What is Medical Message Therapy?
The practice of medical massage therapy is the assessment of the soft tissue and joints of the body. Soft tissues include the skin muscles, ligaments, tendons, connective tissue and membranes. It treats and prevents physical dysfunction and pain of the soft tissues and joints. Medical massage therapy develops, maintains, rehabilitates, and improves physical function, and relieves pain. Medical massage therapy treats problem specific areas by combining deep tissue massage, stretching and condition specific exercises to help maintain mobility and decrease tension. Massage therapy supports overall health as well, by normalizing the circulatory, lymphatic, muscular, and nervous system. Massage therapy can exert a stimulating effect or soothing effect on the nervous system. In general, massage increases circulation. This reduces painful swelling and inflammation, and promotes healing by removing waste products and bringing nutrients to your tissues. Like a sponge absorbing water, tendons, ligaments and muscles begin to soften and lengthen. It can improve circulation to various tissues and organs. For example, it can also improve circulation through muscle, improving healing and recovery to damaged tissue.
Chiropractic and massage therapy, used in combination, form a powerful healing approach that addresses pain on many levels. Both long-term muscle tension and sudden impacts, such as falls, can pull and hold joints out of normal alignment. Chiropractic uses adjustments to return the joints to their normal positions and restore joint mobility. Joint misalignments or subluxations, are often accompanied by tension or injury to the surrounding muscles, and ligaments. These tissues can produce pain that spreads because it causes protective muscle tightening in surrounding areas. Over time, tight, inflamed muscles and fascia suffer poor circulation and can develop adhesions that prevent muscles from lengthening completely. Painful trigger points can also develop, referring pain or tingling to other areas in the body. Addressing soft tissue problems is an important complement to chiropractic care. Muscles move joints, while ligaments support them. If a subluxation is adjusted without addressing related soft tissues, the whole problem is not being addressed and the pain and dysfunction may persist.
Physical Benefits of Medical Massage Therapy
- Fosters faster healing of strained muscles and sprained ligaments
- Reduces pain and swelling
- Reduces formation of excessive scar tissue
- Improves circulation of blood and movement of lymph fluids
- Helps relieve tension, strain and whiplash related headaches
- Reduces muscle spasms
- Provides greater joint flexibility and range of motion
- Helps relieve muscle tension and stiffness
- Promotes deeper and easier breathing
- Expedites rehabilitation after injury
- Strengthens the immune system
- Improves posture
- Reduces stress
Soft tissue components of your pain…
Soft tissue irritation and guarding can actually spread because it causes protective muscle tightening in surrounding areas. Over time, tight, inflamed muscles and fascia (together called myofascia) suffer poor circulation and can develop glue-like myofascial adhesions, which prevent muscles from lengthening completely. Painful trigger points can also develop, often referring pain or tingling to other areas in the body. In extreme cases, tight muscles can compress nerves or blood vessels.
Why addressing soft tissue is important…
Addressing soft tissue problems is an important complement to chiropractic care. This is because muscles move joints, while ligaments and fascia support them. If a joint is adjusted without addressing related soft tissue problems, you may still experience pain. In addition, your tight muscles and shortened fascia can prolong the healing process and cause a joint complex to heal in a tightened and stiff state.