Headaches are one of the most common ailments in the United States – more than 75% of people surveyed report suffering from episodes of headaches, and half of people reported that these headaches were severe. One of the reasons why they’re so frequent is because a headache can be triggered by a number of different causes. Stress, poor posture, muscle tension, and lack of sleep are four common states that can increase the frequency of headaches. Luckily at Elements Massage in Peoria, we know therapeutic massage can help with all of these.
Sitting at a desk, hovering over a laptop, or stooping over work can cause postural problems in people of all ages. Hunched shoulders and curved necks leads to muscle strain because, believe it or not, these are not the positions your muscles should be holding for hours on end. The resulting strain and tightness, especially in the neck or shoulders, can cause tension headaches. Tension headaches are usually more diffuse and exhibit mild to moderate pain levels – often described as similar to the feeling of a tight band around your head. Massage therapy can release the tension in these muscles and ease the headaches that tend to follow. And while stress is usually a part of everyday life, chronic stress can lead to headaches and even migraines. This unfortunately creates a vicious feedback loop where the headache or migraine usually contributes to more stress, and on and on it can go. Massage therapy helps reduce stress by relaxing the body and rebalancing the levels of stress hormones in your body. The feeling of relaxation following massage is both mental and physical in this sense, and a reduction in stress can help manage the frequency and intensity of headaches. Finally, sleep loss can contribute to headaches by triggering the production of proteins that stimulate facial muscles associated with headaches. Getting enough sleep is important to keeping your body and your brain healthy, and therapeutic massage can help improve sleep quality by reducing stress and muscle tension.
Taken together, massage therapy is an excellent way to address multiple causes of headaches without having to take a single trip to the drugstore. By improving your mental and physical wellbeing, therapeutic massage is able to mitigate many of the factors that contribute to the episodic headaches many of us experience. Book an appointment to see the improvements in your own life! Elements Massage in Peoria 623.399.4400