There are many people who live day to day suffering from arthritis. It is the leading cause of disability and reduced quality of living in the U.S. Arthritis can limit normal activity and result in unmanageable pain. It also results in the inflammation of joints throughout the body and surrounding tissue. Arthritis patients can benefit in many ways from receiving massage therapy on a regular basis.
Although alone it may not be the cure, massage can benefit arthritis patients by helping to reduce pain, stiffness and anxiety. Massage helps to eliminate toxins that may accumulate throughout the tissues, blood stream, nervous system and joints. It can lead to increased mobility, range of motion, strength and overall range of function. Massage can also help patients get more deep sleep, another aspect of daily life that many sufferers of arthritis lack. The restorative process takes place during sleep which adds to the importance of massage for patients.
There are over 100 variations of the disease, as well as many types of massage available for those experiencing pain from arthritis. It is very important for the patient and therapist to discuss what method will be most beneficial. Depending on where the most pain occurs will determine what type of massage a therapist will suggest. Reflexology focuses on bones and joints of the hands, wrists, feet and head. Trigger point, deep tissue and Swedish massage are other common methods that are worth exploring. There are many ways to treat arthritis patients, from slow, gentle stretching to vibration and friction. Some common treatments consist of skin rolling, tapping and light kneading.
More and more doctors are recommending massage therapy to their arthritis patients. Many arthritis sufferers may be hesitant to receive massage therapy in fear of additional pain from the touching of stiff bones and joints. It is important for arthritis patients to be familiar with the massage therapy process and have trust in their therapist. Communication will be present before, during and after each session to ensure that the therapist understands tolerance levels and delivers a desirable massage every time.
The key is to maintain frequent visits to remain relaxed and rejuvenated. Massage therapy allows patients with arthritis to view their condition as workable and livable rather than something they can’t control. It can empower patients and help them to feel happier, more relaxed and healthier overall.
Be sure to talk with our therapists to determine the right treatment for you. Ask about different oils, herbs and creams used during massage that can help further relieve pain.