I had known about lymphatic drainage massage but I didn’t really know all of the benefits. Plus, I had never experienced one either. However, having a lymphatic drainage massage turned out to be a huge help!
Read more about our lymphatic drainage massage before and afters.
Lymphatic Drainage Massage Benefits
There are an incredible number of benefits for getting a lymphatic drainage massage. From reducing swelling, improving circulation and improving the normal flow of lymph.
Reason #1: A Large Amount of Fluid in the Upper Eyelid and a Lymphatic Drainage Massage
LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE MASSAGE BEFORE
One morning, my husband woke up with no other symptoms but an extremely puffy and almost “toxic” looking eyes. His eyes weren’t red or in anyway discolored. But, he was retaining an unusually large amount of fluid in his upper eyelids and for no known reason.
Being married to a surgeon is great, but it’s not when the surgeon becomes the patient. Like most doctors, my husband won’t go to the doctor. And that morning was no exception. He said he felt fine otherwise and was certain it wasn’t an infection. So, he headed off to work.
LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE MASSAGE AFTER
While my husband was at work, I made an appointment for him to have a lymphatic drainage massage session. By the time he came home the swelling was somewhat reduced, but not close to being back to normal. I had NO idea what to expect from a lymphatic drainage massage session. But I just crossed my fingers it would work.
And boy did it ever! Several hours after we left the therapist my husband’s eyes were almost back to normal. And by the next morning he looked totally fine.
REASON #2: Puffy Eyes and a Lymphatic Drainage Massage
LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE MASSAGE BEFORE
About five months after my husband’s puffy eye incident, I woke up with the same thing. The only difference was that instead of it happening to both eyes it only happened to one. The up-close photo below gives you a good idea of how bad it was. But just like my husband, I felt totally fine otherwise.
To this day we don’t know what could have possibly caused the puffy eye problem. We have speculated that maybe it’s a reaction to a tea, herb or supplement we don’t use regularly. We also don’t know how long it would have lasted without a lymphatic drainage massage. However, if we had just went to a doctor they probably wouldn’t be able to do too much. Maybe they would prescribe steroids or suggest an antihistamine, but they wouldn’t be able to do anything manually.
I’m just so glad I knew about something–lymphatic drainage massage– that worked incredibly fast and had zero side effects.
LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE MASSAGE AFTER
The morning I woke up, we had a dinner even to attend that evening. There was no way I could go with my eye so puffy. I scheduled the only appointment available for 5pm. I hoped that by the time our event began at 7pm, I would be able to see better out of my eye.
By the time I got off the massage table, the swelling had gone down by about 50%. Then, by the time we got to our event I was 90% better. I also noticed feeling unusually relaxed while having the lymphatic drainage massage therapy. That feeling, along with also feeling incredibly rejuvenated, lasted throughout the evening.
The effective and fast results my husband and I had from both of our lymphatic drainage massages was so promising.
What is a Lymphatic Drainage Massage?
The lymphatic system is foundational to good health. It’s main function is to cleanse both internal and external toxins and protect our body from harmful invaders. Thus, the lymph system plays a key role in both our immune function and cellular health. I can’t say it more simply than that. But there is also plenty to say about the broad range of health needs for which lymph drainage is an excellent tool to support.
It is important to understand that the lymphatic system is foundational to the immune system. It is essential for protecting us from illness and damaging, disease-provoking inflammation. Basically, the lymphatic system is the body’s cellular “waste removal system.” It is a network of lymph nodes and capillaries that carry away fluids from all tissues of the body, gathering the waste so it can ultimately be excreted out by our organs of elimination. With the assistance of the network of lymph capillaries and nodes, immune cells can travel around neutralizing pathogens, such as bacteria and mold, averting disease and infection. Keeping your lymphatic system functioning properly, directly contributes to overall health; a stronger lymphatic system means a more resilient and responsive immunity.
What happens when the lymphatic system becomes overwhelmed with toxins?
Your lymphatic system can become stagnant or impeded by loss of mobility, scar tissue, and especially when burdened with toxic debris. A stagnant or “clogged” lymph system can contribute to impaired immunity (and disease), fluid retention (edema), chronic pain (from the swelling and inflammation) and, from an aesthetic standpoint, even cellulite. A sluggish lymph system can impact or be an underlying factor in chronic sinusitis, puffy eyes, swollen ankles, arthritis, ear infections, colds and tonsil infections.
What does a lymphatic drainage massage feels like?
A lymphatic drainage massage is not at all like a standard Swedish or deep tissue massage. It is specifically designed to activate the movement of the valves in the superficial lymph capillaries which accelerates the flow of lymph (waste fluids) to cleanse the tissues. It feels very gentle, it does not press into muscles at all but rather moves skin laterally. A type of massage is also repetitive, which can be quite soothing and hypnotic almost. Lymph drainage treatments can be used to reduce pain, and can be used when other forms of massage are too forceful for the recipient.y
Who would benefit most from lymphatic drainage most?
Pretty much anyone in a situation in which cleansing/ detoxification is called for would benefit from a lymphatic drainage massage. This is because the lymphatic system is the means for clearing waste from cells. That waste still has to be evacuated by the bladder or bowels, so for example if you are doing a juice fast, you can use lymph drainage to assist the bowel in emptying. But you don’t have to wait for a dietary fast! You can use lymphatic drainage massage at any time to help your body cleanse.
And, just as important, it’s worth noting lymph drainage can be used for inflammatory conditions of all kinds—such as a sprained ankle, a knee recovering from joint replacement therapy, sinus congestion, or a swollen arm following radiation for cancer treatment.
This type of massage also used to help reduce pain and soreness after a rigorous workout. The gentle, rythmic treatment produces a whole-body relaxation effect, while it interrupts nociceptor (pain) signals which further helps reduce pain.
Can a lymphatic drainage massage help with the common cold?
Yes, a good lymphatic drainage massage can definitely help if you are coming down with a cold. The technique will rally the body’s defenses to flush out the offending microbes and drain the inflamed mucous membranes, thus opening airways and giving relief from congestion.
Is it possible to do a self-lymphatic drainage massage?
Yes there are videos on YouTube you can readily find which will instruct you on how to do self lymphatic drainage massage. It’s great to be proactive with self care. Another method of self care is dry skin brushing, for which there are also many online tutorials available.
Is there anything that can be done to naturally enhance the body’s lymphatic drainage system other than have a lympthatic drainage massage?
Yes! rebounding is a great home care tool. The trick with rebounding and other exercise in relation to the lymphatics is to understand one thing. High impact, cardio activity does not directly help the lymphatics. Increasing blood flow is good, but that increases the work the lymph system must do.
Here’s an easy way to explain it. You need to fix a leak before mopping up the flood it has caused. So using the rebounder is to be done by generating a gentle rhythmic bounce without letting the feet leave the mat. Otherwise you are increasing blood flow and adding to the load of fluid. Gentle movement is essential to support the lymphatics, as the system relies on joint movement and skin tone to maintain its proper pumping function.
Of course eating a healing, anti-inflammatory clean diet rich in plenty of plant foods will also help detox the body via the bowels. For what it is worth, it is important to have a bowel movement at least once a day, preferably twice. It’s also worth mentioning regular use of an infrared sauna is also a great way to enhance the body’s natural detoxification pathways.
After someone has had a lymphatic drainage massage, is there anything else they can do at home to optimize their results and enhance detoxification further?
I encourage everyone to become knowledgeable about their own health needs and common sense wellness practices – including clean food and water of course!
Herbal teas that help the body’s natural immune and elimination processes can be utilized. Although not a complete list by any means, a few herbs that help enhance the body’s natural detoxification process include burdock, licorice root, fennel and aloe vera. Gaia makes a great “Cleanse & Detox” tea that includes these and other detox-enhancing herbs, by the way. (Note: you can buy Gaia Cleanse & Detox Tea on Amazon.)
As mentioned above, infrared sauna, rebounding and a clean eating diet can all be helpful in supporting the body’s natural detoxification process.
Saturday 19th of May 2018
Thankyou for sharing your story! I too battle with inflammation! As a licensed massage therapist it affects my work. I cleaned up.my eating with healthy plant based diet. More smoothies, fresh juices ,raw salads and MASSAGES! NO MORE meats. I eat salmon once a week . I feel AMAZING and younger! ?❤
Friday 25th of May 2018
SO happy to hear you are feeling better Melissa! Thank you for sharing xoxox