Massage Offers Hands-On Relief from Arthritis Pain

Rubdown therapy may reduce stiffness and improve flexibility. Just be sure you choose the appropriate form and the right therapist.

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You know how good a back rub feels, how it can set you at ease, relax tense muscles and relieve pain. The medical community now recognizes that those same benefits of massage extend to elsewhere in the body, and that this hands-on therapy can help alleviate symptoms of osteoarthritis and other medical conditions. "Touch is the main ingredient for massage, and if done in the correct manner, it gets the nervous system to relax," says Karen Fink, LMT, RN, BSN, CLL, a massage therapist with Cleveland Clinics Health Solutions Program. "Obviously, pain is perceived by the nervous system, and if you can get the nervous system to relax, a lot of times you get a huge pain relief." However, massage isnt as simple as a back rub. The wrong type of massage, in the wrong hands and not coordinated with your other therapies, may do more harm than good.
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