6 Reasons Massage Therapy Might Be Just What You Need
Many people believe that getting a massage is a way of spoiling themselves; in fact, I used to be one of those people myself. I’ve always seen massage therapies as a relaxing activity that helped me unwind during a stressful period of time.
However, it’s so much more than that.
When done by a specialist, massage therapies can provide so many health benefits and they may even help you to prevent long-term illnesses! Therefore, if you needed any more reasons to opt for such an activity, here are 6 ways massages can improve your health and wellbeing.
6 Reasons to Opt for a Massage Therapy
It eases stress pains
More than 40% of adults in the U.S. were sedentary – and that was in 1997, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) statistics. We can only imagine the numbers of 2020, especially since we’ve been stuck at home for months.
Aaron Tanason, a registered massage therapist, explains that people who live a sedentary lifestyle are most likely dealing with postural stress. This condition translates into pain and stiffness in the shoulders and neck areas. If left untreated, postural stress can cause weakness and pain in the low back, especially for desk workers who sit in a chair for prolonged periods of time.
Luckily, massage therapy can counteract the negative impact of sitting, thus helping you continue your work safely.
It soothes anxiety/depression
Although it’s often overlooked, emotional health is just as important as the physical one. According to Tanason, human touch can generally be very relaxing and soothing – even though it’s done in a professional manner like massage.
A study published by the International Journal of Neuroscience analyzed the effects of massage therapy on women diagnosed with cancer. Ladies who received such therapy three times a week reported being less angry and depressed, while helping them enjoy the present moment.
It boosts immunity
This year, people have probably become more interested in strengthening their immunity than ever – and for good reason. Aside from eating the right things and staying active, there’s one more thing you can do (and you’ll love it): massage.
A 2010 study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine proved that massage therapies can boost the blood cell count. This is a major benefit since these cells are essential for protecting your body against new threats. Furthermore, this activity is particularly beneficial for people with HIV as it adds extra strength to their (already weakened) immune system.
It relieves headaches
Having occasional headaches is more than enough to paralyze your entire activity for the day. Lisa Marie de Miranda, registered massage therapist at Paleolife Massage Therapy, says that massage can decrease the frequency of tension headaches – and when they do appear, they might even be milder than before.
Studies taken at Granada University of Spain found that only one session of massage therapy can have immediate effects on patients diagnosed with chronic tension headaches.
Still not sure if you’re having tension headaches? Our post on stress headaches covers everything you need to know about this diagnosis.
- It improves sleep quality
Massage therapies can have beneficial effects for sleep quality and quantity regardless of age. Whether you’re over 50 or you have an infant at home, a single massage session can help to relax your muscles and mind. During this activity, your body releases endorphins, also known as the hormones of relaxation.
As de Miranda explains, massage is especially beneficial for infants to help them feel safe and become aware of their own body. As a parent or grandparent, you can perform any kind of massage carefully at home.
It eases muscle pains
Tanason says that massage improves blood circulation, thus easing muscle soreness and pains. In fact, a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2011 found that taking a massage therapy is just as effective as other methods of treating chronic back pain.
However, if you’re suffering from pain in a specific area for longer, it might be time to find the real cause behind them. Here’s some of our content that can help:
- The One Item That May Cause Chronic Neck Pain
- Fibromyalgia – It’s not in your head, the pain in your body is real
- 10 Subtle Signs You’re Not as Healthy as You Think
Tell us your massage stories in the comments and how it helped you relax more in this topsy turvy world.