Help Your Body Heal
You may be able to help your body heal itself with medical massage therapy. More and more doctors are beginning to prescribe medical massage as a way to aid your own body's natural ability to heal itself. They do this to minimize, or avoid, using high doses of prescription pain medications, and sometimes it can even help avoid surgery. Sometimes the therapy can relieve pain. In some cases, it can actually aid healing.
Medical Massage VS. Relaxation Massage
It is important to understand the distinction between medical massage and relaxation massage. While both may have some medical benefits, a medical treatment will be designed to help with a particular problem.
You may call yourself to schedule relaxation massage at a day spa, resort, or beauty school. Lots of people enjoy these sessions in order to relax, improve their mood, or relieve sore muscles. A session will probably be applied to the whole body, or to whatever parts of the body you request.
Compare that to a medical treatment. This will probably be applied to the part of your body that is affected. It is very specifically designed to help treat a certain injury or illness. The treatment should be prescribed by a doctor, and it should be performed by a qualified therapist.
A medical doctor will prescribe this treatment, much as they might prescribe medication. And this type of treatment may actually reduce the need for medication too. It can also relieve pain, relax muscle spasms, and improve blood circulation. Sometimes one treatment will be enough, and sometimes a patient need to schedule regular visits over a course of time.
Common Massage Therapy Treatments
There are a variety of uses for massage therapy, and more uses are being studied all of the time. Some are to relieve chronic pain caused by illnesses or pregnancy. Some may help with bloating or constipation. Still others may help people who have been injured in an accident. Patients who get treatment also tend to report an improved mood, along with relief from pain.
Warnings About Medical Massage Therapy
Keep in mind that doctors do prescribe the treatment. This is because the massage therapists are not expected to diagnose a problem, but simply to relieve it. For example, some heart problems could present themselves as back or arm pain. But if this is the case, a massage could be very dangerous. That is why a medical professional must prescribe the treatment, and the patient cannot go out and seek it on their own.
Will Health Insurance Cover Medical Massage Therapy?
Since this is accepted medical treatment, prescribed by a doctor, and performed by a licensed professional, will health insurance cover it? Many insurers do help pay for these treatments.
If you want to find out if your plan covers this, you need to do a couple of things. First you should call your insurer to find out how they will handle payments. Secondly, you will need to make sure the therapist is on your plan. Some types of health insurance, like PPO or HMO health plans, may have a list of network providers you can use. This may actually be helpful because the therapists will have to be qualified to make the network list. Other insurers may approve your treatment, but require you to file your own claims.