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Health Benefits Of Massages

Last updated April 23, 2016

A massage is a term used to explain pressing, rubbing, and manipulating the skin, muscles, tendons, and ligament. Individuals call professional massage therapists to loosen up tight areas in the body. They most likely use their hands and fingers, but could also use their forearms, elbows, and even feet to get into the deep tissue.


Most people love to relax and receive massages. It is calming and helps our body recover. A massage is a term used to explain pressing, rubbing, and manipulating the skin, muscles, tendons, and ligament. Individuals call professional massage therapists to loosen up tight areas in the body. They most likely use their hands and fingers, but could also use their forearms, elbows, and even feet to get into the deep tissue.

There are many health benefits with having a massage. Individuals with back pain can benefit from a massage. There are studies that suggest that massage therapy is effective for back pain. It even has the potential of reducing cost of care and therapy. An hour-long Swedish massage once a week has the ability to alleviate pain and stiffness, and improve movement.

Multiple studies have suggested that massage therapy can reduce the number of migraines an individual can have and improve sleep. One of the reasons why individuals are able to sleep is because massages can help decrease the body’s production of the stress hormone, cortisol, by up to 50%. This has the ability to reduce the risk of depression. It is also recommended that cancer patients get massages, since it can relieve fatigue, pain, depression, and nausea in cancer patients.

Additional Resource:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12779300 (accessed on 04/02/2016)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11322842 (accessed on 04/02/2016)

https://nccih.nih.gov/health/massage/massageintroduction.htm (accessed on 04/02/2016)

http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/acm.2009.0634 (accessed on 04/02/2016)

https://nccih.nih.gov/health/massage (accessed on 04/02/2016)

Smith, M. C., Stallings, M. A., Mariner, S., & Burrall, M. (1999). Benefits of massage therapy for hospitalized patients: a descriptive and qualitative evaluation. Alternative therapies in health and medicine, 5(4), 64.

Field, T., Hernandez-Reif, M., Seligmen, S., Krasnegor, J., Sunshine, W., Rivas-Chacon, R., ... & Kuhn, C. (1997). Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis: benefits from massage theraphy. Journal of pediatric Psychology, 22(5), 607-617.

Castro-Sánchez, A. M., Matarán-Peñarrocha, G. A., Granero-Molina, J., Aguilera-Manrique, G., Quesada-Rubio, J. M., & Moreno-Lorenzo, C. (2010). Benefits of massage-myofascial release therapy on pain, anxiety, quality of sleep, depression, and quality of life in patients with fibromyalgia. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2011.

Vickers, A., & Zollman, C. (1999). ABC of complementary medicine: Massage therapies. British Medical Journal, 319(7219), 1254.

Grealish, L., Lomasney, A., & Whiteman, B. (2000). Foot massage: a nursing intervention to modify the distressing symptoms of pain and nausea in patients hospitalized with cancer. Cancer Nursing, 23(3), 237-243.

Reviewed and Approved by a member of the DoveMed Editorial Board
First uploaded: April 23, 2016
Last updated: April 23, 2016