For patients in acute care, recovery can be difficult and challenging. Acute care is for patients who need direct access to sophisticated medical technology to survive. Patients who typically end up in acute care include seniors suffering from a pre-existing condition that makes it difficult for them to recover; and those who have experienced a medical emergency that requires immediate care.
Much debate has gone into the creation of acute care environments in order to make these wards in the hospital more conducive to patient healing. One research team decided to take a novel approach to improving patient care and quality of life. They conducted a pilot in which patients were given six Indian head massage treatments.
What is an Indian head massage? It is based on principles derived from Ayurveda. Ayurveda has been practiced for thousands of years and its aim over this long span of human history has been to balance body, mind, and spirit to promote a long life.
The practice of Indian head massage—also known as champissage—is a form of massage that focuses on the relaxation of the face, head, neck, shoulders, upper back, and upper arms. In Ayervedic medicine, these areas of the upper body are considered energy centers. They can store both positive (i.e. relaxed) energy and negative (stress and tension) energy. Indian head massage is thought to release stress and tension, helping to create a sense of well being and peace. Indian head massage is usually done over the clothing and in a seated position.
So how did the patients in the acute care ward fare after receiving their six treatments? The researchers obtained feedback from both staff and patients by having them fill out questionnaires and by giving verbal feedback. The researchers also observed the effects of the Indian head massage treatments. Responses were positive and overall, the treatments enhanced the patients’ treatment and care while being hospitalized. The researchers concluded that Indian head massage is a complementary therapy that could help promote a therapeutic and caring environment in an acute care ward as well as boosting recovery in patients.
Of course, you don’t have to wait until the unfortunate day you find yourself in hospital to give Indian head massage a try. You can find a practitioner now and get to work improving your circulation and blood supply to your brain. You could also find that you feel calmer and revitalized after a treatment. Indian head massage can help to ease both anxiety and depression.
Indian head massage is supposed to help balance your Chakras too. In Ayurvedic tradition, you have seven Chakras through which your life energy flows.
On a more practical, physical level, Indian head massage can relax tense muscles, ease stiff and sore tendons, and break down stubborn knots in muscle tissue. By accomplishing all these things together, Indian head massage could help you gain better joint mobility.
One final health benefit of Indian head massage is the potential for the treatment to remove harmful toxins from your body.
Photo Credit: Clive Chilvers / Shutterstock.com
Source(s) for Today’s Article:
Halldorsson, R., et al., “Using Indian head massage to aid recovery,” Nurs Times. June 26-July 2, 2013; 109(25): 14-6.
“What is Indian Head Massage?” The Canadian Centre of Indian Head Massage web site; http://www.indianheadmassagecanada.com/whatis.html, last accessed August 9, 2013.