Certain ailments may require the use of medical massage to alleviate unpleasant symptoms. This type of massage differs from the traditional relaxation massage that’s offered to clients in a massage parlor. A physician’s order is required, and insurance companies will normally pay for a certain number of sessions. There are a number of benefits to this type of massage as well, some of which will be discussed below.
What is a Medical Massage?
According to WiseGeek, a massage that has been prescribed by a physician is ordered to treat a specific condition, normally musculoskeletal in nature. These types of massage can be used in a physical therapy clinic for a variety of purposes, including:
– Increase flexibility to a certain area of the body
– Build strength
– Treat various types of injuries, including sports-related injuries
– Help to minimize swelling in a certain area
– Alleviate muscle and joint pain or cramping
– Provide relief for migraine-related pain
– Minimize the normal aches and pains that often accompany late-stage pregnancy
– Provide increased range-of-motion to those with debilitating arthritis
– Assist in stretching the tendons and ligaments that are tight, such as that which is seen in contractures
As a way to offer symptom management to psychiatric patients, some psychiatrists or psychologists may offer this type of massage as an adjunct to therapy. Certain medical practices, such as an Orthopedist may offer this massage to patients during their appointments. This is a great way to determine if the massage is actually something the patient can follow through with as well as whether this type of therapy is going to be beneficial to the patient.
What are the Benefits?
There are several benefits to this type of massage.
– Patients who have a muscular injury are not getting enough blood-rich oxygen to the injured area. This massage will help to get the blood flowing back into the damaged tissues, which promotes faster healing to the area.
– Nerve pain – physician ordered massage will help to alleviate pressure that swollen tissues are placing on nerves. In addition, trigger points, which are areas of increased nerve activity, are relieved. It’s been estimated by the MMPA that about 75 percent of all bodily pains are directly related to trigger points.
– Stress – as one of the oldest types of treatments in medicine, this massage has been proven to effectively ease stress and anxiety in patients. In addition, massage increases circulation, which helps to keep all the body’s organs well oxygenated as well as remove waste products from the cells.
– Improved posture – sore muscles in the back can cause a person to stand with their shoulders hunched. This creates an unnatural curvature around the middle of the chest. Massage can relieve those tight and sore muscles and encourage a person to stand more upright. This can reduce the effects of poor posture as a person ages.
In addition to treating current conditions, this type of massage has also been shown to prevent chronic pain conditions from developing in the future. With over 80 percent of all pain coming from injury or damage to the soft tissues, this massage can be of great benefit to many people. With a physician’s order, this massage is one of the easiest, and most affordable treatments available for pain.