An itchy feeling can be due to increased vasodilation which is a benefit commonly gained through massage. As the massage works away on your body, your blood flow increases & this increased blood flow provides much-needed oxygen to the muscles & in response, your capillaries and arteries expand to accommodate the amount of blood moving through the body. This process stimulates surrounding nerve cells and sends a signal to your brain. Interestingly, your brain translates this signal as the need to itch.
There’s not much you can do to change this process. After all, it’s your brain’s natural response to a good thing (improved blood flow). But there is one thing you can do to reduce the itching & that is to massage more! That way, your body gets used to it and has regular improved circulation with regular massage.
What is Vasodilation causing Itch during Massage?
Vasodilation is the process in which an increase in blood flow is enabled to travel through blood vessels as they widen and come closer to the skin surface, improving circulation and recovery. Various techniques used within a massage chair are aimed to increase vasodilation. This assists with relaxation decreased pain and prepare an individual for a workout or simply day-to-day use of the body in a more effective manner.
Vasodilation is where blood vessels widen and come closer to the surface of the skin. Blood vessels dilate as smooth muscles lining the vessels relax. Vasodilation reduces the restriction of blood flow through vessels, decreasing blood pressure and increasing blood circulation. A sign of vasodilation a person may get is a pinking effect on the skin, which shows a localised increase of blood flow to the area. Vasodilation increases blood flow, reduces swelling and also helps with the regulation of body temperature. A variety of movements are used during your massage to encourage vasodilation.
What are the benefits of increased vasodilation during a massage?
Increased vasodilation can benefit a person in many different ways. Common benefits of increased vasodilation include:
- Improved recovery
- Lymphatic drainage and the removal of circulatory waste products
- Improved circulation
Increased vasodilation can help improve recovery. After injury or surgery, a build-up of metabolic wastes and excess fluids occurs around the area. A build-up of metabolic wastes and excess fluids can slow down recovery, increase swelling and increase pain. Increasing vasodilation results in an increase in blood flow around the body. Increasing blood flow helps to carry metabolic wastes and excess fluids away from the injury site and out through different nodes and glands within the body. When metabolic wastes and excess fluids have been removed, the increased blood flow provides the injured area with an increase of oxygen and nutrients that help repair muscles, maintain their health and speed up recovery time.
The maintenance of healthy muscles is a common benefit of increased vasodilation. Vasodilation increases blood circulation around the body. Within the blood flow are essential oxygen and nutrients needed to keep muscles strong and healthy. When vasodilation occurs and blood circulation is increased, this results in an increased amount of essential products being transported to all muscles. An increase in essential products prevents muscles from weakening and becoming damaged therefore maintaining their health and strength.
Increased vasodilation improves circulation. During a massage, when the blood vessels dilate, the area blood has to travel through increases. Blood pressure is also reduced as vessels dilate. Reducing blood pressure and increasing the space blood has to travel through, improves circulation as more blood is able to travel around the body at a faster rate.
What techniques are used in a massage chair to increase vasodilation?
Many techniques can be used to increase vasodilation, a variety of which can be found in your massage chair. The most common massage movements used include:
- Deep Strokes
Deep strokes involve using a firm pressure to get deeper into the muscles. Deep strokes help to increase vasodilation by encouraging the release of the neurotransmitter histamine. Histamine increases the absorbency of vessels, relaxing muscles cells lining the vessels. Increasing the absorbency and relaxing the muscle cells lining the vessels results in vasodilation.
Kneading is another massage chair technique that can increase vasodilation by performing circular movements. Kneading is where soft tissues are slowly pulled away from the bone and then brought back to the bone in a squeezing action. Connective tissues are stretched and loosened during kneading which aids in the reduction of muscle tightness and pain. Kneading is also used to increase the temperature of a muscle and so, increase vasodilation to allow this to occur. Using kneading to increase vasodilation can help decrease muscle tightness, improve tissue elasticity and increase flexibility.
Compression is another common technique used to increase vasodilation. Compression or squeezing massage with the air-cells in your massage chair is specifically designed to get the blood pumping as it squeezes and improve circulation. Compression or air massage aids to increase vasodilation which helps to decrease tension, increase range of movement and increase blood flow.
What Can You Do to Avoid Feeling Itchy After Using a Massage Chair?
Whilst massage chairs causing itchiness is often related to increased vasodilation which is a great way to promote relaxation and increase blood flow for healthier muscles, the level and extent of itchiness vary from one person to another. Some common tips that can help reduce the level of itch are:
- Select a low setting on the massage chair to start with, and increase steadily depending on your needs. Starting on a higher setting may trigger a more intense itchy feeling.
- Drink enough water to keep your skin hydrated.
- Use your massage chair regularly to ensure your body is well maintained and becomes used to the increased vasodilation.
Should you have any underlying health issues or concerns about the itch, ensure you get a medical check-up to confirm there are no other issues triggering your particular itch.
Shop our massage chairs
If you are ready to start benefiting from the increased vasodilation and to experience a massage on a regular basis, Relax For Life has what you need. We offer the best massage chairs in Australia that meet every budget and massage need.
Whether you’re looking for a recliner chair, Japanese massage chair or stretching massage chair, you can trust us to deliver the best product and service. Contact us for enquiries or visit our showrooms in Sydney, Melbourne or Gold Coast to explore the exclusive collection of massage chairs from the world’s top-rated brands in Australia.