It’s not uncommon to get tired feet after a hard day’s work, hours of walking around, standing up, or exploring nature. Even if carrying a hammock sleeping bag with a comfortable hammock will help you rest your feet when needed, a few massage techniques will also help you relax your feet.
If you spend lots of your work hours standing up or walking from one place to another, you’ve most probably experienced foot discomfort. Our feet bear the weight of the whole body and do a lot of work, that’s why taking daily care of them is compulsory if you want to keep them flexible and strong.
Today’s market offers a variety of products formulated or designed to meet such needs. From essential oils used for massage sessions to massagers and salts you can use when bathing, foot products will help you relax your feet and support their health.
If you’ve had a foot massage, you’ve probably felt its benefits almost instantly. A few minutes of daily foot massage along with reflexology and a healthy lifestyle help in promoting physical health.
While there is little evidence to support some of the more bold claims regarding the benefits of foot massages, some of the benefits you can get to enjoy after having your feet massaged are supported by scientific research. Here is how foot massages can help your physical and mental health.
Blood circulation improvement
Today’s society includes many jobs that require little to no physical effort and a significant number of people lead a sedentary life that affects health in various ways. The feet muscles are no longer used properly, which affects the blood flow. Pair that with tight shoes and you can imagine the outcome.
Here is where a few minutes of daily foot massage can work miracles. The foot massage helps in transporting oxygen to the cells and improves blood circulation in lower extremities. This impacts the overall health and not only the foot comfort you get to feel.
Promote relaxation and better sleep
One of the first things that come to one’s mind when thinking of a foot massage is the relaxing benefits it triggers. After a hard day’s work and lots of standing up, one’s feet might tend to swell up. A few minutes of reflexology and foot massage will soothe and relax your feet and will trigger a feeling of general well-being.
Moreover, having a foot massage before bed will help your blood circulation, as we’ve just mentioned. This will further promote better sleep, which will directly and positively impact your overall health and mood.
Fight depression and improve mood
A foot massage session will instantly relax your feet yet regular massages help in taking that relaxation one step further and alleviating depression symptoms. Applying pressure to and massaging certain points on the feet for a few minutes twice or thrice a day can reduce symptoms of depression.
Furthermore, frequent reflexology and foot massage sessions can reduce anxiety and thus improve mood. There are specific massage techniques that have been appreciated for having positive mental health effects.
Help in managing inflammation of the plantar fascia
Some people may not have a normal foot arch because of ligament laxity. This is known as flat feet and, while some of those suffering from this may have no discomfort, some people with flat feet can experience foot paint even after light physical exercises.
The connective tissue that provides the arch foot with support is known as the plantar fascia. This tissue can deteriorate or inflame, which can lead to chronic heel pain. This pain can be managed and reduced with the help of appropriate foot exercise and massage.
Make sure that you see your doctor or a health care specialist whenever you feel pain, though, and follow the prescribed treatments as recommended. They might include a certain type of exercise and massage and doing that at home following some general guidelines you find online might cause more harm than good.
Reduce body pain
Reflexology foot massages don’t just help you relax your feet and improve blood circulation but can also help you relieve various body pains since everything in the human body is interconnected.
Such benefits are part of the most appreciated health effects of reflexology and foot massages. If carried out properly and carefully, reflexology helps reduce migraines, headaches, lower and upper backaches as well as neck pain.
Help in managing symptoms of PMS and menopause
Mood swings, headaches, irritability, sadness, and fatigue are just some of the PSM symptoms some women suffer from. Daily foot massages can help you alleviate some of these symptoms.
Menopause symptoms are similar to those mentioned above, just that they can be coupled with a few more such as hot flashes and depression. Regular foot massages can also help in reducing them.
Plus, some women can also suffer from sleeplessness during this time and since foot massages promote better sleep, they might help in alleviating and managing more symptoms at once.
Reduce edema in pregnant women
It is not uncommon for pregnant women to have swollen feet and ankles due to fluid retention. This happens especially in the last trimester of pregnancy. Pairing a healthy diet with rest and regular foot massages can help you reduce the effects of edema.
If you find professional massages to be too expensive for your budget, there are a few simple techniques that can be learned fairly quickly and carried out at home. Ask your significant other to help you with that and you won’t just manage the swelling and alleviate it but you will also get to spend time together.
Foot massages can help you relax physically and mentally. However, it is best to see your doctor and a massage specialist whenever there is pain involved. Identifying the cause will help the health care provider choose the right treatment.
In case you have no physical condition and you’re interested in the relaxing benefits of foot massages, there are many online resources where you can learn a few things about different massage styles and techniques.