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How can therapeutic massage help your headaches?

If you suffer from headaches, just a few minutes with a massage therapist may change your life. Your headaches are not necessarily caused by chemical imbalance or stress. It could be that you have an easily correctable condition in which your neck muscles and joints are actually irritating the delicate nerves which control muscle tension and blood flow, resulting in a headache that medication will never cure!It may turn out that all you need is a therapeutic massage to begin to determine if you are needlessly suffering, and that the beginning of the end of your pain may be only days away, through therapeutic massage.

Massage has a long history - back to the Greeks, the Romans, the Egyptians, the ancient Chinese. Not surprisingly, then, it has evolved into many different methods. The best known, perhaps, is Swedish massage which was developed by Peter Henrik Ling, a Swedish gymnast, but there are also Oriental types, sports massage, trigger point therapy, and others.

You know from experience, of course, that a back rub is soothing.  Kind of like mom rubbing your temples when you had a headache as a child, to pat you back to help you get to sleep? Felt great, didn't it? Massage can reduce anxiety levels, tension, or pain.

Just as that temple rub helped relax you when you were a child, massage performed by an expert can do the same thing for the whole body. If you have watched track and field competitions lately, you've seen athletes receiving massage before and after their events. Before the event it loosens the muscles and gets the blood moving. Afterwards, the massage helps the body rid itself of the lactic and carbonic acids that have built up in the muscles. Those acids are the cause of cramping and pain.

According to the American Massage Therapy Association, massage lowers the heart rate and blood pressure, increases circulation of blood and lymph, relaxes the muscles, and heightens the body's production of endorphins which fight pain. It isn't just recommended for headaches. It has been shown to help people with cancer, asthma, depression, arthritis, and many other serious diseases.