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How Can Massage Help Treat Back Pain

If you suffer from back pain - you are not alone - nearly 65 million Americans report a recent episode of back pain, according to Georgetown University - 8 percent of all adults experience persistent or chronic back pain, and as a result are limited in certain everyday activities.

Back pain can range from minor muscle spasms resulting from exercise to constant, chronic, debilitating pain. Therapeutic Massage from an experienced massage therapist can provide much needed relief from the painful symptoms of back pain. But, you' might be asking yourself, "How can Massage help back pain and what type of Massage works best?

4 Ways Massage Can Help Back Pain

Massage is a safe, therapeutic, and non-invasive therapy that can provide a wide variety of benefits. In fact, professional Massage Therapy is widely accepted as a way for many temporary and chronic back pain sufferers to get relief from painful symptom and even improve the underlying issues.

 

Massage Therapy can assist in the treatment of back pain in a many beneficial ways – here’s four for starters:

1) Discovering The Underlying Issues Causing Pain

A professional and experienced Massage Therapist can assist you and your healthcare professionals discover the possible root causes of your back pain. They may even suggest specific exercises, stretches, or lifestyle changes to incorporate into your daily routine that can relieve back pain symptoms over time. Experienced Massage Therapists can also help you identify when you should see a doctor, Chiropractor, or other specialist to treat more serious underlying issues.

2) Increase Blood Flow

Massage Therapy encourages blood flow to the the affected areas of the back through specific therapeutic techniques. This can speed recovery, reduce inflammation, and promote healing. especially with pain caused by physical activity or a soft tissue injury. Research has also shown that Massage Therapy can increase vascular function in both athletes and sedentary individuals.

3) Increased Endorphin Release

Endorphins are the natural compounds within the body that produce a sense of happiness and well-being within the brain. Whats even better is they can reduce pain and relieve feelings of anxiety. Certain Massage Therapy techniques like Acupressure / Shiatsu and Trigger- Point / Myfascial Release are well known to increase endorphin levels. This not only can help you feel better but can speed-up the healing process within the body.

4) Muscle Tension Relief

Muscle tension is often associated with back pain and can cause limited movement and range of motion, especially around the neck, shoulders, and lower back. Massage Therapy encourages muscles to relax, unwind, and release which increase flexibility and reduce associated pain.

 

Best Types Of Massage For Back Pain

There are many different types of Massage Therapy and choosing the right one can be confusing – especially when you’re experiencing back pain. All types of Massage have benefits, but some are more effective at treating specific issues. Here are the top three we recommend for temporary and chronic back pain:

1) Trigger Point / Myofascial Release Massage

Trigger Point Massage, also known as Myofascial Release Massage, is generally perceived as the best for lower back pain and soft tissue injuries. A Trigger Point Myofascial Release Therapist utilizes alternating levels of focused pressure on specific tension points to encourage muscle spasm release and relaxation. Pressure is applied to points of tension with knuckles, fingers, elbows, and sometimes tools for ten to thirty seconds, then relaxed.

 

This type of Massage Therapy promotes the release of lactic acid and encourages the flow of blood and oxygen. There can sometimes be temporary soreness following this form of Massage, however most clients experience reduced back pain and increased range of motion within 24 hours after their Massage session.

2) Deep Tissue Massage

Deep Tissue Massage utilizes a many techniques similar to Swedish Massage – the style most people think of when they hear the word “Massage”. However, much more pressure is applied to the affected muscles.

 

 

This form of massage allows your therapist to work on tightly held muscles and scar tissue that could be the root cause of back pain symptoms. As with Trigger Point Massage, some clients experience soreness following this type of therapy but Deep Tissue Massage is very effective at relieving muscle tension, especially in the neck and back.

3) Sports Massage

While Sports Massage Therapy also utilizes deep pressure, similar to Deep Tissue and Trigger Point, an experienced Sports Massage Therapist will incorporate advanced range of motion and stretching techniques to alleviate back pain and release spasmed muscles. 

 

Don’t be fooled by the name though. You don’t need to be an athlete to get a Sports Massage as it is extremely beneficial in helping to alleviate back pain caused by any form of physical activity or soft tissue injury.

Finding The Right Massage Therapist

Massage Therapy can be an important part of your treatment and recovery plan for those experiencing temporary or chronic back pain. Because of this, It is important to find a professional Massage Therapist that has the experience to provide the highest quality therapy.

 

With so many massage services being advertised, it can be hard to tell the highly trained, experienced practitioners, from the more general, simply relaxation based, ones. Researching the qualifications, experience, and specialties of the

Massage Therapist you are considering can assist you in making an educated decision.

 

If you are currently looking for the right Massage Therapist to help with your back pain, we are happy to help.  Feel free to book an appointment and if we don’t have a therapist that fits your needs, we’ll point you in the right direction.

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