1. Who pays for Massage Therapy?
Most progressive extended health insurance plans cover massage therapy treatments when provided by a Registered Massage Therapist. Most do not require a physician’s order for treatments, although a few may still have this requirement. Most plans require that the covered individual pay for the treatment and submit the expense for reimbursement. Contact your employer for more information. Most Massage Therapists will require payment upon the provision of services. As most are operating as an independent practitioner, they are not in a position to provide credit, that is, wait until payment is received under extended health plans, before receiving payment. Discuss this with your Massage Therapist before treatment.
2. Is/should Massage Therapy be painful?
In a word, no. Massage Therapy is meant to relieve pain. There are some techniques that can be uncomfortable, but massage therapy should never cause the client pain. If, during treatment, you experience pain, inform your therapist. Communication is key. As a therapist, we do not know what the client is feeling unless we are told. A therapist should check in with the client to be sure the pressure is ok, but if you are experiencing pain, DO NOT wait for your therapist to ask you, please tell them. If you experience pain or tenderness several hours or the day after your treatment, this may be normal and is known as kickback pain. This may occur if your treatment was relatively deep and your muscles were fairly tight. It may also occur if the therapist worked too deep too quickly or if the client does not follow post treatment instructions given by the therapist.
3. How often should I have a massage?
There is no rule about how often to have a massage. If you and your therapist are working on something specific, your therapist will discuss a treatment plan with you. This will let you know how often you are supposed to have a massage and for how long. If your massage is for relaxation or stress relief purposes, it is recommended to come approximately once a month.
4. What is TMJ (Tempromandibular Joint Disorder)?
Tempromandibular Joint Disorder is jaw pain that is caused primarily by biomechanical dysfunction of the disc and joint which connects the mandible to the skull. The disorder and resultant dysfunction can result in significant pain and headache to the face, teeth and neck. Muscle pain may be caused by degeneration of the joint from arthritic conditions such as osteoarthritis or degenerative disc disease or by muscle spasms secondary to another cause or factor. Other likely causes may be trauma or injury to other parts of the body such as whiplash or a fall or injury to the hip or low back. TMJ can also be caused by dental abnormalities such as malocclusions and bite malalignments. The primary cause of TMJ however, is clenching, bruxism and grinding due to stress and unexpressed emotions.
Treatment of TMJ
Massage Therapy is an effective treatment of TMJ. The approach may involve massage techniques to inside/outside muscles of the face, jaw and neck.
CranioSacral and SomatoEmotional Release Therapies involve intra-oral techniques that are gentle, yet effective for releasing muscles involved in chewing, swallowing, clenching and grinding. SomatoEmotional Release Therapy also addresses the biomechanics of the rest of the body which may be contributing to misalignment. Advanced intra-oral techniques are used specific to the Avenue of Expression to facilitate the release of unwanted tension due to unexpressed fear, anger and sadness.
TMJ is a symptom of physical, mental and emotional stress. Healthy rest, diet and exercise can also contribute to reducing the symptoms and possible cause of TMJ disorder.
5. What is Lomi Lomi?
The written history of Lomilomi massage and its proper uses are very scant. Throughout the Polynesian Island and Hawaii, this highly revered art was kept primarily a family occupation. Because of the spiritual knowledge necessary to be a truly successful practitioner, it was believed that only a chosen few were capable of understanding the reasons behind the healings. Frequently, the village priests or “kahuna” would train the successor to the family knowledge over a period of years to be sure of his or her abilities and sincerity in becoming a healer. There are also stories of a method of the “Laying on of Hands” from the kahuna to the trainees, where the kahuna chanted ancient prayers that would infuse the student with the ability to feel the healing energies that he or she would be working with the help of others during the massage treatment.
There are actually many facets involved in an authentic Lomlomi massage, both spiritual and physical. Aunty Margaret teaches: “Hawaiian Lomilomi is a loving touch. Love that the body as if it were your own. This is the secret of her technique. Success is guaranteed by the loving touch. “if your hands are gentle and loving, your patient will feel the sincerity of your heart. His soul will reach out to yours, and the Lord’s healing will flow through both of you. This is a universal formula for healing. It is our love flowing from the heart through the hands, a touch from soul to soul. This is the secret of Aunty Margaret’s loving touch, which she shares with all those who come to her willing to learn how to love and help others.
A- Is for ‘Aloha’, meaning greetings and welcome with love;
L- Is for ‘Launa’, meaning friendly, a feeling from the heart;
O- Is for ‘Oli’oil, meaning pleasure of being helpful and kind;
H- Is for ‘Hau’oli’, meaning happy, the happiness of sharing;
A- Is for ‘Akahi’, meaning humble, giving and serving.
“Alo” meaaing “before the divine creator.”
“Ha” meaning “the breath of life.”
Ho’oponopono: Forgiveness of self and others. Emptying of the heart and mind.
In any place, usually at the family dinner table, and done before the
sun sets, as a daily practice.
Certified Hawaiian Board of Massage; Margaret and Nerita Machado,
Kona Coast ,of the Big Island of Hawaii.
6. Is Deep Tissue Massage Better?
It is commonly thought that deep pressure is best…but this is not always the case. The adage “No Pain, No Gain” does not always hold true. The best determinant of pressure is what the client can tolerate on that day all the while staying relaxed. When pressure is too deep the surrounding muscles will tense to protect the area. Conversely, when a therapist first relaxes tense and sore muscles surrounding a trigger point the actual trigger point and deeper tissues can be treated more effectively. It is important to let your therapist know if the treatment is too deep or if it is painful, being mindful of pain verses intensity. A treatment can be intense without being painful. Being present in your body during a massage treatment and maintaining relaxed full breathing helps relax muscles and enables the therapist to treat more effectively.