Conditions treated

Massage Therapy and Sleep Issues

A good night’s sleep is crucial to our well-being and our health. Sleep issues can impact your entire day. You may feel drowsy or irritable, your thoughts may be foggy, and you may start to notice a difference in your body as well.

If you’re having trouble falling asleep at night maybe it’s time you consider massage therapy to help you sleep better.

The Importance of Sleep

Sleep is such an important part of our well-being. While some people need less sleep than others, sleep deprivation is associated with several medical issues and can lead to a decline in overall health.

The Center for Disease Control has reported that a lack of sleep is associated with a host of medical issues:

  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Obesity
  • Depression

An ongoing issue with sleep can affect how you feel physically and emotionally, and grow into a larger health issue.

Massage for Better Sleep

Some research is illuminating how massage therapy can benefit people who are having difficulty sleeping. For example, one study followed several people with lower back pain and sleep disturbances. The group that received massages reported feeling less pain, with fewer depression symptoms and improved anxiety and sleep.

This study followed these adults with lower back pain and sleep disturbances for five weeks. The adults chosen for the study experienced lower back pain and related sleep issues for at least six months.

One group received 30-minute massages, two times per week. The other group received relaxation therapy sessions twice a week for 30 minutes. Each participant filled out a questionnaire at the beginning and end of the trial. At the end of the trail, those in the massage group reported benefits in anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbance. They even showed improved trunk and pain flexion performance.

Slow-Stroke Back Massages for Leukemia Patients

Massage may help people undergoing treatment for leukemia to ease the symptoms they are experiencing, including fatigue and sleep disorders, when paired with their treatment regimen.

A study published in 2017 followed 60 adult acute leukemia patients and their nurses for four weeks. The patients were separated into two groups: the control group and the intervention group. The intervention group of patients received slow-stroke back massages 3 times per week for 10 minutes at a time. Both groups reported their pain, fatigue, and sleep disorder symptoms on a numeric rating scale.

Patients who received slow-stroke back massages three times per week reported feeling less pain and fatigue. They also found their sleep quality improved and experienced less effects of their progressive sleep disorders.

Massage and Fatigue

Sleep issues will lead you to feel fatigued. Another study followed the effects of massage therapy for patients with poor sleep quality who had also received a coronary artery bypass graft surgery. This study looked at whether massage therapy was an effective way to improve sleep quality for these patients.

The 40 participants in the study were randomly assigned to a control group or a massage therapy group after their release from the ICU. For three nights the participants in the massage therapy group received massage therapy sessions.

Participants in the control group and massage therapy group were evaluated the following morning for pain in their back, chest, and shoulders, and on fatigue and sleep quality. While both groups reported feeling less pain, the participants in the massage therapy group also reported fewer complaints of fatigue and experienced better sleep.

I’m a firm believer in the benefits of massage therapy for sleep disturbances, sleep disorders, and fatigue. Let’s work together so you can sleep better at night and wake up feeling rested, happy, and well.