When should I not get a massage?

There are few conditions which would prevent you from enjoying some type of massage. If you have any of the following conditions, you should not get a massage (and if you develop any prior to your appointment, let us know and we will be happy to reschedule you):

  • Fever
  • Any type of infectious disease
  • Contagious rash or other skin condition of unknown origin
  • Immediately following chemotherapy or radiation – however, it is great idea to have a massage before these treatments (ask your doctor first)
  • Systemic infections
  • Severe cold
  • Liver and kidney diseases
  • Blood clot/clotting disorder
  • Pregnancy-induced diabetes, toxemia, preeclampsia/eclampsia
  • High blood pressure (unless under control with medication)
  • Heart disease
  • Fracture, acute sprains and strains – see your physician first. Once the fracture/injury is no longer in the acute stage, massage can help reduce the loss of mobility, reduce scar tissue formation and reduce edema/swelling that frequently occurs with a fracture, strain or sprain.
  • Bleeding, burns (including sunburn) or other acute injury – see your physician first – they may recommend massage therapy later to help manage scar tissue formation or swelling

There are many other conditions for which your therapist may need to adapt his/her techniques (i.e. arthritis or osteoporosis) or avoid an area completely (i.e. minor bruising, cuts or burns). These guidelines are provided to protect you and your massage therapist. You don’t want the massage to make an underlying medical condition worse, and you don’t want to pass anything contagious to the massage therapist.

To ensure your therapist can choose an appropriate type of massage for you, it is important that you fully fill out the health history forms before you begin your first session. The intake form will ask general health questions to rule out any contraindications to massage. It is very important that you inform the practitioner of any health problems, allergies, or medications you are taking. You will be asked at any subsequent visits about any new medical or physical conditions. If you’re not asked, volunteer that information if there is anything the therapist should know.

If you’re unsure about whether a minor condition should prohibit you from getting a massage, call your therapist before your appointment. For some illnesses, other bodywork modalities may work well.

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