Do You Know If You Need A Deep Tissue Massage?

Deep tissue massage is a specialty massage offering focusing primarily on the deeper layers of muscles and fascia. Therapists may use firmer pressure and strokes during this type of massage to release tension in these areas. Specifically, a deep tissue massage is meant to break up scar tissue and physically break down muscle knots or adhesions, which are bands of painful and rigid tissue. These adhesions can disrupt circulation, causing pain, limited range of motion, and inflammation.

To begin the massage, your therapist may start with lighter pressure to warm up and prep the muscles. Your massage therapist may then use techniques such as stripping, which is a deep gliding pressure along the length of the muscle fibers using the elbow, forearm, knuckles, and thumbs or friction, where pressure is applies across the grain of a muscle to release adhesions and realign tissue fibers.

 Deep tissue massage is commonly thought to be “painful” but this should not be the case. Proper communication with your therapist will help them know how much pressure to use. If the massage is painful, your body will naturally tense up in response to the pain, making it hard for your therapist to reach deeper muscles. While some moments of discomfort are normal, always communicate for the best experience!  People who can tolerate a slightly more intense touch may consider a deep tissue massage for its many benefits!

You may need a deep tissue massage if you…

1.Have Too Much Stress in Your Life

If you feel stressed out due to the demands at work or home, deep tissue massage can help ease this stress in a healthy manner. While all massage is beneficial for lowering stress, a deep tissue massage can really work

2.Are in Pain

If you suffer from chronic pain, consider a deep tissue massage. Self-stretching exercises along with deep tissue massage can lower the pain caused by conditions such as plantar fasciitis, fibromyalgia, sciatica, and other forms of chronic neck and back pain.

3. Feel Stiff or Inflexible

Damaged muscles, ligaments, or tendons are a form of scar tissue that can cause limited mobility and pain. You may not be able to see them but they are certainly there, stemming from old sports injuries, a car accident, or too much repetitive movement.  Deep tissue massage can help restore blood flow and movement to these damaged areas.

4. Have high blood pressure

Although high blood pressure should always be monitored carefully by your physician, a deep tissue massage may help lower your blood pressure and heart rate. Research studies have shown that individuals receiving a deep tissue massage demonstrate a heart rate that is ten beats lower per minute as well as lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure readings. Blood pressure and heart rate can be directly tied to stress, with both conditions rising with the more stress you are under. Chronic issues with heart rate and high blood pressure due to heart disease or diabetes always require physician treatment, but if you feel your blood pressure start to rise under stress than consider regular deep tissue massage to keep your numbers in a healthy range.

For the best experience, drink plenty of water after the massage to help flush the metabolic waste from the tissues.

 

Essential Oils for Allergies

An allergic reaction begins in the immune system, when an allergen tricks the immune system into thinking the substance is an invader. Sensing it is under attack, the immune system then overreacts to the allergen, when in reality it is just a harmless substance. The immune system then produces immunoglobulin E antibodies, which travel to cells that release histamines and other chemicals, causing the allergies.

The most common causes of an allergic reaction are pollen, dust, mold, insect stings, animal dander, food, medications, and latex. Different people respond to allergens differently, with some people experiencing life-threatening anaphylaxis. Many people experience bothersome watery eyes, runny nose, or sore throat, or could have a rash. It is unknown exactly what causes the immune system to tag a substance as an allergen, but one theory is inflammation in the body. Inflammation, which is the root of many diseases, leads to an imbalance between the body and the immune system, causing an exaggerated reaction to a trigger.

Essential oils have the amazing benefit of reducing inflammation and boosting the immune system. Specific essential oils to help treat allergies will help detoxify the body and fight infection while reducing inflammation. Some essential oils have the amazing benefit of helping your allergy symptoms while also helping to prevent your next attack.

Here are some of the best essential oils to try if you suffer from allergies

1.Peppermint Oil

Peppermint oil is beneficial for treating allergic reactions and other respiratory conditions such as colds, coughs, and clogged sinuses. Inhaling diffused peppermint can help dislodge the phlegm that is causing your congestion. Peppermint oil has anti-inflammatory effects and reduces the symptoms of allergic rhinitis or asthma, while also acting as an antispasmodic, meaning it helps you to stop coughing. Peppermint oil can be diffused or taken internally. Try adding one to two drops to a glass of water or tea once a day. A roller ball can also be used to put the peppermint oil onto the chest, back, or temples but it is best mixed with coconut oil or another oil before topical application.

2.Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil opens up the lungs and sinuses, reducing symptoms of allergies. Eucalyptus produces a cold sensation in the nose that helps to improve the airflow of nasal passages. It works as an expectorant, helping to clear the lungs and sinuses of phlegm. To relieve congestion, pour a cup of boiling water into a bowl and add 1-2 drops of eucalyptus essential oil. Place a towel over your head and inhale deeply for 5-10 minutes.

3. Basil Oil

Basil may be a familiar herb for cooking, but it is also a powerful anti-inflammatory essential oil. Basil helps support the adrenal glands, which helps your body react appropriately to any perceived threat. Basil helps detoxify the body of bacteria and viruses, demonstrating antimicrobial activity in various research studies. Basil can be diffused or taken internally. Dilute 2-3 drops basil oil with equal parts coconut oil for respiratory support, or take one drop of basil oil internally by adding it to soup or salad dressing.

4. Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is a powerful substance that acts as an antiseptic. Diffusing tea tree oil in your home can kill mold and bacteria. It has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. Tea tree oil can be used as a household cleaner to help reduce the presence of possible allergen triggers such as mold spores.

 

5. Lemon Oil

Lemon oil helps to support the lymphatic system and with overcoming respiratory conditions. Studies have shown that lemon essential oil acts as an antimicrobial, killing off bacteria and eliminating allergy triggers in the air. Adding a few drops of lemon oil to water helps with immune function and detoxification of the body. Lemon essential oil can be used to disinfect your home and diffused to help neutralize allergens in the air of your home.

Improving Digestion Through Massage Therapy

Many people find themselves suffering from digestive issues, either chronically or occasionally, it does happen to all of us. Bloating, gas, and constipation are uncomfortable and indicate that some part of the digestive system is not operating like it should. One of the more overlooked treatments for digestive issues is massage therapy. Massage therapy manipulates soft tissues to bring increased health and wellness, improving the function of mind and body. It can be an effective therapy for treating digestive issues both through direct manipulation and the comprehensive benefits of massage.

Digestive issues may occur occasionally or chronically due to stress, a poor diet, lack of exercise, or a disease or malfunction of the digestive tract. Chronic digestive issues should always be evaluated by your health care provider and definitely before beginning a massage therapy program. Occasional digestive issues happen to us all and are more likely due to chronic stress, anxiety, or poor diet. A massage therapist can help bring relief from the discomfort of digestive issues by applying manual pressure to the areas of congestion in the abdomen, helping to stimulate the movement of the digestive tract. Massage directly to the abdomen can help relax the abdominal muscles and stimulate trapped gas, which can cause abdominal pain.

Massage therapy is shown to help reduce pain, and improves circulation, resulting in the faster removal of stagnant, deoxygenated blood and toxins from the body and improving the flow of oxygenated blood to the organs, such as those which aid in digestion.

Many digestive disorders, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome ( IBS), Crohn’s disease, or ulcerative colitis can worsen under anxiety and stress. Massage therapy should not generally be used during a flare-up but can be used to keep symptoms under control as a regular preventive therapy in combination with treatment or a special diet recommended by your health care provider. Massage therapy is shown to lower feelings of stress and anxiety, as well as the blood levels of hormones associated with stress such as cortisol. Preventing flare-ups is important for an improved quality of life for individuals with these diseases.

Besides direct abdominal massage, a massage therapist may focus on muscles throughout the digestive system, facial massage, and the lower back. The muscles in our body are interconnected and working a seemingly non-related area can result in significant benefits to digestion. The digestive system is a sensitive area and topic for many people with a large number of people preferring not to generally be touched around their abdomen. Communication with your massage therapist is key to feeling comfortable! Moderate pressure is shown to bring the most benefits but it is important that you are not in any pain or discomfort so let your therapist know how you are feeling each step of the way.