Your first massage experience

If you have not had a massage before and would like to know more about it, then read this.  It explains the process and hopefully will answer any questions you may have.   

Make sure when you schedule your massage, that you will not be rushed.  Try not to schedule too much activity on the day you get a massage, as you will want to give your body a chance to unwind and de-stress both before and after the massage.  Taking time out for yourself, also called self care is very important on a regular basis.  Reschedule your visit if you have a fever, skin irritations (such as poison ivy, sunburn or shingles rash), or if you are trying to stabilize your medication (such as insulin or blood pressure), because massage can affect the dosage needed temporarily. In the days before your massage drink plenty of water and don't eat just before your massage. A light meal a couple hours before is acceptable. Give yourself enough time to arrive on time and relaxed.

HEALTH HISTORY

Generally, first appointments begin with an intake process, starting with a health history. The health history may be mailed out to you (just request this when you make an appointment) or you can arrive 10 minutes early to fill out the form. Generally, a health history will ask about medical conditions, areas of concern, your level of pain or discomfort on good and bad days, what helps reduce the pain and what makes it worse, and your contact information. You will be asked to sign a consent form as well.

The therapist will review your health history and ask questions. Because massage can affect multiple body systems, such as the cardiovascular and nervous systems, be honest with the therapist about your health. You should also let the therapist know about any pharmaceutical drugs or botanical medicines you are taking, because massage can enhance or reduce the effect of pharmaceutical drugs, such as blood pressure medication. Knowing you history allows a therapist to determine if there are any reason you should avoid massage or a particular technique.

The massage therapist will ask you questions to better design a session that meets your needs and goals within the time allotted. Let the therapist know what areas of your body you would like worked on, if there are any areas to avoid, and if you have any techniques that you would like to use or avoid. If you are concerned about undressing, discuss it with the therapist. Don't be afraid to discuss any apprehensions or concerns. All information you give is confidential. Massage therapy is non-sexual and your modesty is of utmost priority.

The therapist will outline what will happen in the session and then leave the room so you can undress to your comfort level. When you are ready, lie down on the massage table and cover yourself with the sheet or other draping on the table. therapist will knock before re-entering. Generally, you will lie on a massage table, covered by a sheet or blanket. Make sure you are comfortable and let the therapist know if you are not. Tell the therapist if you are cold, want to be covered, don't want an area of your body touched, don't like the music, or are experiencing discomfort with the technique or pressure. Remember, you are in charge and can ask for changes or stop the session at any time. therapist will check in frequently during the massage to make sure the pressure is acceptable for you. You can visit my website for any additional information you may need or you can call if you have any questions