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Over 37 million Americans routinely suffer from headaches. There are many reasons for this (e.g. genes, environment, lifestyle) but the one thing they all have in common is they want relief. Research suggests that massage is one of the best forms of relief available here.
Common Types of Headaches
When your head hurts you may think that everyone else’s head hurts in the same exact way that yours does. However, this isn’t the case. There are several different types of pain that a person can suffer from here, including:
- Cluster are more common in men. Typically, these occur at night and start with little to no warning. Once they begin, they’ll last for anywhere from 6 – 12 weeks. Sometimes they’re seasonal. Symptoms include a painful, red, or droopy eye, facial swelling, sweating. The headache itself will only last 15 minutes – 3 hours.
- Sinuses in your forehead, cheekbones, and nose can swell up due to allergies causing pressure to mount and sinus difficulties to form.
- Tension is a very common cause of head problems. The pain is typically mild and occurs on both sides of your head. They can easily be treated by taking over-the-counter medication.
- Vascular head issues cause a pounding feeling in your head. These will last three or four hours at a time.
- Classic migraines cause blurred vision, auras, and auditory hallucinations. These will make you feel weak and numb. They’re typically caused by stress, food, medication, and not enough sleep.
- Aura-less migraines generally cause throbbing pain on one side of your head and light sensitivity. They can last for several hours to several days.
Common Treatment Modalities
Once you’ve discovered what type of headache you’re most likely suffering from, it’s time to decide on which treatment modality will work best for you. The ones that have shown the most promise include:
- Deep tissue is a technique whereby firm pressure and slow strokes are used to reach deep muscle layers and help them relax. Your therapist will make deep, gliding movements using either their knuckles or their thumbs. Since it’s applied to your head it’ll help with any pain in this part of your body. Studies have shown that this will alleviate suboccipital muscle spasms, which lie at the root of your head pain.
- Trigger point technique is like the deep tissue technique in that your strained muscles are relaxed when you apply direct pressure to the muscles that are in the area where a patient’s primary pain is found (e.g. around a patient’s eyes, at their temples).
- Neuromuscular technique specifically pinpoints and releases trigger points (a.k.a. stiff muscles). This can help a therapist get directly to the source. However, it’s vital that the right amount of pressure be used and to only work on one side of a patient’s head at a time so that each muscle receives proper treatment.
When you’re ready to take a proactive stance against your headaches by getting a massage, make sure you contact Maria’s Professional Massage. Maria is an experienced therapist with numerous years of training and experience. You can’t go wrong with her so give her a call today
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DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) is significantly decreased if you’re able to receive a massage after engaging in strenuous exercise. You’ll also notice that your creatinine level will drop, and your muscles will be enabled to perform better. These are all things that have been proven by a recent research study entitled “Massage Alleviates Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness After Strenuous Exercise: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.” In this study 11 previously published research studies on this topic were reviewed. In doing so, over 500 participants were included within this research.
Getting a Massage After a Workout vs. Your Usual Care
Each of the studies that was included within this meta-analysis consisted of a randomized controlled trial. In each of these trials the comparison between receiving this treatment modality and receiving no care or any type of intervention after exercising was looked at. Some of the other things that were considered here include outcome measures. For this it was important that participants reported a primary feeling of muscle soreness or pain. Secondarily, it was also important that muscle performance and serum creatine kinase be measurable.
Techniques used for the post-exercise massage were 8 types that are used in Sweden as well as the technique that’s traditionally used in China. In each study the body area or muscle region that the technique was used upon varied. This is also true of the duration: The area being focused on let researchers to determine whether the technique was used for anywhere between 6 – 30 minutes at a time.
Timing and frequency also varied depending upon which study you look at. For instance, directly follow eccentric exercise participants in one study received 10 minutes of treatment. This was repeated again 24 hours later. However, in another study the 17 minutes of treatment wasn’t repeated until 48 hours later.
Regardless as to which study was consulted, participants who received treatment reported that they felt like their muscles were significantly less sore afterwards. This was especially true when compared to those who received no intervention whatsoever. The amount of improvement regarding how sore a person’s muscles feel also increased when treatment occurred 48 – 72 hours after an intense workout instead of 24 hours afterwards. In fact, this study discovered that the largest drop in people with sore muscles occurred when treatment was received 48 hours after the participant worked out. These participants also demonstrated a marked decrease in creatine kinase, especially when compared to those who didn’t receive any treatment. The one similarity that occurred between all groups regardless of when they received treatment was that both their maximal isometric force and their peak torque improved.
When you’re searching for an effective way in which to alleviate DOMS, you should consider this type of an intervention. After all, this report demonstrates that treatment won’t only help alleviate muscle soreness but it’ll also help your muscles perform better the next time you exercise.
Now that you know how to properly care for your muscle soreness, make sure you contact Maria’s Professional Massage and make an appointment for after your next workout session.
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You’d probably do anything to help your sore muscles feel better. What you may not realize though is that there are some tools available that will help you get some relief. While a massage is great, these tools can help release any knots you have in your muscles.
Shopping for the Right Tools
When you go online to shop for these tools it’s easy to fall down a rabbit hole since there are a lot of gadgets that don’t only look weird but are also available in a wide array of shapes and sizes. While you can find a lot of high-tech tools here (e.g. solar-powered, heated, diffusing social oils) the low-tech ones are surprisingly effective including things like:
- Foam rollers are a simple tube-shaped cylinder that’s made from dense foam. It helps relieve back pain, but you must choose the right foam density first. If you’re in great shape, a very hard roller may be just what you need. However, there are also softer rollers that have a little more give to them. Once you’ve made your choice you should place your roller under your trigger points then lie down on it so that your body weight can press the roller into these tight spots on your back. Try not to wiggle around to much. Instead, when the roller is properly placed, stay put so that the steady pressure that’s being placed on your back eases up. If this doesn’t work, you may want to move the roller slightly above or below your trigger point. A little discomfort is normal regardless of the roller’s placement, but when you’re done your muscles will feel more relaxed.
- Rubber lacrosse balls are better than a foam roller for any neck or shoulder discomfort you may be suffering from since you don’t need to be a contortionist to use them properly. Nevertheless, these lacrosse balls work in much the same way that a foam roller works on your back. You should try to reach the knots in your neck and shoulders while you’re lying on the floor, but if this doesn’t work you should try to stand by a wall then lean back against your lacrosse balls. You may need to be a bit creative here.
When to use Massage Tools
Once you’ve chosen a tool you should use it consistently – 5 or 6 times daily for 3 – 5 minutes each time. This will provide you with the best results. However, you should never use these tools right before you work out. Since they provide you with a trigger point massage, they relax your muscles so if you exercise immediately after using them you’ve raised your risk of injury. Instead, try using them before going to sleep at night. All it takes is 10 minutes and you may even sleep better because of it.
When you’ve tried these tools and found that they’re not working for you, it’s time to schedule an appointment with Maria’s Professional Massage. Maria will have you feeling better soon so contact her today.
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It’s not a secret at all that massage therapy has several benefits upon the human body, as it’s far from being just a method of relaxation.
For example, it was recently discovered that therapeutic massage can help to reduce the unnecessary use of anti-psychotics!
How? Human interaction is the secret!
According to a report from The Alzheimer’s Society, there is a small – but it exists – amount of evidence showing that massage can help in the management of several symptoms associated with dementia. To be more specific, we’re talking about depression, anxiety, or even agitation.
People living with dementia can easily and gladly accept a hand massage, as the touch of a hand is still a familiar sensation to them. A quick, five-minute session of therapeutic massage on the hands can trigger a psychological relaxation response!
But this is not everything, as it can also increase the level of serotonin, otherwise a monoamine neurotransmitter, known as a contributor to the feeling of happiness.
Hands aren’t the only areas where therapeutic massage moves can be applied. Foot massages, for example, are great for promoting sleep, but also transmitting a sensation of support and comfort, which leads to deep relaxation. Therefore, it can also reduce some of the behavioral symptoms of dementia.
Moving on, it was also revealed that massage can treat one of the most critical symptoms of dementia, agitation. For the past years, this side effect was treated with medication, but let’s not forget that this also involves side effects, like increasing a patient’s risk of falls and even fractures.
Even more, it was observed that therapeutic massage used with a specific control group will have great effects for those already suffering from dementia, not to mention they also have a useful adjunct to the current pain management plan.
As mentioned above, dementia patients can enjoy multiple benefits, even after a quick massage session. It helps getting rid of feelings like anxiety while increasing the body’s alertness. But, probably one of the most important benefits, is easing the feeling of loneliness and boredom, felt by a lot of patients. If you prefer, massage has what it takes to make dementia patients feel, once again, worthy of themselves.
To sum it up, it can easily be said that therapeutic massage can easily be considered an alternative in easing the behavioral symptoms, through the sensation of calmness it triggers. Therefore, it’s also a holistic approach to taking care of dementia.
Thanks to her extensive experience, but also knowledge and massage training, Maria’s Professional massage can be the place where you can see the benefits of therapeutic massage put into practice.
Everything begins with scheduling an appointment for a patient suffering from dementia and you can help them embark on a journey to obtaining a better mind and body, through gentle human interaction.
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According to multiple pieces of research, you should consider massages part of your toolkit of strategies to maintain solid mental health, as the latter is considered as one of the biggest issues of the 21st century, but ignored by many people.
Therefore, let’s take a few moments and discuss the positive impact massages can have on your mental well-being, shall we?
It can stimulate the production of feel-good hormones, responsible for alleviating depression
Depression is one of those conditions which can be not visible at all, able to make people feel like they don’t even get out of bed. However, according to several studies, there is a strong correlation between massage therapy and alleviation of many depressive symptoms.
Specifically, it was proven that one of the main massage benefits is affecting body chemistry, thus increasing serotonin and dopamine, the two neurotransmitters involved in depression.
Since massage involves human touch, it can help individuals ‘get rid’ of loneliness, one of the most isolating feelings of depression, by releasing oxytocin, also known as the “cuddle hormone” and responsible for triggering an increased social bonding.
Regular massage sessions can soothe anxiety
Anxiety itself can turn into bigger mental health issues, so for some people, laying on a massage table, alone with their thoughts, can sound like a big challenge. Still, it can help a lot!
A massage session can significantly reduce the amount of build-up stress in the body, thus helping you forget about the anxiety that runs throughout your veins. But this is not everything, as it has been proven that it diminishes the level of cortisol, known as the stress hormone, by almost 30 per cent! And this can really help your body fight anxiety!
As a side note, a study conducted in 2010 showed that a short-term 50 per cent anxiety reduction when it comes to anxiety symptoms can be observed after constant massaging sessions.
It can help you concentrate better
One of the most ignored massage benefits is its ability to solve concentration issues. We know, it sounds surprising, but you should know that this is one of the ways you can boost your ability to handle tasks better.
Technically speaking, the lack of concentration is caused by muscle tension, which eventually diverts blood flow from your brain. However, massage can help release this, increasing the nutrient flow and the amount of oxygen reaching your brain, allowing you to step up your focus.
Studies have also shown that even a 15-minute session in a massage chair can decrease frontal alpha and beta power, which results in enhanced alertness. Even more, people who got massages admitted increased speed and accuracy on math problems!
Last but not least, we shouldn’t forget about probably one of the primary massage benefits: improving circulation.
The body’s lymphatic system is basically the equivalent to a drainage system, being able to remove toxins, as well as waste build-up and bacteria, thus protecting it against any threats.
By applying pressure on the body, the lymphatic system receives a huge boost and detoxifies itself with more ease. But this is not everything as your circulation will improve as well, creating a really nice feeling of freshness!
To wrap it up, a massage session can offer you a lot, whether it’s your mental health or just overall well-being. Schedule your appointment at Maria’s Professional Massage of Clearwater today and you will experience these benefits yourself, even after just one session.
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Lately, people are looking forward to discovering ways of staying healthy until a late age, which is nothing but great news. We all know how important is to pay your doctor a visit regularly or stick to a daily – if your schedule allows it – exercise routine, combined with a healthy diet.
On the other side, it’s less known that proper massage therapy, conducted by a professional, can also have a huge impact on one’s health. In fact, let’s take a few moments and see which are the essential benefits of this type of therapy!
It relieves stress
There’s no doubt that this is one of the main benefits massage therapy comes with. It was scientifically proven that being constantly exposed to stress can increase the risk of heart disease, but also diabetes or hypertension, so getting massage regularly is pretty much one of the best things one can try in order to deal with what’s called “the disease of the 21st century”.
A massage session can be an intensely relaxing experience, as you’re simply lying back and feel how the tension ‘living’ your muscles is immediately going away.
It helps you get better sleep
The lack of sleep can also be a tremendous problem, affecting the majority of adults in the United States and leading to a range of chronic conditions, like cardiovascular disease, depression, diabetes, or even obesity. But guess what? Massage therapy can be one of the best solutions to it.
By getting rid of muscle tension and setting a moment in the day when you slow down a bit, you can enter a prolonged state of intense relaxation, which can last long after the massage session.
No more high blood pressure
How many times did you analyze your diet? Just do it once and you’ll most likely notice that you are eating too much…salt. Yes, salt, and this has a negative impact on your blood pressure, placing a strain on the heart, leading to hypertension and increasing the risk of a stroke.
It was proven that massage therapy can contribute to reducing high blood pressure, lowering systolic, as well as diastolic blood pressure. Also, according to recent research, it regulates the levels of cortisol, the hormone responsible for raising the pressure.
It strengthens the immune system
Recent studies have proven that massage can significantly improve the response of the immune system. Specifically, people who started massage therapy admitted experiencing a notable spike in the production of lymphocytes, the cells responsible for protecting your body from diseases.
Combined with its stress relieving ‘powers’, a massage session could be incredibly helpful for anybody who wants to maintain their immunity at top levels.
So, supercharging your health through massage sounds like an excellent idea, don’t you think? If you’re located in the Clearwater area, Maria is the one who can help you. Combining multiple massage types, including Ashiatsu, Cupping, Deep Tissue, or even Warm Bamboo, with her modern anatomical knowledge and the philosophy of Asian culture, she is the one who can introduce you to massage therapy and its full benefits.
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Considering how often people complain about having a life filled with stress and body fatigue, there’s no surprise that massage saloons have more clients than ever. And these are just two of the main reasons why people are relying on such services to feel better.
If you’re a fan of massage yourself, however, you should be aware of a few aspects before deciding to put massage therapy into your regular wellness program. The frequency of your massage therapy completely depends on both your physical and emotional needs, but also your stress levels.
Is getting a massage way too often bad?
The idea is that getting a massage regularly – a few times a week, that is – will allow you to experience several health benefits. Still, this may not be right for each individual!
For example, if you have some injuries causing you pain or other back pains, you definitely need to consult a physician and see what it’s recommended in your case. Also, if you’re hoping to get rid of any type of pain after one massage session, we have some bad news for you: just like going to the gym for one month isn’t going to get you that summer body you always wanted, getting a massage one-time won’t fix an aching body.
If you’re hoping to get rid of muscle tension caused by poor posture, lack of exercise or stretching, or daily stress-buildup, regular visits with a massage therapist should become part of your routine.
What should I start with?
Ok, so it’s all set: you’ve made an appointment and are ready to experience your first massage session. The first thing you should do is to actually talk to your therapist. A great therapist should be a partner whom you trust and handle your body to, in order to ‘fix’ some of its problems.
Take a few moments and discuss your goals, fitness routine, your physical background – make sure you mention any injuries you experienced in the past – and anything else which could affect the way your sessions go. By being open and honest with your therapist you will help them determine how often you should meet.
Is there an exact number of recommended massage sessions per week?
Generally speaking, it’s recommended to schedule massage therapy more often during periods when your stress levels increase or when you have to deal with stress and pain associated with physical and mental conditions. Also, if you know that you have an important event coming up, which can have a negative impact on your stress levels, it’s also highly recommended to schedule a few extra massage sessions.
If you’re searching for an experienced therapist who can help you with this, Maria’s professional massage is one of the top services you can choose. With a diverse background and professional demeanor, she has a proven track record with a wide client base, located in Clearwater, Palm Harbor, Safety Harbor Florida and Tampa Bay Area.
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As my regular clients know, I have had the good fortune of being able to continue massage during my entire pregnancy, up until the day I gave birth to a baby girl, Isis, on March 29, 2013.
My original plan was to have a friend’s mom babysit her or place into an infant care facility, but the babysitting fell through and the thought of placing her with a stranger in a facility this young didn’t seem as appealing after looking into it more. Plus, I feel it’s important as a parent to get bonding time in with Isis as much as possible because she’s only a baby for a brief amount of time and I don’t want to miss out on it.
Now Isis is 2 months old, and has been my massage sidekick for 1.5 months now. I appreciate both the loyalty and patience of my clients who continued to come to me for massages despite Isis’s crying and fussing at times during a session. Now she and I have a routine worked out that is successful most of the times to where she is happy and the client can get a quiet massage. If she gets fussy in her bassinet, I put her into the baby carrier and carry her on me as I massage. Normally she watches as I work or dozes off. And as I said, she’s not guaranteed to be cry free during the session, because she is a baby, after all…
Over this past year, I have been studying Thai Yoga Massage. I have over 65 hours of training in the Southern style through Dr. James’ Thai Yoga Center and Soma Veda Institute. Lydia Smith, the instructor, introduced the class to Southern Style Thai Massage as well as other complementary & holistic topics, such as Vitalism, veganism and Bio-Tapp therapy.
Over the past weekend I completed over 15 hour of Northern Style Thai Massage training at the Orlando School of Thai Massage from instructor Rob Murray. He is well versed with the Thai culture as well at Thai massage for he started giving him mother Thai Massages in Thailand at the age of 6. I am honored to have to opportunity to work with a native Thai instructor in Florida and am excited about my journey onward into the art of Thai Yoga Massage.