Benefits of Massage
Beneficial Effects of Massage Therapy
Massage therapy is hands down one of the best things you can do for your health. As if laying down on a comfy table for an hour or more, as a skilled massage therapist kneads and rubs your whole body until it’s loose as a wet noodle wasn’t enough of a treat, you also receive a handful of health benefits by getting massages.
From as early as 2700 B.C., massage was used by several ancient cultures to treat injuries and cure terminal conditions. Massage was the preferred treatment for sports and war injuries. Massage therapy continues to hold its place as one of the most effective, safe and natural ways to treat mental and physical ailments, such as stress, pain, anxiety and depression. Here are its top 10 benefits
1. Pain Relief
One of the biggest reasons people get massages is to relieve pain. Whether it’s chronic pain from an illness or cramps from excessive exercising, massage therapy is the key to relieving pain the holistic, noninvasive way. Depending on your health, level of pain tolerance and exercise routine, there are various types of techniques to trigger certain tissues to relieve various aches and pains. Massages provide pain relief through applied pressure, muscle relaxation and increased circulation. With regular massage therapy sessions muscle cramps and spasms, stiffness and body aches are either reduced or prevent altogether.
2. Stress Relief
Stress affects everyone in one way or another, but if you’re like one of the millions of people who deal with it every day, you’ve got to manage it. One of the best ways to relieve stress and keep stress-hormone levels in control is to get regular massages. Immersed in serene relaxation, a full body massage has been known to bring your body and mind in a sleep state, allowing you to get a much needed power nap. Massage therapy also raises the body’s production and release of endorphins. These are stress and pain preventing hormones that enhance mood and boost immunity. Reducing your stress levels will do wonders for your current mental and physical health, while preventing potential diseases or stress-related conditions.
3. Increases Circulation
Get your blood flowing and stimulate the lymphatic systems through regular massage therapy. While the massage therapist applies pressure, stimulates muscles and relieves pain, your circulatory system is hard at work pumping oxygen and nutrients into tissues and organs. Increased circulation improves blood flow, removes waste away from muscles and internal organs, lowers blood pressure and improves overall body function.
4. Boosts Immunity
A strong immune system will help you fend off colds and fight infections fast. Unfortunately, poor nutrition, lack of sleep and stress have weakened our immune systems, making us more susceptible to illness. A tried-and-true way to boost your immunity is through massage. Massage therapy can increase your body’s natural ability to protect itself and keep you healthy when others are sick.Certain massages and techniques will improve the flow of lymph, a bodily fluid that fights infection and disease, as well as remove excess lymph through manual drainage.
5.Improves Posture and Flexibility
Regular massage therapy can do wonders for your posture and flexibility. Massage therapy loosens and relaxes muscles, which relieves pressure points and gives joints a greater range of motion. Once pressure points are relieved, the body can position itself properly and develop a natural posture that doesn’t cause pain.
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6. Lowers Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is a serious condition that could lead to heart attacks, kidney failures or strokes. There are several factors that cause high blood pressure, including stress, anxiety and anger as major contributors. One way to combat high blood pressure and prevent such conditions is through massage. Regular massages have been found to lower blood pressure, by reducing the stress-hormone levels that can cause onset depression, anxiety and anger. Being pain-and stress-free will greatly affect your blood pressure and allow you to relax your mind.
7. Relaxes Muscles and Mind
Considering the amount of stressors surrounding us every day, it’s sometimes impossible to allow our minds and bodies to relax and release. Massage therapy is one of the easiest ways to achieve this because it activates the body’s parasympathetic nervous system that controls its ability to feel good. Massage therapy loosens and relaxes tense, overworked muscles by breaking up adhesions that cause discomfort. In addition to relaxing your body, massage therapy also calms a racing mind.
8. Rehabilitates Injuries
Physical therapy, occupational therapy and other forms of rehabilitation are important to the healing and recovery of injuries, but it doesn’t totally prevent experiencing pain or additional injuries. This is where massage therapy fits in as a supplement to standard rehab. Massage therapy will help increase circulation, relax muscles, increase flexibility and posture and reduce recovery time, while easing stress that may be intensified from painful injuries.
9. Flushes Bodily Toxins
Massage therapy plays an important role in clearing toxins from your body. Regular massages can flush out lactic acid build-up in muscles, promote sinus drainage, loosen mucus in the lungs and break up scar tissue. Flushing out toxins and clearing the normal byproducts of muscle metabolism can result in reduced fatigue, improved stamina and accelerated healing of muscle tears or injuries.
10. Regulates Blood Sugar Levels
Massage can help regulate blood sugar levels of those with or without diabetes. Through various techniques and modalities, blood sugar levels are reduced to allow for greater mobility and elasticity in the body. In addition to regulated blood sugar levels, massage therapy also reduces anxiety and depression in children with diabetes.
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