As you’re probably aware, massages are for more than just relaxation. In fact, if you perform a very physically demanding job, are on your feet or sitting most of the day, or frequently workout or play sports with friends, getting a remedial massage might be even more important to find time for each month.
All of that being said, is there such a thing as too much of a good thing? Part of the answer depends on what you’re looking to massage for, while the other part has to do with what kind of massage you’re getting. Although you’ll always want to consult your doctor first, here’s a bit of information to better understand how frequently you should and can receive remedial massage.
Why are you getting the remedial massage?
One of the first questions you should ask yourself when figuring out how often to get a remedial massage is “Why am I getting a massage in the first place?” Part of answering this question involves determining what you’re using remedial massage for specifically. This is because different studies have shown that remedial massage’s effectiveness as a form of intervention in part depends on what condition you’re using massage therapy to address.
For example, deep tissue massage has been shown to be widely effective for both back pain and neck pain. In these situations, seeing a massage therapist as opposed to just performing stretches can be particularly beneficial. Daily massages for as little as ten days can alleviate pain in the lower back or neck pain tremendously.
Another study showcased massage therapy’s effectiveness for mental health issues like anxiety. After all, everyone knows that a massage therapist can reduce your stress, but many people only think about massage therapy in a luxurious way or a form of pampering, instead of thinking about how a therapist can be a part of your treatment plan. If you’re using massage to help address stress and mental health issues, you may only need to go get a massage once or twice a month.
How recently did you sustain the injury?
Another major factor to consider when it comes to determining how often you get a remedial massage is how often you experienced the injury. A relaxation massage is quite different than a therapeutic massage since massage as a form of intervention is far more focused on treating underlying medical conditions as opposed to simply trying to relax your muscles. As such, you need to pay special attention to how recently the condition you’re planning on treating with massage happened since that directly relates to how often you use therapeutic massage as a way of addressing your medical problem — similar to the frequency of taking a specific dosage of medicine.
For example, if the injury or problem is new and not expected to last long, a few sessions of remedial massage can be spaced out anywhere from three days to a week apart in order to fix the problem. On the other hand, chronic conditions require a different kind of time commitment when it comes to remedial massage. For example, since chronic conditions have affected your body’s trigger points over the course of a cumulative number of years, they will likely need many years of deep tissue bodywork in order to fully be released.
While acute and chronic problems are two of the most common medical reasons to see a massage therapist, it’s also worth noting that a monthly maintenance massage is equally beneficial. Receiving a maintenance massage can be incredibly helpful for improving your mobility and muscle health. This can thus become a preventative measure to take in order to lead a healthy physical lifestyle, so it’s worth building into your routine, too.
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