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In massage therapy, a massage therapist rubs and kneads the soft tissues of your body. The soft tissues include muscle, connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and skin. The massage therapist varies the amount of pressure and movement. Massage is part of integrative medicine. Medical centers often offer it with standard treatment. It can be used for a wide range of medical conditions.
Studies of massage benefits have found massage can:
- Help reduce stress.
- Lessen pain and muscle tightness.
- Increase relaxation.
- Improve the work of the immune system.
Physical benefits of massage include
- Improved circulation
- Decreased muscle stiffness
- Decreased joint inflammation
- Better quality of sleep
- Quicker recovery between workouts
- Improved flexibility
- Less pain and soreness
- Strengthened immune response
What to expect after a massage
It’s common to feel relaxed, tired or even sore after a massage. This is because your muscles are being worked by the massage therapist. After a massage, it may feel like you completed a workout. It is possible to experience a headache or nausea after a massage.
Some people think that massage must hurt to help. But a massage doesn’t need to be painful to be effective.
If your massage therapist is pushing too hard, ask for lighter pressure. Occasionally you may have a sensitive spot in a muscle that feels like a knot. It’s likely to be uncomfortable while your massage therapist works it out. But if it becomes painful, speak up. Most serious problems come from too much pressure during a massage.
Cupping is a form of massage therapy which decompresses soft tissues using vacuum suction, unlike other forms of massage that compresses soft tissues. During cupping, the cup gently sucks to your skin and lifts underlying soft tissue into the cup.
- Release scar tissue and fascial adhesions
- Reduce painful trigger points
- Improve circulation, blood and lymph circulation
- Relieve pain
- Promote mobility and range of motion
- Improves mature scars
- Decrease toxins
Cupping therapy is not suitable for everyone. There are risks associated with performing cupping therapies on individuals with the following conditions. You must inform your massage therapist/practitioner if you have any of the following conditions: