Massage is beneficial at any age, but especially while children and teens are developing in such a rapid way. Massage can help ease growing pains, decrease stress and anxiety and helps with body image,
While there are many health benefits of massage, human touch is an amazing way to show love and affection and can create a lasting bond. Furthermore, making massage a routine in a child’s life can help them grow into balanced and healthy adults.
Here are some benefits of massage for both young children and teens:
Infant Weight Gain
Gentle massage and cuddling releases a growth hormone in a premature infant that helps with weight gain and aids in development of vital organs and brain development.
Stimulates Motor Development
Massage helps ease the tension and pain that happens when you grow and develop quickly. It has been shown to help with motor development in infants but can also help with Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, HIV and infants born with drug or alcohol addictions.
Stimulates Cognitive Development
Many studies have been done regarding massage improving cognitive development. Becoming more alert as well as an increase of energy happens when serotonin and dopamine levels are increased. Massage is one great way to increase those levels; improving memory, behavior and cognition as well as developing better focus, attention and potential for learning.
Stress and Anxiety Relief
By using massage, stress hormone and blood glucose levels can be reduced. This can contribute to the health of the immune system which can positively affect the bodies' defense against toxins, parasites, bacteria, microbes, pathogens and viruses. Massage has also been found to reduce asthma and anxiety symptoms in children, teens and adults.
Children participate in many activities and sports during the school year. They often suffer strains, sprains and repetitive motion injuries. as well as growth plate injuries and even fractures. Because they are still growing and are more vulnerable than adults to overuse and injury, it makes sense to offer them the same opportunity for pain relief and healing through massage and acupuncture. An added benefit is performance, if you feel better you'll play better!
Oftentimes when we think about stress and anxiety we think of an adult condition; however, children and teens experience a myriad of difficult situations in their every day lives.
Massage is a wonderful stress-buster for teenagers. It's a great way to allow the stress we hold in our bodies to dissolve. At the same time when our good guy hormones are increased by massage and touch, our immune system becomes stronger, allowing us to fight viruses and illness.
Poor Body Image & Eating Disorders
Eating disorders can come from many sources, including social pressures, depression and poor body image. When depression and low body confidence goes untreated, oftentimes eating disorders can develop.
Massage increases the feel good hormone dopamine and can make us feel better and reduce feelings of anxiety or depression. It's also a wonderful reminder that any body no matter what size, shape or dimensions can be touched and honored in a positive manner. This can be powerful medicine for a person with poor body image issues.
While counseling is critical in treating people with eating disorders, massage therapy can be a powerful adjunct to other forms of treatment. Please check out our Xiuma Healthy Lifestyle Program that will help your teen learn what their bodies really need.
Having a regular massage also tells our body, mind and spirit that self care is necessary for wellness and it's ok to take care of ourselves. Children who receive regular bodywork will grow into more balanced, healthy adults.
Do you know a child or teen who could use a massage?
Call 801-426-4226 and schedule a massage for them today!