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Care After a Massage Increases Benefits

May 3rd, 2014 • Posted by Atlantis Health Network • Permalink

Scheduling a massage appointment is a little like scheduling a vacation -- you look forward to relaxation, pain relief, and quiet time. But while we may anticipate our time on the massage table, many of us forget to think about the aftercare that can make a massage have an even stronger impact on our lives.

Drink water

This is a critical step to making the most of your massage. Toxins are released into your body when tissues are massaged. While that's one of the benefits of massage, it can also give you a headache, cause fatigue and create other issues if you don't flush those toxins on out. To do this, drink lots of water and you'll avoid unpleasant side effects.

Take a warm bath

Depending on the type of massage, your muscles may ache after being pushed and prodded by our massage therapist. A warm bath can relax and soothe those muscles and is a great opportunity to continue the quiet tranquility you began on the massage table. You can add a favorite scented oil to your bath or even some Epsom salts, which give the water a silky feel, to create an experience that appeals to your senses of smell and touch. (There are some claims that Epsom salts also help toxins leave your body, but that has not been scientifically proven. No matter what, they feel great in your bathwater!)

Gentle stretching or Yoga

Your muscles and tendons have been manipulated, and sometimes gentle stretching exercises will help those muscles begin the recovery process. If you're experiencing any pain, the muscles may tighten and loosening them through exercise can help. In addition, stretching often helps push out those toxins that were released during the massage.

Quiet time

Massage therapists report that they often hear clients say, "Oh, I feel so terrific. I wish I didn't have to. . ." Whatever they need to do - pick up kids, go back to work, meet a deadline -- it can cut into the process of healing that you go through mentally and physically. One of the massage benefits is the quiet, soothing atmosphere. It helps your brain slow down, calms your breathing and gives you moments of peace during a hectic schedule.

If you can, schedule your massage to coincide with a time when you don't have to slide back into your routine. Sit quietly at a coffee shop and read a book. Find your favorite spot in the sun and journal. Take a nap or meet a friend for lunch. Often, the quiet time in the massage room gives you the opportunity to think and that can raise sad or stressful issues. Massage therapists say clients may cry during a massage because slowing down sometimes means letting emotions flow freely. It's a perfectly normal reaction. Take time after a massage to work through those feelings.

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