According to the Mayo Clinic, massage therapy is considered an alternative medicine that can help a person reduce anxiety, relieve headaches and recover from sports injuries. Massage therapy may also help reduce stress related insomnia. Some people also get massages for personal reasons, such as to aid in relaxation, to enjoy some personal pampering or to share time in a couple's massage with a significant other.
Mayo Clinic defines a massage as the pressing, rubbing and kneading of muscles, tendons and ligaments. Some massages also include muscle movement and stretching. According to USA Today, more people currently get massages for medical benefits than for pampering purposes. The report states that massages can also help lower blood pressure and boost immunity. The University of New Hampshire states that massage can reduce joint pain and help those suffering from depression.
Although there are many benefits to massages, there are also some risks to the therapy. Mayo Clinic reports that in rare instances, massages may result in an allergic reaction to the oils, internal bleeding or nerve damage. Anyone who is pregnant, has suffered a bone fracture, has suffered allergic reactions or has diabetes is advised to consult a health care professional before scheduling a massage.