What Medical Conditions Might Benefit From Massage Or Is It Mainly A Stress Reducer?

Ronald Glick, M.D., UPMC

Question: What medical conditions might benefit from massage or is it mainly a stress reducer?

Answer: Massage can certainly help for stress and stress management. We've found that when patients are in the hospital for various health conditions, receiving massage by the nursing staff can help lower their blood pressure, and just in general improve their pain and their wellbeing.

It can also help for various kinds of pain and musculoskeletal conditions. A lot of people wear stress in different parts of their body -- particularly, it can cause headaches, neck pain, muscle tightness in the shoulders -- and massage can help to loosen those areas up as well.

Massage can also help for deeper or more serious pain or musculoskeletal problems -- things like osteoarthritis or disc disease, people with more serious neck or back pain. So massage ends up being beneficial both for pain and other health conditions, as well as for the stress management.

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