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3 ways medical massage is different from spa massage

Published on April 05, 2018

3 ways medical massage is different from spa massage

Tamara Mathies, CMT
Lifestyle Health

Medical Massage benefitsWhen I explain to people that we offer medical massages, I often get confused looks. Isn’t a spa massage the same?

There is, in fact, a difference. In both, someone applies pressure to your body. However, a medical massage differs in three important ways:

  1. It is outcome-based. In addition to stress relief and relaxation, a medical massage focuses on a medical need. It is often used to manage pain, reduce inflammation, improve circulation, relieve nerve compression, improve digestion, increase flexibility or treat other health care concerns.
  2. It targets your needs through a variety of techniques. Spa massage and medical massage may feel similar, but their techniques differ. During a spa massage, the techniques likely focus on relaxation. A medical massage therapist will use a broader set of therapies for muscle health and recovery.
  3. It includes specific follow-up recommendations. A medical massage therapist will provide a targeted plan for treatment, along with recommendations for a series of timed visits versus a periodic spa visit.

Types of massage

Based on your goals, practitioners can use multiple treatments together to meet your specific needs.

  • Swedish massage
  • Deep tissue and trigger point therapy
  • Sports massage
  • Reflexology
  • Myofascial release
  • Healing touch
  • Prenatal and postnatal massage
  • Aromatherapy
  • Chair massage
  • Thai massage
  • Cupping therapy

Contact Lifestyle Health to find out if medical massage might be the best fit for you.

Health information accessed through www.centracare.com is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. We strive to present reliable, up-to-date health information on our web site and “For the Health of It” blog. However, this information is not intended for the purpose of diagnosing or prescribing. Please contact your health care provider if you have any concerns or questions about specific content that may affect your health. Log in to MyChart to send a secure message to your provider.

About the Author

Tamara MathiesTamara Mathies
Certified Massage Therapist
Lifestyle Health

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