Massage Therapy – the evidence for practice
Research on massage therapy is still in its early stages. A lot of the scientific research on massage therapy is preliminary or conflicting, but much of the evidence points toward beneficial effects on pain and other symptoms associated with a number of different conditions. Much of the evidence suggests that these effects are short term and that people need to keep getting massages for the benefits to continue.
Researchers have studied the effects of massage for many conditions and information reported below can be found here:
Some of the findings show massage may be useful for chronic low-back pain, chronic neck pain, and may help with pain due to osteoarthritis of the knee. Numerous systematic reviews (large scale reviews of many research studies) and clinical studies have suggested that at least for the short term, massage therapy for cancer patients may reduce pain, promote relaxation, and boost mood. Massage therapy may help to reduce depression and may help temporarily reduce pain, fatigue, and other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia, but the evidence is not definitive. Clinical trials on the effects of massage for headaches are preliminary and only somewhat promising.
There are a number of other resources that report on the effectiveness of massage therapy. Here are three more:
Mayo Clinic: Massage: Get in touch with its many benefits
AMTA: Massage Therapy for Anxiety
Association of Massage Therapists (Aus):
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