As technology has become more innovative, we have learned more about the best ways to recover after exercise. This includes the use of products such as handheld massage guns and electric back massagers that aid in the recovery process from the comfort of our homes. While these products have grown in popularity and can offer several benefits, some negative consequences can occur if not used properly.
Home massage devices work by stimulating the skin’s sensory cells, which stops muscles from contracting; therefore, relaxing them. They can also prevent soreness by increasing blood flow to the affected area, which helps the muscle’s healing process. “Think of it as a mini hammer, repeatedly impacting the soft tissue, causing blood flow to increase in that area,” said the Cleveland Clinic. Massaging muscles as a warmup or cooldown can also prepare them for physical activity and relieve lactic acid buildup that causes soreness.
While using hand-held massagers can be advantageous, it is important to remember that they can have an adverse effect on your health if used improperly. For instance, using a massage device after an injury involving a sprain or a strain can only worsen the amount of pain or swelling you may experience.
You can prevent injuries or accidents by paying attention to warning signs that signal when you should stop using the device, such as skin irritation and redness or increased pain. It is also crucial to understand that these devices are not meant to be used on bones, nerves, or joints – only muscles.
Lastly, one of the most important things to know about using these products properly is to avoid self-diagnosis and treatment. Instead, consult a doctor before usage to ensure that you are using massage devices safely and effectively.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.