Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage
Lymphatic drainage massage, also known as manual lymphatic drainage massage is a very light touch massage which can help lymphoedema. There are two types of lymphoedema, secondary and primary.
Lymphatic drainage is sometimes termed 'massage' because it involves hand movements on the skin but it is very different from therapeutic or aromatherapy massage which can cause friction to the skin and increase the blood supply. This, in turn, causes more lymph to be produced.
The techniques of Lymphatic draining massage provide regular stimulation of the lymph vessels. These are located just under the skin. It encourages them to work harder and find new pathways to drain away the lymph using a milking or syphoning effect to move lymph away from the swollen area. Treatment with MLD may be particularly helpful if you have swelling of your face, neck upper arm, thigh, breast, or body. It relieves/can relieve swelling that occurs when medical treatment or illness blocks your lymphatic system.
It is a very gentle form of massage used to relieve painful swelling in your arms and legs caused by lymphedema. Lymphedema often affects people recovering from breast cancer surgery. But it is caused by other things as well.
The massage involves gently manipulating specific areas of your body to help lymph move to an area with working lymph vessel and encouraging them to empty. It clears lymphatic fluid from your tissues then it moves the fluid to your lymph nodes.
Like all treatments there are contra-indications (reasons for not having treatment) amongst these are blood clots, kidney failure, heart condition or if you have an infection.
It could take several treatments before you see a difference and any supportwear you have been prescribed should still be worn. Help is available here for helping to remove and reapply the supportwear.
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This massage uses very light pressure to stimulate the lymphatic system, improve fluid circulation, as well as stimulating the immune system.
It may help to reduce swelling and to regenerate tissue.
It is incredibly relaxing and soothing, and can assist in detoxifying the body.