Did you know?
Massage soothes the body, calms the mind and revives the spirit of cancer patients and caregivers. Research suggests that massage helps patients cope with the side effects of cancer and cancer treatment and improves quality of life after treatment.
Oncology Massage has been shown to:
⦁ Reduce muscular tension
⦁ Decrease stress, anxiety and fatigue
⦁ Reduce post-operative swelling
⦁ Lessen the discomfort of neuropathy
⦁ Reduce pain
⦁ Improve flexibility and range of motion
⦁ Increase immune system function
⦁ Slow the formation of scar tissue
⦁ Eliminate toxins from the body
What is Oncology Massage?
Massage is a “hands on” treatment in which a therapist manipulates muscles and other soft tissues of the body to improve health and well being. Varieties of massage range from gentle stroking and kneading of muscles and other soft tissues to deeper manual techniques. Massage usually takes place on a massage table and the patient may wear minimal clothing and is covered by a sheet, light blanket, or towel. Oils or lotions are often used to keep friction from irritating the skin and soothing music and dim lighting are often added to increase relaxation.
Using an Oncology Massage Therapist is important because they are specially trained to meet people where they are in their experience with cancer and to apply a highly individualized massage treatment to comfort, nurture and support them in their process.
How does it work?
Studies indicate that, although massage affects the body as a whole, it particularly influences the activity of the musculoskeletal, circulatory, lymphatic, and nervous systems. It improves circulation and allows the body to heal itself more quickly and more completely. Scientific studies have shown that massage suppresses inflammation and actually enhances cell recovery. Evidence also shows that it releases endorphins from the brain, which makes massage particularly effective for the management of pain.
Studies and additional resources:
Source: University of Maryland MedicalCenter
Source: The American Cancer Society http://www.cancer.org/treatment/treatmentsandsideeffects/complementaryandalternativemedicine/manualhealingandphysicaltouch/massage
Source: MD Anderson: Oncology Massage improves quality of life for cancer patients
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