch,” and a perfect environment for inducing hypnotic states and relaxation.

How Sensory Deprivation Tanks Help With Stress And Anxiety

Floating causes the body to self-regulate. When external stimulation is decreased, the body begins to slowly unwind and revert to a state of well-being. Well-being is our natural state.

This state of intense relaxation buffers emotional reactions to internal and external events, allowing the subject to safely expose themselves to what would normally be anxiety-provoking thoughts, memories, and situations.

Many float centers are helping define the relationship between sensory deprivation and reducing psychological afflictions like anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and insomnia. We hope that the data we collect from these programs will be useful for future scientific analysis relating to REST.

Watch this Documentary on Floatation.

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