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Article du mois
Article of the month



(Swedish, Californian, Esalem and other muscular massages)
By: Jocelyn Vincent, translated by CATCM's team

People often associate massage and relaxation and by the fact, to the lack of danger.

As we will see further, it's not always the case. That's why it is important to make the difference between the massage lavished by a professional and the one don among spouses, initially. Secondly, it turns out as important to choose a qualified massage therapist.

A professional massage therapist uses much more deep, targeted and precise techniques of massage that the person who gives a massage to its partner. This last one more being similar to caresses and effleurages than a therapeutic massage itself, strictly speaking. Here, I do not denigrate the exchange of massage among partners who are certainly pleasant to receive and who allow a certain relaxation, but whom does not aim at all to undo muscular tensions causing discomfort or susceptible to possibly cause some eventually.

If massage lavished by spouses represents very little danger for the conductor, it is quite otherwise for the more elaborated massage made by therapists.

It is important to be informed that there are two types of contraindication  to the massage.

The absolutes counter-indications, which mean that NO massage must be lavished under any excuse, except after evaluation and on recommendation of a doctor. Further to such a medical recommendation, any professional massage therapist will reserve the right to accept or to refuse to lavish a massage according to its competence and to its own professional evaluation.

The counter-indications that ask for a particular attention. These last ones allow a massage nonetheless, but require certain aptitudes or additional knowledge to make sure not to harm the health of the client. It is not rare, in this position kind, that the therapist requires a paper from the doctor before proceeding to the massage.

Absolute contraindications:

Haemophiliacs people, possess not or few blood platelet which allow the coagulation of the blood during wound. Since massage can, occasionally, cause of micro muscular wounds (during kneadings for example) it is counter-indicated to make a massage. Even the lymphatic drainage which is however a light massage, which favors the movement of the lymph, can provoke haemorrhages.

An Haemophiliac friend told me, several years ago, that she had received a lymphatic drainage while she was in her period. The massage therapist she met and who called himself professional, did not complete a health report. Since she did not believe that this disease was a contraindication, she says nothing about it. When she returns home, the menstruations started to be increasingly abundant, to the point where she must have been hospitalized for three days. As what a situation, which can seem harmless for somebody not having the competence to evaluate it can prove very high risk.

Certain haemophiliacs have sufficient platelets to receive a massage in that case, an authorization of the doctor will be necessary to allow the massage therapist to proceed.

If you need medication to avoid abundant bleedings when you go to your dentist, you should verify with your doctor if massage is contraindicated for you

The phlebitis is an inflammation of a vein (usually at the level of the legs).

Massage can dislodge a bloody clot lodged in the affected vein, which could then lodge itself elsewhere in the organism (lung, brains). In the event of phlebitis, no massage, even of the non affected zones must be made. If the therapist suspects a phlebitis, he should redirect its client to the hospital immediately.

Fever indicates that organism fights an infection. It is important to let the body do his work. Massage can provoke an increase of the body temperature, what should not be advised because body temperature is already too high. Moreover, massage could favor the movement of the infection in another zone of the body.

Particular attention

The therapist should avoid localized massage except for the drainage.

The therapist must avoid localized massage and should ask for a medical reference.

There are massage therapist who received a special training and are specialized in bond with this problematic.

Often diabetic people fee circulatory problems at the extremities level (mainly at the level of feet and toes). In case of doubt, the massage therapist makes sure that the client has a medical follow-up for that purpose or directs it if need be.

Varicose vein
The therapist has to avoid massage on varicose veins. On the other hand, a light drainage can help to relieve the pain.

Pregnant woman (request a specialized training)
The therapist must have received a specialized training for this clientele.

High blood pressure
Massage is allowed if pressure is under medical supervision and under control.
The massage therapist must avoid deep drainages.
If pressure is not controlled, the massage therapist can require a medical reference before providing care.

Heart problem
Massage can be excellent to support the relaxation of these clients.
However, the therapist should previously make sure that the client is under medical supervision.

Cutaneous affection
For contagious affections, the therapist must avoid massaging zones affected in order to avoid propagating the disease. For example, one can ask the client whose suffering from athlete's foot to keep his socks.

Massage therapist can choose to wear latex gloves to protect itself of any contagion.

In conclusion
Counter-indications mentioned above are related to the muscular massage. Energy massages as polarity, Shiatsu, have different contraindications. You will thus be able to be pampered, but by using an approach more suitable to your situation.

A professional massage therapist should ALWAYS complete a health report. The best way of protecting yourself and of avoiding useless risks is to get inform and to ask questions.

The fact of emitting receipts for the purposes of insurance does not guarantee at all quality or professionalism of the massage therapist.

You can also consult the following article to help you choose your massage therapist.

How to choose your massage therapist

To note that this article does not claimed to make an exhaustive statement of all the diseases which represent a contraindication to the muscular massage. It is written in the intention to sensitize the customer in the fact that there are contraindications.

Jocelyn Vincent is a massage therapist / hypnotherapist and president of the ACTMD





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