Menopause & Massage?!

Are you suffering from the symptoms of menopause?

If so, you are not alone!  In fact, 80% of perimenopausal and menopausal women experience at least one clinical symptom and 40% seek medical advice.

Did you know that massage therapy has been found to be very effective in treating many of the most common complaints?  Some of these include insomnia, hot flashes, night sweats, nervousness, anxiety, irritability, and depression. 

A recent study showed that massage therapy has a positive influence on sleep for menopausal women.  Participants fell asleep more quickly, showed improvement in their quality of sleep, and awoke feeling better with regular massage treatments.  Similarly, many studies have shown that massage therapy leads to more time spent in deep sleep.

Psychology Today reported that sleeplessness and menopausal symptoms are closely connected, and that decreased sleep makes a person more sensitive to pain, increased stress and mood swings. Thankfully, massage therapy calms the nervous system, helping with stress and anxiety, as well as better sleep.

According to the Institute for Integrated Healthcare, regular massage therapy treatments have also been found to help with menopausal symptoms by balancing hormones, decreasing headaches, helping to regulate fluid balance, and increasing endorphins.  In fact, another study has shown that regular massage therapy leads to a significant improvement in hot flashes and night sweats.

The research is clear:

  1. Increased stress causes menopausal symptoms to be more severe.
  2. Regular massage therapy can significantly decrease menopausal symptoms.
  3. Relaxation is an important aspect of maintaining one’s health.
  4. Proper breathing techniques can also have a positive effect on menopausal symptoms.

Regardless of your stage of life, taking steps to decrease stress will help you to live a happier, more well balanced, and healthier life. Choose to live better, choose Better Health!

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Are you really looking after yourself?

January is often considered a month of renewal.  Many of us start the year off with resolutions to make healthier choices during the coming months.  Walk into any local gym right now and you will be greeted by a multitude of people keen to become more healthy and “turn over a new leaf”. While I fully support an active lifestyle and know the importance of it, too often I have found that sometimes people feel guilty about booking a massage therapy treatment for themselves. For some reason, it seems more acceptable to “better” oneself by sweating and working hard in the gym, than by taking one hour a month to have a preventative massage therapy treatment. This can be an effective way to de-stress and address any muscular issues before they have a chance to become bigger problems.

Winter is hard on your body!

In fact, daily life itself can be more taxing to our bodies during the winter months. As we shovel the driveway, clear off our vehicle, or wait for our car to warm up, we tend to tighten our muscles and scrunch up our shoulders in an attempt to stay warm.  Cold weather causes muscles to lose more heat and contract, causing tightness throughout the body. Muscles can lose their range of motion and nerves can more easily be pinched.  When left untreated shoulder and/or neck tension can become constant pain or headaches. Low back pain can often be ignored for quite some time-until suddenly, it can’t! Massage therapy decreases muscle tension, improves circulation, improves joint mobility and decreases pain.  Having monthly maintenance treatments are an excellent way to avoid acute pain and also are a great way to manage stress levels and improve sleep during these cold, dark winter days.

Massage therapy is an investment in your health

What better way to start the year off right than investing in your own health?  Massage therapy will help you get through the season with less stress, fewer injuries and also maximize your performance while working on “the new you” at the gym.

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Pain in your butt?

The gluteal muscles of your buttocks are among the largest and strongest in the body. They are responsible for moving your leg at the hip joint. More specifically, they extend your thigh, help with rotation, and help keep your pelvis stabilized and strong. For example, every time you climb the stairs, get out of your car, or get out of bed in the morning, your glutes kick into action. You rely on them every day.

When you do activities such as running, climbing, or squats, your glutes are loaded even more. These muscles can get tight and painful from overuse or strain and massage therapy can provide relief. Under the glutes lie the lateral rotators of the hip.

The most clinically notable of these is the piriformis muscle. It is really important to address when a person is experiencing sciatica type symptoms. The sciatic nerve can be compressed by the piriformis muscle and cause pain in the hip area and down the back of your leg, often making it painful to sit or to get up from sitting. Thankfully, massage therapy is very good at addressing this “piriformis syndrome“.

As you can see, the gluteal region of the body is an important one for day to day life as well as for more athletic pursuits. Keeping it strong is important to your overall health as it plays a big role in keeping you active and mobile. If you are experiencing discomfort or limited movement because of tightness in this area, it is wise to get it treated to prevent any further muscle or nerve involvement

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