What is lymphatic drainage?
It is a treatment that will make you feel so relaxed that you realise WOW! My body feels really light right now.
That is the gentle power of MLD, Manual Lymphatic Drainage. A technique used to pump the lymph fluid around the body.
Lymph is a colourless or yellowish fluid moving around the body to help clean the blood cells, help dispose of waste material from the interstitial fluid as well as getting rid of foreign organisms like viruses and bacteria. Without our lymphatic system we wouldn’t survive a small cut or common cold, let alone more serious diseases.
Our circulatory system has our heart to pump blood around our body. Our digestive system has involuntary muscles to push food down our throat and into our stomachs. Our lymphatic system doesn’t have its own pump so it relies heavily on our muscles, preferably healthy muscles, to help pump it around our bodies. Sometimes this isn’t as easy as that. Think about when you’ve been sick or injured and you are resting for hours and days at a time, there’s not much muscle movement and certainly no exercise happening.
Rest is important for our bodies to recover. At the same time our bodies have been invaded by viruses and or bacteria. Our circulatory system is doing its best to beat the diseases and illness in our bodies, but then there maybe overload – so our lymph is kicked into overdrive. Without much muscle movement helping to pump the lymph around it gets stagnant and therefore the waste by products and cell waste isn’t being pushed through our body to get out. Sometimes people have had such a serious illness that their lymph system shuts down, and sometimes you see oedema – swelling of the legs, ankles, arms and hands.
Since this becomes a chronic disease, it is important for the therapist to move the lymph into the lymph nodes and get the disease out and away from the major organs of the body. Not an easy task. I don’t claim to help with such serious illness.
The lymphatic system is like a spider’s web all over our body. It is a fine, strong structure, like silk. It is found deep within us and superficial, laying just under our skin between the epidermis and muscles. It is mainly the superficial structure that I can treat. Using a very gentle, and structured progressive type of massage I can help pump lymphatic fluid around the body.
I do not treat clients undergoing major bio-chemical treatment for diseases such as cancer or lymphatic nodal inflammations. I will refer you to a specialist if this hasn’t been recommended in the first place. However I do treat clients who haven’t been able to shake a severe cold or have been unable to push through the last few days of illness, given it has been treated by a doctor already possibly with anti-biotic, or other drugs.
It is a very soothing treatment, unlike most massage treatment you would be used to. It does take longer to do, and I can treat a focus area, like head and neck, if you feel. I would suggest your first MLD treatment to be a full body experience so you know what it should be like and then we can tailor the treatment in the future. As a therapist it is great to do, it’s not difficult but I need to concentrate on the treatment as I do for all my treatments.
I hope you have MLD as a relaxation treatment and that you never need it for anything more serious. Book in to see me for a deep relaxation massage of MLD soon. You won’t regret it!