According to WebMD, 75-90% of all doctor’s office visits are for stress-related ailments and complaints .Stress plays a part in health issues such as headaches, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, depression, insomnia, and anxiety.
People who experience high levels of stress, or become stressed out easily, tend to get sick more often than others who do not. High levels of stress can negatively impact a person’s immune system. When you are stressed, a hormone called cortisol is released. Cortisol suppresses the immune system and inflammatory pathways, rendering the body more susceptible to disease.
How Massage Therapy Strengthens Your Immune System
Massage therapy is a process by which a therapist manipulates the muscles, tissues, and tendons in the human body into a more relaxed state. This process is usually carried out with the use of their hands and fingers, although the use of special tools may be used to maneuver the recipient’s body.
Massage therapy has two positive effects on the body, physiologically and psychologically. Massages relax the body and calm the mind. Muscles are stretched and loosened so that the body is no longer tense while the the action of a massage can deepen an individual’s breathing, lower their heart rate and blood pressure. Overall, a massage can make a person feel more relaxed, and less stressed.
Clinical studies have even shown that regular massages can not only alleviate stress, but can also increase the immune system’s cytotoxic capacity, which is the body’s “killer cells” that attack threats to the immune system. They are the body’s first line of defense against an illness.
Additional Health Benefits of a Massage
- Stretching and manipulating the muscles helps the body to release hormones like dopamine and serotonin, which positively affects your mood.
- Through a massage therapy, there blood circulation increases. The improvement in the rate at which the blood circulates strengthens the body’s immune system and heart muscles
- Massage therapy dilates the blood vessels, which can reduce your risk of having a heart disease. It also enhances the production of the red blood cells.
- It also helps to wash out accumulated waste products which are liable for causing discomfort and pain (like lactic acid).
- When the blood that circulates around the body is increased, it increases the amount of oxygen provided to the vital organs of the body system, giving you an increase in the energy produced in the body, which helps you take on stress more successfully.