Research indicates that 92% of people say massage can play a role in pain reduction. People who suffer from chronic pain and who don’t want to take addictive medications may be particularly interested in alternative treatments. Deep tissue massage is a type of therapeutic massage that has been found to be effective for chronic pain. Here are the basic facts you need to know.
What is Deep Tissue Massage?
Deep tissue massage is a kind of therapy which corrects misalignment of muscle and tissue. It can be relaxing, but is more intense than other kinds of massage. It is particularly effective for chronic pain, including stiffness in the neck and upper back, muscle aches and pains, and pain in the lower back and the shoulders. It employs some of the same motions as classic massage, but more slowly and more deeply, with a focus on places of pain and tension. The goal is to reach the deep layers of the muscles and the connecting tissue around them.
How Does Deep Tissue Massage Work?
With long-term tension or injury in the muscles, adhesions, or strips of tight tissue, typically form in tendons, ligaments, and muscles. These adhesions may interfere with proper circulation and lead to inflammation, restricted movement, and pain. If the therapist is to touch the deep parts of the muscles, the surface muscles must be relaxed.
Is Deep Tissue Massage Painful?
Patients typically experience a certain amount of pain or discomfort during deep tissue massage therapy. It will probably be a little more uncomfortable than a Swedish massage. You should tell your therapist if you feel pain or soreness, or if you’re having trouble withstanding the amount of pressure they are applying. It’s a good idea to drink a large quantity of water afterward to flush out lactic acid, which can make your tissues sore the day after. Some pain or stiffness is common even if you do drink a lot of water, but it will usually disappear after a day or two. Your therapist may advise you to place an ice pack on the treated area.
Benefits of Deep Tissue Massage
This type of massage typically zeros in on a particular problem, including the following:
- Pain in the lower back
- Chronic pain
- Problems with posture
- Limited mobility
- Healing from falls, whiplash, and other injuries
- Recovery from carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive motion injuries
- Pain from osteoarthritis
- Tension in the glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps, and other muscles
- Tennis elbow
- Muscle spasms
- Piriformis syndrome
- Discomfort after exercise or bodybuilding
What Can I Expect During a Deep Tissue Massage?
The therapist may use hands, elbows, fingers, knuckles, and forearms to reach the deepest layers of your muscles. They may request that you breathe deeply while they knead particularly tense places on your body.
How Quickly Will I See the Benefits of a Deep Tissue Massage?
You should keep your expectations realistic. Some patients request greater pressure because they believe that the therapist can resolve all of their aches, pains, and tense places with one hour-long session if they press firmly enough. This is not possible. Chronic pain and decades’ worth of physical tension can’t be quickly resolved; they are best addressed with exercise, postural work, and relaxation methods, in addition to regular deep tissue massage. You should also know that gentler types of massage, such as craniosacral therapy, can bring about realignment and release of tension.
Deep tissue massage is a popular alternative treatment for chronic pain. Patients who want to steer clear of addictive pain medications may be especially interested in this type of therapy. It helps manage pain, discomfort, and tension over time, so you’ll see benefits gradually. Contact us today to learn more.