Have you ever seen a baby being swaddled? Although swaddling was more popular previously, not a lot of people still continue to do it in the West. However, in certain parts of Asia, such as India and Japan, the practice of swaddling babies continues.
Swaddling for Babies and Adults
Now, there is a new twist to this practice, swaddling for adults as a form of physical therapy. It may seem like a strange idea. We can all imagine a baby being swaddled i.e., tied up so that it's in the fetal position. After all, the baby just came out of the womb. But adults? First of all, it seems like it would be quite uncomfortable. And secondly, what's the benefit of it?
Reverting to the Fetal Position
Have you noticed how adults who are going through something unpleasant or traumatic might automatically revert to the fetal position because it provides a feeling of comfort? Plus, many of us tend to curl up in a semi-fetal position when we sleep at night, with our knees pulled up.
How Do You Swaddle an Adult?
Now, imagine if someone actually swaddled you so that you were completely in the fetal position. And additionally, the sheet which was swaddling you would also cover your face so that you almost felt like you were back in the womb, with limited mobility and no external stimuli coming at you. This is what is done in adult swaddling, a new physiotherapy technique which was started in Japan by Nobuko Watanabe, a Japanese midwife, in 2015. After wrapping the adult in this way, they are also encouraged to rock back and forth which once again recreates the motion they experienced in the womb.
Comfort, Back Pain and Posture
You can imagine that this type of therapy would be very comforting for anyone because it recreates the feeling of being back in the mother's womb. Plus, many adults also say that it helps them with lower back pain and improves posture.
To learn more about this and other forms of physical or occupational therapy, visit the Healthcare section of our blog.
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