Saturday, 26 October 2013

Massage for Health–Understanding the Benefits and Risks of Massage

Massage Therapy

Massage is a general term for pressing, rubbing and manipulating your skin, muscles, tendons and ligaments. Massage therapists typically use their hands and fingers for massage, but may also use their forearms, elbows and even feet. Massage for health may range from light stroking to deep pressure.  

Watch this video by expertvillage for more information about the benefits of massage therapy below:

Health Benefits of Massage

Massage is generally considered part of complementary and alternative medicine. It's increasingly being offered along with standard treatment for a wide range of medical conditions and situations. Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension.
Massage is found helpful for anxiety, digestive disorders, headaches, insomnia related to stress, soft tissue strains or injuries and sports injuries. In addition to these health benefits some people enjoy massage because it often involves caring and comfort.
There are many different types of massages and these massages can target to the different parts of the body also.  Main types of massages are:
  • SWEDISH MASSAGE: This is a gentle form of massage that uses long strokes, kneading, deep circular movements, vibration and tapping to help relax and energize.
  • DEEP MASSAGE: This massage therapy technique uses slower, more-forceful strokes to target the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue, commonly to help with muscle damage from injuries.
  • SPORTS MASSAGE: This is similar to Swedish massage, but it's geared toward people involved in sport activities to help prevent or treat injuries.
  • TRIGGER POINT MASSAGE: This massage therapy focuses on areas of tight muscle fibers that can form in your muscles after injuries or overuse.
Some of the different massages can target certain parts of the body: 
  • CRANIO-SACRAL MASSAGE: This will focus on your neck, head, and spine to get it working properly in the right alignment again.  This will also loosen up the tight muscles in the body. 
  • CHI NEI TSANG: This is one type of massage that will focus on your abdominal organs and help you with your digestive pain or disease.  
  • THE TRAGER APPROACH:  If your joints are giving you the problem, you need to use this type of massage therapy. 
  • ROSEN METHOD: This type of massage is to relax or to relieve stress and tension.  
  • ROLFING: This is one of the techniques that work to align your tissues the right way and straighten the spine up.  After this massage, you should feel better and not worse.
The other kinds of massage that are used are the Alexander technique, Acupressure, Reiki, and Shiatsu methods. 

Risks Associated with the Massage for Health

Despite its benefits, massage isn't meant as a replacement for regular medical care. There are some risks also associated with massage in certain conditions such as bleeding disorders or for those who take blood-thinning medication, for those who have burns, open or healing wounds, deep vein thrombosis and fractures. In rare circumstances, massage can cause internal bleeding, nerve damage, temporary paralysis and allergic reactions to massage oils or lotions.

There are many people that love to get massages because they feel great and they also benefit for their health. Massage therapy and techniques when they are done the right way can decrease your stress levels and also relax your muscles and they can improve your immune system as well.  Massages for health can also help to relive pain in the body and cure headaches.  Healing injuries and retaining muscle and joint mobility are also accredited to massages. 

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