Lymphatic Drainage Massage
What is Lymphatic Drainage?
Lymphatic massage or lymphatic drainage is a gentle, rhythmical massage treatment performed by a specially trained lymphatic massage therapist to stimulate the circulation of lymph fluid around the body. This physical stimulation helps to rapidly speed up the removal of wastes and toxins from a sluggish lymphatic system. Lymphatic massage can also aid in the prevention of swelling after injury or surgery. It may even provide a significant boost to your immune system.
How Does Lymphatic Drainage Help You?
Lymphatic massage aims to increase the efficiency of your lymphatic and circulatory system. By reducing the volume of retained fluid and the pressure associated, it can reduce the risk of impeded circulation. This volume reduction increases your circulatory system’s capacity to move out retained fluids and any toxic waste build-ups rapidly. In some cases, we have found that a patient feels quite “energised” post-drainage.
Lymphatic massage improves circulation, increases your metabolic rate, and has the potential to enhance your immunity. It is very beneficial in post-operative conditions that affect your lymphatic systems such as post-mastectomy. 25-33% of all people living with breast cancer develop lymphoedema. (Kelly D 2008, Stubblefield M 2011)
What Conditions May Benefit from a Lymphatic Massage
Some of the conditions that may benefit from lymphatic drainage massage include:
- Chronic fluid retention in legs or arms.
- Swelling of a limb: pre or post-surgery.
- Lymphoedema. (Hock K, Colby L 2012)
- Post-mastectomy or breast cancer treatment. (Torres Lacomba M et al. 2010)
- Breast tenderness & congestion.
- Fibromyalgia & Lupus
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Depression & Anxiety
- Hormonal & emotional imbalances
- Cellulite fat accumulation.
- Recurrent infections, e.g. colds, flu, tonsillitis, sinus & yeast infections.
What is the Duration of a Lymphatic Massage Session?
Lymphatic massage sessions range from 30 to 90 minutes, depending on the condition. We recommend that your initial lymphatic massage session is a 60-minute session to stimulate your lymphatic flow. This period will stimulate drainage in one limb. If treating more than two or more limbs, we recommend a 90-minute consultation initially. Your lymphatic drainage massage therapists will guide you for your follow up care based on how you respond to the massage and their experience.
What to Expect at your first Lymphatic Massage Treatment
In your first session, your lymphatic massage therapist will gain a thorough history & understanding of your condition to ascertain how to treat your specific condition effectively. Lymphatic massage requires a massage table. Towels protect your modesty. The massage strokes used in the massage are light and rhythmic, and the lymphatic massage should not be painful. Massage oil is optional.
After your massage, your massage therapist may recommend compression garments. If suggested, we’ll provide you with additional information. You may also benefit from some tips on exercises, self-massage, skin brushing & compression bandaging that will continue to assist in lymphatic drainage process. Your therapist will encourage you to ask questions to understand your best care options fully.
What is the Lymphatic System?
Your lymphatic system’s primary roles are to collect excess fluid from the tissues, purify it and return it to the bloodstream. This role is essential because many substances are continuously leaking out of the blood capillaries into the surrounding tissues. When your lymphatic system fails to sweep up these excess fluids, they can accumulate, cause swelling and potentially increase the risk of infection. An efficient lymphatic system helps to defend your body against germs such as bacteria, viruses & fungi that may cause illness. Luckily, an effective lymphatic system silently works in the background, keeping you healthy.
The lymphatic system drains the fluid into specific regions of your body, such as your armpits and groin, where there is a concentration of lymph nodes. The lymph nodes contain lymphocytes (a type of white blood cell) & some of these lymphocytes include antibodies that fight off germs (including cancer cells) & stops the infection from spreading throughout the body. The good news is that lymphatic massage rapidly speeds up your lymphatic system and its capacity to fight disease and viruses, remove toxins and waste products, reduce swelling, filter lymph fluid and your blood, leading to your better health.
Lymphatic massage is a specialised treatment that requires additional qualifications. If you are interested in lymphatic drainage, please ensure that your massage therapist is appropriately qualified.
What Conditions Can Massage Therapy Help?
Massage is effective in relieving or treating a wide range of conditions and ailments, such as, but not limited to:
Common Massage Styles
The professional healthcare team at PhysioWorks include several skilled Remedial Massage Therapists to attend to your optimal muscle care. You'll find that your Remedial Massage Therapist will provide you with excellence in sports and muscle injury care. Private health insurance covers remedial massage therapists.
Common Massage Styles
- Active Release Technique - ART
- Deep Tissue Massage
- Lymphatic Drainage
- Myofascial Release
- Pre-Event Massage
- Pregnancy Massage
- Relaxation Massage
- Remedial Massage
- Sports Massage
- Sports Recovery Massage
- Swedish Massage
- Therapeutic Massage
- Trigger Point Therapy
Soft Tissue Massage Therapy
Soft tissue massage therapy involves direct physical action upon the soft tissues of your body. Your muscles, tendons, ligaments, or other connective tissue such as fascia are the target structures.
Massage therapists possess a variety of massage styles, which they customise to each client. Soft tissue techniques include a whole range of massage depths, pressures, and durations.
Massage Styles Include:
A gentle and relaxing massage style that incorporates long, smooth strokes to relax and soften superficial muscles. An excellent massage option for those looking for a gentle treatment to promote that relaxed and stress-free feeling.
Deep Tissue Massage
A deeper massage is targeting the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue. This massage style incorporates slow, deep strokes to break up stubborn knots and tight soft tissues. Deep tissue massage is excellent for those who suffer from chronic tightness, scar tissue formation, repetitive strain, or regular physical activity.
Sports massage specifically treats those involved in physical activity. Sports massage focuses on preventing and treating injury while also enhancing athletic performance. Therapists will commonly use a mixture of Swedish and deep tissue massage techniques. The massage therapist will frequently finish your sports massage with some gentle stretch therapy.
Remedial massage is a modality that incorporates numerous techniques to locate and treat musculoskeletal imbalances and chronic/acute pain. Specific techniques used include: Swedish and deep tissue massage, trigger point therapy, myofascial release, muscle energy techniques and stretching. Remedial massage is useful for those suffering from a particular complaint or those who want to ensure their body is functioning at its optimum level.
A massage using a selection of Swedish, deep and therapeutic massage techniques reduces stress, decreases swelling, relieves aches and pains, and reduces anxiety and depression. Pregnancy massages occur with the woman on her side or back. Your massage therapist will customise the massage to a woman’s individual needs.
What are the Benefits of Massage?
Massage may provide you with many benefits. These include:
- Pain Relief
- Reduced Swelling
- Reduced Stiffness
- Improved Sleep
- Reduced Stress
How Does Massage Help You?
In addition to feeling great, massage has a positive impact on various systems of your body. These include:
Quick Muscular Pain Relief
Massage directly affects the muscular system by stretching tight muscles, relaxing and releasing overused muscles. As a result, you should experience reduced muscle spasms and muscle cramping and help muscle tissue regeneration.
Reduce Post-Exercise Muscle Soreness
Massage reduces muscular pain for everyone, from athletes to the elderly. By hastening the removal of exercise toxins in the muscles, your soreness will quickly diminish. If you're pulling up sore after exercising? Don't let it discourage you. A Sports Recovery Massage will help you eliminate this and get you participating pain-free again!
Reducing Swollen Joints
By working on a joint's muscles, massage can increase the joint range of motion and increase collective strength and stabilisation.
Circulatory and Lymphatic Systems
By improving your lymphatic drainage, massage reduces the swelling that results from strains, sprains and other health problems. Lymphatic massage encourages blood flow to the tissue being treated by stimulating the circulatory system. As the lymphatic system works close to the circulatory system, the massage will promote reduced pain and swelling by improving lymphatic flow.
Remedial massage can promote a decrease in cortisol, which is a byproduct released by pain and stress. Massage also encourages an increased level of serotonin and dopamine, which improves your mood, relaxation and assists in relieving pain. The follow on effect in reducing anxiety while enhancing sleep, concentration and energy levels.
Stiffness. Make it a Thing of the Past.
If you've been having trouble getting out of bed in the mornings, massage will loosen your body and get you out on the right side of the bed every morning! Bounce out of bed every day.
Relax! Enjoy Life
Everyone experiences stress and anxiety as life becomes a little too much. Maybe you should too! The rich and famous use massage to ensure they stay relaxed and refreshed.
Sleep Like a Baby Again!
Massage has outstanding relaxing abilities that result in blissfully contented sleep! If you're not sleeping well? Book your massage NOW!
A Stress-Free Lifestyle
Everyone experiences stress and muscular tension, whether it be through stress or over-extending yourself. However, you might be suffering just a little more than some of your friends. Massage sedates and relaxes your overworked muscles. Say goodbye to stress.
What is a Pre-Event Massage?
Pre-event massage occurs before a workout, competition or sporting performance. Pre-event massage aims to increase blood circulation flexibility and mentally prepare people for activity and enhance performance. Pre-event massage is short and specific massage treatment.
Before an event, 3-5 days before, a deep tissue massage can be incredibly beneficial. You can release knots, relax tired muscles, improve your range of motion and get a much-needed break from your training schedule.
If you're considering a pre-event massage or post-event recovery massage, your timing is essential for maximum benefit.
When is the Best Time for a Pre-Event Sports Massage?
Pre-event massages that require deep tissue techniques should occur no later than 48 to 72 hours before the planned exercise event.
Is it Bad to Get a Massage the Day Before a Game or Event?
Any massage undertaken within 48-hours prior should be light relaxation only.
If you have a sporting event coming up soon, please discuss your timeframes with your sports massage therapist to ensure that your muscles work optimally on the big day.
What Causes Post-Exercise Muscular Pain?
What Causes Muscular Pain?
You know the feeling… dreaded “stiff and sore muscles” a day or two after you’ve done a little more exercise than usual.
Shortly after exercise begins, a mix of lactic and carbonic acids builds up in muscle tissue. These acids are waste products of muscle contractions. Don’t worry. These acids are normal. To produce “energy”, muscles burn stored glycogen. Lactic and carbonic acids are by-products of this metabolic process.
The good news is that most of these acids convert back into glycogen and are restored in preparation for your next bout of exercise. Pain and muscle fatigue can exist until the acid levels in your muscles return to normal.
How Does Massage Help?
Massage helps to eliminate the irritation caused by these acidic wastes. Research shows that massage can increase muscle recovery much quicker than rest alone.
Why is Massage So Useful When You Exercise?
Regular exercise causes many body changes. One improvement is the increase in blood vessels to the muscles to meet the demand for more oxygen and nutrients. This circulation increase helps to eliminate the waste products and toxins that build up with exercise. Importantly, it can take several weeks to develop improved muscular circulation.
Until the blood supply increases, you will have trouble with oxygen and nutrients supply. This allows toxic wastes to back up and stagnate. You will experience soreness, pain and stiffness. Many exercise enthusiasts regard aches and pains as the inevitable price to be paid. This is usually not true.
What about Muscle & Joint Stiffness?
Massage eases muscle and joint stiffness. Using massage strokes to reduce muscle tension and passive movement to stretch the connective tissue found around joints massage will improve your performance. Massage also lengthens muscle and tendon units to help prevent injuries from occurring in the first place.
What about Soft Tissue Injuries and Massages?
Massage aids recovery from soft tissue injuries such as sprains and strains. Tissue repair accelerates by increasing circulation in the injured area. Massage therapy can help speed, improve recovery, and reduce discomfort from soft tissue injuries.
Massage is Drug-Free Treatment
Massage is a drugless therapy. Headaches, insomnia, neck and back pain, digestive disorders including constipation and spastic colon, arthritis, asthma, carpal tunnel syndrome and muscular aches and pains are just some of the problems that can respond to massage therapy.