How to Relax During an MRI Scan

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans let your doctor get critical information on the tissues in your body. Some patients feel nervous during this test because of the enclosed space in an MRI machine. Knowing how to relax during an MRI scan can help you have a more comfortable procedure. Here are five methods you can employ to help you feel calmer.

1. Do Your Research

Understanding how an MRI procedure works can help you feel calmer when you participate in one. Many of the fears associated with a patient’s first MRI can come from not knowing what to expect. You can use the Internet to research the MRI process to understand the steps involved. If you plan to get your MRI at Health Images, we explain the scan on our MRI page. We also welcome patients from other areas of the country to use our website to learn more.

2. Ask the Doctor for an Explanation or a Touradministering MRI

Your doctor and technologist can also help you understand what to expect from your MRI. If you have a consultation appointment before your MRI scan, you can use this opportunity to ask any questions. The MRI provider’s office can also answer any questions you have over the phone. Think of what parts of the MRI scan worry you and ask about those aspects.

Some MRI providers also let you schedule a visit in advance to see the MRI machine. Modern MRI scanners have much bigger openings and shorter scan times than many patients think. You can also use this visit as a chance to ask more questions about the machine and the procedure.

3. Listen to Your Favorite Music During the MRI

Did you know that you can listen to music during some types of MRI scans? Your technologist can provide you with headphones to listen to music they offer. Listening to music can help you feel more relaxed while the scan takes place. Ask your technologist if they will allow you to listen to music during your scan.

4. Practice MRI Relaxation Techniques

There are plenty of stress-relief strategies to try before and during your scan. Popular MRI relaxation techniques include:

  • Meditation: Simple meditation activities like focusing on your breathing or visualizing a calm place help some patients relax.
  • Closing your eyes: Keeping your eyes closed or covering them with a towel can reduce the enclosed feeling that you might experience.
  • Talk to the technologist: Many MRI facilities let you talk to the technologist throughout the exam to give you something else to focus on.

family in front of mri machine

5. Bring Support to Your MRI

A trusted friend or loved one can accompany you to your appointment to provide support. In some cases, they can enter the MRI room with you, but check with your provider in advance. Choose someone who keeps you calm in stressful situations.

Schedule an MRI at Health Images

At Health Images, we perform diagnostic imaging for Colorado patients and doctors. If you need an MRI or another test, find a location near you.