What you should know about massage therapy?
More than just being a stress and pain reliever, massage therapy has a lot more benefits to offer that actually contribute to a healthy lifestyle. Though not known to many, massage therapy lowers blood pressure, strengthens the immune system, facilitates faster recovery from injury and healing and even improves posture. Not only that, it also enhances attentiveness and flexibility in an individual. Certainly, these are things that lie beyond the relaxation it is known for. This is perhaps why massage therapy as an industry has become so big nowadays.
Through constant application of pressure, massage therapy relaxes blood vessels and decreases systolic and diastolic blood pressure, decreases the level of cortisol or stress hormones and prevents anxiety and depression. These reduce the threat of heart attack and create a clear mind and body making the individual more dynamic and active. Massage also helps relax the muscles itself, allowing people to become more energized. This is the reason why people are so much into massage therapy. It rejuvenates the body from all the stress that we encounter everyday.
Since massage decreases one’s stress levels, it also lessens the possibility of an individual’s vulnerability to pathogens by increasing the body’s cytotoxic capacity. When the number of active natural killer cells increases, our body’s line of defense becomes stronger and more stable and becomes more effective in shielding us from illnesses.
Faster recovery from injury is another benefit of massage therapy because it relaxes the muscles and improves circulation of important body fluids making it easier for the body to deliver nutrients to vital organs and other parts of the body. It also initiates pain management when the injured part is undergoing treatment since it activates the parasympathetic nervous system causing the production of endorphins which are natural pain killers thus speeding up the healing process.
Other than these good effects, massage therapy can correct bad posture which causes pain and stress in muscles that can lead to the body’s breakdown. It eases the tension in worn out muscles, soothes pressure points and increases the flexibility in joints by stimulating the production of body fluids and lubricants, so as to allow the body to position itself in a painless way. Thus, the individual can move freely and carry out daily tasks without hassle.
As shown in electroencephalogram (EEG) patterns, regular massage can also improve a person’s mathematical ability due to increased attentiveness because of the elimination of stress. The absence of stress imposes less pressure on an individual resulting to a more concentrated and focused mind, free of worries and distracting thoughts.
Massage therapy may be considered as a simple recreational activity however it does more than just restoring one’s vitality because it lessens or even eliminates the dangers imposed on a person’s health. It also helps an individual loosen up because it releases unwanted energy and leaves the person with a renewed outlook and refreshed senses.
Study even shows that HIV patients who have regular massage therapy sessions notice an improvement in their condition. This proves that massage therapy is not a waste of time rather it is an individual’s key to having a sound mind and body.
Well apart from it being able to help relieve sore muscles, a few others things like what are the different types, what are the risks, if there are any side effects and whether or not it should substitute conventional medicine.
For starters, there are more than 10 types being used to date. Some examples of these include reflexology, shiatsu, back massage, Thai, hot stone, deep tissue, aromatherapy and Swedish.
There are only a few serious risks with regards to massage therapy and this can be avoided if you take the proper precautions. The best thing to do will be to consult with your doctor to see if it is safe for you to see a masseuse.
Patients who have the following conditions should not undergo massage therapy. These include deep vein thrombosis that happens to be a blood clot in a deep vein, usually in the legs, a bleeding disorder or taking blood-thinning drugs such as warfarin, damaged blood vessels and weakened bones from osteoporosis, a recent fracture, or cancer.
You also should get a massage if you have a fever, have an open injury, been diagnosed with a tumor, have damaged nerves, have an infection or acute inflammation. Certain conditions could also be dangerous if you decide to have a massage. These include pregnancy, cancer, fragile skin, heart problems, dermatomyositis and a history of physical abuse.
There are certain side effects associated with massage therapy. These include temporary pain or discomfort, bruising, swelling and sensitivity or allergy to massage oils.
Massage therapy should not be used a substitute for regular medical care. If your doctor tells you that you can see a specialist, do some research about the person.
You should check on their credentials or licenses, years of experience and training. If you need massage therapy to help cure medical condition, find out beforehand if they have specialized training in this field.
It wouldn’t hurt to also ask if they use other CAM practices aside from massage therapy to help their patients. Some examples of these include the use of herbs and requiring the patient to go on a special diet.
If everything checks out, then this is the time you find out how many treatments will be needed, the cost and if this will be covered by your insurance. In most cases, this will not be honored. Some people may even ask for a free ten minute test to see how well they perform.
Part of the criteria should include giving you privacy when you change, he or she covers your body for modesty and warmth, inquires before beginning the session what part of the body you want worked on, asks for feedback as to how they are doing and accommodates requests for less or more intense pressure.
The best part about massage therapy is that it can provide relief without the need to ingest pain killing drugs and knowing some facts about it is good so you know what you are getting yourself into once you visit the place. You can read more about this by doing some research which isn’t bad even if you just go for a session to relieve some stress or pain and not have to visit because of a medical condition.