Getting a massage is not only therapeutic, it also feels great. What could be better than a massage after a hectic day at work or dealing with the kids? A massage can help you relax and find the peace you need during a busy week. A massage can rejuvenate you, lower stress, and help you sleep better! What a great way to “get away from it all” for a time!
Have you ever wondered why your massage therapist says you must drink water afterward? If so, you’ve come to the right place! This is a common question we hear, and we have put together a response that we hope helps you and other patients understand the importance of staying hydrated after a massage.
Drinking Water is Healthy
Water is necessary for the health and proper functioning of our bodies. Humans need to drink water every day to stay healthy and hydrated. For one thing, water is essential during physical activity. Workouts and other physical activities cause sweating, which removes excess heat from the body through evaporation. Water also keeps muscles from becoming tired quickly and helps you recover faster from strenuous activities.
When we’re hydrated, we also have better mental energy levels. Every cell in your body, including your brain cells, needs water to transport oxygen and nutrients to maintain optimal mental functions. Mild dehydration is enough to reduce energy levels, including memory loss and cognitive functions.
Staying hydrated is also essential for the proper functioning of our organs. Water is also crucial for massages.
Hydration is Important for Massages
Drinking water before a massage keeps muscles soft and easier to manipulate. On the other hand, dehydrated muscles are rigid and more difficult to work with. You can equate this with a sponge. Think of your muscles as a sponge; when it is dry, it’s stiff and rigid. However, when the sponge is put into water, it becomes soft and malleable. Our muscles work in much the same way when.
Hydration’s also important after a massage. When the therapist works with your muscles, they release certain waste products that are removed by the body. Drinking water after the massage helps your body flush these waste products out. This is especially important for deep tissue and therapeutic massage.
Massage Can Cause Dehydration
Only a few people know that massage can cause dehydration. The reason is that the manipulation of muscles depletes them of water. When you drink water, your muscles are rehydrated. The effect is similar to drinking water before or after strenuous physical activity.
When you get a massage, it stimulates the lymph system, flushing out waste products. If you’re dehydrated, the lymph system doesn’t have enough fluids to work correctly. In that case, you may feel a headache or other aches after a massage.
How Much Water Should You Drink Before a Massage?
The amount of water you need before a massage can vary, depending on different factors. However, drinking at least one glass of water before your massage is best. That way, your muscles will be hydrated and easier to massage.
It’s best not to drink water right before your appointment. Instead, drink at least one glass of water an hour or so before your massage appointment. That way, your body has a chance to get that hydration to other parts of your body, including the muscles.
How Much Water Should I Drink After a Massage?
Physical therapists recommend drinking one to two litres of water after each massage session. Your body needs to stay hydrated to meet your daily physical needs and to flush waste products after a massage.
Drinking plenty of water after a session ensures your lymphatic system has enough liquid to remove waste products the massage releases effectively. In addition, water ensures the waste products are correctly removed from your system, so they can’t have adverse effects on your health.
Finally, water also helps you avoid excessive soreness after a massage. Drinking water after a massage ensures your muscles stay hydrated. It can also help your body recover faster after a massage.
Avoid Drinking Alcohol After Treatment
Experts also recommend that you avoid drinking alcohol after your massage. The problem is that alcohol slows your body’s cleansing process (the lymphatic system). It also introduces chemicals into the body.
On the other hand, water can help cope with any soreness and speed up the removal of waste products from your body after a massage.
Drink Water at Room Temperature
It’s best to drink water at room temperature to speed up the removal of waste products from your system. Use a glass or water bottle that’s BPA-free, or drink from a stainless steel water container for the healthiest results.
What Happens If You Don’t Drink Water After a Massage?
Drinking water post-massage is essential. But what happens if you don’t hydrate after a massage? Here’s what you may experience:
- Pain & muscle rigidity, which can lead to decreased range of motion
- Muscle soreness when touched
- Muscle fatigue
- Temporary loss of strength
- Swelling in certain areas
What About the Urge to Urinate After a Massage?
Many people wonder about the urge to urinate after a massage. Is this normal? Why do I have this urge?
Remember the lymph system we talked about earlier? The lymph system is invigorated when you have a massage, especially a deep tissue or sports massage. When this happens, the system removes the fluid resulting from the massage. This process causes the kidneys to concentrate the liquids, filtering the fluid. The result is increased urine production, which passes through to your bladder. This is the reason why you have an intense urge to urinate after a massage.
In addition, massage can activate the nerve endings in bladder muscles, causing the bladder to contract, triggering the need to go.
The need to urinate and frequency of urination varies from person to person and depends on certain factors. These can include age, health issues, and the type of massage received.
These are normal, natural responses to a massage. There’s nothing to worry about unless this becomes a more frequent or persistent problem.
Summing It Up
Massage therapies are a wonderful way to unwind and improve your health. The best way to get the most out of your massage is to drink water before and after your therapy.
Water keeps your body hydrated, making it easier for the massage therapist to manipulate muscles. If you’re dehydrated, the therapist has a difficult time because your muscles are rigid and hard. On the other hand, if your muscles are hydrated, they’re easier to work with.
Staying hydrated is good for your health and makes your massage therapy more effective.