What is deep tissue massage?

Deep tissue massage

deep tissue massage

The definition of deep tissue massage according dictionary.com is that it is a type of massage which reaches structures far beneath the superficial fascia to attempt to relieve chronic muscle problems or injuries.  To expand on this definition:  deep tissue is typically performed very slowly and the therapist may use fingers, knuckles or elbows.  It is normal to feel some pain during deep tissue but I always advise my clients that it should be a “good pain” and never reach above a 7 on a 0-10 pain scale.  You should be able to keep your muscles relaxed and breath through the pain to work with your massage therapist to release muscle tension, scar tissue, tight fascia and bound muscle fibers.  If you are tensing against the pressure the massage becomes counter productive.

When you should choose deep tissue massage

  • When you have an injury that is past the acute phase and is no longer sensitive to touch, you may also want to get permission from your doctor before getting deep work on a recent injury.

  • When scar tissue and/or muscle tension is causing restriction of movement.

  • Chronic pain may be crying out for deeper work, specifically if the affected area has an underlying deeper issue.

  • Other situations may be appropriate for deep tissue massage as well, if you think it  is right for you discuss your options with your therapist.

How will I feel after a deep tissue massage?

You might feel a little sore, tired or even kinda grouchy after a deep tissue massage, especially if it has been a while since you got bodywork.  I had a client tell me once that she went home after a 90 minute deep tissue treatment and got into an honest and heated discussion with her husband about some things that had been bothering her.  I hope this doesn’t detour you, I tell you this because it is important to understand what is happening to our bodies.  Massage, in general, releases things…what those things are can be debatable, but my personal belief is that the release happens on many levels.  Keep in mind that every person is different and many people leave their deep tissue treatment feeling a profound sense of relaxation.

Here is a great idea:  go get a deep tissue massage (if you feel it is right for you) and report back in the comments on how you feel afterwords!  In the end some discomfort can be normal for the first couple of days and after that you should see improvement in the focus area of the treatment.


Have questions about whether deep tissue massage is right for you?  email us at wonthebody@gmail.com or book online at https://clients.mindbodyonline.com/classic/home?studioid=158494

Thanks so much for reading:)

Jaw pain causes and treatments

Jaw pain is no fun

jaw pain

You have just finished a long day at work and on your ride home you begin to notice that even though you are attempting to relax you are instead clenching your teeth, tensing your neck and hunching your shoulders to your ears.  In fact, you suddenly realize that you have been holding tension in your entire jaw for several days and not only is your face and head feeling a dull pain but your shoulders and neck are also sore and tight.  Jaw tension is common and it has all sorts of underlying causes but typically it is, at least in part, related to stress and anxiety.  The other issue is usually a set of bad postural habits you have been unknowingly implementing into your daily routine due to long hours of sitting and/or dealing with stressful situations.  It can sometimes feel like a lot of work and a long road to recovery once jaw pain begins but if you are willing to work through the underlying issues you can find relief!

Here are some tips, tricks and education on how you can find freedom from that nagging and uncomfortable jaw tension:

Address the root cause

This might be the hard part!  Who or what could be the culprit behind the ongoing tension in your jaw?  Try to pay attention throughout your day to see where you are tensing up.  Is it driving, sitting at the computer for too long, a certain deadline, a certain co-worker or family member?  Stress and anxiety can have serious side effects on your health and it is important to assess your daily life for where these issues might be coming from.  In the end it is up to each of us to confront stressful situations or people in our lives in order to create change.  Or to change our perspective so that what we do doesn’t cause us so much anxiety.  This is, however, always easier said than done.  Some things that have worked for me are having a mantra such as: I let go of the things that are not serving me and using visualization techniques where I imagine the stress cause as a colorful line of energy that is connected to me and I visualize cutting that line of energy with a sword away from myself.  If you are really struggling with changing a certain pattern then it is wise to seek help from a counselor who can give you more skills and support with breaking these harmful routines.

Give yourself a hand

Exercise-finding a balance of strength and flexibility in your muscles is always important but it is especially so when you are dealing with the delicate layers of muscles in the shoulders, neck and jaw.  Check out this great article for some great exercise ideas for your jaw but don’t forget that everything is connected in your body and it is important to try to attain a fully balanced body for true health.

Self Massage-The jaw is a relatively easy place for most people to perform self massage techniques.  Check out this lovely video for a great way to help loosen up your jaw through self massage.  Remember consistency is key with self massage, you should try to work it into your daily routine.

Get some help

Massage, acupuncture and chiropractic care are just a few types of therapies that can help you find freedom from chronic jaw pain and help you feel better in general.  You will want to discuss an appropriate treatment plan with your therapist(s) to make sure you get on the path to success as quickly as possible.  Here is a little article on how massage can influence the release of a tense jaw.

Thanks so much for reading.  I truly hope you are able to find relief from jaw tension, I know first hand that it is a difficult journey.  Here at Written on the Body our skilled therapists are happy to help you with these issues, if you have questions please email us at wonthebody@gmail.com or leave them in the comments.  Ready to book?  Book online here now!




Use your insurance for Massage

Would you like to know how to use your insurance to cover your massage appointments? Here is a handy little guide on how to find out if your insurance covers massage, what your co-pay will be an other helpful hints on using insurance for massage!

insurance for massage

Using Health Insurance for massage

  1. Find out if you are covered

    • Call the customer service phone number on the back of your insurance card

    • Ask the representative to verify if you are covered for massage by a licensed massage therapist

    • If you are covered ask how many massages you get per year or how much your spending limit is per year and if you share it across all complimentary care such as Chiropractors and Physical Therapists

    • Ask if you need a doctors prescription

    • Ask if you have a deductible and if so has it been met

    • Ask what your co-pay is per visit

    • Get the name of the representative you have spoken to as well as a confirmation number for the call just in case issues arise later.

  2. Find a Licensed Massage Therapist who accepts your insurance and let them know you will be using insurance right away so that they can get the necessary information from you to verify your benefits as well.

  • Usually your insurance company will have a provider listing you can search or you can just contact your favorites and ask them if they accept your insurance.  Julie Campbell at Written on the Body Massage and Acupuncture accepts most major health insurance except Kaiser.

  • If you are using insurance at Written on the Body you will need to fill out our insurance verification form and sign our HIPAA release prior to your visit.  Please email us at wonthebody@gmail.com to get this information.

  • Book your appointment and enjoy the wonderful world of getting your massage covered by your health insurance company!

Health Savings Account Cards

Most massage therapists who accept credit cards can also take Health Savings Account cards.  You can always call your company to make sure you are allowed to use your card for Massage before booking.  A safe bet is to also be ready to pay an alternative way the first time you attempt to use your card with your massage therapist.

Auto Insurance and Workers Compensation coverage

  1. Get a prescription

    • If you have been in accident you will want to see a doctor and you can ask them directly for a prescription for Massage Therapy.  Not all insurance companies require this but it is still a good idea to have it just in case.

  2. Fill out the paperwork with your insurance company

    • This is extremely important because your insurance company will not pay your providers without your claim being fully active.

    • You will want to get your adjuster’s name and contact information as well as a claim number to give to your Massage therapist for billing purposes

    • Know your rights!  Make sure you ask as many questions as possible about what type and how much care you are allowed.  Check out this post about Massage and auto insurance to learn more about your rights after a car accident in Oregon.

Thanks for reading and feel free to ask questions in the comments or call/text us at 503-473-8515