Massage is the systematic and scientific manipulation of the soft tissues of the body for therapeutic purposes. As both a healing art and a science it can benefit everybody. It has a broad range of applications and can assist in the treatment of common ailments such as tension headaches, stress, arthritis, lower back pain, sciatica and insomnia.
Here are some of the benefits of regular massage:
Pain Relief & Stress Management
Massage decreases pain with the release of pain-reducing neurochemicals. It can provide stimuli to modulate pain perception and decrease pain directly. Massage decreases stress levels by activating the relaxation response. Recipients of massage show an increase in dopamine and serotonin levels, suggesting a decrease in stress levels and depression.
General Health & Wellbeing
Massage sedates and relaxes the body by normalising nerve activity. It can decrease insomnia and improve sleeping patterns through stimulation of the parasympathetic nervous system.
Massage helps to maintain muscles in the best possible state of nutrition, flexibility and vitality, speeding up muscle recovery after activity or injury. It relieves muscle restrictions, tightness, stiffness and spasm which may limit full movement. It encourages better muscle activity through increased movement of nutrients and removal of waste products. Massage can also delay muscle wasting due to disuse (such as, after a stroke or during lengthy bed rest).
Massage improves oxygenation and nutrition of the skin, increases skin elasticity and loosens scar tissue to promote health and movement. It also improves sebaceous secretion to lubricate the skin and improve its texture and condition.
Massage increases local blood flow without putting additional strain on the heart. It stimulates the nerves that control blood vessels. (Widening the blood vessels can increase blood circulation and lower blood pressure in some cases). It mechanically propels blood towards the heart in bed-rest patients. Massage also decreases the heart rate through decreased stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system (this is called the relaxation response).
Massage may slow down the rate of respiration via reduced stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system. It may also increase lung capacity and pulmonary function where they have been compromised by tight primary and secondary muscles of respiration.
Massage reduces some forms of swelling (lymphoedema) by mechanically stimulating circulation. This can also be useful when a person is immobile due to pain or where injury interferes with lymphatic drainage. It decreases swelling after injury, promoting repair and faster return to activity. Massage has also been shown to increase the presence of natural killer cells and their activity, suggesting that it may strengthen the immune system.
Massage increases the movement of the large intestine, helping to relieve colic and intestinal gas. It activates the parasympathetic nervous system, stimulating digestion. It can also decrease constipation by direct movement of faecal material around the bowel. This will aid in elimination without drugs.
If you’d like more information on how regular massage could benefit you, get in touch with our team today. Contact us on 99081949 or book your appointment below