Massages are often sold as a purely indulgent treat that you can get when you visit a spa, but there is so much more to a massage than just a feel good treat. Did you know that the symptoms of many health problems can be reduced and even eliminated with regular massage?
Here are just a few conditions that massage can work really well on; a few you probably know and some that may surprise you!
Stress: It’s no surprise that a regular dose of massage therapy is good for your stress levels. It works by helping to lower your blood pressure, improve your quality of sleep, and by reducing your stress levels. It's also thought to help reduce the risk of heart disease. In 2008 the journal Psycho-oncology published a study which came to the conclusion “…a significant reduction in cortisol (the main stress hormone) could be safely achieved through massage, with associated improvement in psychological well-being.”
Lower Back Pain: This is such a common problem, often caused by bad posture at work, so no wonder many employers are drafting in massage therapists to help. Poor posture and sitting for too long can cause a lot of lower back problems, as can simply getting older. Get your massage therapist on the case and you can hopefully wave goodbye to a sore back.
Joint Stiffness: Massage can be a blessed relief for people dealing with the pain and stiffness associated with arthritis and other joint problems. Research published in 2013 in the Complementary Therapy in Clinical Practice journal said that people with rheumatoid arthritis reported some relief from pain and stiffness after four once-a-week moderate-pressure massages, topped up with self-massage at home in between treatments. Massage can also help with your range of motion and flexibility, which can relieve pain in your shoulders, knees, and hips.
Circulation: There are a whole range of health problems that can be caused by bad circulation, so it figures that boosting your circulation will be a bonus for your whole body. Regular massage helps to get the blood moving, getting essential nutrients to where they are needed in your tissues and vital organs much faster. The squeezing and pulling actions involved in a good massage also help to flush lactic acid out of your muscles and improve the circulation of lymph - the fluid that carries metabolic waste away from your muscles and internal organs.
Migraine symptoms: Nobody really knows what causes migraines, and there isn’t a cure, but if you’re a migraine sufferer you’ll be pleased to hear that studies have shown that massage can help reduce the frequency of attacks, and lessen the severity of the symptoms. Some migraines, especially those triggered by stress, are especially receptive to massage treatment.
Cancer Treatment Side-effects/Stress: In CURE magazine Spring 2016 edition there is an article about hand massages being used to reduce anxiety and stress during chemotherapy treatments. Nurses at Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics were included in this study and administered 5 minute hand massages to patients in the infusion centers. Patients commented how the hand massages helped to reduce their anxiety and stress and "made them feel like someone valued them as a person". Whether in treatment or post treatment massage can help lessen the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation such as nausea, pain, stress, anxiety, and depression.
Massage Therapist specializing in Therapeutic, Oncology, and Geriatric massage.