A massage may seem like a luxury, but there are many health related benefits to receiving a massage.
For those suffering from depression, sleep disorders, fibromyalgia, migraines and back or muscle pain, massage has been scientifically proven to alleviate or decrease symptoms. Massage can also help to lessen stress-related tension which some experts believe account for 80-90% of disease. You can even lower your blood pressure and build your immune system by having a massage.
According to Dee Vickers of Opulence Massage, "there are clearly two distinct types of massage, spa massage and clinical treatment massage." Spa massage consists of the relaxing massage which most people are familiar with. Clinical massage is recommended by physicians, physical therapists, orthopedic physicians, psychiatrists and dentists. This type of massage is used as a co-treatment in alleviating symptoms in patients suffering from various conditions such as, TMJ or Temporomandibular Joint Disorders.
Always ask your doctor before adding massage to your treatment plan if you have a health condition.
Some of the benefits of massage include:
Increased circulation in the body, which boosts the body's ability to deliver nutrients to tissues and vital organs.
Stimulate the lymph system, improving the body's immunity.
Relax injured or overused muscles.
Increase flexibility in joints.
Release endorphins, which helps to reduce pain and improve mood.
Help people in pain feel and function better.
Reduce the number of migraines and reduce their severity.
Decrease stress and anxiety.
Help people quit smoking.
If you decide to get a massage, communicate with your massage therapist about any health conditions that you may have. Think about the overall goal for your massage. Do you just want to relax or do you want the therapist to perform a more deep tissue massage? Monitor your body and see how massage benefits you.
I hope to see you at the spa soon!
Be wise and be well! This is Sheila Harrell with the Church Health Center.
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