Health Benefits of Flotation Therapy

Flotation or floating therapy was once known as isolation or sensory deprivation treatments. Unappealing as it sounds, it was not well received until these recent years when it was appropriately renamed as flotation or floating therapy. It has since become so popular and is currently widely acclaimed as the most effective de-stressing relaxation technique to benefit both mind and body.

The single person session is experienced in a spa setting, with an oversized tub-like tank or chamber resembling a mini spaceship or in a more spacious suite suitable for the claustrophobic. The chambers and suites have private showers and each one locks from the inside. The session starts with a shower to cleanse the body from scents, oils and lotions, and ends with a shower to remove the Epsom salt bath residue. Most float centers provide basic toiletries for your shower and moisturizing needs, towels and robes as well as light snacks and teas.

The chamber or tank is filled with a foot deep of body temperature water and 1000 to 1300 pounds of medical grade Epsom salt. This combination results in effortless floating, a feeling of being suspended in air. No one sinks in a float tank. As you float, your mind and body starts to relax. The background piped-in music eventually fades and stops, the chamber is completely quiet. The light can be completely off or can be dimmed to your preference. You are in full control of the whole experience, which makes this unthreatening for the novice and claustrophobic.

With the removal of sight and sound (sensory deprivation), your breathing slows down and your body reaches a deeper state of relaxation, deeper than sleep. The floating itself allows the body to rebalance and regenerate itself, reducing elevated levels of Cortisol, the stress hormone. It recharges the brain fast, with an hour of floating compared to 4 hours of sleep. The Epsom salt in the water detoxifies your body as it helps in the recovery and healing process. Some of the more common benefits from the therapy include:

  • increased mental clarity and creativity
  • increased blood flow which lowers blood pressure
  • promotes healing and provides relief of chronic pain and inflammation greatly benefiting arthritis, rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions
  • speeds recovery from athletic activity and injury
  • reduces anxiety, stress and depression resulting in better sleep
  • improves the overall health of the immune system
  • helps with behavior modification, addictive and self-destructive behavior.

It is important to contact your float center or spa prior to your float session for specific preparation requirements. Pregnant women must consult with their medical practitioner before starting floating therapy.

The practice of floating therapy has made a positive impact on our everyday health and wellness, promoting mindfulness and a positive outlook in life. The effortless way to relax and recharge will leave you rejuvenated for days, or even weeks. Continued floating therapy sessions will only greatly enhance your quality of life providing you with the ultimate deep relaxation that is much needed in this stressful reality of life that we’re in.





7 Replies to “Health Benefits of Flotation Therapy”

  1. Very informative article. I had not heard of flotation therapy before reading this, but is sounds amazing.
    I’m sure a lot of people could benefit, especially in the stressed environment of today.
    I feel truly inspired to give this a try, thanks for sharing.
    Normally, is there a choice of music, or does the spa have it’s own?

    1. I highly recommend that you try this natural way of healing the body and mind. Most spas have their own piped-in music, but you are definitely welcome to bring your own music player. The music will and should only play for the first five minutes, and after that it is complete silence, and total darkness (if one can tolerate). This is what sensory deprivation is all allows your mind and body to focus on your own breathing as you drift into the deepest realms of true relaxation. Let me know how it goes for you if you do decide to give it a try. Thanks for the great feedback/comments.

  2. Hey there,

    I have been meaning to try this therapy out but the idea of floating naked in a strange place doesn’t make quite comfortable.

    Is there a way I can get a professional in this therapy and pay them to help me set this experience up in my home?

    And how much would I have to pay for that if they agreed?

    1. Hello Dave, there isn’t a setup or service available for home use as of yet. There are several float centers all over the country now. Just to reassure you, this experience is very private in your own spa room or suite. There is a shower and dressing area in-room, just a few steps from the actual chamber or flotation tank. It is best experienced when there is no barrier between your bare skin and the Epsom salt solution to maximize its benefits. But it is perfectly alright to wear swim trunks if you prefer. An hour long float center session averages $40-45. Let me know if you have additional questions, or need additional information. Thank you!

    1. Hello Melani, it works wonders for deep relaxation, rejuvenation and stress relief. check your local spas or google float centers near you. there are more locations opening up around the country. let me know if you need help finding one.

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