Sensory Deprivation, commonly known as “Floating” or “Float Therapy” is gaining popular interest for its effectiveness in relieving stress and promoting relaxation. But what exactly is Float Therapy? Float Therapy involves stepping into a cabin of about 11 inches of water and simply floating on the water. The float cabin uses water and 1100 pounds of magnesium sulphate (Epsom salt). The high salt concentration allows you to float effortlessly on top of the water.
In addition, the magnesium sulphate acts as a muscle relaxer, anti-inflammatory and detoxification agent. The water is set to 94.5 degrees which is thermo-receptor neutral, which means you lose track of where your body ends, and the water begins. While you have the option to use light and sound, optimal results are achieved without either. This is known as Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy (R.E.S.T.)
Restricted environmental stimulation therapy (REST) is offered as a useful, flexible tool that can facilitate change in addictive variables at each level of complexity, from habitual acts through attitudes to self-concept and spirituality. The nature of REST is discussed in terms of processes and effects. Basically two processes, refocusing and re-balancing, contribute to the various physical and mental effects of restricted environmental stimulation.
These effects include profound relaxation, relief from pain, and a shift in consciousness to a state that is more introspective, less defensive, and more receptive. Research in treating addictive behaviors with REST is reviewed with smoking, overeating, alcohol consumption, and drug misuse.