Arthritis is quite the buzz word in today’s medical world. We frequently hear statements like “Oh, it’s just my arthritis acting up” or “My doctor told me my knees hurt because I’m getting old and probably have arthritis.” Sadly, the cause of someone suffering from the symptoms associated with arthritis is often overlooked. And treatment recommendations are too frequently popping a pill. But it doesn’t have to be that way! Let’s take a moment and learn a little bit about arthritis.
The definition of arthritis is: inflammation of a joint. Ouch! There are more than 100 different types of arthritis, but they all share these common symptoms: pain, stiffness, decreased range of motion, and swelling. It was reported in 2015 that across the US 1 in 6 adults reported being affected by arthritis. And women are more commonly affected than men, averaging 1 in every 4. The CDC is projecting that by the year 2040 nearly 78 million people will be diagnosed with a form of arthritis. That’s a 60% increase from numbers reported in 2005 (2005). Clearly there is a need to help people manage their symptoms… ideally in a natural, healthy manner!
Luckily, we have a powerful tool in our office that helps combat the symptoms of arthritis… Therapeutic Massage. According to the Arthritis Foundation, studies have shown that regular massage therapy has led to improvements in pain, stiffness, range of motion, hand grip strength and overall function of the joints.
In addition to the physical symptoms of arthritis, the mental and emotional stress of being in pain and/or experiencing limited mobility can be overwhelming. Regardless of the origin of stress (mental, emotional, or physical) the body reacts by producing higher levels of cortisol, which simply increases inflammation. Research has shown that massage can not only lower the body’s production of cortisol, but it can also increase the production of serotonin which has the ability to improve mood. Even sleep can be improved by lowering the production of neurotransmitter substance P, which is often linked to pain.
For our arthritis sufferers that frequent Body Logic we encourage signing up for our monthly membership program. Each massage session, especially when performed with a regular consistency, builds from the last one. We find, on average, that after 6 months of receiving monthly massage clients are finding pain relief lasts longer and joint mobility is improved long term. if you are interested in helping yourself or a friend battle the aches and pains of arthritis, check out our FAQs about Body Logic’s massage membership program or call the office at 757-427-0355 and schedule your first massage!