Massage has long been used as an alternative and complementary medicine for stress relief, relaxation, muscle recovery, and other health conditions such as arthritis. It is useful for people suffering from fatigue, stress, and painful muscles since the techniques used in massage aim to improve blood circulation, promote healing, and restore proper function. Although a massage may provide several benefits to your body, it also comes with a few drawbacks that could cause discomfort or aggravate the underlying medical issues. This article looks at different circumstances when having a massage can be bad for you and how it can cause negative side effects.
- It May Worsen Pre-Existing Health Conditions
If you never discussed with your massage therapist about a pre-existing health condition, there are high chances that having a massage could cause further complications. For instance, massage performed at the site of bone fractures, open wounds, and blood clots could cause more harm than good as it worsens your current situation. While massage is helpful for cancer patients, a massage therapist needs to avoid direct contact with the tumor site. Pregnant women could also experience induced labor or internal injuries after having a massage.
Patients with low blood platelet counts may suffer from bruising and pain depending on the amount of pressure applied during the massage. It is important to get approval from your doctor or discuss with your therapist about any pre-existing health condition so that they can customize the massage to suit your needs.
- Soreness After Massage
Many people think of massage as a soothing and relaxing session but it may turn out to be intense and painful for other types of massage such as sports massage or deep-tissue massage. Many people have experienced some type of discomfort after the session especially when a therapist applies a great amount of pressure during the massage. However, soreness that occurs after having a Swedish massage should not last for more than a day or two. It is important to seek medical advice should the pain extend beyond this period. You can always ask your therapist to reduce the intensity of pressure at your next session.
- Sensory Injury From Painful Massage
A painful and alarming sensory experience may increase pain sensitivity of an individual that can last for a lifetime. Individuals who experience pain system dysfunction can have both minor and major drawbacks when receiving a painful massage. The experience of pain is affected by several factors that can be emotional or psychological. People suffering from chronic pain may experience a certain degree of pain neurology dysfunction, which can be worsened by threatening sensations that may be caused by a massage. Pain science reveals that a volatile and misleading sensation is often more than just a symptom and can be worse than what started it in the first place.
- Tissue Tears and Injuries
Many therapists believe in the principle of no pain no gain, which means that if it does not hurt, then it is not effective. Although it has been backed up by successful therapy sessions, this sort of mindset can turn out to be problematic for many reasons. Applying too much pressure can do more harm than benefit as it can lead to tissue tears, severe bruising and even fractures. It also takes you away from the experience of having a relaxing massage since the session entails vicious pulling, tugging, and pressing. Pushing hard enough on the wrong place can cause serious injury to a nerve, which may affect senses that send critical information to the brain.
- Stress-Induced Fatigue
Intense massage can drain your energy the following day as you may feel extremely tired than usual. This happens because your neurological system may become over-stimulated by the massage thus creating stress-induced fatigue. Your central nervous system may be slightly overloaded from the physical manipulation techniques used by your therapist, which can take some time to adjust. During this period, it is important to avoid intense exercises or stressful engagements to help your body unwind both physically and mentally.
There is no doubt that massage can have many health benefits for an individual. However, it can also be bad for you if not done using the right procedures. It is recommended to disclose any pre-existing health conditions to your therapist so that they can adjust the treatment to suit your needs. It is also important to speak up if you are not comfortable with the massage techniques used by your therapist. Waiting until you are feeling stiff, tense, and sore may worsen your current situation and can create a negative experience, especially if you are having a massage for the first time.