Evidence indicates that psychological stress plays a role in precipitating and exacerbating asthma symptoms and suggests that relaxation techniques aimed at reducing stress and autonomie arousal leads to symptom reduction. This study explored the effect of a tape-recorded relaxation intervention on well-being (mood and stressors), asthma symptoms, and a measure of pulmonary function (PEFR). Twenty adult asthmatics were studied for 21 days in their natural environment using a multiple baseline design. Self-administered relaxation training (including both breathing exercises and muscle relaxation) led to decreased negative mood and stressor report. Reporting of asthma symptoms decreased over time, and PEFR was increased by relaxation training. Asthma medication use was unchanged. Results suggest that tape-recorded relaxation training positively impacts well-being, asthma symptoms, and PEFR in a naturalistic setting. Further study of the potential use of inexpensive tape-recorded interventions in chronic illness is warranted.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Applied Psychology
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health