How Massage Makes You Happy
It sounds maybe a little bit funny. But it is the truth. Massage can change your mood.
Actually, a massage treatment can make you happier.
And today we are going to explain to you why massage can make you happier.
How massage reduces depression.
Depression number 1 disease
But first, let’s talk a bit more about being not-happy or depressed.
Actually, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is the most common illness worldwide and the leading cause of disability.
You read that correct!
The WHO estimates that 350 million people are affected by depression, globally.
It was a shock to us as well to hear that.
But the good thing is… there is something you can do…
But first, some more facts about depression…
1 out of 10 people
The last few years it seems that the number of people with depression and burn-out complaints is increasing in the west.
In the Netherlands, more than 100 million medicines are prescribed annually.
In 2016 alone, 1 out of 10 people took psychoactive medication.
In 2017, more than 1 million people in the Netherlands were using anti-depressants and/or tranquilizers.
It became even common to say: I just take a “pammetje” – the medical term is benzodiazepines.
However, it is commonly referred to as pam: temazepam or oxazepam.
Oxazepam affects chemicals in the brain that may be unbalanced in people with anxiety.
It is used to treat anxiety disorders (which can cause depression) or alcohol withdrawal symptoms.
Besides tranquilizers, there are also antidepressants.
These antidepressants can help relieve symptoms of depression, social anxiety disorder, anxiety disorders, seasonal affective disorder, and dysthymia, or mild chronic depression.
As well as other conditions.
It is very worrying that many people are heavily on antidepressants and tranquilizers.
There are a lot of side effects, like nausea, weight gain, headache etc.
Let alone the side effects, stopping this medication is very difficult.
Research shows that it is even easier to get rid of heroin than some medications given for depression.
If you are reading this article and you don’t know what a depression is, you are very lucky.
Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest.
Some people describe a depression as being in a black hole. They see everything negative when they feel depressed.
Social media influences
As research shows that the number of people with depression and anxiety symptoms is increasing, the question is why is that?
Some people say this generation has too high expectations.
Plus our community ties are weaker.
And we are focussed on goals.
And on money.
This might be all under the influence of the internet.
Nowadays our personal ties are weaker.
Maybe some of you have many friends on your social media. But some of you might still feel lonely, not seeing many people in real life, face-to-face.
Moreover, several studies indicate that increased time spent online is related to a decline in communication with family members. That may further lead to increased feelings of depression and loneliness.
Plus, when you look to social media it all looks so beautiful, glamorous, good to be true.
Therefore maybe you even compare sometimes what they see on social media to your own life, and get distracted.
This might even influence your mental status negatively.
Causes of depression
So why do we get depressed?
This is a difficult question.
Studies show that it is a complex combination of biological, genetic, environmental and psychosocial factors.
How do antidepressants work?
Now we know some facts about depression.
And facts about how many people are taking medications.
So let’s see how do they work?
There are various sorts of antidepressants. Most of them are trying to balance the serotonin level.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter in the brain. Serotonin plays a key role in stabilizing mood.
There are antidepressants called SSRIs. This stands for Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors. They block the absorption of serotonin in the brain.
On the other hand, we have the Serotonin and Noradrenaline Reuptake Inhibitors. For short SNRIs. They raise levels of serotonin and norepinephrine. Norepinephrine is another neurotransmitter that stabilizes mood.
So, in short, antidepressants are working on balancing the serotonin level.
How massage makes you happy
This might be a surprise…
Massage also balances the serotonin level.
In physiology, we can explain depression in a very easy way: lack of serotonin.
The level of serotonin, a neurotransmitter, can change depending on your situation and environment.
When you receive a massage treatment your levels of serotonin are balanced.
Plus, during your massage treatment, you increase endorphins and dopamines.
These are the so-called ‘happy hormones’.
The result you see real quick, which is really nice.
After a massage treatment, you feel already a difference.
Whereas anti-depressants are showing their results only after 1 or 2 months.
Yes, 1 or 2 months!
Most people will not even feel any benefits during the first or second week when using antidepressants.
Reduce depression by massage
So instead of taking pills, why not try a massage treatment?
A massage treatment gives you result even without any side effects.
You might now ask yourself: ‘Okay this is nice, but do I get directly result after one massage?’
We recommend when you are really depressed to get a one hour massage at least in the beginning every day.
Well, yes that is the best.
And of course, it does not have to be expensive.
You can just follow a massage course (in which you practice as well on each other). Or you can follow free massage videos. Or you can do an online course together with your partner, so you both benefit and don’t have to pay a daily masseur.
Are you depressed?
So do you feel depressed? Or do you know someone who is depressed? Please recommend them a massage treatment, because isn’t it such a pity to become sick just by having too much stress?
Create a happy day,
Nicole & Manel
PS: If you know someone else who needs to know this, feel free to share this blog through the social media buttons below.
PSPS: A side note: We are not against taking medication. We do understand that some people really need medication (tranquilizers or antidepressants) to help with depression. However, this article is to show alternatives, before taking medication, because we believe too many people take tranquilizers or antidepressants too quickly, without knowing the side affects and without trying other options.