Massage is just another procedure that occupies an important place in Naturopathy. Actually massage has had a very long history, dating back to ancient times. Massage has been used therapeutically for thousands of years in India, China, Greece, Rome, Egypt, etc..
Massage has a very salubrious influence on the organs and systems of the human anatomy as detailed below:
(1) Skin: The beneficial effects of massage to the skin are unequalled. The pores of the skin are opened up helping of the elimination of toxins from the body through sweat.
(2) Muscles: Massage reduces the tension in the muscles and relieves muscle strain. Strenuous exertion results in the accumulation of lactic acid. Massage will help to rid the muscles of the acid and so imparts a feeling of warmth and vigour.
(3) Circulation of the blood: The circulation of the blood at the area being massaged is speeded up, so that the component is supplied with more nutrients, and its therapeutic powers are augmented. The accelerated circulation reduces swelling. There’s an increase in the capacity of the blood to use it and to carry oxygen.
(4) Nerves: Slow and gentle massage with light pressure alleviates tension of the nerves and calms them. Massage stimulates nerves that are lax and increases their efficiency.
(5) The digestive tract: Massaging the abdomen
stimulates the digestive tract, and promotes better removal of wastes. The body’s forces are strengthened as a result of gain.
(6) The urinary system: Massaging triggers the urinary system. Because of this the process of elimination of toxic substances from the body via the urine is accelerated by the formation of amounts of urine.
(7) The core: Systematic massage will lower the load on the center, and thus increase its efficacy.
Normally dry palms are used for massage; but if the skin is too dry or if the body is excessively weak, wet fabric or soothing oil may be used. One of the oils, sesame (til) oil is the most appropriate for this function. Some people today use talcum powder to decreasing friction but this practice is not desirable, as the pores of the skin get clogged up.
Strategy: The process should begin with massage of the legs and arms. Next abdomen, the chest, back and buttocks should be straightened finishing with all the face and the mind. For massaging the trunk cloth should be used. As far as you can, we should massage ourselves with our own hands in order to combine the advantages of massages to a certain degree also with those of exercise. May take the support of others.
A massage should rather be accompanied by a bath with lukewarm water.
If suffering from elevated blood pressure, the direction of massaging movements should be reversed, i.e. from head to foot.
Notice: Massages are contra-indicated from these conditions:
(1) In fevers, no massage of any sort is suggested.
(2) Pregnant women should avoid massaging the abdomen.
(3) Abdominal massages should be avoided in cases of diarrhoea, gastric or
duodenal ulcers, appendicitis or tumours in the gut.
(4) Massages are usually unadvisable in most cases of skin ailments.