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What is Indian Head Massage?

 

There are a wide range of options to choose from when it comes to booking a massage. Each massage has its own slightly different qualities and benefits, and we want to help you choose the right massage to suit you. In this article, we’re going to look at Indian head massage and how it can help you.

What is it?

Indian head massage, or Champissage, originated in India more than 2,000 years ago and eventually made its way over to Western society. Despite its name, it is used to treat the neck and shoulders as well as the head and scalp. It follows the same theories as acupressure to target certain points in these areas that are thought to have a positive effect on your overall wellbeing by balancing your body’s energy.

Indian head massage is generally a gentle massage that mostly uses circular strokes, but can incorporate a variety of techniques and levels of pressure. It is typically done without using oils (although they can be incorporated if you wish) and can be done through a light layer of clothing when it comes to the shoulders.

What are the benefits of Indian head massage?

There are a number of physical benefits or getting an Indian head massage. It can help to relieve pain around the areas covered, which is great for tension in the neck and shoulders. Since this kind of pain is common among office workers and is an increasingly common problem due to smartphone usage, Indian head massage can be used to help a lot of people.

It can also help to relieve pain from headaches and migraines, and could even reduce the prevalence of them. Indian head massage is also great for your scalp and hair. It is thought to stimulate the hair follicles and increase circulation to the scalp, which can both increase hair growth and lead to thicker, healthier-looking hair. By improving circulation in the area, these techniques can also help to relieve blocked sinuses and other symptoms of sinusitis.

Like other types of massage, Indian head massage is incredibly relaxing, which can have a number of knock-on effects such as relieving stress and anxiety, improving sleep quality, and helping to improve focus. And add to all this that it feels great!

We offer a range of different massages customized to your needs at Moonstone Massage. Get in touch with us to find out more about our services and packages, or go online to book a massage with us in Winston Salem, NC.

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How to Look After Your Skin in the Sun

Among many other benefits, regular massage is great for keeping your skin looking and feeling great. But we still have to look after our skin in other ways, particularly when it comes to sun exposure. As well as the serious risk of skin cancer from exposure to UV rays, not protecting your skin from the sun can lead to premature aging.

Here are some tips for how to look after your skin in the sun.

Wear sunscreen

You’ve probably been told it a lot throughout your life, but it’s still easy to forget to wear sunscreen or underestimate its importance. Whenever you’ll be out in the sun, you should apply sunscreen to any areas that will be exposed. Even on overcast and cloudy days, you can still be exposed to UV rays. Try to use at least SPF 15 and reapply your sunscreen every 2 hours.

Seek the shade

If you’re spending a day at the beach or an afternoon in the park, you don’t have to be out in the direct sunlight all the time. Sit under a tree or an umbrella to shade yourself from the sun and give your skin a break. You should especially look for shade around midday when the sun’s rays are at their strongest.

Cover up

You don’t exactly want to wrap up warm when it’s sunny, but covering up helps to limit the amount of skin exposed to the sun. Wear light clothing that covers you, a hat to shade your face, sunglasses to protect your eyes. You can also look for clothing that absorbs UV light and sunglasses that specifically protect against it.

Hydrate

You should drink plenty of fluids when out in the sun and the heat to make sure you don’t become dehydrated. But staying hydrated in the sun is also important for keeping your skin in good condition. Dehydration and sun damage are a sure combination for dry skin, wrinkles, and other skin issues.

Moisturize

After spending a day in the sun, you should use a moisturizer to rehydrate your skin and help it renew and repair. You can find products that are specifically designed for use after sun exposure.

Book a massage treatment or a facial for better skin with Moonstone Massage. And you can get in touch to find out more about the different types of treatments we offer in Winston Salem, NC.

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A Guide to Massage Oils

 

Massage oils aren’t necessary for a good massage, but they can help to reduce the friction for a more comfortable massage as well as enhancing various benefits of a massage. If you’re wondering whether to include massage oils in your professional or at-home massages, then read on for some of the benefits and the different types of massage oils to choose from.

The benefits of massage oil

Massage oil can add a variety of benefits to your professional massage. Different types of oil can nourish the skin during your massage, helping with a variety of skin problems such as eczema, dry skin, and wrinkles. Some oils also have warming effects, helping your muscles to relax and loosen even more during your massage.

The lubricating effect of massage oils means that the massage therapist’s hands glide more easily and smoothly over your skin. The pleasant smells of massage oils can also have a relaxation boosting effect, as with aromatherapy.

Popular types of massage oil

For your next massage, here are some of the most popular types of massage oil that you might want to add:

  • Almond oil – Sweet almond oil can offer both hydrating and anti-inflammatory benefits for your skin, which can be helpful for dry skin and even conditions like eczema
  • Jojoba oil – Jojoba is an easily absorbed oil that penetrates deeply into the skin and helps to moisturize it
  • Avocado oil – Avocado oil is particularly good for dry skin and problems like psoriasis and eczema, containing vitamins and antioxidants that are good for the skin
  • Coconut oil – Coconut oil is a thick oil that’s good for dry, cracked skin, as well as having anti-inflammatory and soothing properties
  • Olive oil – This isn’t just for cooking. Olive oil can also be used in your massages. It can help to moisturize your skin and relieve aching or stiff muscles. It also contains antioxidants that can have various benefits to your wellbeing.
  • Essential oils – The above oils are carrier oils, which can be combined with essential oils for greater benefits and for aromatherapy properties. Here’s a guide to some of the different essential oils you can use and the benefits they offer

If you want certain massage oils used during your appointment or would prefer not to use massage oils, then talk to your massage therapist when booking your appointment or at the beginning of your appointment and we can adapt to your preferences. Contact Moonstone Massage to talk to a massage therapist, or you can book an appointment online.

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The Benefits of Massage for Babies

 

While you’re pregnant, a prenatal massage can offer lots of benefits to both you and your baby. It helps to relieve tension and pain as well as relaxing you mentally. And the boost in circulation caused by massage helps to get more nutrients to your baby to help them grow. And the benefits of massage don’t have to stop once your baby is born. Baby and infant massage has a lot of benefits for both parent and child.

The benefits of baby massage

Massaging your baby has both physical and emotional benefits for both of you. Gentle massage can help to aid your baby’s digestion, just like when you rub and pat their back after a bottle of milk. This can help to prevent problems like gas and constipation, and is particularly beneficial if your baby suffers from colic.

The boost in circulation also supports digestion and other bodily functions, and can help your baby’s growth by improving nutrient delivery in their body. And as they grow, which they’re doing every day, massage can help to ease any discomfort and growing pains as well as being generally relaxing like it is for adults, which can help your baby sleep better.

Massaging your baby is great for developing that maternal or paternal bond between the two of you. The touch of your skin stimulates the release of oxytocin in both of you, helping to strengthen your bond and love on a chemical level.

How to massage your baby

Touch is important for your baby from birth, but it is better to wait a few weeks before you start performing massage techniques. Six weeks is a good place to start. You can massage your baby every day, perhaps once they first wake up in the morning or when you’re trying to get them to sleep at night or naptime.

All it requires are gentle touches with your fingers or thumbs in different motions, like circular or stroking motions. This can be beneficial on your child’s back, stomach, legs, arms, hands, and feet. Always be conscious of your baby’s reactions and stop the massage or use less pressure if they seem uncomfortable.

Choose a warm, comfortable location for the massage. You may want to lie them down in bed or on the changing table, for example. Talking to your baby while you massage them can also be beneficial as a way to relax them and increase your bond. You can use oils in your massage if you choose to, just make sure that they are suitable for your baby’s skin.

If you’d like any more tips on baby massage or need a relaxing massage for yourself, contact Moonstone Massage or book an appointment with us online for a range of treatments in Winston Salem, NC.

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Tips for Sitting at a Desk All Day

 

Many jobs require workers to sit at a desk for the best part of 8 hours a day. As well as the downsides of a largely sedentary lifestyle, this can also be harmful to our posture if we don’t sit correctly or set up our workstations correctly. This is why chronic neck, back, and shoulder pain are so common among office workers.

We’ve rounded up some tips to help you maintain good posture and support throughout the workday.

Setting up your work station

The position of your chair, desk, computer screen, mouse, and keyboard all have an impact on your posture. The incorrect heights can put a strain on your neck, back, or other areas. Here are some tips for setting up your work station correctly:

  • Adjust your chair to a height so that your feet can fully reach the floor, keep your feet flat on the floor while you work. Adding a footstool or other support can make this more comfortable for some
  • Adjust the back of the chair so that it provides adequate lower back support. A cushion or support behind your back can help with this
  • Your monitor should be positioned so that the top of the screen is approximately at eye level. You can use a monitor stand or place it on books to achieve this height
  • How close you sit to the desk and the position of your keyboard should mean that you can keep your forearms and wrists are parallel with the floor, with your elbows at right angles. An armrest or wrist support can make this more comfortable

Choosing the right chair

The type of chair you use also has a big impact on the level of support you receive while sitting at your desk. A chair with an adjustable height and backrest is ideal so that you can adjust your sitting position properly. Look for a chair with adequate lumbar support to comfortably improve your posture, giving your lower back the support it needs. Armrests can also make your office chair more comfortable, particularly if they are adjustable.

Look at ergonomic chairs to help make your workspace more comfortable and supportive.

Get up and move

Sitting for long periods of time can be bad for our physical health even if our posture is correct. So, it’s important to get up regularly, even if it’s just to walk around the office for a couple of minutes. Doing stretches at your desk can also help to improve your posture and relieve some of the tension in your neck, back, and other areas.

If you sit for long periods at work each day, then regular massage treatments can help to maintain your posture and treat any tension or pain caused by this position. Contact Moonstone Massage or book an appointment with us online for a range of treatment options in Winston Salem, NC.

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Causes and Treatments of Migraines

 

Migraines can be extremely frustrating and painful. They can stop you from getting work done or from enjoying whatever you were doing before the migraine hit. Depending on the severity of your migraines, they can be fairly debilitating, leaving you having to lay in bed for hours in the dark due to sensitivity to the light.

Migraine symptoms

Symptoms of migraines can vary from one person to the next and even from one episode to the next. The main symptom is an often-intense headache, which can become more painful through movement and exposure to light and sound. This pain may be localized to one side of the head or can be a more general throbbing pain.

Approximately 30% of migraine sufferers also experience ‘aura’ with their migraines. This typically occurs before the onset of the headache and involves a disruption to vision. Patients typically see lights, colored spots, or dark patches in their field of vision. Some people also experience other symptoms such as nausea and light-headedness with their migraines.

Migraine causes

The cause of migraines is not completely understood, but certain factors can potentially lead to the onset of a migraine attack in some people. These include:

  • Hormone changes
  • Lack of sleep
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Dehydration
  • Alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Undereating or skipping meals
  • Consuming too much caffeine
  • Consuming too much sugar
  • Bright lights, e.g. bright sunlight or staring at a computer or television screen
  • Poor posture
  • Lack of fresh air
  • High-pressure weather, e.g. thunderstorms

A combination of these factors could contribute to a migraine occurring. So, for some people, lifestyle changes such as getting enough sleep, a healthy diet, and regular exercise can reduce the incidence of migraines. Migraines may also have a genetic component, meaning you are more likely to suffer from migraines if one of your parents does.

Migraine treatments

You can’t cure yourself of migraines, but there are ways to manage the pain when they occur and even prevent their onset. Regular over-the-counter pain medication can help to reduce and manage your symptoms. Many sufferers experience warning signs before the onset of pain, including aura, and taking painkillers at this point can help to lessen or even prevent the headache. If your migraines are severe or disruptive to your life, you can talk to your doctor about prescription medications that manage or prevent migraines.

For a natural alternative, massage can help to manage pain from migraines and reduce their severity and occurrence. If you want to see how regular massage treatments could improve or prevent your migraines and headaches, then contact us at Moonstone Massage or book an appointment with us online.

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The Dangers of Sitting

The average person’s lifestyle has become increasingly more sedentary over the centuries. Many of us sit at a desk working all day, commute to and from work sitting in a car or on public transport, and then spend our evenings relaxing on the couch in front of the TV or sitting with friends for a couple of drinks. All the inventions and advancements that have made life easier for us have also removed much of the necessity to be active.

If you don’t have an active job or if you’re not extremely active in your leisure time, then it’s likely that you spend too much of your time sitting down. Here are some of the dangers and health risks of sitting for too long each day.

You’re more likely to gain weight

Being overweight or obese comes with many of its own health risks. When you spend most of your day sitting, you burn much fewer calories than if you are active. Even basic activities like standing and walking burn calories that contribute to your total daily energy expenditure. If you consume more calories than you expend on a daily basis, then this will lead to weight gain over time.

A greater risk of certain diseases

Leading such a sedentary lifestyle is also linked to various conditions and diseases, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer. As a result, studies have also found that too much sitting and too little physical activity is an indicator of premature death. So, getting up and about on a daily basis could literally add years to your life.

It’s bad for your posture

Do you ever get a bad back after you’ve been sitting for too long? Sitting for too long puts a strain on your back, neck, and spine, which can lead to chronic pain in the back, neck, and shoulders. A combination of exercise, regular movement, stretching, and massage can help to keep your body in good shape and improve your posture. For when you do need to sit, make sure you watch your posture and invest in an ergonomic chair if you sit all day for work.

Reduced blood flow

Moving gets our blood pumping more effectively, helping it reach and nourish all of our tissues and organs. Sitting for too long can reduce blood flow to these areas and lead to health problems such as varicose veins and deep vein thrombosis. Getting up from your desk or sofa regularly helps to keep your blood pumping effectively.

If you have a sedentary job, then try to take regular breaks, even if it’s just to walk around the office for a few minutes. You can also do stretches at your desk. Try to do some activity and exercise outside of work, too, or start walking to and from work if it’s possible. Massage can help to improve poor posture and other health effects from sitting too much. Contact Moonstone Massage to book an appointment with us.

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A Guide to Aromatherapy

 

Are you interested in alternative or complementary therapies to improve your mental, physical, and emotional health? Aromatherapy is a popular practice that can be combined with a variety of other treatments, including massage and facials. Read on to find out more about aromatherapy and how it can help you.

What is aromatherapy?

Aromatherapy is a type of holistic, complementary therapy that has been around for thousands of years. It involves the use of essential oils to boost your physical and emotional wellbeing in a variety of ways.

Essential oils are natural compounds extracted from plants. The name ‘essential’ does not refer to them being vital to human health but, instead, to the extraction of the plant’s ‘essence’. These aromatic compounds are distilled and combined with a carrier oil to form the essential oil, which can then be diffused in the air for its pleasant smell or applied directly to the skin.

Lots of different essential oils are used in aromatherapy, here are some that are commonly used:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Fennel
  • Lavender
  • Lemongrass
  • Patchouli
  • Peppermint
  • Chamomile
  • Rose
  • Rosemary
  • Tea tree
  • Ylang ylang

The benefits of aromatherapy

People reap the benefits of essential oils by either inhaling them or absorbing them through the skin. This means they are a great pairing for lots of different types of massage. You can also use them at home by mixing some into your bath water, for example.

While different people may experience slightly different benefits of using essential oils and aromatherapy treatments, here are some ways it could help you:

  • Promotes relaxation
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Makes it easier to fall asleep at night and improves sleep quality
  • Reduces pain and stiffness in the joints
  • Helps to manage pain from a range of conditions
  • Relieves and helps to prevent headaches and migraines
  • Helps cancer patients manage the side effects of chemotherapy treatment
  • Boosts your immune system and helps you fight viruses and other illnesses
  • Improves and aids digestion

With these benefits, aromatherapy and aromatherapy massage can be beneficial for a range of people, including those suffering from asthma, insomnia, menstrual cramps, depression, anxiety, inflammation, cancer, arthritis, and more.

At Moonstone Massage, we can use essential oils during your massage or facial to help you get the most out of your treatment. Get in touch with us to discuss this with your massage therapist or book an appointment with us online for your next massage.

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Do Massage Chairs Work?

 

If you’re looking for ways to stay relaxed and keep your muscles in good condition between professional massage appointments, then there are various ways you can try to self-massage at home. We recently discussed massage guns and how effective they are. In this article, we’re going to look at massage chairs to see if they can help and whether or not they are worth it.

What is a massage chair?

A massage chair is a comfortable chair with a headrest and a footrest. It may use various mechanisms to produce relaxing massaging effects. Mainly, massage chairs use motors to create vibrations, utilizing vibration therapy to stimulate and massage muscles all around your body. More advanced models may feature other mechanisms such as rollers, which may move in circles or other patterns and directions to massage the muscles in contact with those areas.

Depending on the complexity of the massage chair, you may be able to control its various features plus the speed or intensity of the vibrations using controls built into the chair or via a remote control.

So, how well do massage chairs actually work when it comes to achieving the same effects and benefits of professional massage? Let’s look at some of their benefits and limitations.

The benefits of massage chairs

Massage chairs can be incredibly relaxing and stress relieving. Imagine sitting in front of the television with the light touches and vibrations from your massage chair melting away all your tension. As well as feeling nice, this can help to reduce stress and anxiety levels, help you sleep better at night, and relieve physical tension that can lead to stiff and sore muscles.

Another big benefit is that you can use it every day if you own one, whereas you’re unlikely to have the time and budget to have a professional massage every day. Massage chairs can be useful for people with back pain and poor posture as they help to align and lengthen the spine by keeping you in a comfortable, supportive position. The vibration and other methods of stimulation also help to increase circulation like professional massage does, which can have a variety of benefits.

The limitations of massage chairs

While massage chairs are a relaxing experience that you can enjoy on a regular basis, they can’t achieve everything that a professional massage therapist does. Massage therapists use a variety of techniques to achieve the desired effect, and they are able to understand your pain points and alter their technique or target specific areas to help you in the best way. Most massage chairs simply use vibration to offer a few benefits to you, mentally and physically.

If your muscles or joints need treatment, if you’re just looking for a way to unwind and reduce stress, then book a massage treatment with Moonstone Massage, or get in touch to find out more about our variety of treatment options in Winston Salem, NC.

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The Benefits of Facials

Spa treatments like massages and facials have a variety of wonderful benefits for you both physically and psychologically. Having a facial treatment on a regular basis is great for your skin and is also a relaxing and invigorating treatment that you’ll enjoy. Read on for some of the main benefits of getting a facial.

Healthy looking skin

Professional facial treatments leave you with softer, smoother, glowing skin. Exfoliation helps to remove dead skin cells for a fresher looking face, and moisturizing products prevent dry skin so that your face looks and feels softer.

And facials aren’t just about the rejuvenating products applied to your skin. They also use facial massage techniques that help to increase circulation to the area. This means your skin cells get more of the oxygen and nutrients they need to give you healthy-looking skin.

Reduce signs of aging

Facial massage techniques and the lotions and creams used on your face help to boost collagen production. This helps to improve the elasticity of your skin, keeping it tighter and helping to prevent or reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Keep your skin properly hydrated through regular facials also helps to slow down signs of aging. All of this adds up to smoother, younger-looking skin.

Treat skin blemishes

Blemishes on the skin can make us feel self-conscious and leave us reaching for make-up to cover it up. Regular facials can help to clear up and even prevent blackheads, whiteheads, and other types of acne breakouts. Facial massage and their related skin treatments can even help to prevent the marks left behind by acne or reduce the appearance of acne scarring over time. The use of massage and eye creams can also help to reduce the appearance of bags and dark circles under the eyes.

Relaxation and stress reduction

The gentle motions of facials combined with the nice smells and soothing feeling of the skin products used during a facial are extremely relaxing. If you need to unwind at the end of a long, busy week or find new ways to manage your stress levels, then a facial treatment is a great option. Facials are also great for treating yourself or a loved one on a special occasion.

At Moonstone Massage, we offer 30, 60, and 90-minute facial appointments, whether you need a quick pick me up or a full pampering session. Get in touch to find out more about our different facial treatments or book an appointment online with us in Winston Salem, NC.