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Post-surgery Massage Therapy: An integral part of recovery

There are many reasons, causes, and circumstances that lead to surgical procedures, but there exists one notable common denominator during post-surgery rehabilitation: massage therapy. Massage therapy can alleviate some of those post-surgery complications. After surgery, your body is susceptible to restricted blood flow, damaged scar tissue, limited range of motion, and pain or discomfort. Still, massage therapy serves as a viable method to get you back on your feet—sometimes literally.

Blood circulation

Blood circulation is imperative to the health and healing of virtually every part of your body. Cold extremities (hands and feet), numbness, fatigue, or aches are often a result poor circulation. A strong, healthy flow of blood introduces a fresh flow of oxygen-rich blood through to these congested or clogged parts—which carry away the things you don’t want (lactic acid and metabolic waste) and introduce things you do want (new blood)! Massage therapy catalyzes in-flow and out-flow of blood by creating pressure that helps blood move through the process. Good circulation is correlated with lower blood pressure and improved bodily functions.

Scar tissue

Healthy tissues are often damaged and scarred from surgical procedures— and sometimes this happens before the surgery (e.g. accidents resulting in lacerations.) It’s not always painful, but there are several symptoms that you could observe when experiencing scar tissue pain: inflammation or swelling; redness; throbbing or itchiness; or sensitivity. Scar tissue is not always visible, and isn’t always painful. Massage therapists use particular techniques, such as deep-tissue massage and/or myofascial release, to alleviate these symptoms. The good thing about massage therapy is that it’s a viable solution to any type of scar tissue pain.

Range of motion and flexibility

Flexibility and range of motion are essential characteristics of a healthy body (muscles, tendons, joints, connective tissues, almost everything!) Range of motion is the range that your joints can move. If you have a limited range of motion, you can imagine how this affects your daily tasks, such as reaching for objects—either above or beneath you. Muscles that don’t extend its limits (think sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week..) eventually tighten into that position. Similarly, muscles that get exercised in same repetitive motions (think continuous cycling without stretching..) result in the in tightened muscles too. Surgery often imposes these sorts of restrictions to our body, limiting our range of motions—sometimes completely. Flexibility and mobility of joints, and its connected pairs, can be enhanced by stretching and, of course, massage therapy.

Surgeries not only take a toll on your body, but also your emotional state. Not only does a massage address your immediate physical health-related complications, but doing so enables you to enjoy the life you want to enjoy. Information in this article is not to be taken as a diagnosis or fact for what you may be experiencing. If you’re unsure whether massage therapy will help your specific issue, it’s best to consult your physician or to call our office and speak to one of our therapists. Our massage physicians would be happy to chat to you about your specific post-surgery concerns. Please call, email or visit our office for more information.


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