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Massage Therapy

Massage can relieve tension in your muscles, which is why most people use it for relaxation, relief of stress and anxiety, or to reduce muscle soreness. Massage can enable your body to release natural painkillers, and is known to boost your immune system. It will also aid the Doctor in more effective spinal adjustments.

massage therapy

Massage Therapy compliments chiropractic adjustments.

While more research is needed to confirm the benefits of massage, some studies have found it helpful for:

  • Anxiety. Massage reduced anxiety in depressed children and anorexic women. It also reduced anxiety and withdrawal symptoms in adults trying to quit smoking.
  • Pain. Pain was decreased in people with fibromyalgia, migraines and recent surgery. Back pain also might be relieved by massage. However, back pain study results have been contradictory, and more research is required.
  • Labor pain. Massage during labor appears to lessen stress and anxiety, relax muscles and reduce pain.
  • Infant growth. Massage encouraged weight gain premature babies and reduced number of days they stayed in the hospital.
  • Children with diabetes. Children who were massaged every day by their parents were more likely to stick to their medication and diet regimens, which helped reduce their blood glucose levels.
  • Sports-related soreness. Some athletes receive massages after exercise, especially to the muscles they use most in their sport or activity. A massage might help increase blood flow to your muscles and may reduce muscle soreness after you exercise.
  • Immune system. Cancer treatment. People with cancer who received regular massage therapy during treatment reported less anxiety, pain and fatigue.
  • Self-esteem. Because massage involves direct contact with another person through touch, it can make you feel cared for. That special attention can improve self-image in people with physical disabilities and terminal illnesses. Using touch to convey caring can help children with severe physical disabilities.

What to Expect during your Massage!

On your initial visit, you will be asked to fill out a client intake form. Please arrive 10- 15 minutes prior to your appointment time to fill it out. The information on this form provides the massage therapist with information about any underlying medical conditions. List all conditions, you know about. There may be ingredients in the products used that you could be allergic to, so be sure to mention allergies too. You will be asked at any subsequent visits for new medical or physical conditions as well.

Ask questions! If you’re expecting something in particular from the massage, make sure this is told to the therapist. For example, if you’ve been having a lot of tightness in your right shoulder, and you’d like some extra attention given to it, tell the therapist. If you prefer a lighter or deeper massage, make that preference known. The massage therapist will discover your tight and sore areas during the massage, and will prioritize the time spent on these areas, and may do less work on others. Letting the therapist know ahead of time about these problem areas lets them maximize your time and care.

Once you’ve finished with the intake, the massage therapist will give you some privacy to get undressed and get on the massage table. Once you’re undressed and under the drape that will be provided, the therapist will come back into the room. For the most part, your work is done, and all you have to do is relax and enjoy. The therapist will undrape the section of the body that will be worked on first, and apply a lubricant, either oil or lotion, to the skin. A variety of strokes will be used; some rubbing, kneading, vibration, and percussion; whatever will work best for your muscles. Stretching, rocking, or pressure point work may all be added. If the therapist gives you directions to exhale slowly, just follow along. If they stretch or rotate any joint, don’t try to help, just stay as relaxed and limp as you can and let the therapist move that part of your body. Most people find quiet is conducive to relaxation, but it’s okay to chat and ask questions if you wish. Don’t feel obligated to make small talk—the focus is on your relaxation and it’s perfectly polite to be quiet.

Every therapist has their own style of massage, strokes they like to use on different parts of the body, and prefer to work on different areas of the body in a particular order. One therapist may start you on your stomach and begin the massage with your back. Another may start you on your back and begin with your feet. So for a first visit with any massage therapist, don’t be alarmed if their style and direction is different from another therapist you’ve seen.

When the therapist finishes with one area of the body, they will put the drape back over that part, and undrape the next section to be massaged. At some point, you may be asked to roll over under the drape, and the therapist will continue with the other side of the body. When the massage is over, you’ll be left in private to get dressed again. If a towel was used for a drape, you can wipe off any excess oil with it. The therapist will return, and this is a good time to discuss any concerns and schedule another appointment.

Taking Care of Yourself after a Massage

To help the benefits of your massage last longer try these guidelines:

  • Be sure to have adequate water intake after your massage to help clear away lactic acid and toxins.
  • Practice any homework or instructions your therapist has given you to keep up the benefits between sessions (i.e. stretches, relaxation methods or posture awareness)
  • Take things easy for a couple of hours after your massage to enjoy longer benefits
  • Maintain regular massage or bodywork appointments to keep stress and tight muscles at manageable levels.

We’d love to meet you and answer your questions. Give us a call today.

The Active People Keeping People Active – Crawfordsville and Montgomery County