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Massage Therapy
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings

What is Massage Therapy?

Massage refers to the manipulation of bodily muscles, tendons, connective tissue, ligaments, and even organs to help promote health often primarily through relaxation.

It is documented that ancient civilizations have used massage for centuries and it is still used in modern day times the world over. Though there are hundreds of types of massage, some of the most common include Acupressure, Ayurvedic, deep tissue, Esalen, medical, reflexology, Shiatsu, stone, Swedish, Thai, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Trigger Point and Visceral.

Massage is most commonly used to relieve muscular tension and promote relaxation. It is also said to be helpful as an aid to the treatment of various conditions, including attention deficit disorder (ADD) , asthma , autism , bedsores, bulimia , cystic fibrosis, diabetes , eczema , fibromyalgia , HIV , iliotibial band pain , juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, low back pain , lymphedema , neck pain , premenstrual syndrome (PMS) , pregnancy , severe burns, and spinal cord injury .

Safety Issues

Massage is generally safe. 1 However, it can sometimes exacerbate pain temporarily, even when properly performed. In addition, if massage is performed too forcefully on fragile people, bone fractures and other internal injuries are possible. However, licensed massage therapists have been trained in ways to avoid causing these problems. Machines designed to perform elements of massage may be less safe. 2