OK you have had your massage and are now in that “massage hangover” state of sleepy relaxation. Maybe what your therapist advised you to do now to make the most of your massage has gone in one ear and out the other. Here is a brief overview of what you just might have forgotten:
Drink lots of water in the next 24 hours. This may be the most important piece of advice for you to follow. One of the biggest benefits of massage is that it increases the circulation of both your blood and lymph fluids. This is the perfect time to flush as many toxins out of your body through your kidneys as possible. Drinking water is key to this important process. If you have gotten your massage in the evening, don’t down so much water that you will have to wake to go to the bathroom in the night. Just make sure to drink a lot the next day.
Rest. Your body is now in a very relaxed state which can let it heal. Try to schedule your session when you will be able to take time afterward for yourself. The longer you can stay relaxed the longer your body has to focus on healing. A warm (not hot!) bath with Epsom salts is wonderful for this. Plus the Epsom salts further enhance the detox process that your body is going through.
If sore, ice. Massage treatments for injuries and other aches and pains can involve breaking up scar tissue. It is very normal to be sore for a day or two after a really effective treatment. If you experience this, stay away from heat. Heat will increase the inflammation which will ultimately lead to more scar tissue formation. Your best course of action would be ice on the affected area. This will control the inflammation and let the tissues heal. Other anti –inflammatories such as Advil would be ok if ice isn’t an option. Make sure that you let the therapist know at your next session if the pain lasted for more than two days. It may mean that your treatment should be altered a bit.
Following these few simple steps can really make a difference in how great the benefits from your massage session are and how long they last.