5 Ways Physiotherapy Can Help Relieve Stress

5 Ways Physiotherapy Can Help Relieve Stress

Physiotherapy techniques like massage therapy, posture training and learning optimal sleep positioning can help improve quality and duration of sleep. Physiotherapists also teach diaphragmatic breathing exercises to lower cortisol levels and promote relaxation.

Chronic stress can lead to deteriorated health in the musculoskeletal, gastrointestinal and nervous system. Physiotherapy can relieve many of the symptoms caused by stress.

1. Exercise

Almost everyone knows that exercise does the body good, but few realize that it can also be an effective stress relief tool. Physical activity is an important part of any self-care routine, and can help to relieve stress by allowing your mind and body to disconnect from the day’s problems. It also helps to regulate hormones that can cause you to feel overwhelmed.

When you are exercising, your brain releases endorphins, natural chemicals that create a positive sensation in your body. This chemical reaction helps to lift your mood and distracts you from the things that are causing you stress. Regular exercise also helps to increase your energy and improve your sleep, both of which can help you feel more focused and able to deal with stressful situations.

A physiotherapist can help you find the best type, amount and level of exercise that is right for you. They will work with you to ensure that the exercise that you choose is something that you are able to stick with, so that it becomes an integral part of your life. They can also help you plan future progressions in your exercise regime, which will keep you motivated and on track if life starts to throw you off course.

In addition to recommending exercises that are right for you, your physiotherapist may also have access to equipment such as TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) machines, which can alter the pain messages that your body sends to your brain, helping to reduce your stress levels. They can also recommend stretching and strengthening exercises to help you relax your muscles and ease aches and pains. These exercises can be done in the comfort of your own home or at your physiotherapy clinic.

2. Massage

Therapeutic massage is a regular part of the physical therapy regimen after injuries, but it is also an effective treatment for relieving stress. Studies have shown that massage reduces heart rate and blood pressure, boosts the body’s production of endorphins, serotonin and dopamine, increases tissue elasticity and improves posture, and enhances flexibility.

When the body is tense, stressed or in pain, it requires more energy to perform tasks and move around. When this energy is used up, the body can start to feel low and tired. The best way to combat this is through regular massage, which stimulates the autonomic nervous system and encourages the release of these positive hormones. You can experience pain-free living with ProMelius physiotherapists as soon as today, they’re just a call away!

In addition to reducing cortisol levels, massage helps to relieve muscular knots and reduce tension build up. In turn, this decreases stress and anxiety and promotes relaxation, which can help to reduce fatigue.

Massage increases circulation, which can improve a person’s overall mood and increase their sense of well-being. In a similar fashion, it can also reduce the effects of depression and help a person to sleep better. Moreover, it can prevent a person from feeling lonely and boosts self-confidence.

Massage can have a positive impact on your life and help you live a healthier lifestyle far into the future. In order to reap these benefits, you should make it a priority to take time out for yourself and indulge in regular massages and other holistic treatments, such as yoga (check out our recommended partner The Hot Spot Yoga) or exercise. The most successful people are often the ones who can balance their work and home lives, look after themselves physically and emotionally and find time for regular stress relief activities, such as therapeutic massage.

3. Relaxation

Relaxation techniques are therapeutic exercises that can help individuals decrease both physical and psychological tension and anxiety. They can be facilitated by health professionals, or they can be learned through self-help modalities like meditation or deep breathing. Physiotherapists are well-versed in the benefits of relaxation for stress management and can help their patients find a strategy that works for them.

Practicing relaxation can help decrease cortisol levels and reduce blood pressure and heart rate, among other physiological responses. It can also provide a healthy alternative to drugs or other medications for reducing stress and anxiety. Some forms of relaxation include guided imagery, biofeedback, self-hypnosis, and deep breathing exercise. While different strategies may work for different people, it is important to try several in order to discover the one that provides the most effective results.

For example, the progressive muscle relaxation technique involves tensing and relaxing each body part one by one to achieve a state of calm. It can be performed anywhere and doesn’t require any special equipment or skills, although it is important to consult with your doctor first if you have a condition such as back problems or muscle spasms that could be aggravated by tensing muscles.

Another common technique is visualization, which involves imagining an environment that makes you feel relaxed. You can use all your senses when visualizing, including smell, sound, and touch. Try to imagine a place that is familiar and appealing to you, such as a beach or a quiet room.

In addition to these methods of relaxation, it’s important for individuals to cut out things that increase their stress. For example, watching the news, being constantly connected to social media or drinking too much caffeine can add to feelings of anxiety.

4. Yoga

Yoga is an ancient mind-body practice that is well-known for its ability to calm and relax the body. It incorporates slow and deep belly breaths, stretches the muscles, encourages mindfulness (the state of being fully aware and present), and focuses on the connection between the mind and body. Yoga is particularly effective for those who struggle with mental health issues, including depression and anxiety.

The calming effect of yoga comes from the fact that it has been shown to balance the autonomic nervous system by increasing parasympathetic activity while decreasing sympathetic activity. The result is an overall decrease in stress hormones, blood pressure and heart rate, as well as improved vascular function and cellular repair.

Studies on yoga also show that it can help increase serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin levels, all of which are natural anti-depressants. In addition, it has been found to reduce the effects of stress by promoting relaxation and a positive outlook on life.

Unlike other types of exercise, which focus on specific muscles and parts of the body, yoga takes a holistic approach to health and wellbeing. Yoga views the human body as a union of the body, emotions, and spirit and believes that true healing comes from the harmonious resonance of all six layers.

Adding yoga to your physical therapy treatment regimen can be an excellent way to reduce stress and improve your overall wellbeing. It can be particularly beneficial for patients whose daily activities produce back strain and who live inherently stressful lives. In these cases, yoga can be used as a preventative measure to avoid the need for more intensive medical intervention later. However, it is important to note that yoga should never be used as a substitute for appropriate medication or psychotherapy.

5. Meditation

Meditation can be done almost anywhere, and is a very effective method to help reduce stress. It helps to lower the levels of cortisol (the stress hormone), which in turn improves immune system function and prevents inflammation. It also has the ability to change negative thoughts and increase positive ones. However, like the other techniques, it requires regular practice to reap the benefits of it.

Studies have shown that regular meditation can decrease pain perception and activate the body’s natural relaxation response, which slows breathing and heart rate, lowers blood pressure, and brings the mind and body back into balance. It can also decrease the fight-or-flight reaction that increases heart rate and blood pressure in stressful situations. This can help alleviate the strain on the heart and arteries, which can lead to high blood pressure over time, which is linked to stroke, heart disease, and atherosclerosis.

Physical therapists are familiar with mindful movement practices, such as yoga, tai chi, and qigong, which are popular ways to relieve stress and improve strength, balance, and flexibility. These practices elicit the relaxation response through interoceptive awareness, attention to breath and body sensations, focus on the present moment, and intentional movement.

For example, tai chi, qigong, and yoga use breathing exercises that activate the vagus nerve, which causes parasympathetic activity to be stimulated. These exercises can be incorporated into a patient’s exercise routine, either as part of a class or as a guided practice by the physical therapist. The physical therapist can instruct the patient in how to perform these movements, and also guide them through mindfulness and meditation exercises. This will help the patient to learn to relax in the face of stress, and build resilience to it.

Jeremy Lawson