As the weather warms up, many of us notice that our feet, ankles and legs start to swell. Swelling, or edema, that is more generalized may be a symptom of a serious health condition, such as heart, liver or kidney problems. However, the temporary condition of swollen feet or legs can be treated with the specialized massage therapy offered at the Cafe of Life in Longmont.
Many factors, such as pregnancy or just prolonged sitting, can impair the body’s ability to efficiently remove excess fluid and lead to painfully swollen legs or feet. A gentle form of massage called Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) or Lymph Drainage Therapy (LDT) can help fluids drain normally again and greatly reduce swelling. First, the affected limb is raised above the level of the heart for 10 to 15 minutes to allow gravity to assist in draining. Second, the massage starts nearer to the heart in order to open up the pathways for the excess fluid being retained in the lower parts of the body. Finally, the legs are massaged with specific rhythm and pressure following the direction of the lymphatic map.
Ways to Prevent Swollen Feet or Legs Between Massage Sessions
- Exercise- Proper blood circulation is key to stopping blood from pooling in your legs and feet. Swimming and inverted yoga postures are excellent choices!
- Stay Hydrated- It’s important to drink enough water year-round, but especially vital in the summer to help detox and keep our tissues supple.
- Avoid Too Much Salt or Caffeine- Both of these lead to water retention, so consume in moderation.
A properly functioning circulatory system is critical for optimal health, so if you are experiencing painful swelling or any other symptom of poor circulation, make an appointment today for a massage and/or chiropractic evaluation. Dr. Jess and the massage practitioners at Cafe of Life in Longmont have specialized training to help increase blood circulation and relieve the discomfort caused by swollen feet or legs.