Depression can be defined as "anhedonia" which means the inability to experience pleasure or delight. This symptom "anhedonia" helps diagnose depression.Massage therapy alleviates depression by affecting serotonin and dopamine levels. These chemicals are neurotransmitters. Learn about seasonal depressionSeasonal affective disorder
Serotonin is widespread in the central nervous system. Each nerve cell can affect up to 500,000 nerve cells. No wonder the chemical influences our behavior. Serotonin is involved in depression, appetite control, sleep, mood, behavior, temperature regulation, memory and learning, muscle contraction, hormone regulation and cardiovascular function.
Dopamine affects brain processes that control movement, feelings of pleasure and pain and emotional responses. Studies have shown that an increase of this chemical messenger in the frontal lobe relieves pain and increases pleasure.
SAD can be relieved by release of these transmitters. To explain further, nerves wrap around muscles to cause movement. Nerves store neurotransmitters in small sacs called synaptic vesicles. Sufficient pressure activates nerves and neurotransmitters are released. Often massage therapists call this treatment approach neuromuscular therapy (NMT).
Escape winter blues and cabin fever. Treat your chemical messengers to a massage.