Heat therapy, also known as thermotherapy, uses heat on the body to provide a pain relief and improve the patient’s health. Heat therapy may take many forms: hot stone massage, healing pad, whirlpool baths, sunbathing, etc. However, not all of these methods are equally pleasant. Excessive exposure to sun and to heat may even damage the skin and result in sunburns. The hot stone massage therefore provides a successful way to warm up the tissues and to transfer the heat deep into the body, more quickly than air. Moreover, people often describe hot stone massage as one of the most pleasant experiences. Let us find what it is all about.
Hot stone massage
This is a special kind of massage that uses smooth river rock heated stones, usually basalt, which is a black volcanic rock that heats very well. The stones are typically sanitized before the massage and heated in 120 to 150 degree water. Before the massage a therapist normally warms the subject’s body with a classic massage. It is important to prepare the muscles for heat therapy by naturally increasing the blood flow through the body. Hot stone massage is normally performed by massaging the body with a heated stone. Sometimes, the therapists places the heated stones along the spine, or on a specific parts of the patient’s body, to improve the energy flow through the meridians. As the heat warms the body, the muscles relax and the therapist may work with additional pressure. This type of massage is, therefore, excellent choice for people who prefer very light massage and who suffer from muscular tension.
Benefits of hot stone massage
Hot stone massage provides a relief for many health conditions. It works very well against the back pain and back aches, it improves the blood circulation, it helps to manage symptoms of osteoarthritis and arthritis pain, it helps to release the tension, anxiety and stress. Deep tissue massage can help those suffering from insomnia, as it induces feelings of relaxation and promotes a good night's sleep.
However, certain people are not suitable for hot stone therapy. People recovering from surgeries or chemotherapy or radiation, should stay away from hot stone massage. Patients prone to blood clots and people with heart diseases should also check with their doctors. People suffering from infectious skin diseases, rashes or open wounds should probably seek other treatment options. Pregnant women are supposed to consult with their medical care providers and to have therapy done by massage therapists certified in pregnancy massage.