Earlier this week I posted about the severity of my headaches and neck pain and I went Wednesday to have a wonderful massage. I only purchased a 30-minute session, but it was so wonderful. Unfortunately, the pain came back yesterday in my neck in full force, but the 24-hours of relief was marvelous.
I am going to continue with massage therapy every six weeks to see if my overall pain level decreases. I have had physical therapy in the past, but never had much with massage therapy with the exception of the massages at the chiropractors. I have never responded well to chiropractic treatments so even though the massages felt good, the misery I would experience from the repeated adjustments pretty much wiped out the good the massages did!
The massage therapist used a combination of techniques including hot rocks to help my pain. I asked her to please not do any deep tissue massaging because that is just killer for Fibromyalgia patients. I don’t relax well, so having a massage regularly is really going to benefit me in many ways.
It is believed that massage therapy is beneficial to Fibromyalgia and CFS patients because it enhances the production of certain pain blockers, including endorphins, serotonin, and norepinephrine. These hormones work to counteract pain signals conducted by the brain, and this would explain why massage offers such dramatic pain relief. According to the Fibromyalgia Symptoms website, massage therapy can have the following benefits:
- increased blood circulation to the muscles, allowing for faster muscle repair
- increased flexibility
- increased range of motion
- decreased stress and depression
- reduced pain
- reduced stiffness
- improved sleep patterns
In a 1996 study, Fibromyalgia sufferers reported a 38% decrease in pain symptoms after receiving just ten, 30 minute massage sessions. They also reported a significant decrease in their sleep difficulties: they began sleeping for longer periods at a time and were disturbed less by sleep disorders.
So I guess I’ll find out if this is true!