Within us all there is a silent system working to keep us healthy – the lymph system. Without it our bodies would swell up like balloons, swamping our cells with stagnant fluid. The lymph system’s impact is so far reaching that many don’t even realize that minor aches and pains, low energy or susceptibility to colds and flu may be due to a sluggish lymph system and a compromised immune system. In this article we’ll discuss the anatomy of the lymph system, what happens during edema and how lymph drainage massage can help.
Lymphatic drainage massage is a profound technique to help increase lymph flow. With an increase of lymph flow immune function is increased. Harmful substances are removed from the tissues and neutralized in the nodes. It has also been shown that an increase in lymph flow stimulates an increased production of lymphocytes- enhancing immune function.
Patients that have extreme amounts of edema should work with a group of healthcare practitioner trained in lymph drainage, bandaging and other modalities. However, with a proper understanding of contraindications and some basic training, massage therapists can enhance the health of their clients and reduce minor cases of edema.
Lymphatic drainage in this arena can be applied to clients who are suffering from a lack of energy, or a sluggish immune system.
Lymphatic drainage massage is also useful when working with clients who have sports injuries. After the initial inflammatory stage has passed, lymphatic work can be applied after Sports or Neuromuscular massage has been completed. This will help to clear the tissue of debris, and help to reduce the minor edema that sometimes occurs after deep massage. Continued applications of lymphatic drainage while the client is healing can help to enhance the tissue regeneration process by keep the tissue as healthy as possible.