Massage Therapy

Research continues to show enormous benefits of touch. Consequently, the medical community is embracing bodywork, and massage is becoming an integral part of a wide range of care from neonatal to hospice, for those with injuries, pre and post surgery and for pain patients.

One Duke study stands out to me. Professor Saul Schanberg found that rat pups separated from their parents for 45 minutes underwent major internal changes including a large drop in growth hormones. Injections of growth hormones didn’t help. But when someone stroked them with a wet paint brush, mimicking their mothers tongue, the hormone levels went back up!



Here is a summary of recent findings from studies performed at various institutions confirming massage including the Mayo Clinic, Yale Research Center, and National Institutes of Health.  

  • Research shows that in response to massage, specific physiological changes cascade throughout the body with profound effects!
  • There was significant decrease in patient reported distress for all 4 measures of pain, physical discomfort, emotional discomfort, and fatigue.  
  • There was immediate beneficial effects on reducing stress and anxiety in acutely hospitalized psychiatric patients.
  • Preschool children with high scores of behavioral problems, receiving massage showed significant decrease in aggression scores. Parents reported a decrease in somatic problems of their children, and social problems decreased. The conclusion was that daily touching by massage for 5-10 minutes, 3 times a day could be an easy and inexpensive way to decrease aggression in preschool children.  
  • There was improved weight gain in preterm infants receiving massage.
  • There were also benefits with full term infants with an increase in alertness and social behavior, less injury, and an increase in weight gain.
  • Massage decreases pain and anxiety levels for heart patients after surgery, thus allowing them to exit ICU a day earlier and heal faster. “It’s not enough to just fix the heart. We have to treat the whole patient”.  
  • Swedish massage benefits osteoarthritis patients.
  • Massage has immediate benefits on pain and mood among patients with advanced cancer.
  • Asthmatic children show better pulmonary function.
  • Arthritis sufferers note fewer aches and discomforts.
  • Premenstrual syndrome sufferers have a decrease in water retention and cramping.
  • Massage reduces a a brain chemical called substance P that is related to pain.
  • Massage decreases cortisol, thus increasing immunity. Cortisol is produced when you are stressed.  It kills cells important for immunity.

I like to tell my clients that massage simply makes everything work better! The description of cascading physiological changes is a great one, remembering that each body part is connected to all other body parts.  Massaging the feet can relieve a headache, or a deep tissue massage of the hamstrings can ease lower back pain. I believe that if a person could be massaged daily, his health would have a chance to dramatically improve. My hope is that people will be smart, and educate themselves to the many known benefits of massage and begin to incorporate it in their daily lives, making it a priority, forming new habits of taking care of themselves and their loved ones! Reach out and massage those you love! And you will live a happier, and healthier life!


Carole Barone

Licensed Massage Therapist
#MA 53992

Nirvana Massage

813-951-5414

Email Carole

Flexible Hours by Appointment

Will travel with table or chair upon request. 

Specializing in:
Relaxation/Swedish Massage
Deep Tissue/Trigger Point Massage
Neuromuscular Massage
Sports Massage
Pregnancy Massage
Certified IAIM Instructor (Infant Massage)