Indian Head Massage for Osteoarthritis

‘Osteo’ means bone and ‘arthritis’ means joint damage and inflammation. This is the commonest form of joint disease, where there is damage to the surface of the joint and an abnormal reaction in the underlying bone. It is a degenerative disorder, most often affecting weight-bearing joints (knees and hips) and sometimes lumbar and cervical vertebrae. It can occur with ageing due to ‘wear and tear’, or prematurely, for reasons such as obesity (which places undue stress on weight bearing joints) or following injury to a joint. There is a breakdown of articular cartilage covering and cushioning the ends of bones within the joint and the bone surfaces rub against each other. The body attempts to repair the damage with an overgrowth of bone (bone spurs) that worsen the condition. Symptoms include pain (usually after prolonged activity), stiffness (particularly in the morning or with inactivity), loss of function, reduced joint motion, and deformity. Unlike rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis does not result from inflammation.

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Note – Gentle massage can loosen muscles and provide overall relaxation. Avoid any manipulation of the neck if this region is affected. If knees or hips are affected, ensure that client is comfortable during treatment. Medical approval may be required.

Head Massage for Fibromyalgia

This chronic condition primarily occurs in females and affects muscles and ligaments but does not damage joints. The fibrous tissues (fibro-) and muscles (-my) are affected by pain (-algia) and tenderness. It is characterised by widespread musculoskeletal pain, fatigue, and multiple tender points in precise localised areas, particularly the neck, spine, shoulders, and hips. It may also cause sleep disturbances, morning stiffness, irritable bowel syndrome, anxiety, and other symptoms. Many medical professionals believe there is a connection between fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome; some even theorise that they are actually the same.

Note – Massage can help with associated stress and improve sleeping pattern. Avoid deep pressure on tender areas.

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