Getting a massage is a simple, conventional form of reducing pain due to various factors. That said, the science community has done some work concerning massages, focusing primarily on their effectiveness, safety, and side effects. The results? Well, most research work done to date is promising. It is ‘promising' in the aspects of temporary relief from any discomfort or pain to the individual being treated. There are no long-term benefits associated with massage therapy. Meaning, you must keep getting a massage to keep benefiting from them. Now the question comes—how effective are massages?
By now one thing is clear—the effect of massages is temporary. Though a temporary solution, you should not play down the significance of these ‘effects.' Remember you get the results (in the form of relief) albeit for a short time. So, how effective are massages in dealing with some common ailments? Researchers have dedicated their work to various health conditions. But a few among them were subjected to extensive research which the following are.
Getting a massage can help with things like chronic low-back pain, neck pain, labor pain, and osteoarthritis pain.
Some research and studies suggested massage for cancer patients to reduce pain, promote relaxation, and help in elevating mood. Massage therapists need to be cautious with cancer patients and avoid massaging the following:
Studies have also suggested that massage might help with depression and relaxation of the mind.
According to a 2010 review, massage therapy could help with a temporary reduction in pain, fatigue, and other symptoms that are related to fibromyalgia.
There's not much to learn from the clinical trials concerning headaches; however, the results look favorable.
For people with HIV or AIDS, massage therapy might help with improving the quality of life as per a 2010 review of four small clinical trials conclusion.
Infant Care A 2010 review claims about massage promotes weight gain in preterm infants. However, a 2013 review brushed away these claims saying there’s no sufficient evidence in those regards.
Safety and Side Effects of Massages
Massage therapy provides the most benefit when performed by a trained practitioner. That said, precautions need to be taken by practitioners, especially when tending people with certain health conditions:
So, there's the science's verdict on massages. What we have learned is, a massage can help with reduction in pain, providing relief and relaxation for many individuals but the results can vary depending on the individual.