If there is one key-takeaway here, it is don’t wait until you need self-care to practice self-care. Easier said than done for most us, who wait until we’ve reached a maximum stress threshold before calling a personal ‘time out’. Stress affects us both mentally and physically, interrupting our sleep, our mood, our eating habits, and contributing to body tension and aches and pains. Managing the stressors before they reach the point of no return should be a priority. Getting a massage, according to a recent survey conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Massage Envy, is one of the most common forms of self-care among the respondents.
Here are 5 reasons to make frequent massage a part of your self-care routine.
1. Manage sleep
According to the American Psychological Association, adults who get less than eight hours of sleep a night are more likely to experience symptoms of stress. Massage therapy can help improve sleep by helping you relax, relieve stress and tension, and release serotonin neurotransmitters that help you feel calm.
2. Relieve anxiety & depression
Stress can trigger an out-of-control feeling, increasing anxiety, and depression. Again, we go back to the serotonin neurotransmitters released during massage therapy which can give our mood a much needed boost to overcome those feelings of anxiety or depression caused by stress.
3. Reduce Pain
Not just for mental breaks, massage therapy as self-care for aches and pains is strongly encouraged. 48 percent of the OnePoll respondents indicated they had gotten a massage after experiencing muscle pain.
4. Increase flexibility & range of motion
Stress can be synonymous with tight muscles, especially in the neck and shoulders where we tend to hold everything when we’re anxious and frazzled. That tightness can limit our range of motion. Massage will loosen the muscles, connective tissues, ligaments, and everything in between to help your joints become more fluid.
5. Create Me Time
Probably the single most important reason to make massage therapy part of your self-care routine: to get much-needed alone time. Just you and your massage therapist. No boss, no children, no spouse, no worries for 60 to 90 minutes. You owe it to yourself!
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