Tips and After Care for Manual Lymphatic Drainage
During a manual lymphatic drainage session, the lymph flow increases significantly.
You may experience some reactions while your body goes through a self-healing process after your session.
These include – frequent visits to the toilet, runny nose and/or cough, perspiration, deep sleep or difficulty sleeping and vivid dreams. Conditions which have been suppressed may temporarily be flared up also.
These should only last about 24-48 hours and are positive signs that your body is re balancing itself and responding to the treatment.
After Care for MLD
- loosen tight clothing to encourage lymph flow
- increase water intake for the next few days
- reduce caffeine intake
- avoid hot baths or showers for at least 2 hours
- avoid alcohol for 24 hours either side of your session time
- make time to rest and relax helping blood pressure to normalise, it has probably dropped during the session
- eat light, raw foods
- Like exercise, make bodywork a part of your regular routine for good health.
- Drink warm water in the morning -the addition of some lemon juice helps to alkalise the body.
- Deep Breathing helps to circulate the blood and lymph and oxygenate the blood.
- Breathe in slowly through your nose, deep down into the belly causing it to rise. Then slowly breathe out through the mouth. Do this for 5-10 repetitions. Repeat during the day, especially when you are feeling tired.
- Place hands in the hollow area on each side of the lower back, between the hips and the ribs. Palms are placed on the body, direction is not important. Imagine energy is running through your hands and into your kidneys. Relax and breathe deeply and leave your hands there for a few minutes. It helps to energise you and takes some stress off the kidneys. It helps with hydration also. Energising your kidneys helps them deal with the increased metabolic waste that is released during and after your session.Energise Kidneys – to support kidneys and help with metabolic waste release.
Cool Facts about MLD
- There is about 6-10 litres of lymph in the body compared to 3.5-5 litres of blood
- About 1.5 -3 litres of lymph circulates around the body in a day – after MLD this increases to 10-20 litres circulated in a day for up to 3 days after MLD
- The Lymph system is like the bodies waste disposal system, collecting and clearing out metabolic wastes:
- It picks up excess fluid and proteins preventing toxic shock.
- Helps to transport cells around the body to localise infection.
- Carries food components from the small intestines to the blood circulation.
- Proteins can enter the tissues and these need to be removed by the lymphatic system.
- This is the only way trapped proteins can be removed. Swelling often occurs if they remain trapped in the tissues – diuretics do not work on removing trapped proteins.
- These proteins accumulate due to low physical activity, poor diet, excess of toxicity Stress and ageing.
Tips to help keep your lymphatic fluid moving after your session:
- Use a small mini trampoline bouncer. It can work wonders to help move lymph around the body. Only 10-15 mins per day is all you need.
- Dry body brushing can be used to promote lymphatic drainage. It will help to improve immunity, refresh the skin and reduce cellulite.
- Before showering use a dry, natural bristle brush. Use light strokes as lymph sits just under the skin. See diagram for direction of brushing. It is important to follow these areas as lymph flows in certain directions and towards certain lymph nodes. You can then use hot/cold therapy in the shower by alternating hot and cold water every 90 seconds. Do this for several minutes. This increases circulation and boosts immune function and metabolism.
- Avoid tight fitting underwear and switch to natural skin care products.
- There are certain foods that can help support your immune system. All red-staining foods such as berries, cherries, pomegranate, cranberries and beets all help to move lymph. Beets in particular help to thin the bile and are highly beneficial. Bile helps to digest the good fats and eliminate the bad fats. It is responsible for about 80% of the immune response in the gut and also helps to regulate the stool.
It is important to let me know if you experience anything painful during or after your session, so I can modify your sessions accordingly.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me.
By keeping me informed I can ensure you get the treatment that is tailored to your needs.
If you need to book your next Manual Lymphatic Drainage, Book Online now.
Since the introduction of Manual Lymphatic Drainage here at Evolution Health Services, I have been able to see the benefits to our clients for a variety of conditions. These range from immediate visible reduction of swelling, reduction in their anxiety and improved movement as they get off the table. Clients appear more at ease as they see and feel how lymphatic drainage has helped. So today I wanted to share with you 4 clients who benefit from lymphatic drainage. I hope these examples can help you to see how Lymphatic Drainage may be able to help you.
Who Can Benefit from Lymphatic Drainage?
In most cases cancer survivors have had tumours / lymph nodes removed or have had radiation or chemo. When lymph nodes are removed from the body it has an affect on how the body moves lymphatic fluid around. Our bodies are amazing how it can regenerate itself and re-establish links between lymphatic vessels. But the body is unable to regrow Lymph nodes which can result in pooling of lymphatic fluid (Oedema). That’s where Lymphatic Drainage comes in. After taking your medical history we will aid the lymphatic system by redirecting the lymphatic fluid. Over time the body can imitate the direction it should go in. But in some cases the Oedema continues and requires maintenance to stop the accumulation accruing again.
While Massage can be beneficial during your battle with Cancer, we recommend commencing treatment once you are in remission. In the future I will be adding Oncology Massage to my further education and training. So for now it’s best that you seek an appropriately qualified Massage Therapist for Oncology Massage if you require treatment.
Lymphatic drainage post surgery is great to relax the nervous system to reduce pain. Lymphatic Drainage post surgery is also great for Oedema. It leads to greater fluid elimination from tissues and will assist in preventing scarring of the area. The ability of the body to remove unwanted fluid at the site aids in preventing infection and decreases healing time after surgery. Manual Lymphatic Drainage is a very slow and gentle technique. Pain is avoided during treatment as we aim to calm the body.
Recently I have had a few clients attend following Cosmetic Plastic surgery. These procedures are taxing on the body, and I am still amazed at the effectiveness of Manual Lymphatic Drainage in their cases. Within a 90 min session I can literally see and feel the fluid moving, decreasing in the size of the fluid accumulation. I have been seeing great improvements from the time the client gets on the table being sore and unable to move properly. And when they get off the table they are relaxed and moving with more ease and you can see the change not only in the amount of fluid already being drained but in the client themselves.
If you have had surgery and Lymphatic Drainage is recommended. We will require a medical clearance. Contact Us prior to your next Specialist consultation and we can forward you a copy of our Medical Clearance Request Form.
If you have been pregnant before you would most likely know what Oedema during pregnancy is. For those who don’t know, it is when the pregnant person suffers from swelling of the feet and ankles or in the wrists as a result of changes within the body. One of the most common effects of fluid on the wrists results in carpal tunnel syndrome where pregnant women experience numbness and tingling. Lymphatic drainage can assist in reducing the Oedema (swelling) during your pregnancy by switching on the node groups in the body aiding the body to help drain excess fluid and make for a more comfortable pregnancy.
I do a lot of pregnancy massages and I see this condition in about half the women I treat. There is no need for a separate booking for Lymphatic Drainage just advise me at the beginning of your appointment of your symptoms. I will include lymphatic drainage into your pregnancy massage.
Lots of people suffer from Oedema (swelling) after long flights due to the time spent sedentary unable to move freely around the cabin. Lymphatic Drainage has great results for decreasing swelling (oedema) in legs and feet after your flight. It is best to wait 72 hrs in case of a DVT being dislodged and causing even bigger problems. Recently I had clients return from an overseas holiday and experiencing fluid in the legs. I worked gently to encourage the movement of fluid from the affected areas. Following treatment, they noticed a visible change in the swelling and overall feeling in their legs. What a better way to feel after your holiday than swollen and tense.
These are just four examples of the types of clients I can help with Manual Lymphatic Drainage in a Remedial Massage Treatment. If you have been recommended to seek Lymphatic Drainage or have recently had Cancer or Surgery and would like to know if it may help, Contact Us today via the website or call 02 8964 1673 and ask for Rebecca.
Today’s blog has been written by our Remedial Massage Therapist, Rebecca Shaw. She shares details of the new technique she is bringing to her Remedial Massage Treatments to provide better results for her clients. Rebecca has been a Remedial Massage Therapist since 2012 and enjoys working with those clients suffering from conditions impacting the lymphatic system, as well as women during pregnancy and anyone looking to relieve pain as a result of work, training or every day life stresses.
Over the past 18 months I have been developing a passion for manual lymphatic drainage after hearing the benefits it has on the body from a fellow Massage Therapist. As she has now retired, she was also looking to pass on her knowledge as she knew the need for this skill to continue was great. We worked together to share knowledge, skills and work on my technique. Recently I attended formal training to put it all together in context and develop a greater understanding of how manual lymphatic drainage could help. I have more confidence in know why techniques are performed in a light, gentle motion and times when it should be avoided. I am pleased to announce it has now been added to my Remedial Massage Treatments and I can offer it to you at Evolution Health Services.
What is Manual Lymphatic Drainage?
Manual Lymphatic Drainage is a specific type of massage which is used to encourage the natural drainage of the Lymph fluid. This fluid carries waste and proteins away from the tissues through the lymph nodes, where it is cleansed and is returned to the blood circulatory system. Lymph movement is very slow it only pumps 1 pump every 6 seconds, so MLD massage is performed slowly and softly. Only 10lts of lymphatic fluid goes back through the heart every 7 days. After a MLD massage the lymph movement is speed up to 1 pump per 1 second, and 20lts of lymph fluid goes back through the heart in 24hrs and can last up to 7 days.
Due to the slower nature of the treatment and that it works with the whole body, I recommend a 90 minute Remedial Massage Consultation for your first appointment. Following your initial appointment, I will make recommendations for your ongoing treatment plan. This will include recommendations on the duration of each session and frequency of treatments. I will also provide you with information to support you between treatments to greater enhance the benefits to your body.
Who is Manual Lymphatic Drainage good for?
Manual lymphatic drainage can be used to treat lots of conditions such as:
- Post-surgery – to assist in preventing scaring and enable the body to remove unwanted fluid.
- Pre-surgery- for softening and relaxing tissues that need to be operated on.
- Edemas (oedema) – sprained ankles and other post traumatic conditions, with the immediate application of RICE therapy in conjunction with MLD.
- Lymphoedema (primary and secondary)
- Sinusitis / Hay Fever
- Breast surgery (segmental, simple or total)
- Dermatology (eczema, acne vulgaris, seborrhoea, psoriasis)
- Aesthetically (wrinkles)
- Gastroenterology (constipation and digestive disorders)
- Neurology (migraines, strokes)
- Rheumatology (musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders)
- Edema during pregnancy
- Post-surgical conditions
- Bronchitis (asthma and allergies affecting breathing)
Who should avoid Manual Lymphatic Drainage?
- Acute inflammation caused by bacteria, viruses, poisons, or allergens.
- Malignant tumours
- Phlebitis, DVT and Thrombosis (acute venous disease)
- Heart valve insufficiency or asthma due to heart problems
- Very low blood pressure
- Localized skin changes
- Sclerosis in a specific area – cervical artery
I hope this information has been helpful to find out if Manual Lymphatic Drainage is right for you. Manual Lymphatic Drainage is my new passion and I have seen the results working already on a few of my clients. If you would like to book, click here to Book Online for Remedial Massage or Contact Us if you have any further questions. Hopefully I will see you on my massage table soon for a new massage experience.
Remedial Massage Therapist
Today’s blog comes from our Remedial Massage Therapist, Rebecca Shaw. She has recently added another new skill to her already impressive Remedial Massage Treatments. She is now pleased to be able to offer Vacuum Cupping in Remedial Massage treatments.
What is Vacuum Cupping?
Vacuum cupping therapy is an ancient form of alternative medicine in which the therapist uses special cups on your skin to create suction of the skin and fascia. In Traditional Chinese Cupping, the suction of the cups is created by the use of fire. We don’t want to play with fire, so I choose to use the more modern version where I manually pump the air from specially designed cups.
Who will benefit from Vacuum Cupping?
People get vacuum cupping for many reasons including pain, inflammation, blood flow and lymph circulation, relaxation, well-being, fascial tightness, plantar fasciitis, runner’s knee, iliotibial band syndrome and postural fatigue. Vacuum cupping is perfect for clients that can not stand deep pressure massage or Trigger point therapy.
Who can’t have Vacuum Cupping?
Almost anyone can have vacuum cupping, however like all treatments, there are some that need extra care or alternate treatment options. You cannot have vacuum cupping done over any areas that have open wounds, sites of infection, undiagnosed lumps, or if you are a Diabetic client that is vascularly challenged.
What can you expect from Vacuum Cupping?
Vacuum cupping will help stretch the skin and fascia of the client. Think instead of massage pushing against the skin, vacuum cups are sucking up the skin and fascia. So in a way it’s like massage in reverse. Vacuum cupping should not cause pain but sometimes tension can be felt as the cups are moved along the skin. There will be some skin reddening and occasionally bruising, which is not painful and will disappear in a couple of days.
I think Vacuum cupping is beneficial in a Remedial Massage treatment as it allows less deep tissue work to be performed but still allows you to get the same results. For example, if you have postural fatigue it helps to pull all that over stretched tissue back to its natural state. Vacuum cupping of the fascia is something we cannot do just through massage therapy itself, so the use of cups is very beneficial. Clients who don’t like skin to skin contact through massage can now enjoy the benefits of massage without the skin contact.
If you have any of the conditions I have mentioned in this blog just ask during your consultation about vacuum cupping and we can incorporate it into your next massage. To book your next Remedial Massage, book online here and ask for cupping in the comments.
Remedial Massage Therapist
Remedial Massage is more than a feel good treatment. It has benefits beyond reducing pain or increasing mobility. It has the ability to help you get more out of life. We share the story of a client, Bill* who has gained more from Remedial Massage and how Massage can help you keep your independence too.
Bill is a retired man who was referred by his doctor to help recover sensation and movement after an operation. Bill had Bilateral Inguinal Hernia repairs. He was left with scar tissue around surgery site, nerve damage, and loss of sensation in his lower body. Without treatment he has trouble reaching down to put underwear on and has to use a coathanger to reach down to put them on. Prior to seeing us, Bill had been to see another Remedial Massage Therapist. He also had been under the care of a Physiotherapist and his Specialist. He had some relief but was struggling with driving, walking and unable to get out into the garden, which he really enjoyed doing. Bill was hopeful that Remedial Massage could help to decrease his limp when walking, improve his ability to bend down and put on his underwear and possibly regain some sensation from nerve damage.
As a Remedial Massage Therapist, we are often presented with complex cases and Bill came with a list of other health conditions that also needed to be monitored in the process of his treatment. To assist with improving his range of movement, we worked on releasing tight muscles through the hips and inner thighs. We slowly worked through the scar tissue and monitored the level of numbness he was experiencing to see if there was any improvement.
Following treatment, we sent Bill home with some simple stretches to continue on a daily basis. We encouraged him to take short walks to keep mobile and advise his progress with driving, walking and gardening.
We recommended regular Remedial Massage to ensure that his progressed continued. He sees us approximately every 3 – 4 weeks. If he has a flare up of symptoms, we see him fortnightly until it settles and he can return to his monthly visits. It’s not often we see Bill more than once a month as he is doing well to manage his condition by completing his exercises at home.
Remedial Massage has given Bill back his independence. He does not need to rely on anyone to drive him around, prepare his meals or go shopping and he has been able to enjoy some time in the garden. The ability to walk and putting on his pants are small things but have a great impact on a retired man like Bill. We are happy to be able to help Bill remain independent and he knows we are here to help with further self care advice as his condition continues to improve.
If you are looking to get more out of life and regain your independence, contact Evolution Health Services today to see how we can help. Or Book Online here: www.evolutionhealthservices.com.au/book-online *Name changed for client privacy.