Autism and Floating August 14, 2019

According to the CDC, “Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that can cause significant social, communication and behavioral challenges.”[1] As of today, there are no known cures for Autism Spectrum Disorder.[2] There are alternative treatments that can be taken into consideration though. The Gersh Academy at Cougar Mountain for Students on the Autism Spectrum in Issaquah, WA, is integrating a new alternative type of therapy into their curriculum and that is; float therapy.[3]

 

Float therapy incorporates the use of sensory deprivation tanks, developed in 1954 by medical practitioner, John C. Lilly; in order to create an environment in which is healing, calm and meditative.[4] Tyler Reed is a 15-year-old student who attends The Gersh Academy and utilizes floating in order to feel relaxed when he starts to get major anxiety. He says his anxiety has gone “way down” after he floats and he’s able to sleep more soundly at night.[3]

 

Sensory overload is one condition experienced by children and adults on the autism spectrum and therefore, floating may be an alternative treatment so as to deprive the individual from the senses they dislike such as loud noises. Not only can floating create a more relaxed environment but it also may help alleviate stress, depression and deepen meditation practices.

 

A 24-year old woman diagnosed with autism participated in a study in which she floated regularly and she concluded that floating helped her relax, gave her energy and wasn’t bothered with negative feelings, which extended into her everyday life.[5] She also believed that floating helps with problems associated with depression and pain and hoped the treatment would get more recognition since it helped her so much.[5]

 

At GoPolar Cryotherapy & Float Spa we use Float Lab Tanks that help our clientele feel relaxed, alleviate stress, anxiety, depression and so much more. We are dedicated to creating an environment that helps individuals feel comfortable no matter what their situation is. All our floats are ninety minutes but please allot two hours of your time to get the best float experience. If floating is something you’d like to experience, don’t hesitate to contact our Westmont location at (630) 796-2255 to book your appointment.

 

  1. “Treatment | Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) | NCBDDD | CDC.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Accessed July 02, 2019. https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/treatment.html#Complementary.
  1.  Myers SM, Johnson CP (November 2007). “Management of children with autism spectrum disorders”. Pediatrics. 120
  1. Dixon, C. “This Autism School Is Adding Float Therapy To Its Curriculum.” The Autism Site Blog. Accessed July 02, 2019. https://blog.theautismsite.greatergood.com/float-therapy/.
  1. Lilly, John Cunningham (1996). The Scientist: A Metaphysical Autobiography (3 ed.). Ronin Publishing. p. 102. ISBN 0-914171-72-0
  1. Kjellgren, Anette, Hanna Edebol, Tommy Nordén, and Torsten Norlander. “Quality of Life with Flotation Therapy for a Person Diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder, Atypical Autism, PTSD, Anxiety and Depression.” Open Journal of Medical Psychology 02, no. 03 (2013): 134-38. doi:10.4236/ojmp.2013.23020

Wioleta Takuska

 


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