The Benefits of Massage

written by Katie Cardner

Getting a massage has had a reputation of being a luxury for many years. The lights are low, relaxing music is playing, and it usually takes place in a spa or while on vacation. It’s easy to associate a massage as a luxury; you feel amazing afterwards! We need to correct our view of massages from a pampering treat to a therapeutic treatment. There’s a reason you feel amazing afterwards! Massage has countless benefits to the human body:

May Soothe Anxiety & Depression

Massage decreases levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol is needed for many functions of the body, but too much of the stress hormone can have dramatic effects to one’s health. High levels of stress can cause impaired cognitive function, suppressed thyroid performance, higher blood pressure, and increased abdominal fat. Massage helps control the levels of cortisol in the body by relieving stress.

Massage can also boost the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine, which are related to depression. Serotonin regulates mood, hunger, and sleep. Massage helps release serotonin, which in turn helps to regulate one’s mood, pleasurable reward, and sleep patterns. Dopamine is a “feel good” neurotransmitter.

Improves SleepAdobe ID 044ASP365335

Massage can help with sleeping patterns in a few ways. One is with serotonin release, as stated before. Another way massage helps sleep is by increasing delta waves. Delta waves are linked with deep sleep, when your body is able to work on restoration. This is why many people either fall asleep during a massage or feel very sleepy after a massage.

Curbs Headaches

Many headaches come from muscular tension and musculoskeletal imbalances. Massage works to relieve muscular tension and address musculoskeletal imbalances. In turn, massage can reduce the number and severity of migraines.

Boost Immunity

Massage has been shown to increase lymphocytes in the body, also known as white blood cells. Lymphocytes are known to fight disease and infection. Massage also reduces the number of cytokines, which can cause inflammation. The stress-reducing effects of massage can also keep you healthy.

But the benefits of massage don’t stop there! Other pros of regular appointments may include increased alertness, back pain prevention, improved circulation, improved range of motion and muscle flexibility, injury prevention, and more!

So, have you been convinced of the healing powers of massage yet?

Check out the massage page on the HAC website to learn more about our massage therapists or schedule yourself an appointment! »!massage/c119n



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