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Manual Lymphatic Drainage: what’s it good for?

Manual Lymphatic Drainage Massage

Within each one of us resides a silent system who’s only function is to remove toxic build up and keep us healthy. How cool is that?! The lymphatic system is a network of tissues and organs that carries lymphatic fluid with infection fighting blood cells throughout the entire body. This system is often taken for granted and overlooked in avenues of healing. Manual Lymphatic Drainage (or MLD) is one of the many subsets therapeutic massage designed to work specifically with this system to help it work better. Contrary to the deep tissue massage modalities that aims to stimulate the body’s muscles, this type of body work uses very light pressure with specific gentle, rhythmic strokes that stimulates the lymphatic system. This in turn helps to speed up toxin removal (pathogens, intracellular debris, dead blood cells, and other waste) which helps to detoxify the body as a whole.

Why does the lymph system need help? Since the lymphatic system doesn’t have the benefit of the heart pump to push it through the body like our blood does, this flow can become compromised. Without the benefit of the heart to pump it upwards to the neck region for further drainage, its upward movement depends on our muscle and joint movements to get there. And to add to the challenge, the lymphatic system drainage is very unbalanced. The right drainage area is responsible only for the right arm and chest region, but the left drainage area is responsible for the rest of the entire body. Which is why most breast cancer survivors who have had lymph nodes removed on the left side have remaining long term lymphatic edema in their left arm. This, my friends, is where MLD massage comes into play and really shines. It is most widely used in health conditions that require assistance in draining excess fluid build up and water retention such as surgical recovery, sports related injuries and even recovering from a recent cold or allergy condition. By removing these excess toxins from the lymphatic system our body’s immune system naturally improves and gives us an extra surge of energy that was once bogged down by a clogged circulation.

Common conditions improved from MLD massage include:

  1. Recent surgical recovery
  2. Sports injury recovery
  3. Allergies or common cold related congestion
  4. Migraine headaches
  5. TMJ dysfunction (after having deep tissue work to surrounding affected musculature)
  6. Breast feeding dysfunction- mastitis
  7. Painful periods with abdominal and/or back cramping
  8. Breast cancer surgery recovery
  9. Arthritic pain swelling
  10. Fibromyalgia flairs

Benefits of MLD include

  1. Increased appetite (best for injury or surgical recovery)
  2. Boost in immune system
  3. Boost in energy
  4. Substantial boost in metabolism
  5. Decreased feelings of depression by lifting mental fog
  6. Rapid recovery of sports related injuries

If you have recently suffered a health crisis that could benefit from MLD please contact us at (904) 448-0046 to schedule your treatment now. If you are uncertain if MLD is the right treatment for you, simply call us to schedule a FREE 15 minute consultation with one of our highly experienced licensed practitioners to discuss your individualized treatment approach.

See you on the table soon!



*Remember, lymphatic drainage massage is all about the flushing of your system, so it’s ultra important to drink lots of water afterwards!

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The information found on this website is fully intended for informational and educational purposes not intended to diagnose or substitute medical attention. Any information presented herein, or information received via telephone or email, should not be construed as the practice of medicine. As a licensed acupuncture physician, Julee Miller, fully recognizes your ultimate health care lies with your general practitioner of health. The medical circumstances of each patient differ, and diagnosis and treatment are offered only after appropriate medical evaluation and completion of applicable testing. Treatment outcomes, of course, are never guaranteed. Individual response from therapy outcomes may vary from those referenced in case discussions and patient testimonials.

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