Substantial health issues facing Native Americans. There is a record of high instances of mental health problems and their consequences, as well as heart disease. On a civic level, there is much to be done. But what can be done on a day to day basis to relieve some of these ailments?

While it is always going to be important to have regular check-ups with a doctor, there is one non-invasive treatment that anyone can take. The benefits of taking massage therapy are manifold and can alleviate or reduce some of the major health problems facing Native Americans.

Muscular 

The modern workplace is overwhelmed by situations that can cause muscular issues. Whether it’s spending eight hours a day in front of a computer screen or on a building site loading heavy equipment, there are a lot of ways one can damage ligaments or tear muscle.

One of the most obvious benefits of undertaking massage therapy is that it treats muscular pain directly. Therapists can also detect any deeper tissue damage and suggest practices or give medical advice that might reduce any further muscular issues.

Immune system

Massage can also help those with compromised immune systems. Though there are, overall, fewer cases of cancer in Native Americans, it is a leading cause of death among Native American women. 

Of course, a massage isn’t a cure for cancer, but it can stimulate the lymphatic system and reduce stress hormones which affect the body’s capacity to fight infection. Also, it supports the body in creating natural cytostatic capacity - the killer cells which can inhibit cell growth.

Sleep 

Many people suffer from insomnia, often from stress and anxiety or poor diet. It has been suggested that a lack of sleep can lead to all manner of other health problems, including Type 2 Diabetes, which affects a high proportion of Native Americans. 

Being treated by a massage therapist can help to nurture a healthy sleep cycle. It triggers serotonin, the neurotransmitter that reduces stress and slows the system down. Its ability to reduce physical pain is also an important factor in creating bodily comfort, making it easier to sleep.

Circulation

Bad heart conditions and heart disease are the leading cause of death in Native Americans. It is significantly higher than the rest of the population and stems from all manner of other issues, including poor mental health or poor diet.

Perhaps one of the most important results of consistent massage therapy is its ability to lower blood pressure and improve circulation. The significant lower stress levels it can support reduces the risk of heart attacks or strokes, and the improved circulation eases the work the heart has to do.

Mental health

Massage can also help to lower cortisol levels. This is especially important for Native Americans, as cortisol is a stress hormone that can have a devastating effect on mental health. 

Mental health issues and their side effects are a major problem for Native Americans, one which is sadly overlooked on a governmental level. Though regular massage might not solve this issue, it is certainly a useful therapy to help combat recurrent mental health problems. Regular massage sessions provide deep relaxation which is key in reducing stress and promoting mental well-being. 

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