There’s no denying that receiving a massage feels great. Working kinks out of achy muscles is probably one of the best feelings in the world. Massage therapy is typically regarded as a luxury spa service, often accompanied by a body wrap and categorized as a spa or beauty service. Of course, the nature of a massage session – a dimly lit room with lovely music in the background – certainly plays in to this theory. And, of course, in a society where we associate taking care of bodies with torturous diets, rigorous workouts, and anxiety inducing doctor visits, it’s hard to imagine that something that feels as good as receiving massage does could actually be beneficial.
But it totally is! The benefits of receiving regular massage reach well beyond feeling good and working out kinks. Last year, through a series of blogs I call the “Body Systems Series,” I explored the benefits massage has for each system of your body. The more research that is done on the benefits of massage therapy, the more health care professionals begin to realize that massage therapy is an amazing form of complementary medicine (never to be confused with alternative medicine). So this year, through a series of blogs, I would like you to join me in the exploration of how massage therapists can work with other medical professionals. This month: neurologists!
WHAT DO NEUROLOGISTS DO?
A neurologist is a specialist who treats pathologies associated with the nervous system. Their schooling can last a decade or longer, and they are trained to treat a variety of pathologies including, but not limited to:
- Movement disorders
- Neurodegenerative diseases
- Spinal cord injuries
- Seizure disorders
- Speech pathologies
Your primary care physician will send you to see a neurologist if you are suffering from symptoms that indicate you have a neurological disorder, pertaining to either your central or peripheral nervous system.
HOW DOES MASSAGE THERAPY COMPLEMENT?
I have already discussed how massage therapy can be beneficial for patients suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. I also have another blog entry discussing how massage benefits people suffering from seizure disorders.
It is widely known that massage therapy can soothe headaches, but why is that? Receiving even one massage can help calm over active nerves that may be firing off, so receiving regular massage can be a great source of pain management!
Always remember that massage therapy should not be considered a form of alternative medicine, it is only complementary. Please always follow the advice of your primary care physician.
Shawn. Functional Neurology Program for Massage Therapists Coming to ITM. [Internet]. [Updated 2011 Dec 8]. Institute for Therapeutic Massage. Tinton Falls, NJ, 07724. [Accessed 2017 Jul 17]. Available from: http://massageprogram.com/uncategorized/functional-neurology-program-for-massage-therapists-coming-to-itm/
Neurology. Wikipedia. 2005 Jan 25.
Lee Health. Burning Back Pain with Radio Frequency Ablation. vimeo.com. 2012.