Health Benefits of Massage

Massage is a form of physical touch that has many health benefits. It has been known to reduce anxiety, improve mood and boost immunity.Massage

It is also an intuitive gesture to comfort and reassure others. It is essential to understand the risks and benefits of massage before treatment. Visit to learn more.

Stress is integral to life, but it can lead to many health problems. Some of these include high blood pressure, gastrointestinal disorders and even asthma. One of the best ways to reduce stress is through massage. Several studies have found that massage decreases cortisol levels in the body while increasing serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that reduces depression and carries signals between nerves. In addition, it stimulates the vagus nerve, which regulates mood and stress response.

Physically, massage increases the temperature of soft tissues by creating friction. This causes capillarisation and vasodilation in the skin which allows blood to flow more freely. This blood flow brings more oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, helping them heal faster. In addition, massage reduces muscle tension and improves range of motion, which can also help alleviate stress and anxiety.

Psychologically, massage stimulates the release of feel good hormones, endorphins, serotonin and dopamine. These hormones override the stress emotions and improve mood. In addition, massage activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for relaxation and sleepiness.

Research has shown that massage can reduce heart rate variability (HRV), which is a measure of the body’s ability to relax. Several studies have found that a single massage reduces the body’s level of cortisol, while also increasing its level of serotonin and dopamine. In addition, massage can cause a decrease in activity in the right frontal cortex of the brain, which is associated with negative emotion.

Although these studies are promising, they have been conducted in relatively small groups and do not prove that massage can actually reduce stress as measured by physiological variables in any specific patient population. However, the results suggest that the concept should be explored further with larger and more rigorous clinical trials.

Massage is an effective way to manage stress, but it is important to schedule your appointment in advance and set aside enough time for the experience. It is not a good idea to plan a meeting or children’s birthday party immediately afterward, and if you must, try to do so in a location that will allow you to relax afterwards.

Relieves Muscle Pain

Massage improves circulation by dilating blood vessels and stimulating the release of chemicals that cause relaxation. This increased circulation can bring more oxygen and nutrients to muscle cells, help remove waste products and reduce swelling in soft tissues. It can also increase flexibility and speed up recovery from injury.

If a muscle feels painful it’s often due to a hyper sensitive nerve pathway sending pain signals to the brain which can overwhelm and confuse other important messages. Massage works to interrupt this cycle by sending other messages that are more relevant to the muscles. This allows the muscles to relax and decreases pain.

A good massage also stimulates the release of endorphins, a natural painkiller. These can mask the sensation of pain or even stop you feeling it completely. If you suffer from chronic muscle tension then regular massage can be a useful tool to break this vicious cycle.

Tight muscles can also restrict movement, making it more difficult to relax. This is especially true when this tightness occurs around an injured area. Massage breaks down the adhesions that form between muscle fibres which can prevent movement and lead to pain.

The physical manipulation of soft tissue can also help to break down scar tissue, which in turn can relieve muscle tension. Scar tissue also restricts blood flow, making it hard for muscles to get the nutrients they need. By breaking down the scar tissue and releasing the tension in the muscles, you can free up the flow of blood to the muscle which helps alleviate the pain.

Massage can be a little uncomfortable at times as deeper tissue is worked on, but the therapist will adjust the pressure to make it comfortable. However, it’s best to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and this will also help alleviate any soreness after the treatment. If you do feel a little sore after the massage it’s important to take it easy and to rest. This will ensure that the effects of the treatment last longer and your muscles can heal properly. This will ultimately mean that your body can recover more quickly and that you’ll be able to train more effectively in the future.

Aids in Recovery

Studies have shown that massage does more than just decrease lactic acid build up in your muscles; it also helps to break down scar tissue and realign muscle fibres. This improves muscle tissue elasticity, increases flexibility and speed up recovery after injury.

It’s not just the physical manipulation of your muscle tissue that makes this possible, it’s the chemicals and hormones that are released during massage. These chemicals cause a relaxation response which not only masks pain but also reduces anxiety and stress.

Athletes that train vigorously often experience stiff and sore muscles. This can hinder performance and slow down recovery. Regular massages help to stretch out tight muscles and increase range of movement which improves flexibility.

The improved circulation caused by massage increases the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to muscle cells. This helps to speed up the repair of micro lesions in muscle tissues that occur during training. This helps to reduce the risk of injury and allows you to continue with your training programme sooner.

Studies have shown that massage improves flexibility, however due to the large amount of heterogeneity between these studies (I2=90%) and a single outlier study17, further high quality research is required to determine the true physiological effects of this technique.

Generally, the type of massage you choose will depend on your specific needs. Some types of massage include:

Remedial Massage – uses specific mobilisation techniques to restore movement to joints and soft tissues. It includes massage, stretching and joint lubrication.

Aromatherapy – uses essential oils that are diluted and massaged into the skin. The oils are chosen for their therapeutic properties.

Shiatsu – is an oriental massage that uses the body’s energy flow to promote healing. This is done by using your fingers to push on pressure points that relate to all parts of the body. This is similar to acupuncture.

While research shows that massage can improve muscle recovery and facility rehabilitation it doesn’t provide a protective effect against loss of muscle function after eccentric exercise, or against delayed onset of muscular soreness. This may be because other factors, such as increased blood flow to the area, and a reduction in inflammatory markers, are more important for protection from losses in muscle strength and function.

Improves Sleep

We often think of massage as an effective treatment for relieving stress, easing pain and improving overall wellbeing, but it can also help promote a good night’s sleep. In fact, it is a common remedy for insomnia and other sleeping disorders that are associated with fatigue and can lead to health problems like obesity, cardiovascular disease and depression.

The reason is that massage reduces anxiety levels, improves mood and promotes relaxation. It can also stimulate the vagus nerve – the major parasympathetic nerve in the body that tells the whole body to rest. And it can lower cortisol – the hormone that increases when you’re stressed out.

A good night’s sleep is critical for a healthy, happy life. Insomnia and poor quality of sleep can contribute to a number of physical and mental health conditions, from chronic pain to depression and even increased risk of workplace or car accidents. Fortunately, research into therapies for insomnia and sleep deprivation continues to point toward nonpharmaceutical approaches like massage therapy.

One way that massage helps improve sleep is by increasing serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that signals to the brain that it is time for bed. This in turn triggers the production of melatonin, which helps us to fall asleep. Additionally, massage can improve posture and loosen tight muscles, all of which can make it easier to relax and get a comfortable night’s sleep.

It’s important to note that it can take a while for your body to establish new patterns of sleeping well, particularly if you are struggling with insomnia. It’s likely that you’ll need regular massage sessions over a period of months to see noticeable results.

For anyone who has difficulty getting a good night’s sleep, we highly recommend trying out massage as a natural and drug-free approach to overcoming insomnia and getting a better quality of sleep. Aside from feeling relaxed and happier, it can also make you healthier and more productive. So if you’re looking to improve your sleep, book in for a professional massage today! The results will be well worth it.