I Have _______________… Can I Get Massage?

 

So many times I’ve heard people say “I have (insert disease or condition here) so I don’t think I can get bodywork.”  That hurts my heart because there are a lot of folks missing out on pain relief and relaxation as a result of assumptions, lack of information or misinformation. 

I have been teaching pathology, the study of diseases, to massage students for ten years and have seen a lot of changes in how we approach different conditions as more and more clinical research is done on manual therapies.  For example not too long before I began to learn my trade it was wrongly thought that massage should not be done on cancer patients because it might cause the cancer to spread.  That had already been disproven but we still weren’t sure what role if any massage could have for people with cancer.  Thirteen years later and not only are we teaching students how to safely work with cancer patients we have a 100 hour continuing education class for professionals in conjunction with Central Baptist Hospital on working with patients both in and out of the hospital.   

If people dealing with some of the most serious physical challenges one can face:  chemotherapy, multiple surgeries, radiation therapy, and cancer itself can get relief from pain, anxiety, and depression through massage what about those suffering from other things?

Because of amazing advances in medical science people are living successfully with a great variety of diseases and conditions.  For many people, even the very ill, bodywork can be modified to accommodate for most any physical limitation.  In fact because even gentle massage is such an enjoyable and positive experience it can improve the quality of life for most anyone.  In some cases massage may even be an important part of managing or healing a condition or injury.

Here is a sample of some conditions clients of mine have had:

Surgical repair of shoulders, knees, and spines                                     Cerebral Palsy

Lupus                                                                                                              Spina Bifida

Cancer (patients and survivors)                                                                Tendinitis/Tendinosis

Psoriasis                                                                                                        Migraines

Joint Replacements                                                                                     Diabetes

Osteoarthritis                                                                                               Cardiovascular Diseases

Rheumatoid Arthritis                                                                                  Depression/Anxiety/PTSD

Multiple Sclerosis                                                                                        Spondylolisthesis

Muscular Dystrophy                                                                                    Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Sprains/Strains                                                                                             Varicose Veins

When going to get a massage be honest about any injuries, illnesses, or surgeries you have had so that the therapist can work with you in the best way possible.  Experienced therapists will ask you about your condition and how it affects your life and will be able to treat you in a way that maximizes the benefits of massage and minimizes the possible problems that could arise. 

If you aren’t sure if you can get massage or are concerned about negative effects from bodywork please contact me, I would be happy to talk to you about it!