Are you muscles sore from repeated or intense exercise? You’ve just conquered the steep hill and, now, your muscles cry out in pain. Or you’ve just endured six hours of dance practice in preparation for the dance competition and your calves are throbbing with pain. Before you reach out for relief with the use of painkillers like Aleve, Aspirin or Advil, consider a different alternative. One that is less drug dependent and more natural and soothing. A recent research shows that massage for pain may work as well as drugs in helping ease pain from intense exercise. Here’s why:
- Tames Inflammation
When the muscles and joints are stretched and overloaded with exercise, they respond with inflammation. When the muscles are inflamed, you feel pain and soreness. That is because exertion causes an increase in pro- inflammatory cytokines that cause muscle soreness. How does massage factor into this equation? Massage helps to reduce the activity of pro-inflammatory cytokines, thereby reducing muscle soreness and discomfort. Treat yourself to a relaxing Swedish massage or more focused deep tissue massage to keep inflammation down and reduce pain.
- Promotes Muscular Recovery
Synthetic painkillers merely suppress pain without treating the underlying cause of muscle soreness. But when you treat yourself to a massage, the kneading and stretching and massage strokes will cause an increase in proteins that help the muscles to produce more mitochondria. From your science lessons in school, you know that mitochondria are the powerhouses of cells, producing energy to help muscles recover from activity. The healing process takes place from where the pain originated.
- Touch Promotes Healing
The power of touch brings comfort and healing. A baby thrives on the power of holding and cuddling and the sick found comfort in touch. Massage essentially uses hands, elbows, fingers, even feet to deliver the massage via touch. Even though it’s difficult to pinpoint the science behind the magic of touch, touch helps to alleviate anxiety, ease stress and reduce pain, all of which helps to induce healing and manage pain.
There are different modalities of massage designed to treat different aspects of health issues. From a more gentle, overall relaxing Swedish massage to one that targets deep tissue, talk to the massage therapist about your particular concerns and health needs. We serve los Angeles County. Contact us for more information on how massage can help you with your pain relief.