Stress is part of our lives each and every day and chances are you’re trying to get rid of some of it. Massage is a good way to relax and forget about life for a bit.
Massage reduces the levels of stress-related chemicals in the body like cortisol, adrenaline, and norepinephrine. It can stimulate the release of endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine, which are chemicals that make our bodies feel good. Massage can also lower blood pressure and heart rate.
Some types of massage work better than others for relieving stress. For example, a deep tissue massage usually isn’t thought of for stress relief, but rather pain relief. However, removing physical restrictions in the connective tissue can decrease stress. At B3, we believe that structure creates and maintains function. Our therapists work with you to decrease stress through a systematic approach that will eventually lead to lower stress levels in the body.
There are also a number of other things that can be done occasionally to help decrease stress.
What to Ask For?
Swedish massage is the most common type of massage. Therapists use different motions to release tension, decompress muscle tissue, and get rid of those knots in the muscles. They use a variety of techniques, but the longer and smoother gliding strokes can be the most relaxing.
Most massage therapists will add aromatherapy to the massage, which can also help relieve stress. Lavender, geranium, and chamomile are some of the most popular scents for massage.
Shiatsu or Thai massage are also gentle and tension-relieving. Shiatsu means finger pressure and during this type of massage, a therapist uses thumbs, hands, elbows, knees, or feet to apply pressure to points in the body. The therapist might also rotate or stretch the limbs. Thai massage is more about stretching and is sometimes more energizing than relaxing.
Acupressure can help trigger points in the body to relax, which loosens tight muscles and leads to relaxation.
A hot stone massage is also good for relaxation. The heat from the smooth stones can help ease the tension causing muscle knots. The stones are especially good if you only like light pressure when getting a massage.
There are thin muscles on the scalp that can hold a lot of tension. A scalp massage can be a great stress reliever. Most people hold stress in the head, neck, and shoulders, so taking care of those areas can be beneficial, especially if you have a time limit.
The ears also contain many pressure points, so massaging them can help the central nervous system release endorphins. If you’re interested in integrating massage therapy into your overall health plan, talk to the professionals at B3 Medical. We can help you be a healthier and less stressed you.