For many people with arthritis, there are days where the pain is hard to manage. In addition to the physical pain, there is also psychological turmoil and stress that comes along with living with chronic pain. Massage can be an excellent complement to help reduce physical pain and to bring peace and calm to an anxious mind.
According to Tiffany Field, PhD, director of the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine, the effects of massage for arthritis sufferers has been significant. ( http://www.massagemag.com/News/2006/January/125/Tiffany.php) those who have used massage regularly, they have seen improvements in pain, stiffness, range of motion, hand grip strength and overall function of the joints.
Massage also lowers the body’s production of the stress hormone cortisol, and boosts production of serotonin, which can then improve your mood. It is that “ahhhhh” feeling you have when the massage is over. For those who suffer with arthritis, to have the combination of the mental and physical relief drastically affects the way they feel in mind and body.
It’s always important to get the OK from your doctor or rheumatologist before beginning a massage regiment if you are an arthritis sufferer. In addition, it is important to consult with your massage therapist ahead of time to ensure the correct kind of massage and pressure to help you achieve optimal results.