Healthy Workouts

The Benefits of Massage Over Mind & Body

Ever since the ancient time, people are benefited from the art of massage. Throughout centuries, massage has turned into a form of therapy, with beneficial effects for both the mind and the body. Today, as we live in a world dominated by stress and overuse technology, massage becomes even more important. It is a great way to relax our bodies, eliminate the accumulated tension and maintain a positive state of mind. There are different types of massages available, as you will have the opportunity to read below. Each of these has various benefits to offer, allowing you to feel better in an instant.

No more aches and pains

Whether you prefer the hot stone massage therapy or you would rather stick with its classic version, it is guaranteed your body will be thankful for the hour of relaxation. Massage is great for pain relief, working wonders on acute inflammation and soreness. Moreover, it can eliminate the tension accumulated in certain parts of the body, improving the overall range of motion.

The massage with hot stones is especially recommended to those who suffer from muscle tension and pain, having a positive effect on blood circulation as well. The effects of massage therapy with regard to pain management have been confirmed by numerous studies, including one that was published in the International Journal of Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork.

Stronger immune system

When it comes to the health benefits of massage therapy, the strengthening of the immune system stands at the top of the list. You might not be aware of this for a fact but getting a massage can stimulate the proper functioning of the immune system, thus protecting you against infections. It improves the circulation of the white blood cells, which are our primary weapons against infection.

According to a study quoted by Science Daily, massage can modify the response of the immune system, contributing to a healthy lifestyle. Another study, published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, confirmed the same beneficial effects, with regard to the Swedish massage therapy.

Better than pain medication

Whenever we are dealing with pain, soreness or inflammation, we have the tendency to resort to medication. However, the standard NSAIDs almost always have side-effects, especially on the liver. Getting a massage works better than pain medication and there are no side-effects to worry about. It is especially great for chronic injuries, bringing the much desired pain relief in an instant. It also acts at the level of the brain, reducing the amount of stress hormones (cortisol) and promoting the release of happiness hormones (serotonin), which are known for their painkilling effect.

Massage was confirmed to be an effective therapy for chronic, non-malignant pain, in a study published in Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Among the conditions that massage could be beneficial for, there are the carpal tunnel syndrome, neck pain and fibromyalgia.

Improved cognitive functioning

Getting a massage is beneficial not only for the body but also for the mind, as numerous studies have confirmed. In fact, according to a study published in the International Journal of Neuroscience, massage therapy is capable of making the brain more alert. The study demonstrated that participants who were given a massage were able to perform math computations with enhanced efficiency. It also proved that massage therapy can be a great way to relieve anxiety and stress.

It is interesting how the brain responds to the physical massage, demonstrating improved cognitive and visual functioning. Scientists have already begun to recommend massage therapy for infants, especially those who have been born pre-term. Massage therapy could stimulate the brain to develop and prevent neurological deficits. Moreover, it increases visual acuity, hence an added benefit to take into consideration.

No more insomnia

The excess use of technology, the daily stress and the lack of proper sleep hygiene can prevent us from getting the rest we need. If you are battling with insomnia, you might consider getting a massage. Insomnia is often linked with a reduced production of serotonin at the level of the brain; massage therapy, as it has been already mentioned above, can actually stimulate the release of serotonin at the level of the brain. So, you can finally say goodbye to those nasty sleeping pills and give massage therapy a try. This will definitely help you sleep better at night.

The beneficial effects of massage therapy over insomnia have been confirmed in a study published in Clinics. The study was undertaken on postmenopausal women who suffered from insomnia and other additional symptoms, such as anxiety, mood swings or depression. It was confirmed that massage therapy is a great way to promote restful sleep, as well as reduce the intensity of other symptoms present in the postmenopausal period of life.

Improved range of motion

There are a number of physical conditions associated with a reduced range of motion, both acute and chronic. Regular massages can improve the overall range of motion, improving the overall functionality for the person in question. Massage therapy is recommended to those who work out on a daily basis but also to those who suffer from arthritic conditions.

It has a beneficial effect on tensed muscles and stiff joints, bringing more oxygen to affected areas. Moreover, it has anti-inflammatory properties, reducing the number of inflammatory enzymes present in the joints. All of these beneficial properties have been confirmed through various studies, including one that was published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science.

Final word

Massage has several health benefits with a positive impact on both the body and the mind. It induces a great state of relaxation and helps eliminate the daily tension. Massage therapy is recommended for both acute and chronic conditions, providing the necessary pain relief and having an anti-inflammatory effect at the same time. It also relieves stress, anxiety and depression, improving the overall quality of life from that perspective.

Author Bio: Katleen Brown

Katleen Brown is a health, beauty and fitness writer. She loves to publish her articles on various health related websites. In her spare time, likes to do research to bring awareness. Recognizing the unity of body, mind, and outlook, she helps empower women to tune into their innate & inner wisdom to transform their health and truly flourish. Get in touch with her on Google+, Pinterest and Twitter.

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