Five Kinds of Massage for AFib
If you have atrial fibrillation (AFib), doctors will tell you it’s imperative to decrease your heart rate. Decreasing your heart rate will mean less likelihood of going into AFib as a result of blood clots, which often lead to strokes.
Massage is a great natural treatment for atrial fibrillation. Though there haven’t been any formal studies on AFib patients and massage treatments, it makes sense that those who have atrial fibrillation could benefit from this natural healing practice.
Massage can have physiological effects on the body that are unrelated to AFib, such as increased immunity, improved circulation and joint range of motion, reduced tension in the muscles and decreased pain. It can also promote a healthy sleep cycle, which everyone needs.
What type of massage should you get and how often should you have one? Below is a list of the five types of massage that have proven to be most helpful:
Swedish massage is a foundational type of massage learned by massage therapists in the United States. It’s a massage that has long, sweeping strokes that leave you very relaxed.
Sometimes, the massage therapist will use rolling or kneading motions and even tapping movements to break up tension and knots in the muscles. Swedish massage is a good introductory type of massage for those who have never had one of any kind. However, after you have been having Swedish massages for a few months, you’ll want to experiment with other types.
An aromatherapy massage may be one of two types; the massage therapist releases scents into the air via an aromatherapy diffuser while you receive the massage, or a massage that includes essential oils in the massage oil itself, for a specific purpose.
For example, eucalyptus might be used during a massage of the neck and face of an individual who suffers from nasal congestion or sinusitis. Peppermint, another essential oil, might be used during a back massage for a person who needs an energy boost. Rose might be used during massages of the back, legs and arms for someone who is experiencing relationship problems and feeling a sense of disconnection.
Essential oils used in an aromatherapy massages are usually kept to a minimum.
This is a massage where reflexology points on the body are held for about 30 seconds, and then massaged. These reflexology points are on the feet, hands and/or ears. When these points are stimulated, the result is improved function in the glands and organs. In the case of AFib, the massage therapist will select points that improve functioning of the heart.
Raindrop Therapy Massage
Raindrop therapy massage is thought to be beneficial for the spine; the spine provides a connection to the heart through spinal nerves. In this form of massage, several different essential oils are sprinkled onto the soles of the feet and the back, including peppermint, wintergreen, basil, oregano, thyme, marjoram, cypress and aroma sietz.
After a few drops are put on, the area is massaged. The different essential oils are layered in a specific order with time in between for your body to absorb them and feel their benefits. You will also receive an aromatherapy benefit with this type of massage.
Head and Scalp Massage
Head and scalp massages are often forgotten. Try them — they’re guaranteed to bring relaxation.
Select a type of massage and book it — stop putting it off. Remember that the effects of massage are cumulative, so you’ll feel better the more massages you get!