Stress can be good for the body. It increases motivation, helps us grow, and boosts our performance. It helps us survive.
Identified as the ‘fight or flight’ response, an optimal level of stress in the body is beneficial. However, as lifestyles shift, stress is becoming the norm, surpassing its optimal levels.
Through the rise of stress, both the body and mind can be placed under significant pressure. Through this pressure, if experienced for the long-term, it is likely that stress will result in physical and psychological side effects and conditions. Insomnia, depression, high blood pressure, panic attacks and heart strain are a few side effects, linked to elevated stress.
With this in mind, it is imperative that stress levels are brought back down to an optimal baseline before traumatic or chronic stress is experienced. This is where biofeedback stress reduction therapies come into the mix, helping to control and reduce the effects of stress on the overall body.
Here at Asana Lodge, we specialise in cognitive and mental health recovery. Through this, our approach follows brain activity and functionality, by utilising non-traditional treatment options. We aim to improve brain health, in turn, control the side effects of many conditions and mental health issues through these treatments, such as biofeedback stress reduction therapies.
If you’re struggling with overactive pressure, see how biofeedback therapy can support stress management.
What is biofeedback stress reduction?
Biofeedback stress reduction therapy can be defined as a technique that teaches people how to manage and control the physiological effects of stress. This can include responses such as an elevated heart rate and muscle tension.
By learning to interpret and respond to this feedback, people are able to achieve a state of relaxation and reduce stress. As we all experience moments in life that are out of our control and can cause stress, the ultimate goal with biofeedback stress reduction therapy is to develop healthier coping mechanisms and responses to these situations, thus lowering the negative impacts of stress on the body.
As touched on above, heightened stress levels can be dangerous for both the body and mind. This pressure, over a period of time, can result in reduced functioning of the body and brain, along with a range of side effects. Muscle tension, increased heart rate, sleep deprivation and anxiety are a few side effects linked to an overactive stress response. Traumatic or chronic stress is also known to deteriorate physical and psychological functions, along with the body’s main systems.
With this in mind, it is vital that effective steps are in place to manage stress, known as biofeedback stress reduction. Biofeedback stress reduction is a non-traditional yet highly effective method, used to first identify the stressor. From here, biofeedback therapy will be used to reduce stress levels and learn how to control those stressors, while promoting relaxation.
Without stress management intervention, ongoing stress can place significant pressures on an individual, reducing their overall health, wellbeing and quality of life. Although traditional forms of treatment may be available to control stress levels, such as prescription medications, here at Asana Lodge, we follow low-risk, non-traditional therapies. Through biofeedback stress reduction and therapy, effective stress management can take place, while also avoiding side effects from prescriptions.
How is stress measured?
In order to understand the required degree of biofeedback stress reduction, measuring stress is a must. Although, on the surface, stress may not initially influence side effects, internal impacts are active and measurable.
Stress can be measured by observing the body’s physiological response to stressors. In the average person, a stress response will start at a baseline, soon activated by a stressor, with the aim to regenerate and return back to the original baseline. This is the natural physiological response to stress. However, commonly for those requiring a biofeedback stress reduction, this response will be different, where the regeneration phase will be delayed or not exist.
With this in mind, before recommending any degree of treatment or stress management techniques, measuring stress levels and how an individual organically responds to stress, internally and externally, is a necessity.
How is biofeedback therapy used in stress management?
For individuals requiring help with managing their stress levels, biofeedback therapy will likely be highly recommended.
This will initially begin by measuring stress levels. As outlined above, the average response to stress will follow a three-step process. This process will first be measured by introducing stressors and triggers. From here, a physiological response to stress will be gauged, by utilising the latest computer programs.
If a delay or inability to recover from one of the active stages is present, with a focus on the regenerative stress response, biofeedback stress reduction will be required, in the form of biofeedback training.
Biofeedback training is highly beneficial when considering stress management. Here is where individuals can witness exactly how stressors affect their internal response, along with their cognitive and physical functioning. From here, biofeedback training will help individuals learn how to control their stress. This is imperative to ensure that chronic stress doesn’t develop. With consistent sessions of biofeedback training, stress levels and responses will reduce, along with the awareness of identifying stressors and how to control the degree of those stressors.
Alongside biofeedback stress reduction and training, sessions on self-help tips are also known to be beneficial. For example, in conjunction with biofeedback stress reduction therapy, learning deep breathing, mindfulness, or muscle relaxation exercises might also be used to reduce physical symptoms of stress, such as reducing muscle tension.
Over time, with consistent practice, the techniques learned in biofeedback therapy can help patients manage their stress response even in the face of triggering situations.
Additional treatment options for stress management
Alongside biofeedback therapy, additional treatment options can be activated to improve stress management. It is also important that evaluations are completed to identify whether further factors are contributing to chronic stress.
Here at Asana Lodge, we focus on evaluating brain activity and functionality. This approach can provide accurate data, surrounding mental health conditions, brain pressures and behavioural habits. To improve stress management techniques and the suitability of biofeedback stress reduction therapies, we will complete an evaluation of biological, psychological, spiritual and social impacts.
In some situations, underlying causation could be fuelling chronic stress, in turn, a negative stress response. For some individuals, this may be an associated mental health condition, pre-existing or caused by an initial stressor. Likewise, further physiological pressures, such as substance abuse, could be influencing increased stress levels. With this in mind, thorough evaluations are conducted before biofeedback stress reduction therapies, ensuring that treatment is suitable and effective for the individual.
Alongside biofeedback therapy and training, additional natural treatment options will be promoted, with a focus on nutrition, physical activity, mindfulness and therapy. This combination can help to instil a biofeedback stress reduction, in conjunction with training.
If you’re struggling with your stress levels, standalone stress management sessions will not carry high recovery rates. Through biofeedback stress reduction and training, you’ll learn to control your stress levels, moving forward, along with identifying common stressors.
For more information on our approach to biofeedback therapy, stress management or overall recovery treatments, get in touch with our team today.