The Health Benefits of Massage

The Health Benefits of Massage

The Health Benefits of Massage

It’s not just for recreation, believe it or not. While a masseuse essentially provides a relaxing diversion from the everyday stress of life, go ahead and ask any of them about what they’re really doing with their job. It’s about the quality of your health; seriously, it is!

In order for your body to maintain regular optimal health, all of its parts–most notably, the cells of your body–have to be healthy. You have healthy cells, because they have a consistent supply of blood flow and lymph (an essential milky white fluid) to help circulate all kinds of nutrients and oxygen throughout the body. Its the circulation of this lymph that helps remove all sorts of impurities and waste out of the body–hence why strength training is so beneficial. Muscle contraction helps stimulate lymph flow.

The Health Benefits of Massage

Here’s the point, though: even for those who work out on a regular basis, the actual activity of working out can actually produce even more waste in the body, more waste than lymph can help carry out. It’s for this reason that massage benefits the body; it helps stimulate that lymph circulation more to handle the carrying out of waste. Moreover, the simple motion of massage in the muscles and skin stimulate blood flow to better balance the whole body. Naturally, every part of your body needs consistent blood flow. Thanks to the enhanced ability of the lymphatic system, all the filtering acts like a flush on your system, purifying your body while circulating more oxygen through your blood flow. You can’t beat that when it comes to health and fitness!

Experts estimate that upwards of ninety percent of disease is stress related. And perhaps nothing ages us faster, internally and externally, than high stress. While eliminating anxiety and pressure altogether in this fast-paced world may be idealistic, massage can, without a doubt, help manage stress. This translates into:

  • Lessen depression and anxiety.
  • Enhanced sleep quality.
  • Greater energy.
  • Improved concentration.
  • Increased circulation.
  • Reduced fatigue.
  • Enhance immunity by stimulating lymph flow—the body's natural defense system.
  • Alleviate low-back pain and improve range of motion.
  • Release endorphins—amino acids that work as the body's natural painkiller.

Remember that when you visit your favorite day spa. You might be coming in for a fun day and, if you’re lucky, an attractive masseuse putting hands on you–but the ultimate meaning behind massage is better health. And remember: just because massage feels like a pampering treat doesn't mean it is any less therapeutic. Consider massage appointments a necessary piece of your health and wellness plan, and work with your practitioner to establish a treatment schedule that best meets your needs.

Benefits of Pregnancy Massage

What is pregnancy massage?

Pregnancy massage is beneficial throughout the entire nine months of the pregnancy; however, if you are having a high risk pregnancy it is best to discuss your condition with your midwife or physician before seeking a therapist. After doing so you may be able to receive massage work with a written release. Most massage therapists are trained not only to do massage but various other modalities as well.

It is best to seek out a therapist who is certified in pregnancy massage because it is important to know and understand what is and is not safe for the mother and her baby as well as having knowledge of pregnancy and the anatomy of a pregnant woman. 

The Health Benefits of Massage
Benefits of Pregnancy Massage

A typical massage session takes at least 60 minutes and can go on up to 90 minutes. The mother will be supported with pillows as she lies on her side. She will be draped with a sheet and only the body part that is being worked will be exposed. Most massage therapists like to keep their room quiet and at a comfortable temperature for the mother, sometimes playing quiet music in the background. It is best to avoid eating a large meal before the massage or drinking large amounts of liquids.

Benefits of Massage that a mother may experience

  • Reduces swelling in hands, feet and ankles
  • Lessens sciatic pain
  • Eases muscular discomforts in areas like the low back & neck, calf cramps, it also helps with tension and tightening that can be experienced throughout the body
  • Tones lose muscles relaxes tense muscles and can help increase flexibility.
  • Helps with relaxation which in turn can decrease insomnia
  • Increases blood and lymph flow which can help increase the elimination of toxins through the circulatory and lymphatic systems, this can also help with fatigue.
  • Increases oxygen in the blood, sometimes on up to 10-15% after a massage.
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Stimulates the release of endorphins, the body's natural pain killers, into the brain and nervous system.
  • Helps relieve anxiety or depression
  • Helps increase blood circulation, which in turn delivers more oxygen and nutrients to the mother and baby.
  • Can be used during the birth as well as after making both experiences easier and more comfortable
  • Eases stress mothers often feel after the birth
There are many more benefits! This list will hopefully give you an idea of how beneficial massage can be during pregnancy.