How Massage Therapy Helps You Sleep Better

At some point in your life, you may have suffered from sleep disorders.

Often, sleep disorders caused by tension or stress are temporary; things usually get better with time. Chronic sleep disorders, on the other hand, can interfere with your daily life and health since they affect sleep quality.

The lack of good sleep can affect emotional balance, energy levels, and overall health.

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Types of Sleep Disorders

  • Insomnia – This is a condition characterized by difficulty staying or falling asleep, frequent awakening with inability to fall back to sleep, and early morning awakenings. Short-term insomnia can last from a few nights to a few weeks. This is caused by worry over a stressful situation. On the other hand, long-term insomnia can last months or years. It is caused by chronic pain, depression, general anxiety, medications or other physical disorders.
  • Parasomnia – This is a disruptive sleep disorder caused during arousal from REM sleep. It is characterized by night terrors, sleepwalking and nightmares.
  • Snoring – This is a problem that disrupts the quality of sleep of your partner and greatly affects your own sleep quality.
  • Sleep Apnea – This is a disorder caused by a blockage in the upper airways. If airflow through the mouth and nose is blocked, breathing may stop. Those with sleep apnea snore loudly and are often tired during the day.

None of these are problems unless they make you feel chronically tired. If you are less sleepy at night or wake up early, but still feel rested and alert, there’s little need to worry.

Preventing Sleep Disorders

  • Get regular exercise but avoid strenuous exercise within 2 hours before bedtime
  • Avoid drinking more than a grass of fluid before bedtime
  • Drink a glass of warm milk at bedtime
  • Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol before bedtime
  • Regular massage therapy or remedial massage
  • Try to reduce your stress and workload

How Massage Promotes Good Quality Sleep

If you tell your professional therapist about your sleep difficulties, you will receive massage that is meant primarily to address the problem.

Regular massage will reduce pain and anxiety. Also, it increases relaxation, helping restore your sleep pattern.

Massage therapy is the manual manipulation of soft body tissues and muscular structure of the human body.

It promotes the release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter secreted in the brain by specialized neurons. It regulates hunger, mood, and sleep.

In fact, people may fall asleep during a massage session even with vigorous manipulation. Also, it promotes a great sense of contentment and well-being.  

Massage surely is a healthy, intelligent, and substance-free choice to help people with sleep disorders.

Due to the fact that serotonin plays a huge role in sleep in different areas of the brain, it is important to find ways to boost serotonin levels for those who are sleep-deprived.

Without a doubt, regular massage therapy will help sleepless individuals get a good night’s sleep.

Adding Essential Oils

Massage can become more effective with the use of essential oils. Scents are capable of instantly evoking emotions and memories. Also, they can directly impact the human body  through the nervous system.

Aromatherapy can’t cure insomnia; however, the use of essential oils can help you fall asleep faster.

This is an alternative medicine practice tapping into the healing power of scents from different essential oils extracted from plants to balance the body, mind, and spirit.

You can dilute the essential oils with water, diffuse it into the air, or gently rub it into the body’s acupressure points to relieve stress, promote better sleep, and relax the body.

Lavender, one of the most in-demand essential oils today, can help with mild insomnia. Also, it provides better sleep quality. The scent of lavender can stimulate brain pathways.

Generally, it is safe, except for those allergic to lavender. If you choose only to apply it to the skin, it is very important that you consult your doctor first because it has estrogenic effects; as such, regular use must be done with caution.

Another essential oil used in massage sessions is jasmine. This has a very relaxing fragrance and a sweet, calming aroma.

Vetiver is also an essential oil promoting good quality sleep. This is distilled from the plant’s roots. It has an earthy and rich scent. If you are new to using vetiver, try mixing it with other essential oils like chamomile and lavender.

The regular use of these healing fragrances will definitely help relax you to prepare for a good night’s sleep.

Becoming a Massage Therapist

Massage therapists usually enter the profession as a second career. Becoming a licensed massage therapist working in a professional setting often involves years of professional training.

Today, there are plenty of reputable massage therapy schools and programs worldwide. Some massage courses are even offered online.

Some of those who study massage end up becoming members of a professional organization while others choose to become a sole practitioner.

Since most therapists are very willing to disclose information regarding their education and training, it never hurts to ask.

Massage therapists play a vital role in caring for various medical issues.

Their main role is to listen to the needs of their clients, such as the need for better sleep quality, and to provide a massage experience to treat such issues.

AUTHOR BIO

Marc Innes is the Owner and Principal of the School of Natural Therapies, a training school for Massage & Holistic Therapies located in London. Marc began his career in the NHS, working in a number of managerial and training roles within the Ambulance Service in London. Marc spent much of that time educating and coaching medical staff. Over time he developed an interest in all things complementary to Allopathic Medicine, in particular, Reiki Healing, which along with EFT, culminated in Marc running a successful teaching and ‘energy healing’ practice. Marc is passionate about the massage and complementary therapy industry.

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