Lymph nodes, which are a vital part of the human immune system, are located in different areas of the body. The nodes have many purposes but mainly serve as filters for stuff that is not supposed to be there. The lymph nodes also are used as illness detectors as many times they will enlarge when something is going wrong in the body and the swelling can alert the doctor of it. Sometimes during an important surgery the lymph node is removed or may be damaged which could cause it to start swelling up with fluid, which is referred to as lymphedema. Surgical removal or damage from a surgery is not the only causes of lymphedema. Sports injuries, various illnesses, and having lymphedema from birth are other causes of it.
A lymphatic drainage form of massage is generally a gentle type of massage given around and on the area where the swelling has become a problem due to the lymphedema. The massage therapist, or even a qualified physician, will use their hands to help encourage the fluid to follow the body’s natural lymphatic flow which in turn will help to alleviate the swelling. Swelling is the largest common problem associated with lymphedema but some individuals may also suffer from aches, tightness in the area where the swelling is, infections, or even hardening of the skin.
Benefits of a Lymphatic Drainage Type of Massage
Helping to increase the lymph node flow will of course move the fluid in the right direction so that the body can properly take care of it, but there are also other lymphatic drainage massage benefits.
- A lymphatic drainage form of massage therapy may help the immune system keep infections and viruses at bay, which does not only help the person to become healthier, but will also help boost their energy levels.
- Just like any form of massage therapy the lymphatic drainage form of massage can also help to rejuvenate the cells in the skin, which is a plus for those who suffer from the hardening of the skin due to the lymphedema.
- The movement of the limb that the swelling limited once before.
A lymphatic drainage massage is beneficial to most people but there are some individuals who should avoid this type of treatment. People who have heart problems, high blood pressure, blood clots, or cancer in the area of the lymphedema should not be given this form of a massage. It is always preferred if an individual who is interested in this form of massage therapy to talk with a physician before beginning it to avoid any complications.