The Science of Massage and the Mind
We all know massages can feel great – but did you know that there is a growing body of scientific research that supports the numerous health benefits of massage therapy? It’s not just physically beneficial either, it can be quite a valuable resource for supporting emotional and psychological well-being too. Here are a few ways massage can soothe both your body and your mind.
It encourages the production of feel-good neurotransmitters that relieve depression
A meta-analysis of these 17 studies shows a strong correlation between massage therapy and a reduction if depressive symptoms. Massage at the hands of a well trained professional can soothe anxiety, reduce cortisol levels (the stress hormone) up to 30%, and increase the production of neurotransmitters known for generating feelings of love, pleasure, and happiness!
Massage boosts concentration
You know that tight feeling in your neck or back after sitting at your desk all day? As it turns out, all of that muscle tension can divert the flow of blood to that area of your body, instead of letting that blood continue to flow on its natural path to your brain. When that tightness has been worked out via massage, blood flow to your brain will increase. This, in turn, improves the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the brain, enhancing your ability to focus.
This study even showed a decreased frontal alpha and beta signal, which would suggest a heightened level of alertness, after a 15-minute chair massage. An increase in speed and accuracy on math problems was also noted for those who received massages, while the control group’s performance remained the same.
Massage helps insomnia
Insomnia is a common sleep disorder that can make it hard to fall asleep, hard to stay asleep, or cause you to wake up too early and not be able to get back to sleep. There’s nothing worse than still feeling tired when you wake up. Insomnia can sap not only your energy level and mood but also your physical and mental health, work performance and quality of life.
So why does massage work for insomnia? Research has shown that massage can reduce stress and contribute to an upsurge of serotonin levels —making it easier to relax so that you can actually fall asleep.
Come to think of it, a massage is sounding pretty good right about now… We have some of the best masseuses around at Spa Estique, you can click here for a full list of blissful and relaxing massages we offer and book your massage appointment today!