Improving Sleep With IMT (Integrative Manual Therapy)

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Restorative sleep is essential to good physical and psychological health. However, many adults and children are suffering from sleep problems, such as difficulties in falling asleep, staying asleep throughout the night, having frequent vivid dreams, or waking up tired in the mornings because of poor sleep quality.   

If you are still experiencing sleeping problems even after practising good sleep hygiene, or ruling out other medical conditions, consider consulting an Integrative Manual Therapy (IMT) practitioner.

 How can IMT improve sleep?

 Developed by Dr. Sharon Weiselfish Giammatteo in the USA, Integrative Manual Therapy (IMT) is a hands-on holistic therapy to health that corrects the underlying causes of a person’s problems. Through gentle hand pressures at specific reflex points and various manual techniques, IMT can help to improve sleep through:

 

  • Calming Down the Vagus Nerve
  • Restoring the Balance in the Nervous System 
  • Releasing the Neck and Body Tensions

IMT helps to Calm Down & Restore the Balance in the Nervous System for Better Sleep

 

Living in a fast-moving society with a busy lifestyle, many children, teens and adults are bombarded by the ongoing stress from school or work, the over-packed schedules, the unpredictable dynamics of relationships and more.

Our nervous system is overstimulated on a regular basis, which makes it hard to ‘switch off’ and go to sleep easily.

 If there is also physical pain, injury, trauma, or tension in the body, it creates additional neural irritations and further disturb our sleep. This can eventually lead to more serious problems, such as chronic exhaustion, difficulty in concentrating, irritability and anxiety.

 

With gentle touch on specific pressure points and various cranial techniques, Integrative Manual Therapy (IMT) can improve sleeping patterns by:

  • Unwinding the tensions in the central nervous system and the Reticular Activating System (RAS) in the brainstem which regulates our sleep-wake cycles 
  • Releasing soft tissue and joint restrictions in the cranial base, neck and the body
  • Reducing the overall body tension, facilitating the body to restand a more tranquil quality of sleep 
  • Removing the fascial blockages and restoring the balance in the autonomic nervous system as well as the vagus nerve
  • Enhancing the body to shift out of the "fight or flight" state and go into the relaxation state 

 

Release the Neck and Body Tensions for Better Sleep with IMT

 Clinically, I have found many children, teenagers and adults who suffer from sleep problems also present with neck pain or spinal stiffness. On the other hand, individuals who have neck issues often find their sleep quality is affected. They may experience difficulty in turning the head or having restricted movements in the neck and shoulders. There are many possible causes of neck pain and stiffness, such as:

  • Poor Posture. Improper postures such as slumping the head forward or lying in bed when using digital devices for a prolonged period puts cumulative stress on the cervical spine
  • Injuries. Accidents and injuries during sports, accidents such as falls from bikes, or physical activities such as carrying heavy bags can overstretch the neck muscles, nerves and ligaments. 

 Neck pain and discomfort hinder the ability to get a good night’s rest. At the same time, poor sleep can increase the sensitivity to neck pain. The vicious cycle continues and perpetuates irritability, brain fog, and lethargy. You may also find children and teens become really tired during the day, which seriously affects their ability to focus on learning and mood regulation.  

 With use of light but firm pressure on precise reflex points, Integrative Manual Therapy (IMT) helpsdone to:

  • Alleviate muscle spasm
  • Release the tightness in the body
  • Improve the alignment and mobility of the spine
  • Relax the nervous system

IMT is a complementary therapy that helps to promote the optimum functioning of the body, allowing a better sleeping pattern, regaining more energy and alertness during the day. If you want to address your sleep problems and have better sleep quality, feel free to contact us and consult with our physiotherapist Wendy Lam

 

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