IT’S THE MOST WONDERFUL – AND STRESSFUL – TIME OF THE YEAR.
As Salter School massage therapy program students are learning, stress can take a serious toll on the body, affecting the heart and the lungs, as well as the digestive and reproductive systems. In fact, according to WebMD, 75-90% of all doctor's office visits are for stress-related ailments and complaints.
Obviously, it’s important to speak to a doctor about any serious medical concerns. However, taking steps to reduce stress can be key to staying healthy to enjoy the good things in your life during the holidays and all year long.
You’ve probably heard that using massage therapy to reduce stress can be a powerful way to ease tension. However, if you’ve never gotten a massage before, it might seem intimidating.
Let’s take a look at some different types of massage.
Best Massages for Stress Relief and Other Conditions
Some of the common are types of massage are Swedish massage, deep-tissue massage, sports massage, and trigger point massage.
Swedish massage is often an excellent choice for stress reduction. This type of massage is rather gentle, employing long strokes, muscle kneading and rolling, friction and tapping.
If stress has driven you to the point of muscle pain, you might want to consider a deep tissue massage. However, it’s important to note that deep-tissue massages are more intense than Swedish massages, as they target deeper areas of the body, such as muscles and connective tissue.
Sports massages can be very effective for people who are extremely physically active. This approach combines various massage techniques to help treat and prevent sports injuries.
Trigger point massage can help relieve muscles that might be tight from overuse. Trigger point massage focuses on specific areas of the body that may be experiencing pain or discomfort, such as the neck or back.
Other Things to Consider When Getting Massage Therapy
Massage therapy can be performed in a variety of locations, ranging from clinical settings to spas. Determine which environment you’re most comfortable with before booking your appointment.
If you’re uncertain what to wear to your massage, it’s best to ask beforehand. Some massages may be performed while you’re wearing loose-fitting clothes, while others may require you to have more skin exposed.
(Here’s an excellent guide from the Mayo Clinic on to what to expect during a massage and how to find an appropriate practitioner.)
Wishing you a happy and stress-free holiday season!