Massage Therapy for Back Pain Relief
Did you know that the touch of a hand can truly relieve pain? When a little child bangs his ankle in a minor tricycle mishap, he’ll instinctively rub that sore spot. Moreover, an office employee with a stiff shoulder will most likely attempt to knead it.
This might be an “optional treatment” but massage therapy already has the respect of the medical community. Rheumatology reports that over 70% of doctors say that at some point they have referred their patients to a massage therapist. If you are suffering from back pain—chronic or brief—consider visiting a massage. Minor pains and aches aside, you should see a doctor to help evaluate you and rule out any other possible causes of your back pain (especially acute or persistent back pain for which there’s no apparent cause). However, before you climb that massage chair, here’s what you need to know about massage therapy and how it works to relieve back pain.
How does massage ease pain?
Massage works in a variety of ways. For a starter, it helps increase blood flow to stiff, sore joints and muscles which are warmed by extra circulation. According to the National Center for Complementary ad Alternate Medicine, studies have shown that massage also triggers the release of natural pain relievers known as opioids in the brain. Also, massage helps speed the flow of a hormone known as oxytocin that encourages feelings contentment and calmness by relaxing strained or achy muscles. That aside, oxytocin is the same hormone that flows in women just before labor. It is responsible for relaxing the uterus and cementing the bond between mother and baby hence the nickname “love hormone”. Moreover, massage also tends to change the way in which our brain senses pain. Short, sharp sensations of good massage can make the brain “forget” about other aches.
How effective is massage therapy for pain relief?
There is little doubt that a good massage can relieve pain and tightness in overworked or stressed muscles. There is growing evidence that massage can help relieve chronic pain, particularly the lower back variety. Massage therapy is very safe, particularly when performed by an experienced, licensed specialist. However, cancer patients are advised to consult with an oncologist regarding the safety of massage therapy since there might be a greater risk of specific adverse effects such as dislodging of blood clots and internal hemorrhage. If you are a cancer patient, consider asking for a referral to a massage therapist who is certified to perform oncology massage. This specialist works in conjunction with a cancer treatment program or medical school. Most importantly, if massage causes pain, stop.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re recovering from a lifelong injury, learning how to prevent future or recurring injuries or just interested in enhancing your wellness and personal athletic performance, Active Rehab Center will be ready to help. Talk to us today at Phone: 586-803-0303 or visit our website http://www.activerehabcenter.com to book an appointment. For directions to Active Rehab Center, please click here.