Massage therapy not only provides relaxation and relief to muscle strain and fatigue, a therapeutic massage may improve your health. There are many benefits to massage therapy, including physical, emotional, and physiological improvements in the body.
Why Get a Massage?
Imagine a long day of standing on cement floors, lifting heavy boxes, or sitting at a desk. Your back is killing you, there is a sharp pain in your shoulder, and your temples are throbbing. Fatigue, repetitive motion, muscle strain, or staying in one position for an extended amount of time could cause any or maybe all of these symptoms.
It’s your body’s way of saying, “slow down and take it easy”. How you respond to these symptoms determines how you will feel. What if your stress, pain, tension, and fatigue could be purged from your body through therapeutic massage? Would you get one? There are many reasons a person may desire or need a massage. The above example covers 80-90% of the cases a massage therapist sees. However, there many good reasons to get a massage.
?Reduces lower back pain and other bodily aches.
?Helps sooth infants and promotes digestion.
?Increases range of motion in joints.
?Decreases illness-related fatigue.
?Calms aggressive behaviours.
?Decreases depression and helps to promote a healthy mind.
?Helps your immunity by increasing white blood cell counts.
?Improves recovery after post-operative surgery.
?Alleviates age-related disorders, sleep disorders, and many more emotional and physical problems.
During massage therapy, the massage therapist works the tension out of stiff and sore muscles, encouraging their patient to relax. This may help the person receiving the massage on many levels: his muscles feel relaxed and are no longer sore, he is relaxed and no longer tense, and the muscles loosen, allowing a larger range of motion.
A study performed on university dance students demonstrated that the dancers had improved in range of motion, mood, balance, posture, and performed better.
As certain muscles are massaged, emotions may be released. The kneading motions combined with heat and or aromatherapy cause a person to relax, releasing tension. Stress and tension is often rubbed away with any aches or pains in the body.
Studies performed by the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami indicated that the immune systems improved in children who were massaged daily by their parents; the children’s white blood cell and neutrophil counts increased. Therapeutic massage is used as a treatment for many illnesses and during the recovery period after surgery.
Scientists believe that this deep, healing massage triggers the release of certain chemicals in the body that helps you combat illnesses and speeds recovery.
When You Should Ask your Doctor Before Getting a Massage
With certain health conditions, it could be dangerous to be on the receiving end of a massage. People with the following symptoms or illnesses should contact their doctors first.
?Blood vessel diseases: If you have a blood clot, the massage could cause the clot to move, and if it moves into your lungs, it can kill you.
?Cardiovascular diseases: People suffering from these diseases may have swollen blood vessels, blood clots, or heart disease.
?Certain forms of cancer.
?If you have skin conditions such as burns, cuts, cold sores, bruises, sores, herpes, open cuts, and swollen areas, you should not have a massage in one of these areas.
?Severe back pain could mean you have a problem that could be exacerbated with massage, so ask your doctor first.
?People with high fevers or chills should not get a massage, since it may be the sign of a serious illness.
?Massaging the feet, lower legs, and abdomen during the first three months of pregnancy could cause miscarriage. There are massage therapists who specialise in pregnancy massage, but always ask your doctor first.
?People with a mild stage of osteoporosis could benefit from massage if permitted by their doctors, but not anyone with severe osteoporosis.
Massage Therapy – Is it Right for You?
The power of touch has miraculous effects: for the very young to the very old, for the terminally ill to the marathon athlete, and for the stay-at-home mum to the over-stressed executive. Massage has the power to relax, heal, and help release emotions and tension without the aid of drugs.
When deciding whether you want to get a massage, consider your health and your needs. As long as you do not have any serious health conditions, this alternative, drug-free therapy may be the right treatment for you.