Massage for Fibromyalgia Syndrome

Pain Reliefing Benefits

By Carolina Cuartas - December 23, 2019

What is Fibromyalgia Syndrome?

Fibromyalgia causes widespread pain and tenderness in the muscles. Most people with this syndrome have various 'tender points' and a reduced threshold to pain. The pain is most commonly felt around the neck, elbows, hips, shoulders, knees, and the back of the head. Those 'tender points' can feel like a aching or burning sensation. Other symptoms of the syndrome include anxiety, depression, difficulty sleeping, and trouble with mental tasks.

Massage can be used as a complementary treatment to relieve chronic symptoms. Depending on the needs of the person, the pressure may range from deep to light.

Types of Massages to Consider:

Myofascial Release

Myofascial Release Massage targets our body’s fascia, a network of connective tissue that is around and between our muscles and organs. Restrictions in myofascial tissue can be caused by trauma, surgery, and inflammatory responses in the body leading to pain and tightness. Massage therapists aim to stretch and loosen the fascia to increase mobility and relieve pain. Myofascial massage can provide much-needed relief from those suffering from soft tissue pain in areas including the back, shoulders, or hips.  It helps by restorating motion by elongating muscle fibers.

Manual Lymphatic Drainage

The lymph vessels consist of lymph vessels, ducts, nodes, and other tissues that form a network of branches that reach most of the body’s tissues. Basically, the lymphatic system plays a key role in the immune system, fluid balance, and elimination of toxins in the body. It also absorbs and transports fatty acids from the digestive system. It is composed of a large network of lymphatic vessels, which are similar to the veins and capillaries of the circulatory system, that carry a clear fluid called lymph directionally towards the heart.

Lymphatic Drainage is a massage used to stimulate the lymphatic system. It consists of light and slow stretching the skin in circular motions. The therapists use an order of strokes to help move the fluids towards the nodes.

Hot Stone Massage

A Hot Stone Massage could leave you feeling physically better than a Swedish or Deep Tissue Massage that does not incorporate heat. The stones allow the masseuse to relax the muscles more easily and get more depth more quickly. Healthline explains, "Heat has long been used to ease muscle tension and pain. It helps increase blood flow to the affected area. It may also reduce muscle spasms and increase flexibility and range of motion." (Source). 

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