What is Therapeutic Massage?
Therapeutic massage is a general term that describes any type of massage modality that helps relieve pain, reduce stress, and work on a specific problem—such as a frozen shoulder. People tend to assume therapeutic massage means deep tissue massage, and that they will get a very strong massage.
Therapeutic massage seeks to obtain a therapeutic benefit. While therapeutic massage is often relaxing, the end goal of the session or series of sessions is not relaxation.
Therapeutic goals can vary considerably between massage therapists and clients. In some cases, massage is recommended by a health professional and may be performed as part of a larger treatment plan. For example, someone attending physiotherapy for an injury might have a regular therapeutic massage to loosen muscles, improve muscle tone, and increase their flexibility. Likewise, therapeutic massage can be used to supplement wound care, cancer care, and a variety of other treatments.
People can use therapeutic massage as a standalone treatment. Some people, such as athletes, laborers, or stressed out even office workers, receive regular therapeutic massage to keep themselves in good physical condition.
People of all ages can benefit from therapeutic massage when it is performed by a competent and fully qualified remedial massage therapist. Massage is also suitable for people with disabilities, expecting mothers, and people in treatment for medical conditions, although some special precautions may need to be taken to protect the health of the client.
Basic therapeutic massage techniques are derived from a variety of massage styles. Your massage therapist will tailor your massage techniques depending on your needs. If you are unsure whether or not massage is appropriate for you, please call us at PhysioWorks for individualized advice.
How Does a Therapeutic Massage Help You?
Therapeutic Massage is a combination of Relaxation Massage and Remedial Massage to not only relax your whole body but at the same time, work through some of the muscle issues or “tight spots” you may be experiencing.
Massage therapy may also improve your circulation, which enhances the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to muscle cells and helps remove waste products or reduce swelling. These circulatory effects of massage may have value in the treatment of some inflammatory conditions, such as arthritis.
Massage therapy induces a relaxation response, which lowers your heart rate, breathing rate, and blood pressure; plus boosts your immune system; and generally decreases the physical effects of stress.
These effects suggest that massage may be helpful for a wide range of conditions.
What Conditions Benefit from a Therapeutic Massage?
Massage therapy helps your body in numerous ways. Massage can relax muscle tissue, which may lead to decreased joint and nerve compression, increased joint and muscle range of motion. This commonly results in less pain and improved function.
Therapeutic massage benefits the following conditions:
- General Wellbeing
- High Blood Pressure
- Low Immunity
- Minor injuries
When are the Best Times for a Therapeutic Massage?
The best time for a therapeutic massage is when you feel yourself getting worked up or when you are just not feeling your best.
Others find a regular therapeutic massage every month or two to be a great dose of prevention therapy. We even have some highly stressed patients who have weekly massages just to cope with daily life.
What Duration is the Best Therapeutic Massage?
If you have never had a therapeutic massage before or it has been quite some time since your last massage then your initial treatment should ideally be for 60 to 90 minutes so that the therapist can work through those tired muscles at an even pace to minimize any possible soreness the following day.
If you are a more regular massage recipient, your massage therapist will guide you as to the direction that works best for you and your muscles.
What Massage Frequency Works Best?
Everyone’s needs differ depending on your lifestyle. As a guide, regular therapeutic massages work best when on a 4 to 6-week basis. This is because your muscles need to keep relaxed and moving through their full available range. Otherwise, they become “creatures of habit”. If tense is how they are most often, that’s what they will consider normal. And… we all know what that leads to… tight muscles, stress, and pain!
For optimal results and less potential for muscle soreness the day post-massage, having a regular massage will keep your body from not only reacting to the positive change we are trying to provide, but it can also retrain your body to help itself and provide you with a better healthier you.
Nicola specializes in therapeutic massage, which for many people is synonymous with deep tissue massage. That makes sense because deep tissue massage is the most common of the therapeutic massage modalities—and if that’s what you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place. Go ahead and click here to book an appointment with Nicola.
Therapeutic Massage vs Deep Tissue
Therapeutic massage is a general term that describes any type of massage modality that helps relieve pain, reduce stress, and work on a specific problem—such as a frozen shoulder. People tend to assume therapeutic massage means deep tissue massage, and that they will get a very strong massage. But this is not always the case. Deep tissue massage is great at breaking down scar tissue and getting your blood circulating, but it may not be what you need on a particular day. A good therapist will apply the specific techniques and the right amount of pressure to address your need, and sometimes that’s a lighter touch.
Types of Therapeutic Massage
There are several different types of therapeutic massage in addition to deep tissue massage, such as:
- neuromuscular massage
- myofascial massage
- trigger point therapy
- sports massage
Many therapists will use a combination of techniques depending on what your body needs. In addition, therapists will often take additional classes in different techniques.
Benefits of Deep Tissue Massage
Most of our clients are interested in deep tissue massage, and that makes sense because it is a great way to manage pain. Deep tissue massage—as well as the other therapeutic massage methods—can give you a lot of relief from chronic pain. Many of our clients come in for frozen shoulder treatment and neck pain—two side effects of working on computers all day.
Deep Tissue Side Effects
Many people want to know what the side effects of deep tissue massage are. That’s a great question, and it varies from person to person—and it can even vary for you depending on what’s going on in your body the day you get a massage. Typically, people may feel more muscle soreness for a day or two after the massage, especially if the therapist gives you a strong message. A deep tissue massage shouldn’t cause horrible pain—and if it does you need to tell your therapist you need less pressure. However, if they’ve been working your muscles, you will probably feel it as the toxins leave your body.
Another side effect is a feeling of disorientation when the massage is over (we call it to massage drunk). You may be a little light-headed and out of it. That’s very normal. Just sit down and drink some water until the feeling passes! You’ll usually be fine in 10 to 15 minutes.
Finally, a deep tissue massage will leave you dehydrated. That’s why your therapist gives you water when it’s over. It is very important to drink plenty of water after a therapeutic massage.
Therapeutic Massage Santa Barbara, Goleta, Ca Santa Barbara Massage Therapy, Licensed Massage Therapist, Lymphatic Therapy Santa Barbara, Sports Massage Santa Barbara, Pain Relief Santa Barbara.
*Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider.
Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.
The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended as diagnosis, treatment, or prescription of any kind. The decision to use, or not to use, any information is the sole responsibility of the reader. These statements are not expressions of legal opinion relative to the scope of practice, medical diagnosis, or medical advice, nor do they represent an endorsement of any product, company, or specific massage therapy technique, modality, or approach. All trademarks, registered trademarks, brand names, registered brand names, logos, and company logos referenced in this post are the property of their owners.