Few human needs get more attention than the quality of our sleep- or the lack of it. Every day we are bombarded with mattresses, pillows, teas, supplements, and music guaranteed to help us sleep; there are entire organizations dedicated to the study of sleep and sleep disorders. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the National Institute of Health (NIH), INSOMNIA is the: inability to fall asleep, inability to remain asleep and/or waking too early in the morning. Insomnia is known to plague millions of Americans every year; some studies show that 3-4 out of every ten adults suffer from sleep problems, although other age groups are certainly not immune. Sleep laboratories and sleep studies abound. Many insurance companies are now addressing sleep disorders and will pay for therapies to correct them.
The bad news is; Insomnia or short sleep deprivation can contribute to the development or exacerbation of:
Heart disease, Asthma, Stroke, Depression, Diabetes, Obesity, Back pain, Anxiety, Fibromyalgia, Headaches, Work-related accidents, and Motor vehicle accidents, to name a few.
The good news is: Massage therapy has been shown to directly impact and improve these sleep problems.
For centuries massage has been known to decrease stress levels, increase circulation, and place the body back into a state of wellness, or self-healing. Now science agrees that massage therapy reduces anxiety and fatigue and is a drug-free way to stimulate the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain. Serotonin, in turn, helps govern the circadian rhythm, or wake/sleep cycle in a 24-hour period. The stimulation of serotonin produces melatonin or the sleep hormone. Many over the counter sleep aids contain melatonin, but massage stimulates your body to produce its own melatonin naturally. Massage = serotonin+melatonin = sleep, and a well-rested happier you.