We can all suffer from anxiety, stress and or depression from time to time. Stress can be good for you but repeatedly pressing the stress response button can start to negatively effect the body. Finding the cause of your anxiety, stress and or depression is very important. Everybody has different triggers and will require different approaches to manage the effects these conditions have on the body. Our advice is to always be open and willing to try different strategies whether it is meditation, yoga, bootcamp, cold water swimming, running, crafting or under guidance of your doctor cognitive behavioral therapy, counselling or medication. Sometimes we are our worst enemy in that we have an excuse for not trying things like I don’t have time, its just part of my job, I don’t want to let anybody down, its our willpower or lack of. This is not the article to go into this but if you want a really great read about willpower and why we make the choices we do and how to change your approach, Kelly Mcgonigal ‘how to master the new science of self control – maximum willpower’ is a great start.
Below is a table showing just some of the symptoms related to anxiety, stress and depression.
|Feeling irritable||Grinding teeth, clenched jaw||Lack of energy|
|Problems with sleep||Headaches||Unexplained aches and pains|
|Feeling of dread, panic or impending doom||Indigestion or acid reflux symptoms||Changes in appetite|
|Racing thoughts||Dizziness or general feeling of ‘being out of it’||Moving or speaking more slowly than usual|
|Difficulty concentrating||Muscle tension in neck, face or shoulders.||Disturbed sleep|
The above table is just a very simple example and you can have anxiety, stress and depression seperately but you can have all 3. Sypmtoms can be very similar for all 3 which is why it is always best to speak to a medical professional to work out your cause and triggers and how to manage it the best way for you.
Massage can be effective to treat some symptoms of mild, short term cases by helping with muscle tension, decreasing pain, helping sleep etc. It can also be very useful for severe chronic cases but must be part of a treatment strategy as it will not work on its own.
Massage helps to reduce cortisol (the stress hormone) and muscle tension by eliciting feelings of calm and deep relaxation. Massage increases localised blood flow which helps the travel of positive hormones like endorphins, serotonin and dopamine to areas of high stress and give a sense of well being. Massage can also reduce feelings of stiffness by increasing tissue elasticity by rising muscle temperature. Very similar effects to exercise.
When booking a massage to help with your stress and anxiety management notify the therapist of why you want the treatment. This way they can create the right environment for you to be able to relax. Asking the therapist to not talk during your treatment is absolutely fine. We are here to help.