Feeling the need to detox? Colon cleanses, detoxifying masks, and salt baths—you may have searched the world wide web for these, but did you know that your body actually has a sophisticated way of eliminating toxins from your body?
The lymphatic system is a subsystem of the circulatory system, and it is responsible for ridding your body of toxins by transporting lymph throughout your body—so that the toxins don’t accumulate and cause disease. Lymph is a clear fluid that consists of a high concentration of white blood cells; it is responsible for helping your body fight infections and diseases.
If you’ve been feeling sluggish, tired, and prone to respiratory infections, such as flu and colds, that could mean your lymphatic system is not working well. Having a poorly functioning lymphatic system can put you at risk of serious conditions, such as cancer and lymphedema.
This is where a lymphatic drainage massage comes in to save the day. Lymphatic drainage massage is a gentle massage technique that facilitates lymph movement around your body. Lymphatic drainage massage is aimed at removing toxins, restoring your immune system’s functions, and ultimately preventing a variety of health conditions.
Let’s find out what you can expect from a lymphatic drainage massage:
Before the Session
Since it is imperative that the pressure on the lymph capillaries be light, you should have a licensed lymphatic specialist do it.
Your practitioner may have you do simple deep breathing exercises prior to your massage to stimulate your lymphatic system and prepare your lymph nodes to bring in more fluid. Deep breathing exercises work by changing the pressure in your chest and abdomen, thereby promoting lymph movement back into the blood.
During the Session
Lymphatic drainage massage—unlike those that you typically get in massage parlors—is very gentle and harmonious.
During the massage, your practitioner will focus on areas that house your main lymph nodes, such as your armpits, groin, and neck.
Your practitioner will use very light pressure and long strokes to move the lymph fluid in a way that the organs will be able to effectively eliminate the toxins. Utilizing rhythmic hand strokes, your practitioner will restimulate your lymphatic system and improve the flow of lymph fluid in your body. This causes you to feel remarkably relaxed during the session.
After the Session
You may be advised to rest for a bit before heading home after your massage.
By the time you get off the massage table, you will feel significant relief, especially if you’re experiencing swelling in your arm or leg. You will notice feeling better by about 50 percent, then hours after the massage, 90 percent better. You will also likely feel incredibly rejuvenated, which will last even for days after your session.
Lymphatic Medicine Specialist in Kansas City, MO
At Missouri Vein Specialists, our board-certified lymphatic medicine specialist Dr. Scott Darling recommends decongestive lymphatic therapy for the long-term management of lymphedema. This condition is characterized by the buildup of lymph in the fatty tissues underneath the skin. Symptoms include pain; swelling in the arm or leg; hard, tight skin; and restricted range of motion.
Decongestive lymphatic therapy is a combination of lymphatic drainage massage and compression bandaging to decongest the fluid buildup and promote healthy blood flow to your lungs and heart.
If you’re experiencing symptoms of lymphedema or you just want to learn more about the therapeutic benefits of lymphatic drainage massage, call us at (816) 792-3400 for an appointment with Dr. Scott Darling. You may also use our online appointment request tool.