Medications and Massage
Whenever you walk in to Alvino Massage for the first time, I ask you to fill out a tedious form. Among the multitude of questions is a section looking to discover what medications you are taking. What I am looking for are signs to what to watch for during a massage. The vast majority of time, you can get a massage no matter what you are taking, but there are a few things to look out for. Please, consult your doctor first if you have any doubts. Here is a list of the three most common types of medications:
Let’s face it; you take pain killers because you hurt. Pain killers work to alter tissue response and possibly reduce inflammation. When you receive a massage while on these medications, the biofeedback your therapist receives is different than when you are not on the medications. There are changes to your body’s temperature, muscle guarding and blood flow.
You can get a massage while on these medications, but it is best to get the massage at the end of your dosage cycle, when your body is a more natural tolerance. Common painkillers include Tylenol, Advil, and aspirin.
Most people take cardiovascular medications to regulate your blood pressure or minimize the response of your sympathetic nervous system. If you get a massage while on these medications, you may feel dizziness, fatigue, or lethargic. It is okay to get a massage while on these medications, but you may be better suited to have shorter, brisker strokes. Remember to get up slowly after a massage and don’t leave until you feel your head is on straight. Common cardiovascular medications include ACE inhibitors, Beta blockers, cholesterol lowering drugs and diuretics.
You need to be cognizant of the effects of diabetes medications. Massage is generally a good thing, because it will lower blood glucose. Paired with medications, you may become unbalanced the other way and trigger a hypoglycemic episode. You should get your massage while in the middle of your dose’s activity, not at the beginning or end. Check your blood glucose before and after a massage to make sure you are okay and bring a snack!
If you have any worries or questions to whether a massage is the right decision at the time, please consult your doctor! I promise to do my best to stay attentive!