Chronic Muscle Pain: If you are troubled by any chronic muscle spasms or stiffness, take a deep tissue massage. Deep tissue massage is aimed at the realignment of deeper muscle layers and connective tissue. It especially helps the chronically contracted or tense regions like stiffened neck, low back stiffness, and frozen shoulders.
Actual Working of the Deep Tissue Massage
As told earlier, deep tissue massage is particularly helpful in relieving chronic contraction. When such a contraction occurs, its cause is the adhesions (group of aching, stiff tissue) in muscles, ligaments, and tendons, because of which blood circulation there stops, leading to pain, limitation of movements, and inflammation.
Deep tissue massage actually breaks down the adhesions and thereby relieves pain and restores movements. For this, the massage professional normally uses deep pressure directly or applies friction across the muscle grains.
Does it Hurt?
Really speaking, some patients undergo pain and discomfort while taking deep tissue massage at certain points. It is essential to let the therapist know of the pain and if its level is beyond your tolerance.
It is also experienced that there is some pain and stiffness after the deep tissue massage. However, it settles down in a day or two. Some masseurs recommend the application of ice to the stiffened area.
Unlike general massages which offer overall relaxation, deep tissue massage aims at correcting a particular problem, like chronic pain, injuries like sports injuries, limitation of movements, recurrent strain injury like carpal tunnel syndrome, osteoarthritis pain, fibromyalgia, muscle spasm, and so on.
Official surveys tell that patients of osteoarthritis find deep tissue massage more helpful in relieving pain than prescription medicines, exercise, physiotherapy, acupuncture, glucosamine, over-the-counter medicines, and diet.
For relieving fibromyalgia pain too, patients prefer deep tissue massage, as immediately after the massage they find their mobility improved.
Who cannot Take a Deep Tissue Massage?
In some conditions like infectious skin disease, open wounds, rashes, chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, and pregnancy, deep tissue massage should not be taken. Patients of osteoporosis need to consult their doctor before taking this massage.
Difference between Deep Pressure and Deep Tissue Massage
Many times a massage performed with deep pressure is wrongly taken to be a deep tissue massage. Deep pressure massage is performed with constant strong and occasionally intense pressure throughout the body and does not address a particular complaint, whereas deep tissue massage is a therapy used to treat a specific musculoskeletal problem making use of dedicated techniques to achieve a certain level of relief. Therefore care must be taken while asking for the massage, because if the deep tissue techniques are applied to the whole body, it may lead to serious injury and nerve trauma.
It is recommended to drink an ample amount of water before starting deep tissue massage because this massage encourages the process of flushing out metabolic wastes from tissues. It is not advisable to eat a heavy meal before having not just deep tissue massage but any type of massage.
If you are undergoing chronic muscle pain, give deep tissue massage a try, taking care to choose a qualified massage therapist.