Stress and anxiety are so ubiquitous in our society that we could call them the modern condition. While some forms of medical treatment do exist to treat some forms of anxiety, on the most part, day-to-day stress and anxieties cannot be cured with a single visit to the doctor: their sources tend to be as complex and multi-faceted as their treatment.
When it comes to problems such as stress and anxiety, then, many turn to alternative forms of treatment as complements to their regular visits to the doctor. The medical industry is increasingly recognizing that therapies such as massage, cupping, aromatherapy and acupuncture can help people recover from stress-related pain and anxiety. Though some of these avenues of treatment require help from a specialist, many do not, and informed self-treatment can definitely be a great way to integrate stress and anxiety relief into one’s daily or weekly routine.
Aromatherapy, for example, can be extremely effective as a means to relax the body, and as a way to achieve mindfulness. Even the inexperienced can dabble in aromatherapy and reap its benefits! Lavender and orange essential oils are especially well-known for their soothing qualities, which you can enjoy by themselves or in anti-stress blends. Creating a relaxing atmosphere in your home can go a longer way than you’d expect: consider brewing yourself relaxing herbal teas, or lighting slow burning, soothing incense. Often, the key to relieve long term stress and anxiety is to develop a series of habits, reflexes and strategies, rather than focusing all your energy on a single avenue of potential relief.
Another popular, yet less well known form of alternative treatment for stress and anxiety are traditional Chinese cupping therapies. Practiced for millenia, cupping increases blood and energy flow in the body, and it can take a range of forms: traditional techniques involved fire and glass cups, but newer practices include silicone and plastic cups, which are versatile and potentially less painful. Silicone cupping and plastic cups both have the advantages of allowing self-treatment: for silicone cups, all you need is to gently squeeze the cup to empty out the air before putting it on the desired area of your body, and plastic cups can come with a hand pump and connecting tube or with a rotating end, which allows you to better control the degree of suction. Though traditional treatments were known to sometimes leave marks, plastic and silicone cups are gentler on the body, and lend themselves well to massage. Silicone facial cups can help you regain your youthful skin, but also release some of the tension stored in your facial muscles.
Massage, then, is a quintessential stress relieving therapy. It can help release tense muscles, and help you feel more connected to and mindful of your body. Many massage accessories, especially gels and lotions, are designed to relax the body. While it’s true that not everyone can afford to get regular professional massage treatments, they are not always necessary to enjoy some of the benefits of massage; consider, for example, massaging your aching feet with a gentle cream or your legs with a body brush, or asking a loved one to rub your back. You can consider renting or buying a table from Lierre: to learn more about the tables we offer, visit the massage table section, or, if you prefer French, consult the tables de massage section.