Massage Therapy: A Healthy Alternative

Pain is something that we all experience, and it is also something that massage therapy has been shown to counter and prevent (click here). In fact, surveys have shown that people choose massage therapy in part because it helps reduce pain and generally increases their wellbeing (click here). The fact that massage therapy is an effective, non-invasive way to deal with pain and stress while improving one’s wellbeing makes the following trends in America, described below, all the more troubling.

First, prescription drug abuse is a serious problem in America, and one that is increasing rapidly, according to the National Institutes of Health. It estimates that currently around 7 million people over the age of 12 abuse prescription pain medication, a number that is increasing quickly, especially among children.

Second, MassageMag.com reports that in 2009, nearly half of Americans (45 percent) did not take all their vacation days, while 39 percent said they had 10 (or more) fewer vacation days in 2009 than they had in 2008. To make matters worse, nearly 80 percent of Americans said they would do the same thing this year, i.e. take less vacation days and work through days they had been given off.

All this leads to the conclusion that Americans work too much and don’t know how to find proper relief for the pain and stress in their lives. While the most recent recession has no doubt made it more difficult to take free and personal time – or indulge in a massage – these are things that we should do to maintain a healthy personality and lifestyle.

Massage therapy, of course, can help in reducing levels of pain, and would be a great alternative, in certain cases, to prescription drugs. It also can be a way to take a break from our hectic work or personal lives, as massage has been shown to reduce levels of stress too. While massage therapy is certainly not a cure-all for every problem, it surely can help deal with some of America’s more stressful and unhealthy tendencies.

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