Combat the Stress: Discover the Benefits of Progressive Muscle Relaxation

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Stress is our natural response to any threat or unpleasant situation. It is that feeling we often get when we are late for a meeting or stuck in traffic. Stress that lasts for the short-term is not harmful, but chronic stress can take a toll on our health. When we experience a stressful situation, the body shows symptoms like a faster heartbeat, a rise in blood pressure, quick breathing, and also tightening of muscles. Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR) is one of the effective techniques for managing stress and relieving this tension.

What is Progressive Muscle Relaxation?

It is a relaxation technique for controlling stress and anxiety, curing insomnia, and also for relieving chronic pain in some cases. It involves the following steps:

  • Tightening a group of muscles while inhaling
  • Relaxing the group of muscles while exhaling

Similarly, the same steps should be followed for other muscle groups, in a sequence, after relaxing for 20 seconds or so. A person would stop feeling anxious once the tension is released.

How is Progressive Muscle Relaxation Beneficial?

The Progressive Muscle Relaxation technique is based on the idea that mental calmness is a natural result of physical relaxation. Dr. Edmund Jacobson created  this technique in the 1920s to help his patients deal with their anxiety. Practicing PMR can help in minimising the stress while also helping those having sleep problems. It is an excellent technique that will enable one to identify the signs of tension in the body.

It has several benefits, as mentioned below:

  • Lowering blood pressure
  • Decreasing muscle tension
  • Reducing anxiety and fatigue
  • Ensuring overall well-being

Practicing this technique for about 10 to 20 minutes in a day can bring significant benefits. You can consult an expert or find a book that guides you through this exercise.

Relaxation techniques not only help in claiming the mind but also have positive effects on the body, especially beneficial if stress is going out of control. They are helpful in curtailing the activities of stress hormones. Other stress management techniques include deep breathing, meditation, and yoga, to name a few. Additionally, exercising, following a healthy diet, getting adequate sleep, and adopting the right attitudes in life, such as positive thinking, are necessary to lower stress and its harmful effects.

Wrapping Up

Every one of us is dealing with the challenges life throws. We all are in a constant race against time, and a hectic lifestyle can lead to stress that becomes a risk factor for several diseases such as hypertension and heart ailments. We often think that there is much nothing we can do to manage stress and that it is part and parcel of life. However, we should not allow stress to reach an extent that it starts disturbing the balance when it comes to our emotional and physical health. It is necessary to take a break and rejuvenate. Stress management is possible in many ways, and Progressive Muscle Relaxation is proven as a reliable technique to lower the stress.

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Disclaimer: The information given in this article is only for reference purposes and should not be taken as professional medical advice.