Self Care, Tips & Massage Information
Self Care for Headaches
Suboccipital muscles are four pairs of small deep posterior muscles originating at either C1 or C2 and inserting at that glorious spot that most everyone wants worked in detail: the base of the occiput. The suboccipital muscles support fine movement and stabilization of your head and function to rock and tilt it.
Below is an excerpt and link to an article from Pain Science about self-massage with a tool to eliminate his particular headache. Several clients have mentioned The Knobble tool as helpful for self-care, so I thought I’d pass this along as well.
“…. warmed the back of my head up with ….. Thermophore heating pads …. Then, using a Knobble massage tool, which is just perfect for this location, I applied some intense pressure to my suboccipital muscles. And then I followed that up with a good dose of mobilizations (simple neck circles).”
Just a few ideas for a great massage!
Show up a little early, so your entire booked session can be on the table
Practically anything can be changed at any time during the session to better suit you. Be sure to let me know!
Time allocation to a particular area
Bolster / Pillow position
Music / Sounds
Face cradle position
Convey any preferences or concerns
If there is any doubt at all: pee before we start
Massage can help lower Blood Pressure
With the American Heart Association’s new guidelines, here’s a quiet reminder that massage can help lower blood pressure.
There is an encouraging study that reported lower systolic and diastolic BP even 72 hours post-massage.
Benefits of Massage
43% of those surveyed turn to massage as part of their self care regime for chronic pain, injuries and recovery.
A noteworthy 29% cited Stress Reduction / Relaxation as their motivation.
Ever wonder what the location of your knee pain might tell you?
Source: US National Library of Medicine
Epsom Salt Baths
I've had a few clients ask about Epsom salt baths (aka magnesium sulphate heptahydrate): Do they help with muscle soreness?
Meh. Probably not.
At least no more so than a regular bath.
It's not particularly well founded that Epsom salt baths are a good mechanism for getting magnesium or sulphate into your body. You're not absorbing the ions by osmosis across your skin....they're too big.
(Interesting tidbit: Epsom salt is actually proven to be more effective as a laxative.)
Epsom salts DO make the water more dense and silky feeling: You’re more buoyant and the water has a smoother feel to it......which is its own benefit. So bathe away!
"There is no good or specific reason to believe that bathing in dissolved Epsom salts will have the slightest : effect on muscle soreness or injury recovery time. Although this folk wisdom may someday prove to have a sound rationale, clearly there is none that its advocates have thought of — or even tried to think of, it seems."
Exceptional source if you'd like to learn more about Epsom salt and the hubbub around it: