The All-Natural Secret to Stress Relief

October 05, 2015posted by Massage Heights

If you suffer from headaches, muscle tension or poor sleeping habits, your stress level may be to blame. Therapeutic health options are at the forefront of the medical community-- including massage therapy as a natural remedy for stress relief. When it comes to anxiety and stress, research shows that consistent high levels of stress for an extended period of time can lead to serious issues. Stress can exacerbate existing health issues, as well leave the body more susceptible to additional physical and emotional conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and depression. Luckily, there is a way to cope with stress. Countless studies show that Massage Therapy is an all-natural means to significantly reduce stress and anxiety.

Massage and the body
A massage helps you shift your thoughts away from everyday worries and allows the body and mind to relax. Massage also helps you feel that you're in control over your health and plays an active role in managing chronic illnesses. Not only do you relax on the table, but massage therapy also affects the body on a chemical level. When you are stressed, cortisol levels are up. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can negatively affect your health and immune system function. In a study conducted by Duke University, all patients that received massage therapy experienced significant reductions in cortisol levels as well as excitatory hormones like norepinephrine and epinephrine. Not only are the body’s stress and anxiety hormones reduced during massage, but the body’s natural “happy hormones,” serotonin and dopamine, are also released. Patients leave a massage feeling relaxed with an improved overall sense of wellbeing. 

Bring on the zzzz’s
When you’re stressed, chances are your sleep patterns are also disrupted – which then exacerbates your stress levels. There’s nothing worse than waking up exhausted from a restless night knowing you have a long day ahead of you. Luckily, Massage Therapy increases delta waves – those associated with deep sleep – according to a study at the Touch Research Institute. After a massage, you will be able to quickly and easily drift off to sleep – and stay that way – allowing you to recharge and rejuvenate for the busy day ahead of you.

Take on the day recharged
In addition to feeling more rested, Massage Therapy makes you more alert. The same study conducted by The Touch Research Institute found that a 15-minute chair massage boosted alertness. Similar to a runner’s high, patients were flooded with feel-good endorphins. The study shows that massage stimulates brain-wave activity that is linked to improved attention. So, even when you are under pressure at work – you’ll be able to handle your stressful workload with a clear mind.

The all-natural solution
How you respond to the stress in your day-to-day life relates to your overall health. Taking the proper steps to alleviate chronic stress can greatly increase your ability to cope with the demands of everyday stressful situations. High amounts of stress can lead to a vast array of physical symptoms that include; headaches, high blood pressure, muscle tension, chest pain, insomnia and digestive issues – so it’s important to take care of yourself.

At Massage Heights, we believe it is essential to give your body a break from the stress of everyday life. As with any other type of therapeutic treatment, benefits from massage are incremental. The more consistent you are with massage sessions, the more your overall health and mood will benefit. Visit a Massage Heights Retreat near you to begin relaxing.