Float therapy, or complete sensory deprivation, is on the rise as an alternative method to treating mental illness. In fact, researchers at the Laureate Institute for Brain Research conducted an experimental study on the effects of float therapy and symptoms of anxiety and depression. The study showed that symptoms significantly decreased after just one float therapy session!
How does this work?
Well, anxiety is often triggered through external stimuli that send the brain into overdrive, causing the sympathetic nervous system to fire up. The results of this leads to increased heart rate, blood pressure, and heightened senses. During a float session, visual, auditory, tactile, proprioceptive, and vestibular input is minimized meaning that these external stimuli are no longer available to trigger this anxiety episode. Furthermore, the act of floating decreases heart rate and blood pressure, calming down the sympathetic nervous system. This brings the brain back to a more normal state, allowing the floater to deal with their anxious thoughts without the physical symptoms that come with anxiety. Frequent floaters have reported coming out of a float therapy session feeling more relaxed and ready to face the world!