The following therapists offer Lymphatic Drainage Massage: Natalie
Lymphatic Drainage Massage (LDM):
A very light touch modality, working with your lymphatic flow to decrease swelling and flush toxins. Most sessions are done entirely face up with focused treatment to the neck and torso.
If you have been drinking heavily the night before or are dehydrated LDM will not be effective.
A little bit about your lymphatic system:
- Most of your lymphatic fluid lies between the muscles and your skin which is why LDM uses such a light touch.
- It regulates pressure in your tissues and blood cells.
- It is responsible for flushing toxins from your body- everything from lactic acid to food preservatives.
- It distributes a lot of your hormones (as well as flushing hormone waste).
- It stores white blood cells, dispersing them into your bloodstream as needed.
- It has its own slow pulse or wave and functions similar to a syphon system in which one area has to be draining for there to be movement in the next.
When do people get LDM?
- Post surgery to decrease swelling and bruising, decrease scarring, and flush toxins introduced by anesthesia, antibiotics, and/or pain meds.
- When dealing with edema, usually characterized by overall puffiness and sensitive nerves.
- When they’ve had ongoing digestive issues. Treating the digestive system requires focused treatment beyond what is done in a standard LDM so we recommend a 75 minute session in this instance.
- To support the immune system. It is important to note that if a person is already dealing with a mild illness LDM will usually intensify symptoms as it increases the flushing of toxins and white blood cell distribution, but the duration of symptoms will be shorter. This would matter if, say, a person were going to take a weekend trip- they might rather deal with mild symptoms for a week, than deal with intense symptoms over their weekend even if they’d be well come Monday.
- When they have been dealing with awful menstrual cycles and/or sleeplessness. Since LDM helps regulate hormone distribution it can positively affect both of these things.
- When they have had lymphatic nodes removed and deal with chronic moderate lymphedema as a result.
When shouldn’t I get lymphatic drainage massage?
- When you are dealing with an infection, sunburn, rash, fever, blood clots, or an entire extremely swollen limb (this can indicate full blown lymphedema or other severe medical conditions, requiring more specialized, emergent medical treatment).
It feels like my therapist is barely touching me? What are they actually doing?
Your lymphatic flow is very subtle and also lies very close to the surface in most areas so sensing it requires a very light touch. Your therapist is feeling and following the rate and direction of your flow, addressing any sluggish areas and redirecting unhealthy flow patterns. Integrated into a soft tissue massage, your therapist is draining off inflamed lymphatic or interstitial fluid (this requires a slightly heavier touch) to decrease nerve pain and fluid pressure on an affected muscle.
How will getting LDM affect me?
Your inflammation and water retention will decrease as a result of LDM which can result in increased energy levels. Those with a heavy toxin load (and therefore more toxins flushed from the treatment) may experience fatigue after a session. LDM commonly causes increased urination as the body flushes more fluids from the tissues.
Are there things I can do to help my lymphatic flow on my own?
- Drinking plenty of water and get enough electrolytes (add lemon juice to your water). Submerge yourself in water (the way your skin lifts in water allows you lymphatic fluid to flow more easily) whether that means swimming or soaking in a bath.
- Exercise can increase deep lymph flow (the 30% that isn’t superficial) by up to 15%.
Jump on a trampoline- the inertia at the bottom of the jumps affects the superficial lymphatic fluid.