Chronic malaise is a term used to describe consistent feelings of discomfort, illness, or lack of well-being that can either come alone or accompany other underlying medical health conditions. Sometimes malaise can persist for a long. Though there are various ways to treat the condition, one of the most essential ways could be various mind-body therapies. Read further to know about the mind-body therapies that could help in managing pervasive unwellness.
What is Chronic Malaise?
Malaise is a term used for a general feeling of discomfort, or illness that might happen suddenly or can gradually develop and persist in a person for a long. Sometimes malaise can be mild. However, in other cases, it becomes chronic and extremely severe and it starts interfering with one’s work performance, family life, and overall well-being.
Reduced physical activity, overexertion, viral infection, mental health conditions, jet lag, and pregnancy are some of the causes of malaise. However, some other chronic medical conditions like chronic anemia, fibromyalgia, diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, liver and kidney diseases, and COPD can also be the reasons behind chronic malaise. Apart from these, HIV, AIDS, and Hepatitis A or C, are some viral infections that can cause chronic malaise.
What are the Different Mind-Body Therapies to Manage Pervasive Unwellness?
Mind-body therapies or mind-body interventions utilize the ongoing interaction between the mind and body to improve overall health and well-being.(1) Mind-body therapies are a group of healing techniques that can induce relaxation, and daily practice of these therapies would be essential for deriving the best benefits from these therapies. Research has indicated that mind-body therapies are safe and are great for managing pervasive unwellness or chronic malaise.
One of the most important mind-body therapies to manage pervasive unwellness is acupuncture. Acupuncture can help ease various types of pain and malaise that are often chronic. It can reduce discomfort and pain in the neck, and low-back pain, and also help in reducing the frequency of tension headaches and also prevent migraine headaches.
Mindfulness or Meditation
Mindfulness includes both meditation and a way of living that develops acceptance and attentional skills, thus reducing pain or general discomfort. Mindfulness-based therapies can be extremely beneficial in managing chronic malaise or pain. These approaches encompass distraction techniques that help patients to shift their attention to stimuli other than the pain.(2)
Another mind-body therapy that can help in managing chronic malaise is guided imagery. This therapy enhances relaxation and also reduces pain and discomfort. Guided imagery uses peaceful, soothing, or symbolically therapeutic mental images to unhook attention from pain and discomfort and bring relaxation.
Yoga involves various physical postures, yet is considered a mind-body intervention. It can act as a wonderful therapy to manage pervasive unwellness or chronic malaise. Yoga emphasizes acceptance, training attention, and meditation, and offers comfort and relaxation.
Biofeedback is considered a mind-body therapy that increases physical awareness and induces a sense of relaxation in one’s mind and body through the use of markers of the stress response. This method also offers a focus of attention and promotes general wellness. Thus it can be used in managing pervasive unwellness.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy
This is a mind-body therapy that changes states of mind and emotion and can be beneficial in managing chronic malaise or pervasive unwellness. There is sound evidence that cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) can treat a wide range of chronic pain conditions, such as chronic back pain, fibromyalgia, and other pain-related issues.(3,4,5)
Tai chi helps improve stability and balance, reducing knee and back pain, and improving quality of life in people with chronic illnesses. Thus, when done regularly with proper guidance and supervision, it can also be used to manage pervasive unwellness.
Hypnosis is one of the premier mind-body therapies used for treating chronic pain and has positive impacts.(6) Pain and discomfort associated with irritable bowel syndrome could be improved with hypnosis.(7) This can be used for managing pervasive unwellness as well. However, this should be performed only by an expert and experienced therapist.
This is another excellent mind-body therapy that can help in improving the condition of chronic malaise. Autogenic training uses both visual imagery and body awareness to generate a deep state of relaxation. During this technique, the patient imagines a peaceful place and also focuses on various physical sensations starting from the toe to the head. This offers great relaxation and can be used to manage pervasive unwellness.
Progressive Muscle Relaxation
Progressive muscle relaxation is a technique that involves slowly tensing and then releasing the body’s each muscle group, starting from the toes to the head. This can benefit you in improving the general feeling of unwellness or discomfort.
Art and Music Therapy
Chronic malaise can be managed well with art and music therapies. Art and music therapies can offer a great sense of relaxation and help in releasing tension and discomfort experienced by people at times.
Chronic malaise or pervasive unwellness can persist for a long and can also be extremely severe at times. Several mind-body therapies, such as mindfulness and meditation, yoga, hypnosis, acupuncture, biofeedback, and more can be beneficial in managing the condition. However, it is essential to be examined by an expert medical professional so that the exact cause behind it can be diagnosed well and can be treated accordingly.
- Systematic Review of Mind-Body Interventions to Treat Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – PMC (nih.gov)
- Patient centred CBT for chronic pain – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Assessing the role of cognitive behavioral therapy in the management of chronic nonspecific back pain – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Non-pharmacological treatment of chronic widespread musculoskeletal pain – PubMed (nih.gov)
- [Hypnotherapeutic treatment approaches in children and adolescents suffering from functional abdominal pain] – PubMed (nih.gov)
- Long term benefits of hypnotherapy for irritable bowel syndrome – PubMed (nih.gov)