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Quarantine is killing a lot of us. Even the most optimistic, optimistic people get hooked. The narrative is different for everyone, but we usually ask ourselves a combination of the following questions:
When does this thing end? When can I visit friends and family again? When will I feel normal again?
Personally, it hits me in the evening. Not sure why; Maybe I'm busy during the day? But as dark falls, small bouts of sadness creep in. Fortunately, my bathtub has replaced a therapist's sofa. My answer is cold therapy, or more precisely hydrotherapy, which was used by one of the most famous painters of all time.
Be like Van Gogh
In 1889, Vincent Van Gogh took up residence in Saint-Remy-de-Provence, a mental hospital in France. He suffered from depression and isolation and as a result cut off part of his own ear.
Van Gogh stayed in Saint-Remy-de-Provence for a little over a year and left in 1890. However, when he was admitted, he experienced a shock to his body that undoubtedly had a profound effect on the narrative he told himself.
Van Gogh's hydrotherapy came in two forms or two temperatures, I should say. Warm baths have been used to calm the mind and calm the body. On the other hand, Van Gogh would also receive the "cold treatment" in which ice and cold water filled the tub. The thought was that an ice bath could invigorate and shock the body and brain in order to tell a new story to yourself.
And now, more than ever, we need a little icy shock to get out of our own heads.
Related: Cryotherapy franchises are hot. Can they last
Cold and brave
"The common cold from full-body cryotherapy stimulates the body's nervous system. It helps release endorphins, adrenaline, and norepinephrine, which can help improve energy and mood," said Jim Donnelly, co-founder and CEO of Restore Hyper Wellness + Cryotherapy .
With my experience in cryotherapy, Donnelly is spot on. Until the COVID-19 hit, I was a sporadic visitor to cryotherapy chambers that was done every two weeks. When people asked me how it was, the best answer I could give them was "an ice pack for your whole body".
I usually do cryo when I feel sore while exercising or doing a little mental funk. But when I got into the cold tube and it got turned up to -150 degrees Celsius or something or should I say, my attitude changed from sad to freezing!
I haven't been on cryotherapy since COVID started, but thousands of others have.
"We have seen tremendous growth in new customers and the number of services customers use to manage their wellbeing, from improving immunity to managing stress and anxiety," said Donnelly.
“Since March, Restore has looked after over 118,000 wellness appointments. Of these, over 75,000 were cryotherapy appointments. "
A cold compliment
Whether you prefer to freeze in a cryochamber or a bathtub, it's important to remember that diet, exercise, and sleep also play important roles. For me, cold therapy is a nice addition to self-care that can restore body and mind. Here are three things I learned from my experience:
It feels good to get the blood flowing. When you sit in cold water or stand in a cryotherapy chamber, the blood vessels constrict. When you step out, the blood vessels reopen or widen. The increase in blood flow provides your cells with nutrients and more oxygen. Think about how you feel after a massage. Sometimes you just have to get something moving. Our bodies are harder than we think. The very thought of being immersed in temperatures as low as -150 ° C probably just made you shiver. And if you do it for the first time, wow! And once quarantine has taught us something, we can get used to almost anything if we do it consistently. Endorphins are welcome! The mental side of cold therapy is perhaps the greatest benefit of all. When you're done, you'll just feel better. As Donnelly said, the cold stimulates the body's nervous system. At some point we will feel sluggish or depressed. Cold therapy is a great way to reset your outlook.
Related Topics: How to Focus, Be Productive, and Keep Your Balance During a Crisis
I know cryotherapy and cold baths are not for everyone. But with COVID, many of us get creative in the way we do things. If you are looking for a challenge for the mind and body, give it a try. It's a great opportunity to see what you're made of, or more precisely, to really see if you have ice in your veins.