What is massage therapy?
What conditions do massage therapists treat?
Do I need a referral to see a massage therapist?
Is it expensive to be treated by a massage therapist?
How will massage therapy benefit me?
How soon will I see results?
What can I expect from my first visit?
Is it painful?
What training is required for massage therapists?




Physical and Mental Benefits: Massage therapy is the assessment and
treatment of the soft tissues of the body. Therapeutic massage is used
to prevent dysfunction, to relieve pain, restore or augment function
and improve health. Swedish massage techniques, which affect the
circulatory, musculoskeletal, nervous and respiratory systems, form the
basis of massage therapy treatment. Hydrotherapy, remedial exercises,
instruction in proper breathing, postural correction and specialized
massage techniques may also be used in treatment.

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Soft tissue injuries and dysfunctions: Whiplash, sprains and strains, sciatica,
tendonitis, muscle spasm, torticollis, temporomandibular joint disorder, thoracic
outlet syndrome, plantar fascitis, degenerative disc disease, Dupuytren`s
contracture, carpal tunnel syndrome and tension headaches.

Diseases and disorders Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, gout,
Multiple Sclerosis, Raynaud`s Disease, bronchitis, emphysema,
Parkinson's Disease and asthma.

Painful conditions low back pain, neck pain, post-surgical pain, cancer,
fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, pregnancy and childbirth, bursitis, HIV/AIDS
and migraines.

Conditions with psychological implications such as stress, anxiety,
depression and hypertension.

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No. Although many physicians refer patients for massage therapy
treatment, massage therapists are primary health care providers who
assess and treat individuals independently. You personally have direct
access to a massage therapist.

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The cost of a visit to a massage therapist is comparable to other
health care providers such as chiropractors, private physiotherapists,
etc. Most private insurance plans cover part or a massage therapist's
entire professional fee. Discounts are available

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Massage therapy stimulates or soothes the nervous system, relieves muscle
tension, assists the digestive and respiratory systems, increases range of
motion in restricted joints, relieves swelling or pain caused by injury or
disease, induces a feeling of general well-being and deep relaxation.

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Tangible results are usually seen early in treatment. After three or four treatments,
most clients report decreased pain and restriction, and improved function and flexibility.
Many factors, including the severity of injury or condition, your initial health, and
compliance with self-care programs at home or work will generally determine length of treatment.

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At your first visit, your massage therapist will personally interview you
and gather a standard medical history, typically providing you with specific
and detailed forms to complete. This is necessary in case there are any
contraindications to treatment and to give your therapist an overall understanding
of your medical health. Depending on the reason for your visit, you may undergo
orthopaedic or neurological tests before treatment begins. Your therapist will
explain the treatment procedure, outlining techniques to be used as well as
secure your consent before commencing with treatment. You are always encouraged
to ask questions and clarify anything you are not clear about.

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Massage therapist's work within the pain tolerance of each individual. However, it
is not always possible to gauge an individual's reaction to first treatment. Some
discomfort may be experienced following treatment. Some conditions (e.g. those
requiring the breakdown of fibrosis) may require incorporating techniques that
are somewhat painful in the short term. Pain relieving techniques can follow such
treatment; with massage therapists suggesting an Epsom salts soak as at-home
care to reduce post-treatment soreness.

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Your massage / bodywork service should be provided by a professional,
who has received sufficient certified training and experience. Don't hesitate
to ask practitioners about their background, training and continuing education
after graduation. I believe 'word-of-mouth' is your best source for referrals. The
training I received was from the New York Institute of Massage along with a
multitude of continuing education and certification programmes. The curriculum
at the NYIM is divided into four twelve-week sessions. By graduation, all students
will have completed 1104 hours of classroom training, 60 hours of therapies in
the student clinic & 20 hours of community service. State exam is required in
New York State.

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