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4 Surprising Benefits of Massage Therapy

For many of our patients at PMR, the idea of massage conjures up images of relaxation and a vacation from the everyday—ideas we don’t typically associate with wellness and treatment plans. But the fact of …

For many of our patients at PMR, the idea of massage conjures up images of relaxation and a vacation from the everyday—ideas we don’t typically associate with wellness and treatment plans.

But the fact of the matter is, many of the conditions that lead patients to seek out treatment at PMR are caused by problems that massage therapy can address, including stress, anxiety, and dysfunctional sleep schedules. Knowing that, let’s take a look at four surprising therapeutic benefits of receiving regular massage therapy as part of a comprehensive treatment plan. 

  1. Reducing Symptoms of Depression and Anxiety

Millions of Americans are affected by serious anxiety and depression, and these mental illnesses often go unseen and untreated. Traditional psychiatric medications may help some patients, but for others they can cause more unpleasant side effects than anything else.

It’s important to understand that both depression and anxiety can be caused by stress and the long-term build-up of negative thoughts and emotions. For that reason, massage therapy may be especially beneficial for those suffering from depression or anxiety, particularly when combined with other forms of treatment.

  1. Eliminating Headaches and Migraines

One of the more unexpected applications of massage therapy is its usefulness in treating headaches, particularly those caused by tension and stress. In fact, repeated studies have shown that those receiving massage therapy have fewer migraine headaches and improved sleep patterns. Massage therapy may improve headaches in two ways—first, by inducing relaxation and reducing stress, and second, by easing pressure in the head, neck, and shoulder area that may contribute to—or be caused by—frequent headaches. 

  1. Treating Insomnia

Insomnia can be caused by many distinct factors, including stress and excess mental energy. Unfortunately, many of those suffering from insomnia and other sleep disturbances are given pills with no other help or guidance.

Here at PMR, we understand the role that lifestyle and habits play in regulating sleep. Everything from diet to exercise to work-related stress can play a role in your sleep patterns—perhaps a much bigger role than you realize. In addition to managing these important factors, massage therapy can help to improve sleep by reducing stress and fostering feelings of calm and relaxation in the mind and body. 

  1. Boosting the Immune System

Much like other applications of massage therapy, there’s a simple explanation and a more scientific, research-supported explanation for the role of massage in bolstering our body’s immune capabilities.

The simple explanation is that massage reduces stress and improves overall quality of life, including sleep and energy levels, which strengthens immune response. Whether this explanation is accurate isn’t entirely known, but studies have shown that adults receiving regular massage therapy do indeed have stronger and more effective immune systems, and are healthier overall as a result.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, give us a call at PMR today!

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