Michelle Garrett, Nov 2017
One of the most common ailments our clients report is allergy and sinus problems. Although most would describe these issues as “seasonal”, this is Oklahoma….
We live in a wonderful state, where we can fully enjoy the changing seasons from sweltering heat in the summer, to blistering cold in the winter. Unfortunately, it seems that with Oklahoma’s climate, there are only a few weeks of reprieve from the dreaded allergy attacks. These attacks manifest in many ways including dry eyes, watery eyes, congestion, runny noses, sore throats, irritated skin, and more. If these symptoms persist, other issues such as Upper Respiratory Infections, headaches, fatigue, sleep disturbances, even upset stomach may arise.
How does regular massage help?
Massage can impact stress levels, sleep patterns, and detoxification. In order to keep the symptoms of seasonal allergies at bay, immune response needs to be at its highest function. Regular massage therapy sessions encourage the body to be well maintained. Circulation of the blood and lymphatic fluid are encouraged by Swedish massage. Blood is responsible for carrying nutrients to the organs and cells, while the lymphatic system removes excess metabolic waste. Without the lymphatic system, that waste could linger in the interstitial space and eventually lead to a weakened immune response.
Self-massage to relieve sinus pressure
Massage of the face and scalp can provide immediate relief of the sinus pressure that is created by congestion.
The diagram to the left shows the basic strokes to relieve sinus pressure created from allergens. Beginning with point 7, marked in blue near the clavicle, and gently massage with circular strokes for 30 seconds. This activates the lymphatic response of the face and neck. Next, start at point 1 in red, and follow each of the 3 pathways using moderate pressure. As the pathways on the face are cleared, it is a good idea to activate the lymph nodes located in the neck, near point 6. When pressure has been relieved, conclude the massage by returning to point 7 for a final “flush” of the lymphatic system.
Drift Therapeutic Spa uses Mountain Rose Herbs essential oils, which you can purchase here. Basil, Eucalyptus, and Peppermint oils are commonly used to help heal and protect bronchial pathways. Lemon and Lavender are antimicrobial oils which can help fight infection. These oils can be diffused into the air. Topical application of essential oils is recommended only when properly diluted and with training.
As always, drinking plenty of water or herbal tea, getting adequate amounts of sleep, and eating nutrient dense foods will all aid in healthy immune response. Seasonal allergies can be quite bothersome. Hopefully these tips will help keep you and your family healthy.