It’s normal to feel stressed sometimes. But if your stress builds up, or it continues for a period of time, you might carry the tension in your muscles. You can relieve muscle tension by doing Jacobson’s relaxation technique. Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) involves relaxing your muscles and tightening them.
The goal is to release tension from your muscles and help identify how that tension feels.
Practicing regularly, this technique helps manage the physical effects of stress. Studies have also found that it has therapeutic benefits for conditions such as:
- Sleeping disorder
Let’s take a look at what PMR is, what the benefits are, and how to use this technique.
What is Progressive Muscle Relaxation?
PMR was developed by American doctor Edmund Jacobson in the 1920s. It was based on the theory that physical relaxation can promote mental relaxation. Jacobson discovered that muscles can be relaxed by straining and then relaxing. He also discovered that this can relax the mind.
The PMR provides a framework for achieving this relaxed state. You need to work with one muscle group at a time. This action emphasizes the sense of relaxation in the area.
- Offset anxiety and stress
- Helps in reducing anxiety
How To Practice Progressive Muscle Relaxation?
You can practice Progressive Muscle Relaxation in the comfort of your home. No special equipment is needed. Here’s how to do it:
- Lay down or sit down. Relax your body.
- Take deep, slow breaths.
- Lift your toes, hold, and then release. Pull your toes down, hold, and then let go.
- Tense your calf muscles now, then release.
- Move your knees towards each other, then release.
- Squeeze your thigh muscles. Hold for a while, then release.
- Clench your hands, hold and then let go.
- Tense your arms, then release.
- Squeeze your buttocks, hold, then let go.
- Contract your abdominal muscles, hold, and then let go.
- Tighten your chest. Pause, exhale, and let go.
- Raise your shoulders. Pause, and then let go.
- Purse your lips together, pause, then release.
- Open your mouth, hold, then release.
- Close your eyes tightly. Pause and then let go.
- Lift your eyebrows, hold and then release.
There you go! Take out 15-20 minutes every day to do it. Turn off your phone to avoid distractions. Practice PMR even when you are feeling calm. You can also listen to PMR recordings.
Health Benefits Of Progressive Muscle Relaxation
As per a 2019 study, PMR reduced stress and anxiety in 50 employed patients. In another 2019 study, it was determined that PMR helped in reducing tension and anxiety in dental patients. PMR also helped in reducing depression.
A larger study done in 2016 determined that PMR was as effective as acupuncture treatment and reduced anxiety. Also, a 2020 study found that PMR may help reduce anxiety in people with COVID19, suggesting benefits for coping with difficult situations.
PMR also helps improve sleep because it induces relaxation. In a 2020 study, researchers tested PMR in 80 burn patients. These patients often suffer from high levels of anxiety and poor sleep quality due to their physical and psychological conditions.
Patients were divided into two groups. One group performed PMR for 20 to 30 minutes a day for 3 consecutive days. Other groups received routine care and treatment. Three days later, researchers found that patients who underwent PMR had significantly reduced anxiety and improved sleep quality compared to the group receiving only conventional treatment. In addition, in a 2015 study, PMR helped mothers of preterm infants improve postpartum sleep.
Relieves Neck Pain
If you tend to have tension in your neck or shoulders, you may experience neck pain. This is a common condition often associated with mental and emotional stress. According to a 2013 study, PMR may help alleviate the symptoms of chronic nonspecific neck pain. It can also improve quality of life and physical function.
Reduces Back Pain
Back pain is another common condition. There are many possible causes, but stress can make them worse. A 2018 study found that an 8-week PMR helped relieve chronic low back pain. Another 2014 study found that PMR with music has the ability to relieve back pain in pregnant women.
Improves Systolic Blood Pressure
High blood pressure, or high blood pressure, increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. Stress can make the condition worse, but PMR can help. A 2018 study using only PMR also found that systolic blood pressure in hypertensive adults could be significantly improved.
Reduces The Frequency of Migraine Attacks
Migraine is a neurological condition that causes severe pain in the face and head. Migraine attacks can be caused by stress, including normal daily stressors. According to a 2016 study, PMR can reduce the frequency of migraine attacks. Researchers believe that balancing levels of the low neurotransmitter serotonin, which is often low in people with migraine headaches, helps.
Relieves the symptoms of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ)
Emotional stress can cause temporomandibular disorders (TMJ). This is a condition that leads to jaw stiffness and locking. A 2019 study found that the sedative effect of PMR helps alleviate the symptoms of TMJ. Research participants experienced less severe pain and tension after practicing the technique.
Buying CBD for Muscle Relaxation
The products offered by Cibadol include tinctures, pills, gummies, and so on. You can check out the complete list of ingredients online along with third-party tests. CBD is one of the many naturally occurring cannabinoids found in hemp plants. Although CBD has been used by humans for many centuries, only recently it has gained popularity in the modern era. CBD is known to help with a series of physical as well as psychological illnesses such as chronic pain, anxiety, stress, inflammation, rashes, etc.
CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in the body and improves various functions such as mood, sleep, appetite, and more. It also increases the production of serotonin (the bliss molecule) in the brain. Many researchers believe that by reducing the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and other similar conditions, CBD can also help boost the effects of PMR. Various yoga and meditation experts also believe that CBD enhances the efficiency of these practices. It is also important to note that using CBD products is completely legal, as long as they contain less than 0.3% THC.
PMR is used for relaxation and it’s something we all need in our lives right now. It helps you to release physical tension and eases stress. You can manage your pain and sleep better with PMR. If you want to feel relaxed over time, start with PMR and CBD right away!