Massage has two roles when it comes to treating migraines and tension related headaches:
In a proactive role, massage treatments are performed on a regular basis to help the body maintain an optimal level of relaxation and stress-relief. This approach reduces the chances of migraine attacks and tension headaches significantly by relaxing muscle spasms and trigger points.
In a comfort role, massage is done to ease the pressure brought on during a migraine or tension related headache. By focusing on the neck, shoulders, and head, massage can decrease the pain and discomfort brought on by migraine or tension headaches.
A recent study showed that massage therapy recipients exhibited fewer migraines and better sleep quality during the weeks they received massage, and the three weeks following, than did participants that did not receive massage therapy. Another study found that in adults with migraine headaches, massage therapy decreased the occurrence of headaches, sleep disturbances and distress symptoms. It also increased serotonin levels, believed to play an important role in the regulation of mood, sleep and appetite.
What type of massage should I choose?
If it’s your first time, it’s worth considering a classic Swedish Massage. Using a combination of long, flowing strokes and variable pressure, it has something for everyone. Make sure to let your therapist know what you want both before and during the session.
If you don’t want to remove your clothes, a Reflexology Foot Massage can help you to relax and reset without being too invasive. It uses points on your feet which correspond to all the different organs within your body. .
Massage should be used in combination with a healthy lifestyle that contains exercise, wise nutritional choices and a good amount of sleep. Ensure that you are doing what you need to do to reduce your stress levels; whether that’s going to yoga, meditating or taking a long walk.