Sleep, that golden magical time when we dream, and, also, the time when our brains rest and repair so we can fully enjoy the next day. It’s no wonder that we are perpetually on the hunt for that perfect mattress or blackout curtains. Since it’s so important to us all, it seems that every other day, a new app is launched promising better sleep by providing white noise or relaxing calming sounds, such as rain drops. Other people swear by essential oils or specific bedtime rituals to help them sleep, such as warm soothing baths or moments of meditation. And other “gurus” tout exercise, with good reason, as a way to relax, stay healthy, and have a more restful night.
But have you ever considered the benefits of massages for improved sleep?
Most of us think of a massage as an emergency fix – a way to get rid of tension or persistent lower back pain, or as a special occasion with the girls for a day at the spa. Or, then again, as a romantic tête-a-tête with your special someone. However, massages also have tangible health benefits. In addition to reducing tension and increasing your range of motion, they increase circulation, which is beneficial to our entire system and overall health. A massage triggers the release of serotonin, which in part provides that wonderful overall sense of calm by helping balance our mood and regulate things such as behaviour, appetite, digestion, memory, and sleep. If we’re honest, it’s not only our mattress or sounds that affect our sleep – stress and anxiety can be major contributors to keeping us awake through the wee hours of the morning.
The combination of released tension, increased blood flow, and more serotonin, help the body achieve an overall sense of well-being that contribute to a good night sleep. Massage Therapists encourage us to think of massages less like a quick fix, and more like an active part of a regular wellness routine. Since massages help minimize anxiety and depression, it makes sense to think of them as physical and emotional self-care. Much like exercise, we see benefits when we are consistent. And the better we feel, the easier we can exercise, sleep, and feel even better!
Some options to consider:
A Classic Swedish Massage is great for relaxation, pain management, stress reduction and increased flexibility.
Deep Tissue massage is a great option to target specific concerns, as it promotes recovery and relaxation. This technique is often suggested to athletes.
In addition to these more traditional options, there are a variety of massage types to suit each person’s goals, preferences, physical and emotional needs. Annie Young Boutique Spa has a qualified team of massage experts that can offer specialty services such as Reiki, Lymphatic Drainage and Reflexology. Check them out on our massages page.