How Floatation Therapy Can Benefit Expectant Parents
By Hannah Everist
Expecting a new baby is a time of joy and excitement for both the pregnant mother and the anticipating father. However, these nine dynamic months come with a multitude of physical, emotional, and psychological fluctuations – some positive, but some not, such as physical discomfort for the mommy-to-be and stress for both parents.
Floatation therapy provides an opportunity to remove oneself from the stress and stimulation that we are constantly bombarded with on a daily basis.
It can benefit expectant parents by providing a safe, comfortable environment in which to relax and self-reflect in preparation for birth and parenting. They can pay special attention to their health, happiness, and well-being during these times to minimize the harmful effects of stress and be able to focus on all of the positive aspects of pregnancy and enjoy preparing for the birth of their child.
What Is Floatation Therapy?
The concept is actually quite simple.
Remove all distractions. Remove all stimulation.
At Rise Above Floatation in Mount Kisco New York, a patron can book sessions in his or her own private float room. As they lay back upon a solution of Epsom Salt that is double the density of the Dead Sea; their whole body becomes as buoyant as a cork. Their head submerged just enough for their ears to be underwater blocking out all sound. When the floater feels safe and ready, they shut off their own lights. A glorious darkness eases their eyes away from all visual activity. The temperature of the float pool, set to skin temperature, is imperceptible, taking away another sub-conscious thought process. The combination of these environmental exclusions let the mind sit with itself in a way not possible in our everyday lives.
Physical Benefits for Mommy-To-Be
A pregnant woman’s float experience will be slightly different than the traditional positioning. While she has the option to float on her back, she also has the additional option of floating facing downward and using her elbows or a flotation device tube, similar to a pool noodle or paddle board, to keep her head above the water.
The zero gravity environment provided by the float tank shoulders the extra weight carried during pregnancy, reducing the strain on the limbs, spine, circulatory system, and organs.
The buoyancy of the tank is maintained by a high concentration of epsom salts, which is also known as Magnesium Sulfate. Magnesium has a relaxing effect on the body, hence the recommendation for higher supplementation during pregnancy, and aids in relieving the bodily aches and pains associated with the extra weight of pregnancy.
Additionally, floatation therapy balances and restores energy levels by reducing stress-related fatigue as well as regulating and improving sleep patterns.
The Importance of Stress Relief During Pregnancy
Perhaps the most beneficial aspect of floatation therapy is the stress-reducing/endorphin-producing effects for both the mother and father.
Of course it is natural for expectant parents, especially new parents, to have just as many worries and concerns as they do excitement. However, it is crucial for the mother to properly manage her stress and keep the release of stress-related hormones to a minimum to ensure the health of the developing baby and minimize the possibility of any complications. Likewise, it is important for the father to also take measures to keep his stress in check so he has the energy, strength, and focus to provide the loving support to his new baby and to the mother of his child. Floatation therapy has also proved to have lasting effects with regard to self-improvement and self-discovery, and mommy’s experience within the float tank will provide her with valuable tools to help get her through the birth as smoothly as possible.
Long Term Benefits
In addition to the immediate effects for both the mother and father, floatation therapy has the potential to have long-term benefits for the new baby. It is a well-known fact that even within the womb, a baby is receptive to external stimuli. Many expectant parents enjoy reading aloud to their unborn baby or playing music through headphones placed on the womb. Some pregnant women even report that the baby will kick or move around when she herself is happy or excited. Many pregnant women report a bonding experience with their baby while in the float tank.
Imagine the positive effects of a child developing within the womb of a well-rested, tranquil, and confident mother and coming into this world into the arms of two cool and composed parents!