NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Water is essential for survival, but its powers go beyond simply drinking. From pain relief to a better night’s sleep, people are floating for health.

It’s a room with no lights, no sound and just a tank filled with water where all you do is float.

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“It’s like therapy for your mind and for your body,” one woman said.

“When they come out of a float, people often say how much younger they look in the mirror and how much better they feel,” said Sam Zeiger, owner of Blue Light Floatation in Chelsea.

Zeiger said people participate in floatation therapy to relieve physical pain like chronic migraines, meditation and relaxation.

Dr. Richard Firshein specializes in alternative medicine. He agrees it can be effective.

“The benefits according to studies show that it induces a very deep state of relaxation much faster than typical meditation,” Dr. Firshein said.

This is how it works: clients step into the tank after a shower where they float in a weightless environment. The rooms are dark and soundproof so they see and hear virtually nothing.

“You can hear your eyes blink, you can hear your blood coursing through your veins,” Zeiger said.

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The tank holds about 12 inches of water heated to skin temperature and is infused with about a thousand pounds of Epsom salt, also known as magnesium sulfate.

“Most of us are deficient in magnesium. That particular nutrient is crucial for maintaining so many body functions. It allows you to relax, it allows your blood vessels to relax,” Dr. Firshein said.

“Magnesium is incredible for sleeping. I go home I feel so relaxed,” client Andy Hnilo said.

The Epsom salt creates buoyant solution that makes it feel as if there is no gravity, allowing muscles and joints to feel completely free from any pressure.

Sessions last 60-90 minutes and some people say floating has changed their life.

“There’s no amount of anti-depressants or pain medication that can replace this,” one woman said.

The cost for float sessions range from about $50 to $80 for an hour.

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As with any other treatment or procedure, consult your doctor regarding any serious health issues.