Woman laying on gray sheets recieving a massage.

There are many reasons why a massage is not just something you should have as a luxury. Yes, there is a certain amount of sophistication and opulence to the idea of having a massage; taking the time for yourself and really allowing your body to be relaxed, but there are many other health-related benefits besides.

Of course, there are also many different types of massage, but the fact remains that as long as you feel alive and relaxed at the end of it, it’s doing its job! Massage has been used in alternative medicine for many years, and its benefits are very well known. If you do need a little extra nudge towards the massage table, here are 8 important reasons why you should get a regular massage.

Regular Massages Reduce Stress And Anxiety

Stress is not something you want in your life. Not only does stress affect your mood, upset your sleep pattern, and cause havoc with your appetite, but it also has a hugely detrimental effect on your major organs and everything else that needs to work effectively within your body. Stress should never be belittled; we all say ‘oh I’m stressed’ from time to time, but real stress can seriously impact health and wellness, and in the worst cases, can be life threatening, as blood pressure shoots through the roof. That chat should tell you how much you need to avoid stress! Now we need to talk about anxiety.

Again, anxiety is not something you want in your life either. Anxiety can rule your life and can also lead towards depression. Studies suggest that regular massages have been shown to reduce stress levels, by bringing about a calm sense of Zen, and putting everything into perspective. Relaxing the muscles and allowing you to feel chilled out, anxiety is reduced as a result. The more massages you have on a regular basis, the lower your stress levels and the lower your anxiety.

Massage Can Improve Skin Elasticity

Regular massage has also been shown to stimulate increased blood flow and skin elasticity. Skin elasticity is the skin's ability to stretch and go back to normal once the stretch has gone. Increased skin elasticity can help reduce symptoms of cellulite, reduce the cosmetic effects of aging, and prevent stretch marks from occurring.

Massages Reduce Aches, Pains, and Muscle Tension

By literally ironing out any bunched up muscles and rolling away tension in the muscles, regular massages can alleviate the pain of many chronic illnesses, such as fibromyalgia or arthritis. If you suffer from lower back pain, massages can also help to build and strengthen the muscles in the area, which will reduce the amount of pain you regularly suffer. In addition to getting rid of muscle tension, regular massages can also alleviate tension headaches, because the tension in the muscles won’t build up to cause the headache in the first place.

Neck pain is also something that can be treated with regular massages, and it’s about building strength overall. The stronger the muscles, the less likely they are to cause pain and discomfort.

Massages Can Lower Blood Pressure

Research suggests that a regular massage can help to lower blood pressure. Whilst you shouldn’t use massage as an alternative to medication if you have been prescribed it by your GP, it can certainly aid medication, and it can also work to help those who have borderline conditions. This is all to do with relaxation, less stress, and eradicating muscle tension. Working in tandem, these all help to reduce blood pressure and help to bring it down to a more normal and natural level.

Of course, we know that high blood pressure is dangerous, because when it is allowed to reach levels which are far too high, without treatment, it can cause stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular problems. For that reason, seeking help for this issue and perhaps incorporating regular massage is the best way forward.

Massages Can Enhance Sports Performance

For those who regularly enjoy sports, perhaps alone or in a team capacity, regular massages can help to take your performance to the next level. This is down to relaxed and fluid muscles, without aches and pains that will hold you back in whatever sporting endeavor you enjoy.

After a game or a run, for example, it’s likely that your muscles will become tight, and this is when injuries can occur. If you have a regular massage, you will loosen and strengthen your muscles, therefore increasing your overall performance and lowering your susceptibility to injury.

Massage Promotes Relaxation, And Therefore Better Sleep

We all know that massages are relaxing, but it’s not just about feeling chilled out, it’s about allowing your body to wash away cares and worries, relax your muscles, and wave goodbye to tension. By doing this, you are giving your body a much better foundation on which to face the day, and with regularity, you will notice that your sleep pattern grows more regulated and improved too.

Sleep deprivation, i.e. getting less than 7-8 hours of sleep every night, can be damaging for the body and the mind. Your appetite will go crazy, you won’t be able to focus, your body will start to pick up illnesses much easier, and overall you will notice your mood nose-dive. By ensuring you allow yourself to relax and switch off at night, and get the right amount of sleep, you will avoid, or at the very least decrease, most of these issues. Massages can help you to do that.

Massage Helps Improve Mobility and Range of Motion

By having regular massages, you are essentially oiling, or lubricating, your joints, and this in itself helps you to move around much more easily. We mentioned earlier about sports performance being increased, due to stronger and flexible muscles, and this can also be the same for those who have a reduced range of motion. For instance, if you are struggling with arthritis and you notice that you can’t move as easily as you would like to, regular massage could help to strengthen muscles, free up tension, and allow you to move more freely as a result.

Massage Can Help Improve Mood

Our final reason is about the mind. You may think that massages only treat the body directly, but they also have a great effect on mood. By lowering stress, bettering sleep patterns, and feeling better overall, mood will improve. In addition, massages help to release ‘happy’ hormones within the body, and with a regular massage schedule, it’s likely that you will notice yourself to feel lighter in mood between treatments, as well as in motion and body.

These 8 reasons should help to re-frame massage from being interpreted as a luxury or indulgence, to a vital part of living your best, healthiest life!

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About The Author

Lorna Frances's picture

Lorna Frances is a nutritional medicine graduate and health and wellness writer at azhealthyfamilies.org. She is an advocate of natural medicine and is passionate about finding natural solutions to common health issues. Connect with Lorna at https://www.facebook.com/atozhealthyfamilies/ or www.azhealthyfamilies.org

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