One of the best things about massage is that it offers a lot of great benefits. It can, for example, help relieve pain, increase muscle flexibility, improve circulation and even stimulate sexual performance. Although these benefits are not as effective as actual medical treatment, they are still quite helpful, which is why so many people turn to massage therapy whenever they are dissatisfied with conventional medical treatments.
Mental and psychological benefits
Despite the wide variety of massages out there, it’s still important to remember that the most popular benefit of massage is that it is pleasurable. The fact is that getting an ordinary full body massage is pleasurable and relaxing regardless of your age, sex or background. Likewise, this sensation of pleasure leads to psychological benefits which in turn help stimulate the production of certain hormones. Hormones, such as Serotonin and Oxycontin are not only useful for making us feel better, they can also help reduce blood pressure and increase the body’s immune system. These are benefits which are common to all types of massage and it is this feeling of relief which most people expect whenever they visit a masseuse, a physical therapist or a spa.
Given its mental and psychological benefits, it’s no surprise that massage is often associated with better behavior and lifestyle. For example, several studies1,2,3 over the years have associated massage with better sleeping habits, higher levels of energy as well as generally good self-esteem. Some studies even hint at the possibility that massage might have a placebo effect on people, which helps improve their health by simply making them feel good about their body. This is especially true for those who are recovering from alcoholism, depression, mental problems and substance abuse, as massage therapy helps them cope with various anxieties that they might experience as a result of their problems.
Even if you find these benefits to be lacking, there is still the fact that massage helps relax our muscles, which not only allows us to experience less discomfort in our daily lives, but also helps the body perform more effectively. So even though massage cannot be used to treat serious illnesses, it is still a good form of pain relief and that fact alone leads to plenty of important health benefits.
1. Massage Therapy Can Help Improve Sleep. Link
2. Research says massage may help infants sleep more, cry less and be less stressed. Link
3. Positive Effects of Massage Therapy on a Patient with Narcolepsy. Link