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Thread: Increased anxiety after massage

  1. #1

    Angry Increased anxiety after massage

    Hi there,

    I'm a newbie to all this but been searching for somewhere to talk about a weird experience that has really shaken me up.

    Last week on holiday, my boyfriend and I booked in to have a massage in a lovely spa. It was all so nice, but about half way through I started feeling really tense in the middle of my back and started panicking that the masseuse wasn't focusing enough on that area. All I could then think about was whether she was going to spend time on this and then and I got tenser and tenser, worrying that it was all going to be a waste of money if she didn't make my back feel relaxed.

    When it was over, I felt so strange like I wanted to burst in to tears and felt some really tight spots in parts of my back that weren't there before.

    Over the next few days I was an emotional wreck but had no idea why. I was so worked up about the massage, feeling like a failure for getting tense in what is meant to be a really relaxing thing and ruining what was until then a perfect holiday. I was so low, bursting into tears randomly, so worked up and anxious that I couldn't sleep ... none of which I was feeling before the massage.

    I've had a few quite stressful months and am about to start a new job, and I must have been holding on to a lot of tension. But honestly, I feel like an utter idiot to have had this sort of reaction to a massage. I feel very scared that I have a bigger problem with anxiety than I was even aware of ...

    I really need to talk about this but no-one seems to understand. Any thoughts would really be appreciated.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    Contra-actions (healing crisis) can occur during or after a massage. Sometimes the client can feel very emotional and tearful. It can be a good way of releasing tension and emotions. Are you feeling any better now? It sounds though that you did start to get anxious about the massage which made you more than tense than relaxed. Maybe if you could try some relaxation techniques if you are still experiencing the tension.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2013

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    When I was going through treatment, a massage therapist came to Hope Lodge (the Cancer Society's housing) and offered massages. I had (and still have) a lot of pain associated with the neck dissection and it helped tremendously! It was a holistic type massage that focused around removing the bad stuff from your body. used certain directional moves to channel it out etc. I have to say I looked SO forward to those as I felt 100% better afterwards and did for a few days afterwards. I wish I could continue to get one once a week!

    Positive thoughts
    "Eat. Drink. Enjoy the work you do. Be thankful for the blessings God gives you in this life. Live, love and seek out the things that bring your heart joy. The rest is meaningless... Like chasing the wind." King Solomon

    The best help is the help you give yourself!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    If you lived nearer Fishmanpa I would do them for you Aromatherapy massages are the most relaxing. I often have trouble waking some of my clients up after a massage and some of them snore while they are sleeping

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2014

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    I get a lot of people who fall asleep even during reflexology and snore away happily but I also get some who gabble on and need to offload. The therapy room in the hands of a trained holistic therapist is a safe place to do all that.Touch is very powerful and can act as a release. If you have ever had one of those cupboards where you keep shoving stuff out of sight so it get fuller and fuller then one day you touch something and the whole lot comes tumbling out. Emotional release can be like that and no matter how hard you try to push it all back in it won't go! It's unfortunate it happened on your holiday but chances are it would happen at some stage anyway but could have built up into affecting your health so maybe see it as a positive for the future . More treatments in the hands of a therapist you can build a therapeutic relationship with would always be beneficial xx

  6. #6

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    Thanks for all your replies. Annie - I didn't really feel much better afterwards, but it has made me think that I probably need to spend more time learning how to relax so it doesn't all build up like it seems like it did. Ange - I like your comparison to a cupboard. That is a bit how it felt! I'm hoping to try and have massage more regularly to hopefully help with the anxiety and to avoid this happening again! I think I put too much pressure on it as well.

    Thanks again

  7. #7

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    I had the exact same reaction, I had a massage in Sri Lanka while on holiday and burst into tears at the end, but I have had back surgery in past and think i just didn't like someone i didn't know touching me. I also had a bad experience (for a woman) while traveling in Nepal, and maybe it triggered memories of that, either way it took a good 3 days to calm down

  8. #8

    Re: Increased anxiety after massage

    Hi and I know it has been a few years since your event with the odd reaction to a massage but I wanted to share with you to see if you can give some light on what to do...About two weeks ago my husband and I took a massage from a chinese lady. This was his second time as he took his first one the day before and he was raving about it of how good it was, I decided to take one my self from the same chinese lady. Mine turned our to be a nightmare, similar to what you describe.
    I used to sleep so easy and peacefully every night, however immediately after that massage I have difficulty sleeping, not been able to fall asleep till wee hours of the night and I feel anxious all the time. I feel anxious for no apparent reason and feel more anxious at night and not been able to fall asleep till wee hours. Please let me know how you cleared you anxiety away.

    ---------- Post added at 05:56 ---------- Previous post was at 05:28 ----------

    Hi and Im a newby also to this forum, but I had to write about my odd experience with a chinese massage. About two weeks ago my husband took a chinese massage from a chinese lady and he came home raving about it. The next day he took his second massage and I took my first right after his with the same chinese lady. Contrary to him my reaction to this massages has been bad. Ever since that massage I have lots of difficulty falling asleep which I did not have before and I have been anxious and tense all the time, specially at night when I feel like bright and awake. How did you cleared this odd response away?

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