Getting a massage may be just what the doctor ordered. Health experts are recommending massage therapy in conjunction with medical treatment for many health conditions including high blood pressure, depression, arthritis and even pain management for cancer patients.
As more people turn to massage therapy to help deal with stress, massages are being offered by businesses, clinics and even airports.
The Back Bay has many excellent choices for massage therapy whether it's a trip to a luxurious day spa combined with a beauty treatment or a weekly visit to a massage therapist because of a health condition.
Eric Derrico, owner of Boston Massage Associates, located at 437 Boylston Street in the Back Bay, says many of his clients are there for clinical reasons to help with a sports injury or chronic pain.
"Getting a massage increases blood circulation, gets rid of metabolic waste build up such as lactic acid and scar tissue. After a massage your muscles work more efficiently," said Derrico.
Because most of us spend our days in front of computer screens, he says, the most common complaints are back aches and neck and shoulder pain caused by a sedentary lifestyle.
Derrico says some health insurance plans let patients use HSA's (health savings account) to pay for a massage. He offers a 25 percent discount for clients who have health insurance which is mandatory in Massachusetts. He also has a no tipping policy.
What should someone look for in a massage therapist? Derrico says make sure the therapist is certified and licensed in Massachusetts. State boards regulate the practice of massage.
"Communication is very important. I like to talk to the client first to see what the goals are."
Derrico says massage is more affordable than people might think. "Clients should ask about package deals such as Groupon and don't be afraid to ask about discounts."
Massage therapy has been around for thousands of years. The earliest record of massage dates back about 4000 years ago used by the Chinese. But over the years massage got a back rap.
In the 1990's massage therapy started making a big comeback. Today massage therapy is respected and trusted by the healthcare community.
For more information on the health benefits of massage therapy, click here.