Do Stress Balls Work (and How to Use Them)?

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Stress balls are those little, round balls of foam that you have probably seen people squeezing between their fingers as a means of releasing stress. With the increasing amount of stress and tension that people face on a daily basis, there is no doubt that you may have wondered whether using stress balls could actually help.

In some situations, stress balls have actually been proven to be highly effective in reducing tension to a great extent. Therefore, if you are someone who finds it difficult to manage stress, it is advisable to keep a stress ball nearby at all times.

Here we will be taking a look at whether stress balls actually work and how to use them effectively.

The Impacts of Stress on the Human Body

Stress can be considered as a strong and draining feeling of tension that is usually felt emotionally, but at times, it can even be felt physically. It can be caused by various events that eventually leave you feeling nervous, angry, or even frustrated. Generally, people tend to face stress when their body reacts to being put into a demanding or challenging situation.

When faced with stress, our body often reacts by displaying signs of a headache, migraine, difficulty in sleeping, fatigue, or even stomach issues in the short run. However, these issues can often build up into more problematic health concerns in the long run, such as high blood pressure, obesity, heart problems, or even diabetes.

Do Stress Balls Actually Work?

The reason stress can have such negative effects on our body is because it usually leads to muscle tension. When stressed out, we often clench our muscles instead of leaving them in a relaxed, normal position. For this reason, it is best to channel the extra energy that stress causes by diverting it towards a non-living and physical object. This can lead to the release of stress.

In this way, stress balls were created for this very need. These balls are squishy and allow for your muscles to contract and release the tense position they were previously in. Due to the squeezable texture they have, stress balls also allow for proper blood circulation, further helping release tension. Gripping and releasing stress balls allows your muscles to move in a normal way and inevitably release all stress you are faced with.

The Benefits of Using a Stress Ball

Although small in size and compressible, stress balls actually have several benefits associated with them. These benefits include:

Strengthening Muscles: Once you get used to using stress balls, you will notice how effective they are in making sure your muscles expand and contract in the way they should. Not only that, but effective use of these stress balls can also lead to your muscles becoming stronger than they previously were.

Lowering Blood Pressure: If your blood pressure is on the rise, this is probably due to lowered blood flow around the body. With the use of stress balls, you can ensure that blood circulates effectively around each part of the body, leading to a decreased or normalized blood pressure.

Reduction Of Stress and Anxiety: The use of stress balls can allow for a reduction of stress and anxiety by decreasing the tension in your muscles.

Increasing Concentration: Stress balls are known for being effective in helping you concentrate better. They allow you to feel relaxed, and this lets you pay greater attention to other matters.

Reducing Arthritis Pains: If you have arthritis, you may feel pain in various parts of your body. Stress balls allow clenching and de-clenching, and in this manner, they can be considered a way to exercise your muscles. Once these muscles expand and contract well, you will feel that the body aches and pains you had will have reduced a great deal.

How to Use a Stress Ball

A stress ball is a very simple object to use as a means to release tension from your body. The moment you hold a stress ball, you will notice your hands becoming comfortable with squeezing it in various ways. However, there are also several effective techniques that doctors advise you to use as a means to gain the most benefit from using a stress ball. Here are some of the exercises you can try out with a stress ball:

The Simple Technique: For this method, simply grasp and hold the stress ball in your left hand for 30 seconds. Then, release your grip and repeat the same step in your right hand.

The Rolling Technique: Take the stress ball and press it against a sturdy surface. Roll the ball back and forth, curving your palm around it every now and then. Make sure to open your fingers completely as you roll the ball away from your hand. Carry on this exercise while alternating hands every 3-5 minutes.

The Palm Pressing Technique: Take the stress ball and place it between the palms of both your hands, holding them closely together. Push your hands closer together, then pull them apart every few seconds. Do this for 3-5 minutes to ensure complete relaxation.

The Finger Gripping Technique: Hold the stress ball between your thumb and index finger, as if you are pinching it. Squeeze and then relax. Repeat this step at least 10 times to give your finger a good grasp of the stress ball.

The Thumb Pressing Technique: Place the stress ball on your palm and hold it with your thumb. Press onto it for a few seconds and then release. Switch hands after 30 seconds.

Final Thoughts

So as you can see from this guide, stress balls can be a very effective way to control and reduce your stress levels. However, make sure to consult a doctor if you feel that your stress and anxiety levels are constantly rising. It may be best for you to take an expert’s opinion if you find that a stress ball has little or no impact.

Images Courtesy of DepositPhotos

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