It’s all so easy to get overwhelmed in today’s society. Whether you have stress in your relationships, parenting, work, or life, good massage therapy can help reboot your physical and mental wellness, taking you from stress to serenity! Some people have more stressful lives than others, so avoiding stressful situations and triggers isn’t always possible (like when you have children or work in a high-stress job). However, learning how to better respond to stress triggers can help, alongside support through a registered massage therapist.
How can massage therapy help you transform your life to better respond to stress and anxiety? Keep reading to learn how a massage can help you live the life you deserve.
Physical symptoms of stress
Stress manifests itself in many ways and is different for each person. The most common, noticeable symptoms include:
- Tense muscles
- Shortness of breath
- Increased heart rate and blood pressure
- Tightening feeling in the chest or a knotted stomach
- Trouble sleeping
Those with severe stress or anxiety often find it hard to focus or make decisions. It can also lead to decreased self-confidence or long-term depression or anxiety.
Benefits of massage therapy for relieving stress
There are many physical and emotional benefits to getting a professional massage. Here are a few of the most common benefits:
Lowers your “stress” hormone
A professional massage increases proper blood flow, which helps reduce cortisol (the “stress” hormone) in your body. It also increases serotonin (the “happy” hormone). This combination of decreasing cortisol and increasing serotonin helps boost your body’s ability to fight pain, anxiety, and feelings of sadness.
Helps you feel relaxed and calm
We hear it all the time from our clients: A good massage helps you feel more relaxed and calm. This is partly because, during your massage, you can relax and disconnect from the outside world, if even for an hour. This helps many feel rested and rejuvenated and approach the rest of their day and week with an increased feeling of calm.
Improves confidence and self-image
When you’re feeling calm and serene, you’re often less likely triggered by what you think others think of you. We love watching our clients walk slightly taller and more confident after their massages with us.
Supports physical healing
If your cause is a physical injury, massages can often help you heal faster. When the pain from your injury is gone, many clients notice their stress over their health goes away, too.
Loosens your tense muscles
Emotional stress often manifests as physical symptoms. Most commonly, those who experience this have tightened back, shoulders, and neck muscles. This muscle tightness is your body’s way to protect you from danger, but there isn’t danger in this case. A massage can help you relax tense muscles to feel more relaxed and at-ease.
Relaxation exercise: If you notice your body is physically tensing up in response to stress, try this:
- Find a place to lay flat on your back (if not possible, sit in a firm chair).
- Go through each part of your body and focus on relaxing the muscles in that area.
- When they’re relaxed, move to the next muscle group and relax those.
- Keep going through until you’re whole body is relaxed.
- Maintain steady, deep breathing throughout.
- Once your whole body is relaxed, try to stay physically relaxed. Do your favourite. calming breathing exercises or meditations until you feel relaxed and confident enough to return to your task.
Can help couples conceive
Couples who experience stress often also struggle with infertility as a result. We’ve seen many clients who had an easier time getting pregnant after both individuals reduced their stress levels through massage (or other natural methods).
Types of stress-relieving massage therapies
Hot stone massage: In this massage, hot stones are placed on specific areas of your body to reduce and relieve stiffness (a side effect of stress). These stones are commonly placed on your back, stomach, face, hands, and feet. It’s shown to help you reduce stress and anxiety, improve joint flexibility and blood circulation, and relieve pain and stiffness.
Lymphatic Drainage Massage
This massage focuses on optimizing and opening up your lymphatic system to ensure it’s free to transport lymph fluid throughout your body and remove metabolic waste and toxins from your body. As a result, it helps boost your immune system, which is often lowered when stressed.
Deep Tissue Massage
As its name suggests, a deep tissue massage aims to relax muscles deeper in your body. This positively impacts your serotonin production and can help reduce high blood pressure.
Swedish massages help your whole body find calm. Many clients report feeling more energetic after a massage and that their mind feels freer, so they have the mental space to release stress and anxiety.
Other ways to reduce stress
In addition to massage, here are some additional tips for reducing or eliminating undue stress in your life:
- Eat healthy: A nourished body functions better.
- Avoid smoking, alcohol, and drugs: These can impact your body’s function.
- Exercise regularly: Keep your physical body strong to fight it.
- Avoid stress triggers: When you can avoid or minimize your exposure to situations that usually cause a response in your body.
- Practice breathing exercises: If you feel stressed, pause and practice calming breathing exercises or meditations.
- Take time for yourself: Regularly make time to do something for yourself.
- Get enough sleep: Focus on getting 6-8 hours per night.
- Get a less stressful job: Ask your boss about transitioning to a less stressful role.
Where to get stress-relieving massage therapy
Oceana Massage has registered massage therapists who can provide a relaxing, stress-relieving massage. Book your stress-relieving massage with one of our qualified, registered massage therapists today.