Craniofacial massage therapy is a type of massage therapy where the masseuse gently rubs your entire head and some parts of your face. Usually, if you go into a salon and ask for a full massage, the massaging of your head and neck is included. Craniofacial massages are essentially the same thing, except that your cheeks, temples and forehead are also included in the massage. There are many benefits to regular craniofacial massage therapy.
Stress and Headache Relief
Every muscle in your neck and face automatically tense up when you experience a less than pleasant situation that demands your attention. This creates a lot of stress and stress creates pain. Craniofacial massage therapy relaxes you, relieves the tension and stress, and helps the body create endorphins, the body's natural pain reliever. If you suffer headaches or migraines frequently, you may even receive a referral from your general physician to a massage therapist who is is skilled in this type of therapy.
Nerve Issues and Eye Strain
Ever wonder why you rub your eyes after staring at a computer screen for several hours? It is the body's way of telling you that your eyes (and your brain!) have had enough and you need a break. Continuing to stare at the screen after giving your eyes a gentle massage can result in more damage to the lens and/or optic nerve, which both need time to rejuvenate. Additionally, any nerve conditions you already have are exacerbated and you need the gentle pressure and release that massage therapy provides.
TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) Patients
Patients who suffer from TMJ have constant pain in their cheeks and jaw, and it can extend into their temples. The facial work these massage therapists provide relieves the pain and helps relax the temporal muscles that hold the lower jaw in place. The constant jaw popping that you feel decreases because your facial muscles are not working overtime to reposition your jaw.
Finding a Craniofacial Massage Therapist
If you are looking for a massage therapist to relieve any or all of the above problems, start by asking the local salons if their massage therapists are certified/licensed in craniofacial massage. If your general physician can refer you to a therapist, that helps too. You will have better luck finding a craniofacial massage therapist if you live in one of Canada's major cities. For more information or to make an appointment, contact a professional spa like Lakeside Spa.