What is Manual lymphatic drainage? Manual Lymphatic Drainage or MLD is a type of gentle massage which is intended to encourage the natural drainage of lymph fluid from the body tissue. Using very light rhythmic pressure, the therapist helps drain puffy, swollen tissues, supports the body's immune system, and helps the body heal from surgery.
Who Can Benefit From MLD? Virtually everyone can benefit from lymphatic drainage as a way to boost their immune system, especially during cold and flu season, or anyone who suffers from allergies, chronic sinusitis or bronchitis.
MLD is especially beneficial for inflammation as a result of injury or trauma to the body, such as, joint sprains or post surgery.
I just had plastic surgery, joint replacement or another surgical procedure, how long should I wait? You can begin MLD treatments in as little as 3 days post op, however, some clients choose to wait until they can drive themselves to their appointment.
How Many Sessions Will It Take to Feel Relief? Because every body is different, there is no clear cut answer. Some may feel relief immediately where as others may not feel relief for 2-3 sessions.
How often do I need to come in for treatments? Post surgically,the ideal treatment is daily for the first week, followed by every other day for the second week until swelling is significantly decreased and does not return between sessions.
It's important to remember that lymph needs to be stimulated in order to move and that lying down and resting, while necessary, does not help the flow of lymph fluid.
Will MLD be effective if I only come once a week? It's possible, but not likely to produce the desired results of long term reduction of fluid build up.
Do I need to do anything between sessions? Yes. MLD will be most effective if treatment is continued at home between sessions. Elevating the effected limb(s) will help decrease swelling. If you're receiving lymphatic drainage as a result of plastic surgery, you will need to wear the compression garments as directed by your physician.
What are some of the side effects of lymphatic drainage? While there are no adverse side effects know with MLD, some clients report an increase in urination due to fluid drainage. Clients who receive MLD for sinus related issues often report a rapid onset of cold or sinus symptoms 12-24 hours after a session. If you think you have or are getting a cold/sinus infection it is best not to get MLD until after your cold has cleared up.
Is MLD As Effective As Deep Tissue Massage? Yes! In fact incorporated with traditional deep tissue massage, lymphatic drainage will decongest the muscle tissue allowing for less pain during your deep tissue session.
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