Stress can have a long-term impact on physical and mental health and many Americans grapple with the condition on a chronic basis. According to the American Institute of Stress, 60% of human illness and disease is caused by stress. Some 44% of Americans say they feel more stress than they did five years ago, and one in five experience symptoms of extreme stress, like heart palpitations, shaking and depression. Stress increases your likelihood of developing other health problems. So what can you do? Using massage for wellness is also a great way to minimize and alleviate stress.
The benefits of massage
Not only does massage help alleviate stress, but it can be used to treat other health problems. Those include:
- Sprains and strains
- Neck and back pain
- Arthritis and joint problems
- Sciatica and fibromyalgia
Many people experience stress in tandem with other ailments, which makes massage a great tool for dealing with the condition. Studies have shown that massage helps lower heart and blood pressure, according to the American Massage Therapy Association. People also perceive less stress, depression and anxiety after undergoing massage treatment.
Dealing with stress and its symptoms
Many sufferers have difficulty managing stress. This is particularly true for those who believe themselves to be in fair or poor health. Psychologist Norman Anderson, chief executive officer of the American Psychological Association (APA), says:
America is at a critical crossroads when it comes to stress and our health. Year after year nearly three-quarters of Americans say they experience stress at levels that exceed what they define as healthy, putting themselves at risk for developing chronic illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes. All of us, including the medical community, need to take stress seriously since stress could easily become our next public health crisis.
According to the APA, people also report having difficulty implementing lifestyle changes they know will decrease their stress and improve their health. That's where massage can help. Massage therapy provides many therapeutic benefits — including stress relief — at an affordable price. It can also relieve stress symptoms like chronic migraines and high blood pressure.
Other ways to handle stress
Getting a massage is one of the top methods for alleviation of stress that the Anxiety and Depression Association of America recommends. The also suggest:
- Practicing yoga or meditation
- Eating healthy meals
- Getting adequate sleep
- Exercising daily
- Using deep breathing techniques
- Talking to someone
- Volunteering in your community
Acupuncture & Massage College’s Community Clinic offers acupuncture, massage therapy and herbal medicine for the treatment of a wide range of health conditions, as well as for overall wellness. To schedule an appointment call (305) 595-9500. For information about AMC’s Oriental Medicine and Massage Therapy programs you can email our admissions department.