Massage therapy is continually growing in demand and popularity. Some insurance companies even provide coverage for treatment sessions. This form of therapy involves hands-on techniques to increase circulation, relieve tension, reduce stress, relieve anxiety, improve sleep, and promote relaxation throughout the entire body. The body’s soft tissue areas include the muscles, tendons, connective tissue, etc. If You are tense and your muscles are tight, or you have been injured and have muscle and/or nerve tissue damage, massage therapy might be helpful. Here are 7 benefits of massage therapy.
When the body is tense and under stress, it produces unhealthy levels of the well-known stress hormone, cortisol, which can contribute to weight gain, sleeplessness, digestive problems, and headaches.
Massage therapy has been shown to decrease cortisol levels in the body. This enables the body to enter a recovery mode. Massage also triggers lasting feelings of relaxation, improved mood, and reduced stress levels.
Not only can massage therapy help with stress relief, but regular massage sessions over a prolonged period of time can boost energy levels, reduce pain and and stimulate people on physical as well as emotional levels.
Regular massage therapy sessions have been found to reduce blood pressure levels. In fact, some long-term studies have shown that a consistent massage program can reduce both systolic (upper number) and diastolic (lower number) blood pressure. Massage can also reduce cortisol levels within the body. Lower pressure levels may reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, and/or kidney failure, as well as many other health issues.
The purpose of massage therapy is to target the source of the body’s pain via eliminating tense muscles, increasing flexibility, and providing relaxation to the affected muscles as well as the body as a whole. Massage promotes circulation to the affected or injured muscles, which increases nutrients and oxygen to the damaged tissues. In turn, this increased activity to the affected sites reduces stiffness and edema (swelling) in the muscles and joints, as well as increases flexibility to help reduce pain. Massage can also stimulate the release of endorphins (pain-killing hormones), which boost the dopamine and serotonin levels in the body. These hormones assist the body in many ways.
Don’t underestimate the long-term benefits of massage therapy. Improved circulation is part of a snowball effect that occurs in the body as a result of receiving regular massage therapy on a consistent basis. This is because proper circulation brings damaged, stiff, and tense muscles the rich blood supply they need to promote healing.
Massage also promotes improved circulation via the use of hands-on pressure, which moves the blood through the damaged and congested areas of the body. This can cause new blood to flow into tissues. In addition, the squeezing, twisting, and pulling action of the massage technique also removes lactic acid from the muscle tissues. As a result, this action improves the lymph fluid circulation, which carries metabolic waste products away from internal organs and muscles.
Many Americans experience back, neck, and muscle pain from a variety of sources. The primary cause of much of this pain is poor posture. Chronic back pain, which is the #1 reason for missed work days and 2nd most common cause of disability, is often the result of incorrect or poor posture while standing and/or sitting.
Massage therapy can help get the body back into proper alignment. In fact, improving one’s posture can be one of the most beneficial and relaxing aspects of massage therapy. Massage allows the body to relax and loosen the muscles made tense and sore via bad posture. In turn, this allows the body to position itself in its organic and pain-free posture. In short, massage therapy helps to correct the positions and movements developed over time as a reaction to pain.
Regular massage sessions provide many benefits to the body. It is well-known that individuals who experience high levels of stress are more vulnerable to illness and injury. When stress is combined with sleep disturbances and poor nutrition, the impact is directed at the body’s immune system. The immune system’s ability to naturally protect itself against infections, pathogens, and bacteria is greatly reduced.
You may wonder how massage therapy benefits the immune system. Studies have indicated that regular massage sessions not only help reduce stress, but can also boost the immune system’s cytotoxic capacity (activity level of the body’s natural “killer cells”) and enhance the body’s ability to deliver nourishment. Additionally, like regular exercise, regular massage therapy can help keep the immune system strong and resilient.