Sleep hygiene has received plenty of air time lately, recognised as an essential component of
well-being. A good night’s rest boosts cognitive function, regulates emotion, maintains a healthy weight, enhances mood, and supports our immune system. The stress of modern living coupled with the stimulation of screen time, and reliance on caffeine and sugar to get us through the day, can make it challenging to wind down in the evening.
To break the cycle of being in constant ‘flight or fight’ mode, a survival technique only necessary when facing a real threat as opposed to anxiety, achieving a state of ‘rest and digest’ will make it easier to achieve quality sleep. Massage has been found to be an effective means of inducing relaxation, with studies indicating that touch can lower activity in areas of the brain associated with tension.
The slow, sweeping motions of a massage switch off the stress response by inviting the body into deeper relaxation. The more often you are able to have massages, the more regularly the body will be able to relax at other times. Ideally, this would be booked close to bedtime so you can slip into slumber with the calming aroma of essential oils still on your skin.
Best massage types for sleep
Deep Tissue Massage
Best scheduled earlier in the day rather than immediately before bed, a deep-tissue massage uses gradually intensifying pressure to reach the deeper layers of the muscle. Some find strong pressure to be energising rather than relaxing and may remain awake throughout, though the easing of tension will be experienced later on in time for bed by increasing blood flow to encourage the body’s natural healing.
Any massage designed to induce relaxation will aim to reduce tightness with long strokes to calm the nervous system. Paired with dimmed lights and serene music, you’ll feel a release of pent-up stress to prepare yourself for a night of restful slumber.
Targeting pressure points in the feet reflexology stimulates other areas of the body, and will feel great if you had a particularly active day. Many find that concentrating on one part of the body encourages the rest to follow suit so that letting go of tightness in your jaw, neck and shoulders becomes easier as a result. A soak in warm water will further heighten relaxation, and some take it a step further with a body scan to visually release areas of tension one area at a time.
While three weekly massages would be ideal, it may not be the most time or cost-effective means of promoting sleep, Regular self-massage is a great alternative, focusing on pressure points which enhance rest and relaxation such as the inner bottom of the left wrist, below the bony part of the inner ankle as well the hollow at the base of the skull.
Book a Massage at THIA
Call or WhatsApp: +852 9291 7301