Stress. It’s as inevitable as it is essential. It can be equal parts exhausting and motivating. And it often gets a bad rap. 

The negative connotations we associate with stress are often related to acute or chronic stress that leaves you worn out and jittery. Acute stress can be quickly remedied with a solid dose of rest, but unchecked, repeated stress can take a toll on your body and mind. This kind of bad stress can lead to anxiety, headaches, insomnia, confusion, poor concentration, and even pain and high blood pressure.

But stress can also be good for us. At its most basic, short-term stress is nature’s survival mechanism. It’s what gives a lion a chance to catch a gazelle while giving the gazelle a chance to escape. In humans, good stress can help us rise to the challenges of daily life and motivate us to reach our goals.

Stress is unavoidable, and it can’t always be the good kind, so managing it can make all the difference between reaching a state of total burnout and restoring your energy between undertakings. At Healthworks, we believe that if stress is essential, rebounding from it should be too. It’s why our massage offerings are central to our restorative services.

Once relegated as just a feel-good luxury that indulges and pampers, massage is now recognized as a powerful stress management tool that can help you take charge of your health and well-being on both physical and psychological levels.

Here’s how massage works to relieve stress:

Triggers a relaxation response. The methodic kneading delivered by our licensed therapists encourages the body to slow down by lowering the amount of cortisol in your body while promoting the release of serotonin.

Reduces blood pressure. A session on the massage table helps calm the sympathetic nervous system, which raises your blood pressure in response to stress.

Improves sleep. Massage can directly impact the body’s production of melatonin. That, combined with lower levels of cortisol and higher levels of serotonin, create a relaxed state that leads to better sleep, which leads to better rest.

Releases muscle tension. Tight muscles are a physical response to stress, which restricts movement and can even lead to pain. A massage can increases tissue elasticity and stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system to relax the body.

Improves mental health. A massage stimulates the receptors, nerves and hormones responsible for mood regulation leading to a more positive outlook, which boosts confidence and improves focus.

Elevate your energy in 2023 by making massage part of your stress management plan. You can learn more about all our offerings here.