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You May Want To Reschedule That Appointment!
As much as I love massage, I realize there are times when getting one is probably not a great idea.
As the old saying goes, “there’s a time and place for everything”.
Let’s look at 9 times when not to get a massage. In these cases it’s probably a good idea to delay or reschedule your appointment entirely.
9 Times When Not To Get A Massage!
#1 After You Get A Tattoo (Especially Days After!)
Have you ever gotten a tattoo before? If you have, you’ll know how long and grueling the healing process is. I just had a quarter sleeve done, and as crazy as it sounds, I prefer the tattoo pain over healing. The process a tattoo takes to heal is actually kinda gross. First the skin has this sore burning feeling for a couple of days, and then it starts to slowly scab. Finally, the old skin peels off and is replaced by a new layer.
Avoid getting a massage days after you get a tattoo, and If you want to be even more cautious, avoid massaging the affected skin for an entire month!
That being said, you can still massage non tattooed areas of your body. For example, if you get your arm tattooed, then you can still get your back, neck, or legs massaged. Just don’t touch the affected area until it heals completely. Healing times vary from person to person, but a good rule of thumb is to wait for 1 full month before doing any massage.
#2 After A Crazy Night Out! (AKA The Dreaded Hangover)
Crazy nights are something we’ve all experienced at some point in our lives. One drink too many and you end up feeling pretty bad the next morning. From feeling invincible and “superman like” the night before, you’re left feeling very human as you nurse that stubborn hangover the morning after. If there’s one thing your body needs most when you’re hungover, it’s rest. Skip the deep tissue work, and jump into a cold shower instead!
Give yourself a day or two to fully recover before you schedule your next appointment. In the meantime, check out these 7 awesome hangover cures from healthline!
#3 When You’re Intoxicated!
In #2 we discussed how it’s probably a bad idea to get a massage when you’re hungover. Well, it’s an even worse idea to get one when you’re drunk or intoxicated. Alcohol is a diuretic, and it can cause you to dehydrate. Below is a video from AsapSCIENCE that talks about why we urinate so much after consuming alcohol (all credit to AsapSCIENCE). Give it a watch!
So we know alcohol dehydrates us, but what does that have to do with massage? Everything! In an earlier post, I spoke about the importance of hydration before massage (yes, not a typo I meant to say before!). Basically, when you’re hydrated, your muscles are easier to manipulate and work. As such, the overall massage is more effective than if you were dehydrated. If you’re drunk, do yourself a favor: take a cab home and hit the sheets! Massage can wait until you recover.
#4 When You’ve Caught The Cold!
Nothing more frustrating than waking in the morning with a slight itch in your throat, and you can’t quite figure out if you’ve got the cold yet. Sorry to break it to you, but usually that’s indeed the case! People all around the world have their favorite “natural remedies” to combat the common cold. I have one too: it’s called REST!
Rest is the one thing that will help your body recover swiftly. What does rest mean? It means laying in bed and getting some shut eye, not binge watching game of thrones until your eyes feel like they’re about to pop!
That being said, there’s a lot of misconceptions about getting a massage while sick. Some say it magically cures the cold, and others swear not to do it. My 2 cents: if you really want to, a light massage is probably okay. However, you should 100% avoid deep tissue work when battling the cold!
#5 If You’re Really Sick!
Here’s where things start to get a little serious. When I say “really sick” I mean cancer, diabetes or some sort of autoimmune disease. If you suffer from any one of these conditions, you should always consult with your doctor before commencing a massage regimen. Why is this important? Simply because you never know what consequences a massage can have on certain conditions. Massage may have adverse effects that only a doctor can recognize. In these instances it pays off big time to get a doctors opinion and approval. Better to be safe than sorry!
#6 If You’re Cut Or Bruised!
Bruises and cuts are a great example of when not to get a massage. Just like the common cold, cuts, nicks and bruises take time to heal completely.
While we’re on the topic, in last week’s soccer game I got cut up pretty bad, and as much as I wanted to see my therapist the same day, I held off. I held off for 2 main reasons:
- It’s Not Fair To My Therapist—Can you imagine massaging someone who has blood and pus oozing out of their knee? Kinda gross right? I wouldn’t wanna do it, so why should I expect someone else to!
- It’s Unhygienic—Not only is it gross, it’s unhygienic!
So what should you do? Treat the wound and wait for it to completely heal (scabbing is a good indication of this) before you book your next appointment.
#7 If You’re Severely Injured (i.e. Broken Bones For Example!)
Broken bones don’t require the attention of a masseuse, they require the attention of a doctor, and probably ASAP. If you’re in recovery mode, it’s probably best to leave the affected area completely. That doesn’t mean you can’t massage unaffected areas of the body. There’s no problem in doing so, as long as it has no impact to the affected area.
#8 If You Suffer From Certain Skin Conditions
This isn’t something that necessarily halts you from getting a massage, it’s just something you ought to be aware of. Some massages require the use of oil and ointments, and if you suffer from a skin condition, your skin may (or may not) react adversely. The worst part about this is you can never be sure, because every massage shop is different. As such, shop A may use a different oil than shop B.
If you do suffer from skin problems, my recommendation is to first consult with your doctor ( a dermatologist in this case), and then determine if it’s advisable to proceed with said treatment. Also, it doesn’t hurt to make your therapist aware of your condition (more on this later).
I’ve used the example of oils in this case, but skin could be aggravated by a number of different factors. Heat is another example. Important to keep this in mind as you assess your specific situation!
#9 If You Didn’t Sleep Well The Night Before
Based on my personal experience, I’ve found massage to be most beneficial whenever I’ve had a goodnight’s rest. In particular, I’ve noted the following:
- My Muscles Feel & Respond Better—I feel my muscles respond better to different massage strokes when I’m well rested. Overall, there’s less discomfort and the experience is more enjoyable.
- Easier For The Therapist—Well at least for my therapist, this is the case!
- Feels Great After—Massage is just that much more effective on a well rested body, so it only makes sense that you would feel more awesome at the end of it!
My recommendation: head to bed early the night before your appointment, leave your cell in the living room, and close the blinds before you sink in to la la land.
Pro tip: Try book your appointments later in the day instead of early morning. I usually book anywhere from a 4-6 PM time range. Why? For one, it’s a great way to end the day, and two it’s only a couple hours before bedtime, which means the “sleepy drowsy” feeling that’s characteristic of massage helps me sleep better. Oh and I almost forgot, always try to book in advance! That way you get the therapist you want, and if you need to reschedule, you have time.
Before You Leave, There’s One Last Thing!
If any one of the 9 points discussed above is applicable to you, seriously consider rescheduling your appointment. I always recommend my readers to consult with their family doctor before commencing a massage regimen, irrespective. It’s also just as important to bring your therapist up to speed, especially if there’s anything he/she needs to be aware of.
When it comes down to it, it’s best to disclose everything!
What’s your take on when not to get a massage? Have you experienced something that’s not covered above? If so, please leave a comment and let’s get some discussion going! Finally if you enjoyed reading, please consider sharing on social media. Thanks and I’ll see you in the next one!