Weekly highlight…The benefits of human touch and reducing stress

Human touch can reduce our cortisol levels leading to lower stress levels. It can help reduce our heart rate and lower blood pressure. In fact a lack of human touch can cause a physical stress on our bodies.

There are many people for various reasons that do not like to be touched. It is important therefore to respect their wishes. I have seen many clients who have been bought a gift certificate for a treatment and when they have initially contacted me, the first thing they say is, “but I don’t want the treatment, I don’t like to be touched” After chatting they actually do come along with the intention of me just working on their face or just their legs but after being with me and knowing that they are comfortable and safe they will then say, “Well actually could you please massage my back and shoulders” and interestingly one of my long standing clients is someone who did start this way and now comes along for a full aromatherapy treatment regularly. A lot is down to trust. Many do not know how they will feel after a treatment. It is the unknown. That person then reports back,  that not only did they feel incredibly relaxed afterwards but so very happy. In fact, happy for days. They then get the bug. I too started this way. I couldn’t bare the thought of a massage but that all changed when I started treating people. To feel nurtured, to escape into deep relaxation with those powerful little oils. Amazing. When I’m on holiday or in fact during this Christmas break I really miss my clients. Treating a client is just as relaxing for me. Roll on the beginning of January!

Serotonin is sometimes called our happy chemical. It contributes to happiness and well being. Many who are on antidepressants have their serotonin raised by the drug but massage and touch have the same benefit because it feels good, it makes you happy, it makes you relaxed, it reduces stress. Touch is healing. Touch is nourishing.

So we know that massage reduces stress. When we are stressed our heart rate increases, our muscles tighten, blood pressure rises. A treatment will help with that tension, it can help tight muscles. It can help an array of symptoms all which have a huge impact on stress. When we are stressed our bodies conserve energy by suppressing our immune and digestive systems. Chronic stress can have an impact on our immune systems increasing the risk of illness like colds and flu. Our digestive systems can be affected. Stress causes circulation to be increased to our heart, muscles and lungs. Massage can help restore normal circulation and improving our immune systems, again lowering stress levels.

A member of my family always had a back stroke before going to bed. It helped them to sleep and even though they are older now the request for a back stroke still arises. Doesn’t a hug just make you feel cared for? A warm embrace if you are feeling low. Holding someones hand or a touch of their shoulder to reassure them in times of need. Touch is so powerful and so important.

Start 2019 with ways to reduce stress levels. Stress can have terrible long term consequences resulting in many mental health issues. Start the year giving yourself some self care and make that a promise to yourself throughout the year.

Wishing you all a healthy and happy New Year x

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