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Lymphatic drainage massage: how best to perform it?

1 Lymphatic drainage massage
  • 1 Lymphatic drainage massage
  • 2 Benefits of lymphatic drainage massage
  • 3 In practice

    What is a lymphatic drainage massage?

    A lymphatic drainage massage is a massage technique that aims to stimulate the body’s lymphatic system to encourage drainage and elimination of toxins, excess fluids, and lymphatic stagnation.
    Caring for this system is essential because it regulates the balance of body fluids, provides immune defense, and removes cellular debris.
    However, different types of drainage massage are categorized according to the benefits sought.
    For example, lymphatic drainage is one of the most popular and widely used forms of massage, especially in medicine and therapy.
    This type of massage promotes the drainage of stagnant lymphatic fluids in body parts with reduced lymphatic circulation. Its goal is to facilitate lymphatic flow.
    Then there is Phenekam massage, of Ayurvedic origin, which uses a lymphatic drainage massage technique.
    The main objective is to activate the lymph flow through intervention in the lymphatic ducts. The purpose is to reduce edema and water retention, helping to eliminate toxic substances that accumulate in the body.
    The Namikoshi massage method, on the other hand, represents a variation of Shiatsu massage used to prevent and treat a wide range of disorders, including those associated with the circulation of lymphatic fluids.
    Finally, there is Tui Na massage, a therapeutic manipulation from traditional Chinese medicine. It is distinguished by the use of pressure and stretching movements to unblock and harmonize the flow of both blood and lymphatic fluids, promoting the reduction of stagnant accumulations through targeted lymphatic drainage.

    What are the benefits of lymphatic drainage massage?

    The benefits of lymphatic drainage massage are many.
    This therapy aims to reduce or eliminate fluid accumulation in specific body areas, thus alleviating swelling and edema.
    But that’s not all: it is also a widely used therapy in the cosmetic field for the treatment of cellulite: here, in fact, the massage acts on water retention and the malfunctioning of the lymphatic circulation, alleviating skin imperfections.
    In addition, this type of massage is also helpful during pregnancy as it helps to counteract fluid retention in the ankle area.
    In addition, in some cases, lymphatic drainage massage can also benefit the muscles and mind, bringing general relaxation.

    How to do a lymphatic drainage massage

    First of all, it should be emphasized that it is best to rely on a professional for a lymphatic drainage massage. Although it can also be done solo, depending on medical help and advice is always best.

    Lymphatic drainage works directly on the lymph nodes using gentle spiral movements.
    These movements are necessary because lymphatic vessels are extremely thin and fragile.
    Usually, during a massage, full hand pressure is not used. Instead, use the fingers to create circular movements that move the lymph.
    It is essential to follow a specific direction and order during the massage, which includes the armpits, groin, and base of the neck, also known as “lymphatic stations.”
    Lymphatic drainage works best when combined with a good massage oil kit.
    Here are the different kinds of lymphatic drainage massage based on the chosen part of the body:

    • lymphatic drainage massage for the legs: the legs are the central area of interest during lymphatic drainage, as the treatment aims to relieve and reduce swelling.
      It is essential to know that lymphatic drainage can also be performed with the help of devices such as compression leggings used in pressure therapy.
      These leggings, by inflating and deflating in a coordinated and rhythmic manner, replace manual massage, pushing the lymph in the correct direction. Another useful approach for the legs are bandages, which apply gradual compression without the use of mechanical pumps or the like.
      In this way, it is easier to act on specific areas where blemishes are most noticeable and bothersome.
    • lymphatic drainage massage for the abdomen: a healthy diet and exercise are the best way to lose weight and regain proper fitness. A valuable support to better define the silhouette is massages, such as targeted lymphatic drainage for the abdomen, which allows you to achieve a flat stomach and lose a few inches.
      The gentle circular massage movements, which become progressively more intense, start from the belly, pass over the ribs and focus on the stomach and colon area. In this way, fat accumulation and water retention, which are responsible for cellulite, are gradually reduced.
      A second technique involving skin pinching and mobilization of localized adiposity is also used.
      This treatment, performed by trained personnel, consists of broad (sometimes slightly painful) pinching that separates the skin from the fat, thereby reactivating microcirculation. It is a very effective treatment, but it is not recommended for sensitive skin.
      Finally, to restore physical balance after the massage and relieve any light trauma, a relaxing circular massage is given.
    • lymphatic drainage massage for the face: although lymphatic drainage is mainly performed on the body, the face can also benefit from it. In fact, when performed properly, working on the skin and subcutaneous tissues, it is possible to stimulate lymphatic drainage in this area, which includes areas near the ears, along the neck, on the cheekbones, around the lips, and under the chin.
      Massage movements, together with the use of oils and creams, can eliminate toxic substances and reduce swelling, such as bags under the eyes, as well as relieve inflammation, which is the main cause of impurities and acne.
      In addition, massage itself plays an important role as an exfoliating and moisturizing action.

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