Treating Arthritis This Winter With Massage Therapy –
With the forecast dipping quite low this week in Vancouver, you can’t help but be reminded that winter is on its way. While this means hot cocoa by the fire and holidays spent with family, it also means freezing temperatures and the aggravated symptoms of Arthritis that can appear in the cold weather. Flare-ups can be more common, and pain can be worsened during cold periods, but a great way to find relief from Arthritis during these cold months is with joint mobilization treatment and deep tissue massage therapy.
Benefits of Joint Mobilization & Deep Tissue Massage For Arthritis
- Joint mobilization treatments use a variety of more passive joint movements, and stretching techniques that can return a full range-of-motion and restore pain-free movement to joints restricted by the stiffness from Arthritis flare-ups brought on more frequently in the winter season.
- Due to the nature of deep tissue massages they can also be beneficial for those who have Arthritis as massages target specific areas of tightness in the deeper layers of the muscles to relieve the muscle soreness and tension brought on by Arthritis inflammation in the joints.
How It Works
Massage therapy treatments have been shown to reduce to release of the stress hormone Cortisol into the body while increasing the release of beneficial hormones like Serotonin that alleviate the chronic pain felt in the affected muscles and joints.
Also, joint mobilizations will help to increase space inside a joint capsule which can improve the joint’s range of motion and help reduce the pain associated with inflammation by increasing blood flow to the area.
Symptoms of Arthritis That Can Benefit From Massage Therapy
Symptoms of Arthritis vary from person to person based on the type of Arthritis and the area of the body that is affected. However many of these symptoms can be managed and soothed with regular massage therapy treatment, these symptoms can include:
- Joint stiffness
- Limited mobility (Hypomobility)
- Muscle tension
- Chronic pain
- Weakened grip strength
What You Can Do at Home
When your massage treatment is over, you RMT will give you exercises to do between massage therapy sessions. It’s important to do them because they help you maintain the benefits of your massage.
Another thing you can do from the comfort of your home is to use natural supplements that help with arthritis. For example, turmeric supplements are beneficial for people with rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and psoriatic arthritis. Turmeric curcumin helps because it changes the way your immune system responds. These changes result in less pain, decreased inflammation, and reduced joint stiffness.
Communication with your doctor about whether or not massage therapy is the right treatment for your type of Arthritis, alongside your medication is essential to treat your condition. Your massage therapist may help alleviate some of the symptoms associated with Arthritis, but managing your symptoms in the long term may require additional medical attention.