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The Holistic Benefits of Massage Therapy
Medical Massage for Your Neck Pain
Similar to back pain, neck pain affects almost all of us at some point in life, and the severity can range from a mild stiffness to complete incapacitation. Medical massage offers a non-drug, non-surgical method of treatment that MANY neck pain sufferers utilize and benefit from. The following is a description of what you can expect when treated with an evidence-based medical massage approach. Let’s first discuss the different types of neck pain. One classification system divides neck pain into two main groups: acute and chronic. In the acute group, there is an onset of pain that comes on quickly and resolves in less than three months. Chronic neck pain represents the patients who continue to have neck pain longer than three months. Studies show that patients experience immediate benefits—including pain reduction and mobility/range of motion (ROM) improvement—following cervical medical massage. Patients who continue with medical massage after their acute episode can expect to continue to benefit from ongoing pain reduction and increased range of motion.
Medical Massage for Your Lower Back Pain
Low back pain (LBP) is such a common problem that if you haven’t suffered from it yet, you probably will eventually. Here are a few facts to consider: 1) LBP affects men and women equally; 2) it is most common between ages 30-50; 3) sedentary (non-active) lifestyles contribute a lot to causation; 4) too much or too little exercise can result in LBP; 5) a BMI around 25 is “ideal” for weight management, which helps prevent LBP; 6) causes of LBP include lifestyle (activity level), genetics, occupation, exercise habits, and the list can go on and on. Different things occur physiologically during soft tissue manipulation. We know that the mechanical receptors located in muscles, muscle tendons, and ligaments are stimulated and this results in muscle relaxation (reduced spasm or tightness), increased measurable range of motion, and a decrease in pain. One study also reported that inflammatory markers (CRP and interleukin-6) measured in a blood test NORMALIZED after a series of nine massage therapy sessions! So, NOT ONLY does medical massage give immediate improvements in pain, flexibility, and muscle relaxation, they also REDUCE INFLAMMATION without the use of any pharmaceuticals!So, let’s review what medical massage does for your low back pain: 1) pain reduction; 2) improved flexibility – now you can put on your socks with less pain and strain; 3) improvements in physical function and the ability to perform activities of daily living like sitting more comfortably, getting in or out of your car, bending over to feed the cat, etc.; 4) improved sleep quality; and 5) faster healing time by actually reducing the inflammatory markers in the blood!
Medical Massage for Your Headaches
Everyone, well at least almost everyone, has had headaches from time to time, and we all know how miserable they can make us feel. In fact, at some point in time, 9 out of 10 Americans suffer from headaches that range between mild and dull to throbbing, intense, and debilitating, sometimes to the point of requiring bed rest in a dark, quiet room. The common reflex is to reach for that bottle of pills and pray the headache subsides so you don’t have to call in sick and lose another day of productivity when you have so much to do. Unfortunately, between the side effects of many medications designed to help headaches and the pain associated with the headache, this approach is frequently NOT the answer. So what is? The good news is that many studies have identified soft tissue manipulation therapy as being very effective for popular types of headaches—in particular tension-type headaches that arise in the neck. An important 2001 study reported that soft tissue manipulation provided almost immediate relief for headaches that arose in the neck with SIGNIFICANTLY fewer side effects and longer-lasting results compared with commonly prescribed medications. Another interesting study that found similar results included tracking the prevalence/frequency of headaches after treatment stopped. The authors of the study reported the patients receiving soft tissue manipulation had continued to experience sustained benefits throughout the following weeks, and even months, in contrast to those in a medication treatment group where headaches came back almost immediately after they discontinued treatment.
We realize you have a choice in whom you consider for your health care provision and we sincerely appreciate your trust in choosing our service for those needs. If you, a friend, or family member requires care for back pain, neck pain or headaches, we would be honored to render our services.