CRVAW Faculty Journal Articles


Effects of Stretch-Based Progressive Relaxation Training on the Secretion of Salivary Immunoglobulin A in Orofacial Pain Patients


There is a growing body of evidence that psychologic stressors can affect physical health and proneness to disease through depletion of the body's immune system. Relatively little research, however, has investigated the potential immunoenhancing effect of stress-relieving strategies such as progressive muscle relaxation. This study explored the relationship between immune functioning and relaxation training with persons experiencing persistent facial pain. In a single experimental session, 21 subjects either received relaxation training or rested for an equivalent time period. Salivary immunoglobulin A, mood, pain, and tension levels were measured before and after relaxation and rest periods. Results indicated that a greater proportion of those receiving relaxation training had increases in secretion of salivary immunoglobulin A. These findings suggest that immunoenhancement may be another potential benefit of progressive relaxation training for persons with chronic pain conditions.

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 1997

Notes/Citation Information

Published in Journal of Orofacial Pain, v. 11, no. 2, p. 115-124.