Can you remember the first time you experienced a true Deep Relaxation during and after a massage? There is nothing like it. There are many valid approaches to practicing the state of relaxation but they may fall short of what professional hands are capable of. Hopefully it did not happen so long ago that you barely remember the last time you had a massage therapy experience as potent and powerful as the one you could be scheduling with us next week.
The healing touch is necessary for humans to be at their happiest. One may think of the baby who does not receive the kind of adequate loving attention from a mother that is best for the child to develop the normal brain activity humans evolved to achieve. We may not be babies any longer, however nobody is too old to enjoy the amazing benefits of bodywork from a caring professional who has the experience to provide the best application of techniques during massage therapy treatments.
In the Mood for Massage?
Although it is not considered a “cure”, massage therapy will help manage the physical sensations and symptoms associated with a variety of ailments. For people exhibiting symptoms of depression, massage can alleviate feelings of sluggishness, back pain, muscle aches, and joint pain. It can also help with energy fatigue and how depression can cause sleeping problems.
Stress and depression are very similar. One of the best ways to combat both is to participate in activities that will stimulate the brain’s feel good chemicals. Cortisol is the hormone that regulates stress in the body and is also related to the body’s fight or flight response to stress. As the stressor such as the body responding to exercise is handled, a level of homeostasis can be restored in the body and the level of cortisol returns to its typical lower level. However, many of us live in busy, stressful world and have heightened stress levels for long periods of time. This continuous alert is known as chronic stress, and it can possibly lead to conglomerate of symptoms as a result from an overproduction of cortisol. In some instances, cortisol inhibits the secretion of insulin, the hormone produced for metabolic functions and to regulate blood sugar. When this occurs, everything from weight gain to more serious health conditions, such as metabolic syndrome type II diabetes may result.
Massage is the art and science of rubbing and stretching muscle. Massage softens connective tissue in the muscles that may be painful, reduce flexibility and mobility, or cause inflammation. Massage Therapy relieves muscle tension, increases blood flow through the body, promotes overall relaxation, and very importantly – will stimulate the brain’s production of mood elevating neurotransmitters such as dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin.
Elevate Your Brain
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that is secreted in the brain by specialized neurons called serotoninergic neurons. It regulates hunger, mood, and sleep and also promotes a sense of well-being and contentment when stimulated. Massage triggers release of serotonin, which explains the mood elevating effects. Despite application of vigorous massage techniques, people often fall asleep during a massage therapy session.
Blood platelets contain high concentrations of serotonin. When a tissue suffers any trauma, such as how exercise makes micro tears in the muscle, blood platelets accumulate at the injury site and release serotonin. This has several effects. It constricts the area’s small blood vessels which minimizes blood loss. Also it attracts the cells that are involved in the healing process and repairs wounded tissue.
Dopamine is another neurotransmitter whose secretion is elevated by massage. The neurons that use dopamine are called dopaminergic neurons and make up the “reward system” in the brain. In this capacity, massage induces the same sensations of pleasure as savory food or a glass of wine. You may find yourself wanting to schedule another massage as soon as possible because of this effect. Oxytocin is also known as the “love hormone”, and it is elevated in nursing mothers and people who are falling in love. If you hug someone for long enough you will produce this hormone. In general, it promotes the warm and fuzzy feeling. Of course this effect is brief and fades over time. This hormone is released when massage is not as intense as others and is more gentle instead.
Receive and Believe
The science on the subject is sound. Come experience how great your mind will feel during and after your massage therapy experience with us. Schedule a massage with an Arlington, VA massage therapist today and see for yourself every way bodywork will enhance your mood and your life. For any additional questions, please contact Zen Body Therapy online.