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Massage Therapy: What You Need To Know

What are the benefits of massage therapy? to treat?

Massage therapy can aid in managing a health issue or improve wellness. The practice involves manipulation of soft tissue in the body. Massage is a practice that has been used in all societies and both Eastern as well as Western throughout the human race and was among the first instruments that individuals used to alleviate pain.

What are the various types of massage?

“Massage therapy” or “massage therapy” encompasses a variety of methods. The most well-known type of massage therapy used in Western nations is known as Swedish also known as classical massage. it is the foundation of the majority of massage-related training programs. Other types include massage for sports, therapeutic massage that focuses on specific goals, such as the release of muscles spasms and techniques that originate from Eastern traditions, like Shiatsu as well as Tuina.

Do massages help pain?

It has also been investigated for a variety of types of pain that include low-back pain shoulder and neck discomfort, pain due to osteoarthritis in the knee, and headaches. The science behind it:

Low-Back Pain

Numerous studies of massage therapy to relieve back pain have revealed just a few hints that massage can be beneficial.

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality in its review of non-pharmacological treatments for lower back pain, reviewed 20 studies that assessed the effectiveness of massage with conventional treatment or other treatments and concluded the evidence suggesting that massage could be beneficial for chronic back pain, however the amount of evidence was not strong. The agency also reviewed six studies that examined different types of massage . However, they discovered it was not sufficient to establish whether one type performed better than others.
A review from 2015 of 25 studies that included 396 participants showed that for both chronic and acute low-back pain, there were some short-term improvement in pain after massage therapy. However, since the study’s quality was poor, the researchers who completed the review concluded that they were of “very less conviction” that massage therapy is an effective treatment for lower back discomfort.
Clinical guidelines for practice (guidance for health professionals) published from the American College of Physicians in 2017 mentioned massage therapy as a treatment option to treat acute or subacute low-back discomfort, but they did not include massage therapy in the list of options to treat chronic low-back pain.

Shoulder and neck pain

Massage therapy could be helpful to ease shoulder or neck discomfort, but it is possible that the benefits will be only for a brief duration.

A review from 2013 consisting of twelve reviews (757 all participants) discovered that massage therapy could be more beneficial for shoulder and neck discomfort than non-active therapies, however it was not as efficient than other active treatments. For shoulder discomfort, massage therapy offered some short-term benefits, but only for a short time.
A review in 2016 of four studies carried out by researchers in the United States (519 participants) found that massage can help in the short-term treatment of neck pain, if massage sessions were lengthy and regular enough.

Osteoarthritis from the Knee

The limited amount of research conducted on massage therapy for arthritis of knees suggests it could have some short-term benefits in alleviating knee pain.

Six studies evaluated massage therapy to treat osteoarthritis of the knee (408 total participants) 5 of them concluded that it could provide short-term relief from pain. Two of the studies that demonstrated relief from pain (149 participants) made application the essential oils (aromatherapy massage).

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There are only a few studies on massage to treat headache have been conducted. The studies examined different types of massages and various types of headaches, and their findings aren’t constant.

A study conducted in 2016 with 64 participants compared two types that of massage (lymphatic drainage, and conventional massage) every week, for 8 weeks for migraine sufferers. It was found that migraine frequency dropped within both categories, as compared those who were on waiting lists.
In a study conducted in 2015 of 56 patients suffering from tension headaches were randomized to receive massage on myofascial trigger points , or the inactive therapy (detuned ultrasound) every week for six weeks or to be placed on waiting lists. The people who were treated with either massage or an inactive treatment experienced a decrease in headache frequency However, it was not evident that there were any differences in those who received both treatments.
A study conducted in 2011 assessed the impact on hand massage when added to the treatment of migraine with multimodal behaviors among 83 participants. Massage therapy had no influence on migraine frequency.

Can massage help cancer patients?

If you take the appropriate security measures, massage therapy may be an integral part of supportive care for cancer patients who’d wish to try it, However, evidence that it may ease anxiety and pain isn’t conclusive.

Massage therapy, either with and sans the use of aromatherapy (the usage of essential oils) is used in an attempt to ease anxiety, pain, and other symptoms for people suffering from cancer. A review from 19 research study (more than 1,200 patients) of massage therapy for cancer patients revealed some evidence that massage may assist with anxiety and pain however the quality of evidence was very poor (because the majority of studies were insignificant and some could be biased) The results weren’t consistent.
Clinical guidelines for practice (guidance for health professionals) for the treatment of patients with breast cancer include the use of massage therapy as one among the strategies that could be helpful in reducing stress and depression, anxiety fatigue, and general living quality. Guidelines for clinical practice in treating people with lung cancer suggest that therapy can be included as a part of support for patients who experience pain or anxiety that are not sufficiently controlled by the usual treatment.
Massage therapists could have to adapt their routines when dealing with cancer patients, for instance, they could need to apply less pressure than normal on areas that are prone to irritation because of cancer or treatments.

Massage may be helpful in treating Fibromyalgia-related symptoms?

Massage therapy could be beneficial for some symptoms of fibromyalgia in the event that it is continued sufficient time.

A 2014 review of nine study (404 people in total) found that the practice of massaging, when continued for at least five weeks, reduced anxiety, pain, and depression among people suffering from fibromyalgia. However, it did not affect sleep issues.
A review comprising 10 different studies (478 participants) examined the effects on different types of massage and concluded that all types of massage were beneficial on the quality of life for patients with Fibromyalgia. Swedish massage is one exception. However, two studies on this kind that used therapy (56 all participants) didn’t show any benefits.

Massage can help babies grow?

There is evidence that infants who have been massaged might experience an increase in weight. Massage benefits are not evident for full-term babies of normal age have been proven.

A 2017 review of research reviewed the findings of 34 studies of massage treatment to premature babies. 20 of these studies (1,250 babies) assessed the impact that massage therapy has on the weight loss with the majority showing improvements. The mechanism behind how massage therapy can boost weight gain isn’t fully comprehended. Certain studies have suggested that there are other benefits of massage, but since the evidence available is insufficient, no conclusion can be drawn about the any other effects besides weight gain.
A review in 2013 of 34 studies on healthy full-term babies didn’t yield any evidence for the beneficial effects of massage for the low-risk infants.

What are the dangers of massage therapy?

The danger of negative results from massage therapy is believed to be minimal. However there are a few reports of serious adverse effects, such as blood leak, nerve injury or fractures in bones. Certain of the reported cases have involved intense types of massages, such as deep tissue massage or those who are more prone to injuries, like older people.