We all suffer from stress. We all worry about things like money and family or juggling a career and relationships with partners and children. When we don't have good coping skills to alleviate the buildup of stress, there is a good chance that the stress can evolve into anxiety.
Anxiety is a medical condition that affects about 13% of the population. The general term for the majority of anxiety cases is General Anxiety Disorder (GAD). When dealing with GAD, patients tend to show more physical than emotional symptoms. These symptoms can be anything from a mild headache to chest pains that mimic a heart attack.
While there are anti-anxiety medications that help to curb the symptoms, there are often side effects that can be very severe. The initial treatment for anxiety tends to lean toward natural therapeutic massage where there are no side effects, only benefits. Massage therapy for anxiety is different from traditional massage. Instead of dealing with muscular issues, this type of massage helps to combat anxiety symptoms by:
- Reducing stress
- Creating a quiet environment, free of outside stimuli
- Relaxing touch as opposed to a deep tissue massage
So how do you know if you have anxiety or are simply stressed out? The first thing you should do if you suspect you have anxiety is to contact your doctor for a proper diagnosis. Most people show different symptoms. Stress typically makes you irritable to the point where you may not be sleeping. Anxiety will show symptoms like shortness of breath, chest pains, inability to sleep, irritability, and can even lead to fear that paralyzes you from doing things that you would normally enjoy. Many people who suffer from anxiety also report changes in their lives such as a divorce or loss of their jobs.Benefits of Massage for Treatment of Anxiety
The key to using massage therapy for anxiety is to use a therapeutic touch. Deep tissue massage that is painful before it gets better may cause more anxiety symptoms. Creating a pain free, relaxing environment is key in reducing the symptoms of anxiety. Only a licensed massage therapist can effectively treat anxiety with massage treatments. The therapist is specially trained in all aspects of treating various conditions through the art of massage, including anxiety.
Your massage therapist for anxiety will use a combination of techniques to ease your symptoms. These techniques are usually a good dose of gentle touch massage that releases tension as well as a quiet environment with subtle sounds like wave sounds that create an environment that promotes mental and physical healing.