Group relaxation

Emmanuelle Manck
04/20/2017
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Relaxation involves a set of techniques designed to achieve deep mental and muscular relaxation via appropriate exercises. The group sessions offered by Institut Curie can help patients enhance their well-being.
Relaxation en groupe à l'Institut Curie

By promoting a state of deep relaxation, these sessions can reduce the physical and mental strain caused by cancer and its treatment, including pain, nausea, fatigue, trouble with sleep and concentration, and symptoms of anxiety or depression. Many clinical studies have observed that the emotional state and quality of life of women treated for breast cancer is improved by relaxation techniques.[1] [2]

The group relaxation sessions offered by Institut Curie are open to anyone with cancer who is:

  • Currently receiving treatment.
  • Being monitored, for two years after the end of treatment.

 

They use specific relaxation techniques, such as:

  • Deep breathing.
  • Muscle relaxation.
  • Focusing attention on bodily sensations.
  • Basic meditation and hypnosis.

 

Sessions are punctuated with opportunities to talk with the psychologist so that he or she can assess how the participants are feeling and their experiences.

 

Once they are familiar with the relaxation techniques, participants can use them in their day-to-day lives to limit stress and help manage difficult emotions – and even some of the side effects of treatment. By practicing relaxation techniques regularly, they can also improve their mental balance (sense of self) and confidence in their body.

 

Practical information

Group sessions are capped at six participants and are run by a psychologist. To register or for more information, contact the front desk of the Psycho-Oncology unit (UPO).  A pre-registration interview is a chance to clarify the benefits of the relaxation group and discuss methods of participation as well as the expectations of those interested.

 

[1] Song, Qing-Hua et al. “Relaxation Training during Chemotherapy for Breast Cancer Improves Mental Health and Lessens Adverse Events.” International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Medicine 6.10 (2013): 979–984. Print.

[2] Molassiotis, A., Yung, H.P., Yam, B.M. et al. The effectiveness of progressive muscle relaxation training in managing chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting in Chinese breast cancer patients: a randomized controlled trial Support Care Cancer (2002) 10: 237.