How Thera can help your aches and pains in the cold weather

Thera Float & Massage Therapy:

Thera Float + Massage Therapy - Float Therapy / Sensory Deprivation Tanks Burlington

Here at Thera Massage + Float Therapy, we are actively working to help our clients achieve a greater sense of well being and health. Our clients come from all age groups and from across the GTA. Many of our clients manage chronic pain conditions and we are always encouraged by the positive impact a float therapy+ Massage therapy treatments have on their health.
Winter seems to make us more aware of the aches and pains in our body, shorter days and colder weather also takes a toll on one’s spirit. It turns out though that feeling more pains in your joints and muscles in the winter months the cold weather does bring about more pain in some people, especially in weight-bearing joints like your hips, ankles and knees. Combined with icy sidewalks changing the walking gait, most people can find themselves experiencing a high-level of generalized muscle and joint pain as the weather turns colder.

Doctors aren’t sure why this happens to the human body, but one theory is that as the weather turns colder more energy and blood is sent to the internal organs thus reducing circulation to your extremities which can cause aches and pains. Generalized pain can greatly affect not only a person’s physical health but their psychological well-being as well, and with winter lasting a few months depending on where you live this can be a challenging condition to manage. If joint and muscle pain lasts too long it can become chronic.

Once the warm weather changes to winter, we see an increase in visits as the cold weather starts. There are several reasons why a float in one of our sensory deprivation tanks provides incredible relief of aches and pains. Our tanks are designed to allow people to be immersed in a floatation tank which holds about 10” of Epsom salt-infused water – the Epsom salts make the water extremely buoyant which lets a person float as if suspended in space, gravity is not a factor in a float tank. The water is kept at a temperature of 94F which is similar to the human body’s temperature. The buoyancy in the water takes the pressure off of aching muscles and joints and allows the body a period of respite and repair.

There are other factors involved in a float therapy session that eases cold weather-related aches and pains. First, the Epsom salts used contain magnesium and sulphate, the combination of these two ingredients stimulates detoxification pathways. Magnesium helps remove toxins from the body while sulphate has been shown to strengthen the walls of the digestive tract. Magnesium also reduces pain in people who suffer from arthritis or diseases which cause inflammation.

One of the most important ways the human body recovers from the daily aches and pains that can occur during the day is by getting a good night’s rest. Over the course of a regular day a person can receive hundreds of microtears in their muscles, these microtears are not serious and after a good night’s sleep are repaired. But for people suffering from generalized pain or joint pain restful sleep can often be challenging to achieve. This lack of proper sleep can kick-start a vicious cycle – the more pain you are in the more a proper night’s sleep would help, yet pain can interrupt sleep and thus the body is not getting an opportunity to heal properly.

Another factor in chronic aches and pains is the ‘fight or flight’ response many humans find themselves in when dealing with stress. This ‘fight or flight’ response is an innate human response to a stressful situation – the human body releases hormones to help a person prepare for the stressful event. These hormones can increase a person’s heart rate, tense muscles and affect the digestive tract. A few of these events a year can be manageable, but many of us deal with stressful life events often and the occasional ‘fight or flight’ response can become a regular occurrence. Over time this constant stress signalling in the body can spin off numerous symptoms including muscle and joint pain.

A session in one of our float tanks does several things that help manage chronic pain and calm down a person’s ‘fight or flight’ response. First, the experience of floating weightless in water takes the pressure of aching muscles and joints and allows a person to enter a state of deep relaxation. During this state of deep relaxation, a person’s muscles can begin to heal, as muscles heal the chronic pain decreases. When a person starts feeling relief from chronic pain their ‘fight or flight’ response starts to calm down and the nervous system begins to regulate itself. As the body adjusts to this state of relaxation psychological distress also decreases. Many of our clients report one of the most important side effects of float therapy – a good night’s rest. With a better night’s sleep, the human body can heal properly.

Many of our clients also report experiencing a meditation-like state during their session. One of the first uses of the flotation tank was to study the effects of sensory deprivation. People who experience a heightened state of sensory deprivation say this leads to a deep state of meditation that can lead to a euphoric experience. The theory behind sensory deprivation is that as the brain is cut off from all external stimuli it relaxes and people experience heightened states of creativity.

At Burlington Thera Float & Massage Therapy we encourage our clients to combine a float session with a massage. A massage following a 60-90 minute session in one of our flotation tanks will release the build-up of lactic acid in your muscles. This release of lactic acid will also help the muscles to relax and heal properly. Our massage therapists are trained in a wide variety of therapeutic massages and we encourage our clients to take time to talk to their massage therapist about what chronic pain they are managing. We always strive to work with our clients to develop a schedule of sessions to address their needs. It’s important to remember that if your massage is covered by your health plan you will have a deadline to submit your receipts, so make sure to book and take full advantage of your health plan!
Thera Float & Massage Therapy is located at 3480 Fairview Street, Suite 10 in Burlington. We are conveniently open during the day and evenings and weekends to accommodate your busy schedule. Give us a call today to book your float session!