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Massage for Back Pain

Although massage is generally thought of as a complementary therapy, it is now being acknowledged by healthcare providers as a genuine method of helping in fighting back pain. It may be very helpful in the management of chronic back pain, but there is no proof to suggest it being beneficial to episodes of acute back pain. There are three techniques of massage therapy which is available to sufferers.

These techniques are hands-on technique where another person carries out the therapy, except for ice massage which can be performed by yourself or the use of a massage chair.

Traditional Massage Therapy

It has been proven that massage helps with managing to control pain as it lowers anxiety and depression which is what encourages the muscles to relax and helps the body to attain a better sleeping pattern. Blood circulation is also increased which allows a boost of nutrients to reach the affected areas (which is particularly helpful to muscular injuries and strains) and also can help increase the range of movement of the sufferer.

Massage also stimulates the making of endorphins, which are the body’s natural pain killers; they are sometimes referred to as feel good chemicals.
Massage therapy can be anything from a gentle touch to a more rigorous exercise programme.

Presently, there are no laws concerning the licensing needs of a massage therapist, so it can be performed by anyone. Care should be taken to find recommendations, if possible from a healthcare provider, for locating a fully trained therapist before any sessions are attended.

A massage received from an untrained person may result in further damage. A usual session costs between £30 and £80, with the average period of treatment being 3 months.

Ice Massage

An Ice massage is recommended to people who suffer from back pain as it is free, fast and easy to administer. It is particularly good for muscular sprains and used regularly in the treatment of sports injuries, it is achieved by placing an ice pack on the area which is affected. The outcome of the cold stimulus is getting the blood vessels contracting and lowering circulation, when the ice pack is removed a swift rush of blood to the area is encountered, which brings with it a huge amount of nutrients which are necessary for healing. The cold is also useful for bringing a reduction in the swelling.

Those suffering with paralysis, arthritis, Raynaud’s disease and those with altered sensations should be careful. Do not apply ice straight to the skin, always make sure there is a cloth between the two surfaces, and the time for the application should be limited to a maximum of 15-20 minutes in one session, otherwise there’s a risk a burn may occur.

Massage Chairs

Massage chairs offer a way of receiving massage therapy by the use of an electronic device. The benefit of a massage chair is that it can be used in the privacy of the suffers home, it is particularly good when mobility is an issue, timing of sessions can be timed when it is suitable to the sufferer and equipment can be kept clean.

These chairs can be very expensive with some models priced up to £4,000, but cheaper second-hand alternatives can be found.

When purchasing a massage chair, make sure you receive a demonstration on the use of the product and if possible installation too.

Any type of massage therapy should not be performed on people suffering with skin infections, rashes, and open wounds, sites of recent fracture, or immediately following chemotherapy or radiation therapy. You should always seek medical advice first.

For sufferers of back pain, massage can be very helpful in controlling pain levels. Each person will realize whether it works for them or not.

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