Benefits of massage for sleep

Research has found that sleep deprivation or poor-quality sleep can contribute to a slew of health problems, including an increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s, cancer and heart disease, weight gain, and lowered immunity. Driving while sleep deprived is just as dangerous as driving while intoxicated.

For many people, sleep can be elusive – one-third of American adults report getting insufficient sleep on a regular basis. Mentally, anxiety and stress keep you up at night, and thoughts about tomorrow’s work schedule or other responsibilities can prevent you from powering down. Physically, aches and pains or restless legs may have you tossing and turning.

According to the American Massage Therapy Association and the National Institutes of Health, massage therapy can be a very effective method of treating insomnia. (No surprise, considering how easy it can be to drift off on the massage table!)

Massage can help improve sleep by alleviating stress, which is known to affect sleep. It decreases cortisol and increases the “feel good” neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine. For those who experience chronic pain, massage can ease symptoms and promote greater relaxation. Best of all, massage is an all-natural approach to managing sleep problems and can help you avoid the use of prescription medications to treat sleeplessness.