Massage therapy, like most alternative treatment methods, is surrounded by misconceptions about how it works, its benefits, and what to expect. Here is a list of 5 of the most common massage myths to ignore when considering massage therapy as part of your day-to-day wellness routine.
Myth 1: Massage Can Cause Complications During Pregnancy
In fact, quite the opposite is true. A prenatal massage therapy treatment has many benefits, such as helping to increase circulation and relaxation of the muscles that cause the stiff joints, aches, and pains that come along with pregnancy. A massage is also an excellent way to help expecting mothers relax, making it a great gift for new mothers and mothers-to-be who could use some time for themselves.
Myth 2: If You Are Not in Pain, It Did Not Work
Many patients believe that if they do not feel sore the day after their massage therapy treatment, it did not work. This massage myth is far from the truth; massage is supposed to make you feel relaxed. Stiffness and soreness the following day are not always expected to be a part of the experience when you receive a massage. However, depending on your prior medical condition, massage treatment can lead to some discomfort.
Myth 3: Massage Can Help Get Rid of Cellulite
While massages are a great addition to diet and exercise to keeping a healthy, well-balanced lifestyle, they do not get rid of cellulite in the body. They are a complementary treatment for post-workout relaxation, especially for muscle soreness and joint pain caused by running a marathon or a more advanced yoga class.
Myth 4: Massages Are Supposed to Hurt
An unfortunate myth related to massage therapy is that a patient should expect a certain amount of pain during the treatment, as that is part of the process. Extreme or wincing pain, instead of pressure, during treatment, is a sign to listen to your body and let your massage therapist know if a technique is causing your body pain.
Myth 5: All Massage Treatments Are the Same
Just as there are a variety of conditions that can be treated by massage therapy, there are also a variety of massage techniques that target different parts of the body. Some of the massage techniques used by your registered massage therapist may include:
- Sports massages, geared towards athletes and sports-related strains and injuries
- Spa massages are meant to help patients relax, unwind, and feel pampered after a long week or special event
- Clinical massage therapy, which targets a patient’s chronic pain, most often in the neck, shoulders, or lower back
- And much more!
Be sure to talk to your registered massage therapist to figure out the best type of massage targeted to your needs.