Men, now it’s your turn. May was heavy with flowery Mother’s Day brunches, celebratory graduations, and emotional end-of-school-year events. This month is all about you. Not only did we celebrate Father’s Day last weekend, but right now we’re in the middle of National Men’s Health week. It’s a great opportunity to take stock of how well you’re doing paying attention to your health and wellness. What – you’re not used to doing this? Well it turns out you’re not alone. In fact, in a Cleveland Clinic study found that the men surveyed would rather talk about almost anything than their health. Favorite conversation topics included current events (36%), sports (32%), and their career (32%). Way down on the list of tolerable talk topics was their own health, weighing in at 7%.
Many experts believe that this phenomenon, and the fact that a full third of American men refuse to get regular medical checkups, is because many men feel that they are invincible, or are too proud to seek medical attention, therefore avoiding the need to seek out wellness. These are rather ridiculous philosophies, of course, as taking care of oneself is equally important for both genders for treatment of current issues, and the prevention and detection of future ones.
If you are a man, or know a man, who fits into the “I’m too cool to think about my health” mold, we’d like to suggest that an Elements massage is the perfect “health care without seeming like health care” practice. If you are a man, or know a man, who is uncomfortable talking or thinking about their health, an Elements massage is the perfect way to take care of your body. Not only can massage soothe tired muscles strained by your job, hobbies, or weekend activities, but it can help prevent a number of health-related concerns.
For one, massage can lower blood pressure, which is significant considering that 1 in 3 adults are affected with this. In fact, until age 65, high blood pressure affects way more men than women. If left unchecked, high blood pressure is linked to heart attacks, stroke, and kidney disease.
Also, massage can be an effective stress reducer. A full 9% of men report experiencing daily depression, a wellness practice that can help fight this phenomenon is valuable indeed. Of course, depressive symptoms should always be reported to, and monitored by, a doctor. However, massage can be an important accompanying tool that can be used to help manage feelings of depression.
Lastly, if your back is aching, massage may be just what’s needed. If your doctor supports it, then we suggest letting an Elements Massage therapist in on any back (or neck, or leg) pain. Massage therapists can often fix not only the hurting areas of the body, but also tackle and release the source of the pain. Through lengthening muscles and breaking up knotted areas and improving circulation to the sore spots, the Elements Massage therapist can gradually help even chronic pain to become more manageable. Try scheduling a few sessions, 2-3 weeks apart at first, to tackle the painful trouble spots.