Therapeutic massage, commonly called massage therapy, is the manipulation of the soft tissues of the body using hands-on techniques to treat pain and stress naturally. It is often a sought after treatment in conjunction with chiropractic care because of the benefits offered by concurrent treatments. When paired with chiropractic, massage provides maximum relief to any discomfort the patient is feeling.
This is one of the most popular types of massage and is done not for just relaxation, but also rehabilitation and health maintenance. During this type of massage, strokes of light to medium pressure are used to reduce joint pain and stiffness. It also helps increase circulation and removal of waste that builds up during physical and emotional stress.
Sometimes referred to as Medical Massage or Focused Work, this type of massage focuses on the deepest layers of muscle tissue, tendons, and fascia. It is often focused on one or two particular areas of concern. The depth of the massage can be adjusted to your preference and your massage therapist will communicate with you throughout your treatment to help balance your comfort level and results.
This is a specialized form of massage for athletes and people that are physically active. It supports peak performance before, during, and after workouts and events by relieving fatigue, reducing swelling, relaxing tension in the muscles, promoting flexibility, and preventing injuries.
This type of massage is used to treat knotted, painful areas that are often irritating nerves. The approach releases trigger points to create balance between the nervous system and musculoskeletal system.
This is the most widely known form of acupressure and uses rhythmic pressure for a short time on specific body points using the fingers, hands, elbows, knees, and even the feet to stimulate and unblock the flow of blood. Gentle stretching may also be used to improve and increase range of motion.
This type of massage uses gentle, sustained pressure to connective tissues to eliminate restrictions and pain and to restore motion. Myofascial pain syndrome and other conditions can respond very well to this particular modality. The sessions are performed without oils or tools so your therapist can detect fascial restrictions and apply the appropriate, sustained pressure to release the fascia.
Orthopedic massage is more results driven as opposed to relaxation driven. It is used to restore function and balance throughout your body for prevention and rehabilitation of injuries. Your massage session may include stretching as well as massage to treat conditions resulting from traumatic or sports injuries, surgery, or poor work ergonomics.
Your massage therapist will likely ask you several questions to establish what areas you would like worked on, any conditions needing treated, and to determine if massage therapy is appropriate for you. Be sure to list all health concerns and medications so your therapist can meet your specific needs.
Choosing the type of massage is not just about whether you like light or deep pressure, but also about your physical condition and health. Your chiropractor and massage therapist will be able to help you decide which type of massage is best for you based on any conditions or injuries you may have and what your goals for the treatment are.
You should undress to the level that you are comfortable with. Many people get completely undressed for a full body massage. However, if you choose to leave your underwear on it is fine. Your therapist will step out of the room to give you privacy to undress and get comfortable on the table.
This depends on the type of massage and the depth of the treatment. Some types of massage don’t probe very deep into the muscles or tissue, while others do. However, pain that hurts more than the “feels good” kind of hurt can be an indication of inflammation or injury and pressure should be adjusted accordingly by your massage therapist.
This varies from person to person. If you are just looking for some occasional relaxation, a session every three to six weeks may be fine. However, if you are trying to address a specific condition, it will likely be recommended that you get treatments more frequently, at least in the beginning.
Most people feel very relaxed, and many feel a significant decrease from their long-term aches and pains. You may feel a bit slowed down for a short period of time and then notice an increase in energy. If you receive a deep massage, you may feel slightly sore the next day, similar to the day after a good workout at the gym. Increasing your water intake after your massage can help alleviate some of that.
Chiropractic care works with the spinal structures to correct abnormalities. However, the body is full of muscles and tendons that control flexibility and movement. If these muscles are tight, over-stretched, or weak, they can cause prolonged spinal problems. Massage can relax tense muscles and relieve soft tissue problems.
Patients will often schedule their massage first so their muscles feel loose for their adjustment. However, it is perfectly safe and appropriate to schedule your appointments back to back and in either order. Treatments may also be scheduled on different days if that works better with your schedule.
While most insurance companies provide coverage for chiropractic treatment, unfortunately, most do not cover massage therapy. There may be a few exceptions, so be sure to check with your specific insurance plan. Many people like to use their flexible spending accounts to pay for their massage sessions.
Massage therapy and chiropractic care make a great team. These combined elements can relieve pain, restore mobility, and improve overall health. When coupled together, these natural therapies extend each treatment’s wellness and health advantages to benefit the patient. Chiropractic deals with the musculoskeletal structure, hard tissues, and nervous system, while massage therapy focuses more on soft tissues. When working together, they significantly improve the body’s function.
If you have been suffering from symptoms for days, months, or even years with no solution in sight, relief could be just around the corner. Many people are living a fuller, more comfortable life with the combined elements of chiropractic massage therapy.