Massage therapy increases the release of dopamine and serotonin while decreasing levels of cortisol in the body. Why is this important? Because by replacing toxic substances with massage therapy sessions as a natural source for dopamine and serotonin, the discomfort of detox in the early stages of withdrawal can be alleviated and, in some cases, dissipated. We offer a massage therapy program as part of our alternative treatments for addiction.
Why Is a Massage Therapy Program Useful for Detox?
Dopamine and serotonin are neurotransmitters and ‘feel-good’ brain chemicals. They flood the brain whenever a person gets a dose of their preferred drug of choice. After prolonged substance abuse, these neurotransmitters have less of a feel-good effect on a person. This happens when the addiction begins to deteriorate the body. The detox experience becomes challenging as the person is looking for the same feel-good brain chemicals to reduce the discomfort of withdrawal symptoms, but they cannot be found.
Cortisol is an endogenous hormone. It is released by our bodies in response to events and circumstances that cause acute stress. It triggers the “fight or flight” call to action in the body. Additionally, high levels of it keep the body on edge. High levels of stress and anxiety are a significant roadblock to detox because they can tempt clients to seek out their old addictive habits as a way to assuage these uncomfortable feelings.
When going through the detox process , it is crucial to find ways to reduce stress as much as possible. There are a variety of physiological and emotional issues at work, including pain, anxiety, agitation, and insomnia. A massage therapy program can be very successful at addressing them by way of its effect on cortisol and how much the stress hormones are reduced when massaged. Stress hormones like cortisol have another negative effect on the immune system. This can lead to higher levels of pain and the potential for illnesses.
The Importance Of Massage Therapy
Not only does massage help to reduce stress, but it also results in a 16% increase in beta-endorphins, which, like dopamine, provide pleasurable sensations. Creating experiences that lead to a positive attitude is the goal because this momentum will contribute to the success of other aspects of addiction therapy programs.
Massage therapy is a key component of detoxification. Though a client who is going through the detox process may have ceased ingesting substances, they still have residual toxins lodged in the muscles and tissues which can wreak havoc. In order to achieve full detox, these toxins must be removed, and massage therapy is an excellent hands-on method.
The following are the various benefits of a massage therapy program for drug and alcohol detox:
- Decreases physical pain
- Reduces dependency on detox medication
- Increases flexibility
- Stimulates blood circulation
- Flushes the lymphatic system of toxins
- Promotes tissue regeneration
- Reduces muscle spasms and cramps
- Improves quality of sleep
- Reduces depression and promotes positivity
A proper therapeutic massage session will loosen muscles leading to increased blood and lymph system circulation. Applied pressure to the tissues and organs allows the body to flush and drain the remaining toxic chemicals out of the body while releasing feel-good endorphins. The lymphatic fluid system normally relies upon exercise and breath to properly move toxins out of the body. However, the added method of massage applies pressure and physically squeezes the hard to reach nodes that need to be flushed.
Contact The Detox Center Today
Our massage therapy program at our residential treatment program can help clients relax, reduce stress, remove toxins, and ultimately feel better. It is a therapy that makes the recovery process easier and more efficient. It also reduces cravings, increases positive outlooks, and ultimately boosts the success rate of other therapies and long term recovery. Contact The Detox Center to learn more about our massage therapy program and other detox center programs.