Massage Therapy: An alternative to dug laden treatment for Arthritis

Arthritis is the quintessential old age disease. There is no escaping from it whatsoever. According to the Centre for Disease Control, about 23% of the adults in the United States which is roughly 54 million people suffer from arthritis. If you speak about Florida alone, it has about 21. 5% adults suffer from arthritis. Looking at it from the perspective of the pharmaceutical industry, that’s the sound of profit ringing in the books. Picture this- an aging adult extremely restricted in their movements, groaning with pain and wasting the wonderful gift of life. Combine the two images- of profit and pain-and you are forced to think-is there any viable alternative to drugs to help manage the symptoms of arthritis? And being a resident of Fort Lauderdale what role do Primary Dedicated Medical Care Center for Seniors in Fort Lauderdale play in the same? Let us find out.

Massage Therapy: The Wonder Drug?

Massage is increasingly becoming the most sought after therapy by young and senior adults alike both in terms of managing symptoms of muscle pain as well as perpetuating the overall well being of an individual. According to a consumer survey conducted by the American Massage Therapy Association in 2017, nearly one in five US adults had taken at least one massage in the 2016. And about 42% of them had taken it to manage some kind of health condition or medical reason. 

Well…how does it work?

Massage works by loosening out stiff muscles and reducing soreness. Pressure on certain  pain points not only improves blood circulation but also reduces inflammation in those areas. Increased blood flow translates to opening up of muscles and improved movement leading to reduced pain. Manipulation of soft tissues of muscles using strategic pressure and swift hand movements helps release muscle tension and brings immediate relief in pain. Come to think of it, it is like a personalized exercise for your muscles, only much more fun. 

Research has also shown that routine massages help suppress the production of 

the stress hormone cortisol; arginine-vasopressin which is linked to lower blood pressure and inflammatory cytokines. It then increases the production of mood boosting hormone serotonin. 

What should I consider before booking a therapy session?

While massages have shown to improve the symptoms of various kinds of arthritis such as knee osteoarthritis, hand arthritis, fibromyalgia and back pain, it is useful to exercise some caution before embarking on a session.

  1. Discuss with your primary health care physician. If you are yet to find a suitable one, walk into a Primary Medical Care Center for Seniors in Fort Lauderdale for counseling and guidance on the therapy to adopt. 
  2. Be cautious if you have damaged or eroded joints from arthritis, fever, inflammation or a rash, severe osteoporosis, varicose veins or blood pressure.
  3. A professional massage therapist is trained to seek feedback from you during a session to understand the level of pressure you can take. Please do not hesitate to provide that feedback. Pressure in a massage therapy is not directly correlated to its benefits. 
  4. Actively ask questions of your therapist in case you suffer from a condition for them to operate from a position of knowledge and understanding of your condition.

The final takeaway is that massage is ultimately not medicine. Massage is at best a complementary treatment and will not fully cure you from any of your conditions. When looking for a massage therapist do not forget to check if it is covered under your health insurance policy in order to enjoy its full benefits without burning a hole in your pocket.

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