Relaxation techniques are basically various methods used to focus the attention on calming the mind and relaxing the muscles and include activities such as visualisation exercises, guided imagery, biofeedback, self-hypnosis, progressive muscle relaxation or deep breathing exercises.
Meditation and practices that include meditation with movement, such as yoga and tai chi, can also promote relaxation.
The goal is similar in all; to produce the body’s natural relaxation response, characterised by slower breathing, lower blood pressure, and a feeling of increased well-being.
Relaxation techniques work very well with children as they are all gentle exercises.
One of the major boons of relaxation training has been in lessening or alleviating chronic, severe pain. Such pain can arise from many different causes, including backache and chronic migraine or tension headaches, diseases such as cancer, and even as the unintended outcome of operations to control pain.
Relaxation Therapy is being used clinically for a range of medical problems, including the management of the side effects of such medical procedures as kidney dialysis and cancer chemotherapy, gastrointestinal problems like irritable bowel syndrome, and insomnia, emphysema and skin disorders.
Psychological therapies such as relaxation techniques as well as other approaches such as cognitive-behavioural therapy, can reduce pain in both children and adolescents with chronic headaches or other types of chronic pain and the effects can last for months.