When you enter a massage therapist’s room, you are immediately transported to a place of calm and tranquility. But massage is much more than a tool for relaxation. For over 3000 years, massage has been used to maintain health and wellness.
Physical therapists have long known the importance of using complementary treatments to improve a patient’s physical therapy outcomes. Manual therapy includes a variety of hands-on therapies. Some of the manual therapy treatments in a physical therapist’s tool belt include cupping, dry needling, and instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization. Massage is also another essential component.
Enhancing Traditional Physical Therapy Treatments
In physical therapy, massage is used to enhance the outcome of traditional treatments, such as exercise. Also, massage can help decrease inflammation, reduce pain, increase range of motion, improve joint stability and mobility, and restore normal movement patterns. All of which are critical to helping move a patient toward recovery. In fact, for some injuries, manual therapy treatments like massage are used before starting traditional treatments.
Research has shown that recovery can be improved by combining different massage techniques. Healing time has also been shown to be shortened by incorporating manual therapy techniques such as massage.
At Step & Spine Physical Therapy, our licensed massage therapists use various specialized modalities as an adjunct to physical therapy. While massage may look the same to the average person, they vary quite significantly. A relaxing Swedish massage will feel substantially different than a deep tissue massage. Some of the treatments offered include Trigger point therapy, Myofascial release, Deep Tissue, Sports, Swedish, and Thai massage.
Trigger Point Therapy
Trigger point therapy addresses referred pain. Referred pain occurs when pain is experienced in one part of the body caused by a trigger point in another. For example, a trigger point in the neck may cause headaches.
Myofascial tissues are the membranes that wrap, connect, and support the muscles. Like trigger point therapy, myofascial release targets stiff and unmoving areas that can often restrict movement. By releasing the tension and tightness in these areas, pain can be reduced.
If you would like to learn more about how massage can complement your physical therapy treatment, please call our office. Our licensed massage therapists would be happy to help you optimize your current treatment and offer massage therapy for those who aren’t currently receiving treatment.