This post was written by a fellow massage therapist and I have her permission to use it here on Valhealing. If you have had surgery, or a strong virus and experienced swelling, Lymph drainage therapy is a massage technique which could help.
“LYMPH DRAINAGE THERAPY – (Self Published Pamphlet)
Lymph drainage therapy (LDT) is a modern massage technique currently being used by many doctors, chiropractors, lymphedema specialists, physical and massage therapists. The therapy stimulates the functioning of the lymphatic system and moves the excess fluids forward into the lymphatic vessels for processing and elimination.
LDT is a gentle procedure. While the exact amount of pressure applied depends on the area and pathology involved, it averages an extremely light five grams, the equivalent weight of a nickel. For the client, the process is very pleasurable and induces deep states of relaxation.
A feeling of well-being generally follows the therapy. The movement and elimination of fluids and toxins provides the body with a sense of release. New pathways for congested fluids provides systemic relaxation and relief.
LDT therapy can reduce edema, stimulate the immune system, relieve chronic inflammation and regenerate tissue from burns and scars (pre and post surgery). In addition, it stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system to relieve chronic pain and can reduce insomnia.
The Lymphatic System
It is the job of the lymph system to collect fluids and waste products from the spaces between the cells. The collected materials flow through the lymphatic pathways, where they are cleaned, filtered and eventually eliminated from the body.
If our lymphatic system didn’t provide this service we would swell up like balloons. Its impact is so far reaching that many aches and pains, low energy, fluid retention and even our susceptibility to colds and flu may be due to a congested lymph system.
Many things impact the efficiency of lymph flow. Surgical lymph node removal will force lymph fluid which once flowed through the node to search for new pathways. The process of this search may result in fluid retention and fluid buildup in the affected area.
Lymph flow may also be affected by stress, fatigue, lack of physical activity, and infection. Even the aging process can cause lymph circulation to become sluggish and congested.
There are several things you can do to help improve the flow of your lymph system. Exercise, increased fluid intake and deep breathing exercise may help. You may also benefit from the services of a therapist trained in lymph drainage therapy.”