Post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, can take a serious toll on emotional and physical health. Individuals suffering from PTSD often try various therapies and treatments to manage their symptoms. According to Disabled Sports USA, swimming is one way for someone living with PTSD to enjoy welcome relief from the many issues that can be associated with the condition. Read on to learn more about the connection between swimming and PTSD, brought to you by the experienced team from San Diego Pools, a leader among San Diego pool companies.
Stress is a common effect related to PTSD for many individuals living with this condition due to having suffered some type of traumatic event. Swimming is certainly a great way to relieve stress due to the relaxing body movements a swimmer makes in the water. In fact, there’s research suggesting swimming may minimize or even reverse brain-related damage due to stress and anxiety.
It’s believed swimming may further promote stress relief through a process known as hippocampal neurogenesis, which refers to the regrowth of cells in areas of the brain affected by atrophy due to long-term exposure to chronic stress and anxiety. Easing the feelings of stress and anxiety associated with PTSD may have the following benefits:
• Improving the ability to multitask
• Helping with the ability to plan
• Boosting short-term and long-term memory
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America notes that a lack of sufficient sleep can worsen stress and anxiety. The National Sleep Foundation reports that various forms of exercise, including swimming, can improve sleep habits and the ability to enjoy a full night’s sleep on a regular basis. Individuals with PTSD can benefit from better sleep by being more relaxed and focused during the day.
Swimming increases levels of “feel-good” hormones called endorphins. The resulting improvements in mood may result in less reliance on medication for individuals with PTSD. This is beneficial because it reduces the risk of becoming dependent on or even addicted to certain medications.
There’s also research suggesting sustained swimming sessions can make PTSD sufferers more confident in their abilities. What’s more, it’s easy to set swimming-related goals that are entirely achievable. And once those goals are achieved, whether they involve swimming more laps or improving overall swimming skills, new goals can be set.
Some people with PTSD experience physical aches and pains related to their traumatic events. Swimming is easy on joints, bones, and muscles, but it still provides enough physical activity to increase flexibility, mobility, and general strength.
It’s not always easy for individuals with PTSD to relax. The breathing patterns required for swimming are similar to those used when practicing yoga. This is one of the reasons swimming can be relaxing and soothing. Even the blue color of the water in a swimming pool has a calming effect that can be beneficial for PTSD sufferers.
If you’re ready to add a pool to your home so you can enjoy the stress-relieving benefits of swimming, reach out to the experienced pros at San Diego Pools. As premier specialists in modern pool design, we’ve been building high-quality pools for more than 40 years, and we can build a pool that’s perfect for you and your family. Give us a call today at 888-707-7786 to learn how we can build the pool of your dreams.