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Massage Therapy For Stress And Anxiety

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MASSAGE THERAPY for stress and anxiety relief – Barbara Pebsworth – Part 1

Massage therapy is offered at many spas, salons, and wellness centers. However, as it continues to become a more mainstream treatment option for physical and mental health concerns, massage is now offered at many hospitals and clinics as well. Some insurance companies even cover massage therapy services.

When meeting with your massage therapist for the first time, make sure to discuss your medical history, including any mental health symptoms.

It is important to schedule these services with a licensed or certified massage therapist. This ensures that you will get treatment from a qualified practitioner who has followed the standards and requirements for their state licensure.

Licensed massage therapists can be found through website directories, including the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork and the American Massage Therapy Association. Let the massage therapist know if you have any specific areas of concern and be sure to discuss what you hope to get out of the massage, such as muscle or stress relief.

Patient Recruitment And Follow

We evaluated 667 potential participants for eligibility using a multi-step screening process: 69 were eligible and randomized . Among those not randomized, 79.9% were ineligible at some point in the screening process, with the majority found ineligible by the GAD screener or the telephone screen . The eligibility status of all 86 persons who refused to continue the screening process was unknown. Thirty-four persons were never screened for eligibility because the recruitment period had ended. One participant was excluded after randomization, but before receiving treatment, after we learned this individualâs anxiety may have been caused by a recently diagnosed serious health condition.

Participant Trial Flow

Our analysis included 68 participants randomized to therapeutic massage , thermotherapy , or the relaxing room . Follow-up rates were 85% and 94% at 12 and 26-weeks, respectively, and were similar across groups. These numbers include four persons later discovered to have had PHQ scores exceeding our inclusion threshold of 14 by 1 to 3 points .

Alleviate The Symptoms Of Chronic Illnesses And Diseases:

People suffering from chronic illnesses and diseases also experience higher stress levels. Elevated stress can worsen the chronic condition which, in turn, can lead to even more stress, all creating a vicious cycle. While massage therapy hasnt been proven to cure any disease, it has been found to improve the quality of life for many individuals.

For example, children with cancer who have regular massages were found to have reduced side effects from their cancer treatment such as reduced pain, anxiety, and depression. This has the added benefit of placing the child in a better psychological and physiological state to better battle their illness.

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Massage Therapy Can Relieve Stress

Stress is prevalent in todays fast-paced world and can negatively affect peoples health and well-being. Massage therapy has shown to significantly reduce stress on both physical and psychological levels. While massage therapists know from experience that massage reduces stress, there is also considerable research that validates our experience.

How Stress And Anxiety Affect The Body & Brain

Top 4 Massage Techniques to De

Can anxiety make you feel sick? The straightforward answer is most definitely yes!

Stress and anxiety share many symptoms:

  • Headaches and Dizziness

  • Consistent Worrying

  • Feeling Overwhelmed

To put it lightly, anxiety and stress play major roles in our physical, mental, and emotional health! It also will affect individual people differently.

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Massages Are Proven To Decrease Anxiety

Massage has been used to treat chronic stress, anxiety, and even depression for centuries. Regular massage therapy decreases both general and targeted pressure and reduces irritability.

Chemicals called endorphins are released during a massage. Endorphins increase levels of relaxation and joy while bringing pain relief. Serotonin, dopamine, and other feel-good neurotransmitters join in to enhance well-being feelings long after the massage is done. Regular massage can even help those who have insomnia get a good nights sleep.

Bodywork Modalities To Include

Bodywork modalities with success at alleviating anxiety symptoms include:

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What Are Anxiety And Depression

Anxiety and depression often occur at the same time. Surprisingly, about 50% of individuals with anxiety or depression also meet the criteria of the other mental health disorder 1. Yet, even with this in mind, the two are still different mental health conditions.

Depression is defined as a mental health disorder characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, worthlessness, and hopelessness 2. Depression is also associated with the ideation of suicide. If left untreated, it can persist and even result in death.

Anxiety, on the other hand, is a group of mental health disorders characterized by worry, unease, and nervousness. Those with anxiety may live in constant fear. It goes beyond worrying or simply being nervous. Anxiety is also an umbrella term for a variety of disorders including Generalized Anxiety Disorder , Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder , Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder , Social Anxiety Disorder, Panic Disorder, and more.

However, in both cases of anxiety and depression, there is treatment available. Treatment for anxiety and depression has shown to be very effective and can help a person manage their condition and overcome negative thinking patterns. In this article, well examine the symptoms of anxiety and depression, how anxiety and depression are linked, what causes depression and anxiety, and the treatment currently available for these conditions.

Massage For Stress & Anxiety

Vagus Nerve Massage For Stress And Anxiety Relief
Everyone experiences some occasional stress from time to time. However, chronic anxiety and stress can have some serious consequences on your physical and mental health. Headaches, irritability, breathing and sleeping problems, fatigue and muscle aches are among the most common symptoms of chronic stress and anxiety. Massage has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, thereby contributing to overall physical and mental well being.Our Relaxation & Stress Relief treatments promote increased body awareness with light to moderate pressure techniques and guided breathing to help you cope with and prevent the physical and emotional symptoms of chronic stress and anxiety.

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Understand Massage Therapy Before You Regret

Massage therapy has several benefits, as well as its not nearly relaxing. It has a positive result on your entire body, including your heart, bones, muscle mass, and skin. It can likewise aid with a series of health problems, consisting of stress and anxiety, persistent ailment, sleeping disorders, and also high blood pressure. It can likewise assist with rest conditions as well as cancer-related exhaustion. Keep reading for more information concerning the benefits of massage. And also, keep in mind, massage therapy isnt just for the rich and also renowned.

First, the massage therapy ought to fit. Relying on the type of massage, you might not intend to fully undress. If you are stressed over your appearance, see to it to ask the therapist if there are any type of precautions to take. Normally, an individual will wear loose-fitting garments to be able to relocate comfortably throughout a massage. However, some types of massage therapy need less clothes, while others call for discreetness defense. So, make certain to ask your therapist what sort of apparel is appropriate for your particular type of massage.

Massage For Anxiety Makes You Feel Better

Dr. Mason Turner, chief of psychiatry at Kaiser Permanente hospital in San Francisco, suggests that massage therapy for anxiety and depression helps by relieving muscle tension and improving physical health. He says massage helps strengthen your body-mind connection. Source Massage Therapy for Depression


If you often fee anxious or suffer from depression, you are not alone. The CDC estimates 1 in 6 adults in the United States suffer from depression at some point in their life. Can massage help anxiety and depression? In a word, yes. Many of our clients come to us because they know massage is a good way to feel better.

In fact, experts say regularly seeking massage to relieve anxiety can help improve your overall health and aid in stress management. This is because massage helps relax your body, which, in turn, relaxes your mind.

Are you depressed, or just having a bad day? In either case, a massage to feel better is a great idea. However, the severity, frequency and duration of symptoms of both general anxiety and depression vary from person to person, and even from day to day. Sometimes our clients dont even realize how anxious they were until after the massage, when they are feeling relaxed and content.

According to the American Massage Therapy Association, symptoms that massage for stress and anxiety can address may include:

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Benefits Of Massage Therapy For Anxiety And Depression

In todays fast-paced world, everyone is a victim of stress. Studies have proven anxiety and depression to be common mental illnesses prevalent among all age groups. This problem doesnt just affect mental health but also tenses other parts of the body. Massage therapy tends to have multiple health benefits for the body. Giving your body moments to rest, you can reap not just psychological but physical benefits as well.

Many people receiving massages fail to acknowledge the health benefits. If you think you might need massage therapy to relieve your depression or stress, here are a few benefits that you should know about. Before heading to the benefits, lets get to know what massage therapy is.

What is massage therapy?

During your massage therapy, the therapist will manipulate and press your soft tissues and muscles to improve function, offer relaxation, or sometimes both. Massage therapy is a technique that has been used in China for over 3000 years. Many people believe that this can help relieve depression and give a feeling of ease. According to their study, massage touches the release hormones that give a feeling of emotional connection. In this manner a massage therapy can greatly help in improving your mood, calming your mind, and relaxing physical pains and aches.

How massage therapy benefits depression and anxiety

Massage therapy offers multiple benefits for relieving anxiety and depression. Here are five benefits described below.

  • Helps with an improved sleep
  • What Causes Anxiety And Depression

    Natural Cure For Anxiety

    There are many factors that can increase your risk of depression and that may contribute to you developing it. These include:

    • Physical, sexual, or emotional abuse.
    • Medications, such as isotretinoin and corticosteroids.
    • Personal conflict.
    • Drug or alcohol abuse.

    Anxiety can also happen due to a variety of reasons, such as:

    • An underlying health issue, including heart disease, diabetes, thyroid problems, chronic pain, respiratory disorders, and more.
    • A side effect from certain medications.
    • Childhood trauma or any other type of trauma.
    • Stress due to an illness diagnosis.
    • General life stress.
    • Having family members with anxiety.
    • Drug or alcohol use.

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    Can Massage Help With Anxiety And Depression

    Massage therapy involves the manipulation of soft tissues to promote relaxation, improve function, and decrease pain. It has been used for thousands of years to improve the state of the mind, body, and soul.

    Today, massage is frequently used to promote feelings of relaxation and to decrease stress or anxiety, as well as treat chronic pain or injuries. In fact, there is a variety of evidence and research studies supporting the use of massage in improving depression and anxiety symptoms. This is widely attributed to massage therapy and its ability to decrease levels of cortisol throughout the body and increase the activity of the parasympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic nervous system is your rest and digest system. It is the opposite of your fight-or-flight system, which is activated during the stress response. By calming your fight-or-flight system and activating the parasympathetic nervous system, you are able to fully relax and put aside your worries, thoughts, and fears.

    Interestingly, experts claim that these symptom-reducing effects associated with massage actually last long after your massage session has ended. Further, massage can help improve your sleep which can have a significant impact on your physical and mental health.

    Massage Therapy Combats Chronic Illness And Injury

    If you talk to a random person, theyre likely to suffer from either joint pain, sports injuries, digestive disorders, or soft-tissue injuries . Many of them are unaware that a massage can help those with chronic conditions improve their quality of life. In conjunction with treatment from a physician, massage therapy is an integral part of maintaining a healthy, pain-free life.

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    How To Treat Anxiety And Depression

    In the last few decades, the general public and healthcare professionals alike have shined a light on mental health care and treatment. With mental health disorders continuing to rise within the general population, various treatment options have been made available. These include the following.

    1. Medications

    The type of medication frequently depends on the type of anxiety or depression disorder. For anxiety, anti-depressants, anti-anxiety medications, and in special circumstances, sedatives may be prescribed. For depression, antipsychotics, anti-depressants, and anti-anxiety medication may also be prescribed. Often, it takes time to find the right medication for the individual. This frequently means a lot of trial and error and first, where you may go on one type of medication only to be switched to a different type. Ultimately, its all about finding what works for the individual.

    2. Psychotherapy

    Psychotherapy involves talking to a therapist and learning techniques or coping mechanisms to manage negative feelings and worrying or fearful thoughts. CBT, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, is often used to treat depression and anxiety. This type of therapy teaches you about how your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors impact one another, and how you can control them.

    3. Light Therapy
    4. Exercise
    5. Avoiding Drugs or Alcohol
    6. Social Support
    7. Stress Management Techniques
    8. Alternative Therapies

    Massage For Stress And Anxiety

    Hand Massage for Stress and Anxiety – Massage Monday #495

    Massage is an effective method of relieving stress and anxiety, and is renowned for its therapeutic effects – especially when combined with aromatherapy oils. With stress and anxiety on the rise, people are looking for non-medicinal alternatives to relieve their symptoms. Massage is one such therapy that has proven effective for a range of conditions, and is well worth exploring.

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    What Type Of Massage Is Best For Stress And Anxiety

    • Swedish Massage When youre looking for deep relaxation, you cant go wrong with a Swedish massage. Light, rhythmic tapping, and targeted rolling and kneading result in a clear mind and relaxed body.
    • Deep Tissue Massage Deep pressing and kneading of the muscles releases knots and melt away tension. When done correctly, this massage is one of the most effective at reducing chronic pain and anxiety.
    • Trigger Point Massage A well-trained massage therapist can find and release trigger points. Once released, pain in specific problem areas fades away, and clients can fully and deeply relax.

    How Swedish Massage Reduces Stress Anxiety

    The strokes and pressure your Swedish massage therapist applies serves to relax muscles, relieving built-up tension. If you are feeling a bit run down or you are experiencing a mild form of depression, a Swedish massage will relax your entire body and give you more energy, freeing your mind and allowing you to release the stress and anxiety in your mind and body.

    Some ways that Swedish massage works to help reduce stress include:

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    Can Massage Help With Stress

    Your selected masseuse will find a treatment that works for you. That way, he/she will manipulate your muscles and tissues to relieve stress and muscle tension.

    After a massage session, you will feel rejuvenated, and you will be in a better mood.

    In addition to that, your cortisol levels will decrease.

    Hence, you will be able to feel how your sleep quality is improving and youll feel more energized.

    One important fact for women is that a massage can improve their body image.

    Thus, it contributes to your self-confidence and psychological health.

    If you have doubts about what is the best type of massage to get, you need to know that every massage is different and offers a wide range of benefits.

    There are different kinds of pressure, techniques, and methods, and what youll choose depends on you and your preferences.

    Your initial goal should be relaxation and healing. That way, you will get your energy and balance back.

    Some of the best massages for stress relief:

    Nevertheless, it can effectively relieve the tension in your upper body and provide you with anxiety and stress relief. Its quick and beneficial.

    • Deep Tissue Massage When your massage therapist locates the spot that creates pain, he/she will apply deep pressure at that particular Your knotted muscles will be pushed hard to heal them.

    It involves stretching on the floor. Benefits of massage range from enhancing internal balance to relieving discomfort, pain, and stress.

    When Can Anxiety Turn Into Depression

    How Massage Therapy Can Relieve Your Anxiety

    Anxiety and depression frequently occur hand-in-hand. Often, when severe anxiety goes untreated, it can quickly turn into depression or result in other and more dangerous coping mechanisms, such as drug abuse. This is why its very important to seek treatment out as early as possible. There is help, and you dont need to go through it alone.

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    What Kinds Of Studies Have Been Done On Massage For Anxiety And Stress


    While stress levels are largely subjective, studies focused on pain, sleep, and other outcomes often find that patients report decreased stress levels as one of the major benefits they receive from massage therapy treatments. In one study on pain in acute care settings, more than half of the patients mentioned relaxation in their survey responses. One described the experience of receiving massage as very helpful, soothing, comforting, and relaxing, which is notable considering how stressful being hospitalized is. Improved emotional well-being and sleep were also mentioned by many patients and nurses, both of which are good indicators of stress reduction.


    Most studies done on massage and anxiety have focused on specific populations. One study found significant improvement in both state and trait anxiety in children with cancer and blood diseases who received Swedish massage. Another measured the physiological responses to stress in hospitalized children and found similar results. Cardiac care patients were the focus of another study. Again, massage was shown to be helpful at reducing anxiety. Still, larger and broader studies on the matter need to be done.

    Anxiety disorders:

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