There never seems to be enough time to focus on health and wellness– physically, mentally, or spiritually. Yet, it is so important to our overall well-being that we take time for our health. According to U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, “You will not have a healthy body if you don’t also take care of your mind. People depend on you. It’s important for you to take care of yourself so that you can do the important things in life — whether it’s working, learning, taking care of your family, volunteering, enjoying the outdoors, or whatever is important to you.”
Massage therapy is one way to take time for your well-being. According to the American Massage Therapy Association, there are many reasons to get a massage:
• Relieve stress • Ease symptoms of depression • Relieve postoperative pain • Reduce anxiety • Manage low-back pain • Help fibromyalgia pain • Reduce muscle tension • Enhance exercise performance • Relieve tension headaches • Sleep better • Improve cardiovascular health • Reduce pain of osteoarthritis • Decrease stress in cancer patients • Improve balance in older adults • Decrease rheumatoid arthritis pain • Temper effects of dementia • Promote relaxation • Lower blood pressure • Decrease symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome • Help chronic neck pain • Lower joint replacement pain • Increase range of motion • Decrease migraine frequency • Improve quality of life in hospice care • Reduce chemotherapy-related nausea
Forty-four states in the USA require massage therapists to be licensed. In the state of Ohio, licensed massaged therapists are licensed by the Ohio Medical Board. They will be licensed as an LMT (Licensed Massage Therapist) with a medical license. You can check on the status of an individual’s license at Ohio’s License Verification website.
Massage includes many techniques, and it is important that you ask questions to determine which is best for you.
In Swedish massage, the therapist uses long strokes, kneading, deep circular movements, vibration, and tapping.
Sports massage combines techniques of Swedish massage and deep tissue massage to release chronic muscle tension. It’s adapted to the needs of athletes.
Myofascial trigger point therapy focuses on trigger points—areas that are painful when pressed and are associated with pain elsewhere in the body.
Still wondering if medical massage is right for you? Beth Burgan, MA, MFA from the University of Minnesota has written a blog titled “What Can I Expect in a First Massage Visit?” that will help guide you through your first visit and finding the massage therapist that is right for you.