The effects of massage on health and disease, while not entirely understood, continue to be be confirmed by recent studies.
Effects of Massage on Chronic Conditions
Massage has been shown to have positive effects on various conditions, including:
- diabetes mellitus,
- depression and anxiety,
- attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD),
- autism spectrum disorder,
- various skin conditions,
Autoimmune disorders, such as:
- multiple sclerosis,
- Parkinson’s disease,
Additionally, massage has beneficial effects when used as an adjunct (additional) to traditional medical treatments, such as dialysis and chemotherapy.
But, Like, What Does Massage *Do* to Effect Health and Disease?
The current scientific theory about the effects of massage on health and disease in the body focuses on the stimulation of pressure receptors, causing the release of the powerful neurotransmitters, dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin.
These chemicals reduce the “stress hormone,” cortisol and increases activity of the vagus nerve.
The increased activity of the vagus nerve activates the parasympathetic nervous system, promoting relaxation and feelings of well-being, comfort, contentment, health, and happiness.
All of this is a super fancy way of saying, “Massage triggers chemical processes that make you feel good.”