The Healing Power of Touch
There are many surprising benefits of massage, not the least of which is the healing power of touch. The answer to your stressful day, your relationship woes, and many physical ailments could lie right at the massage therapist’s fingertips.
More than half of all Americans, according to a variety of sources, say that an inability to get a good night’s sleep is their number one general complaint. Many admit that poor or insufficient sleep affected their daily activities on a regular basis.
Massage therapy can remedy this problem. Several studies conducted by the National Institute of Health found that massage improved sleep for infants, children, adults and the elderly. Massage has been shown to increase delta waves which are the brain waves connected to deep sleep. This may explain why clients find it easy to drift off to sleep while getting a massage.
Not only does massage help you to relax, but it also gives your immune system a much needed boost. During a 45 minute session, the number of white blood cells, lymphocytes that help to defend the body against disease, increase in number.
There are other physical changes that also occur in the body during a massage. Inflammation can be reduced due to the lowering levels of cytokine molecules, there is a decrease in the stress hormone cortisol, and a decrease of the hormone vasopression, connected to aggressive behavior. All very positive by-products for those with busy, hectic lives.
Massage is now a sought after treatment for anxiety and depression. This is a tough world we live in and massage is no longer just for the rich and famous. Studies have shown that people who received ten, 30 minute sessions over a five week period had less anxious behavior, reduced heart rates, and reduced cortisol levels.
The desire and need for touch does not vary by gender, age, or socioeconomic status. A massage is one of the most simple and effective ways to improve a variety of health concerns. With all of the mental and physical benefits, massage should be a part of your over-all wellness strategy.