The beauty of working with talented practitioners on the cutting edge of their fields is that I get to learn something everyday. Most recently, our RMT Heather Heaney, introduced me to abdominal massage, something I had never thought about before when considering massage therapy. As Heather explained, this powerful form of massage can have a significant impact on fertility, digestion and surgical recovery.
The abdomen is a critical part of the body. It houses many of vital organs including our reproductive and digestive systems. Abdominal massage helps stimulate blood flow to the vital organs in the abdominal cavity and improves their function. It can also help with scar tissue as well toning and strengthening the muscles in the abdomen.
Abdominal scar tissue can be found on the skin’s surface as well as in the deep tissue. It can be the result of surgery, injury or repetitive strain. Scar tissue adheres to the muscle fibres and can bind multiple layers of muscle and connective tissue. This prevents the muscle fibres from sliding back forth causing varying degrees of limited movement and pain. Adhesions can interfere with peristalsis (the movement of food through the digestive system), the ovaries, uterine tubes and other structures.
Research has proven that scar tissue can be weaker, have less elastic properties and be prone to future re-injury. It is also 1000 times more pain sensitive than normal tissue. Unresolved scar tissue can also lead to problems with fertility or chronic pelvic pain.
Abdominal massage can help alleviate some of these symptoms.
What should you expect from a treatment:
Initial assessments are 90 minutes in length. This allows Heather to take a full history as well as do a thorough examination of your abdominal tissue. It also leaves plenty of time for an effective massage. To properly treat the abdomen, follow up treatments have been set at 60 minutes.
Who is not appropriate for abdominal massage?
Unfortunately not every treatment is for everyone. You should avoid abdominal massage if you:
- Currently menstruating
- Wear an IUD
- Have had recent abdominal or pelvic surgery and have not yet been cleared
- Have an abdominal infection including a bladder infection
When do we offer abdominal massage?
Abdominal massage is a specialized technique offered only by Heather Heaney. Heather sees clients on Monday afternoon and evenings.