Ahhh…massage. The sound of the word alone can bring on feelings of relaxation!
But what about a therapeutic massage that does more than just relax us?
Could you imagine – a 2 in 1?
No need to imagine anymore!
That is exactly what we are talking about with lymphatic massage.
Did you know you have a lymph system in your body? Do you know what it does?
The lymphatic system in our bodies is basically like our own personal garbage company. A pleasant vision, isn’t it? But, it’s true!
Waste is produced by every cell in our body as it performs its daily functions. Think of it like this…much like when we ingest and process food, our digestive track takes all the good nutrients and gives it back to the body and then creates waste products that exit through our bowels – well, our cells do the same thing within our lymphatic system.
Our lymph system carries all the waste (think toxins, excess stress hormones, and heavy metals) out of our cells. However, we need to help flush it out of our bodies!
How do we do that?
One of the most enjoyable ways can be through massage!
But you may be wondering how this happens. So, let us explain…
What is the purpose of our lymphatic system?
Being a mover system is the main function of the lymphatic system. Remember all that cellular waste? The lymphatic system moves it on out!
This means that the lymphatic system is also a large part of our auto-immune system. White blood cells that attack germs and bacteria excreted these toxins through the lymphatic system to help decrease our susceptibility to illness and disease.
This is a very important part of our health – especially during cold and flu season!
In addition, our lymph nodes, which reside in multiple places in the body, act as as processing power houses to further clean up and remove threats to our bodies as a whole. This helps build up our auto-immune response to agents that can bring us sickness (this is why our lymph nodes swell when we get sick).
What does massage do to help our lymphatic system?
Because the lymph system is made up of vessels like veins that are close to the skin, it makes it easy for massage to stimulate the system and provide support in cleansing the body.
Lymph nodes are along these vessels, mostly in groups, and the largest groupings are in the pelvis, armpits, and neck. The lymph system is one directional in order to move things out so, when massaged, it literally drains our lymph nodes in regions like a watershed does to the earth!
What does a lymphatic massage consist of?
Massaging and draining many parts of the lymphatic system is the main component of lymphatic massage. Although the order of the massage may differ, the main locations stay the same and can include:
- wrist and elbow
After the massage, you may feel waste leaving your body through the bowels, sweat glands, skin, or breath.
As an example, when alcohol is built up in our bodies and makes its way to the cells, the body likes to get as much out as quickly as possible. Hence why we can smell it strongly from people who have seriously over indulged – through skin and breath – the quickest and easiest ways to get it out.
How do I know if I should get a lymphatic massage?
If you live any type of typical Western life, it’s probably a good idea to consider getting one (and regularly if possible).
The toxins we ingest on a daily basis (food, drinks, environmental hazards) can build up over time and create disease and illness. A lymphatic massage can help stimulate the cleansing system in our bodies to rid these harmful elements in our bodies.
Lymphatic massage can also be especially helpful for:
- Cold and Flu Season (for both prevention and recuperation)
- Detoxification (think all that extra yumminess over the holidays that you will want to cleanse from)
- Lymphedema (this swelling and inflammation of the lymph system, many times from weak valves and vessels in the legs, can benefit from the support of massage)
- Auto-Immune Disease (this massage can increase our auto-immune response and help stabilize the system)
- Injury (help give cells a sense of renewal to help reduce inflammation)
What else can I do to help my lymphatic system in addition to massage?
Hydrate and Move!
The lymphatic system relies on help from many other systems in the body to do its job appropriately. Movement and hydration can be two of the most important things you can do to support it and the other organs and systems helping it.
So grab that water bottle and take a walk over your next break.
Oh, and bring your phone to make your lymphatic massage appointment. It might be the most helpful break you’ve taken all year!
Do you live in Castle Rock, Castle Pines, Highlands Ranch, Lone Tree, Centennial, Parker, Larkspur, Monument, Colorado Springs, or the Greater Denver Metro Area and are interested in a lymphatic massage?
Please contact our office at (303) 688-6698 or schedule your appointment with Adam Whitehead, LMT, here to see for yourself how helpful it can be.