The body responds to stress with muscle tension, which can cause pain or discomfort. In turn, tense muscles relay to the body that it's stressed, which keeps the stress–muscle-tension cycle going. Progressive muscle relaxation helps break this cycle by reducing muscle tension and general mental anxiety. Progressive muscle relaxation often helps people get to sleep.
You can use a recording to help you go through all the muscle groups, or you can just learn the order of muscle groups and work through them from memory.
Progressive muscle relaxation is sometimes combined with meditation.
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Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Steven Locke, MD - Psychiatry
Current as ofMay 3, 2013
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