Reasons to Use Massage Therapy Alongside Physiotherapy

When you're suffering from pain in a particular area, it's sometimes difficult to know whether to see a massage therapist or a physiotherapist. The good news is that you can see both. Massage acts as an excellent adjunct for physiotherapy, and you may even reach a stage where you can use it alone. If you're still unsure, here are some great reasons to use massage alongside physio treatments.

Pain Relief for Episodic Pain

Episodic pain is pain that regularly arises in one particular area. For example, you might be suffering from shoulder pain alongside your usual frozen shoulder symptoms. Or, perhaps you have backache every so often and it slows you down during your day-to-day life.

Massage achieves pain relief in a couple of ways. As it relaxes you, it reduces the stress hormones that are present in your body. Stress hormones have the power to cause inflammation, which in itself is a painful experience. Additionally, massage can boost the amount of oxytocin and serotonin you're releasing. Both hormones modulate the way you perceive pain, which in turn makes your experience less uncomfortable.

Shortening Your Recovery Time

The evidence that massage can shorten your recovery time is growing. Some believe that it stimulates extra blood flow to the area of your pain and injury. In turn, this means you're receiving more oxygen and nutrients to the area. It also means you're removing more toxins from the area.

If you're continuing with your usual fitness routine, you may want to try using massages during the first hour after completing your workout. This hour is known as the inflammatory period, and it's believed to be the optimal time for enjoying a massage. 

Helping Your Muscles to Relax

Although you may not always be aware of muscle tightness, it could be impeding your recovery. Muscle tightness can occur following exercise or it may happen because you've been resting after a strain or sprain. Unfortunately, while your muscles remain tight, they're likely to limit your range of movement. This can then cause you to enter into a vicious cycle, where you spend less time moving and become even tighter.

By using massage alongside your usual physio plan, you can reduce tightness and make it easier to engage. As a result, you can adhere to your physio plan and enjoy a more active way of life.

As a useful physiotherapy aid, massage is a natural way to relieve pain and ease inflammation. If you're interested in using it, ask your physiotherapist for advice.