Oncology Massage Techniques:
- Light touch – Non invasive light touch modalities to enhance comfort, relaxation, etc.
- Reflexology of Hands, Feet and Face
- Cranio-sacral Therapy
- Lymphatic Drainage
- Scar Therapy
- Warm Water Bag Therapy
- Mind-Body conneciton – unique opportunity to let down your armor and give yourself to another to care for you. You do not plan, schedule or fight. A chance to simply rest and recharge
- Visceral therapy – balancing the organ function
Those patients at risk of Lymphedema would be ones that the nodes have been removed from some area and the lymph system is compromised. A certified oncology massage therapist is trained in treating these areas and avoiding an onset of lymphedema. Because the lymph system has been compromise, the nodes no longer have the same capacity for transporting fluids through that area where the node has been removed. This can cause backup of fluid leading to swelling which may eventually become extreme or irreversible. Oncology massage integrates safe protocols that will address those issues when lymph nodes have been compromise. Massage given by someone who does not know or utilized these protocols can actually cause lymphedema and other serious problems. For this reason you should see only an expert or an experienced oncology massage therapist if you have any lymph nodes removed.
Oncology massage therapist works closely with your health team and your practitioners. A detailed intake will be completed including the kind of cancer you have, your current treatment and symptoms or side effects you are experiencing and any medical devices or lymph nodes involved. The therapy is done with very light pressure and limited duration. Most importantly you’ll be met with love and respect and recognition of who you are and what your own healing process is.
There’s not only the physical benefits from oncology massage but most importantly there is the psychological benefits. Massage brings a unique focus to the body of a cancer patient, one of nurturing attention. This is so different from the typical painful invasive medical procedures of cancer treatment. Cancer patients in treatment use words such as torture, cut, and burnt to describe how their bodies are being treated. They are seen only as their cancer or the cancer treatment. Their entire life turns out to be about irradiating the cancer. The medical treatments are anything but pleasant. This type of massage minimizes the side effects, sooths, comforts and helps individuals feel like being in their own bodies again. They say that it is the first time they have felt a positive procedure used in the healing strategy.
In addition to changing the focus of treatment to one of nurturing and healing, when a client chooses to receive an oncology massage it gives them a sense of empowerment to be able to take control of the direction of their healing process. This may be the most important time of your life. What you do now may affect the quality and health of the rest of your life. This is your time and you come first whether that is getting enough rest or saying no to too much stress or receiving a nurturing massage. This is the time to take care of you.