When you think about it, we always give ourselves little head massages.
How often during the day do you subconsciously rub your temples, stretch your forehead or stroke the back of your neck when you’re stressed, tired or sore?
We don’t even realise it.
And although you’ve probably heard of an Indian head massage (and we’ll get to that in a sec).
Your head is probably the last part of the body you’d consider taking for a massage simply because there’s not much muscle there.
But throughout a busy day, your mind is constantly in overdrive. Most of us are always on the go dealing with the pressure of work and family life.
And one way to give yourself a little head space is to bring it along to us for a massage. It gives you a chance to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the daily grind.
A head massage not only feels fantastic but also has numerous health benefits that can help you feel more relaxed, focused, and energised.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at head massage, including its techniques, benefits, and how you can experience it for yourself at Diamond Thai in Dublin. So, sit back, relax, and let’s dive in!
Why A Head Massage Feels So Good
If you’ve never had a head massage before, think about how good it feels when your hairdresser starts rubbing shampoo deep into your scalp, and you’ll get a brief idea of what to look forward to.
There’s very few muscles in your scalp and head. They haven’t much work to do, but the few that are there reside close to your brain and love a healing hand.
That’s because there’s lots of touch receptors and nerve endings on the top of your head (1000 per sq centimetre). That’s more than you have in your back.
These nerve endings love nothing more than being stimulated. It’s what causes that beautiful tingling sensation, lifts your mood and makes you relax.
The more stimulation these receptors get, the better you’ll feel, and the more endorphins, dopamine and serotonin your brain will release. These are the body’s natural painkillers, hormones that make you less stressed and help you chill.
Indian Head Massage V’s Thai Head Massage, What’s The Difference?
Although a head massage is a relatively new treatment here in the west, they’ve been at it out in Asia for years, and the Indians have been using it for millennia to promote relaxation, reduce stress, and improve overall well-being.
An Indian head massage is deeply rooted in Ayurvedic medicine, an ancient holistic healing system that originated on the sub-continent over 3,000 years ago.
Also known as Champissage, it involves applying pressure to points along the head, neck and face. Then using different techniques to get the circulation going which helps relax mussels.
Thai head massage is a bit different. Although, like an Indian massage, acupressure is applied to various points around the head. A Thai massage will nearly always involve a little stretching to release tension and sometimes the use of hot compresses and herbal oils.
Today, head massage is offered in spas and wellness centres around the world, and here at Diamond Thai, we take elements from both traditions so you get the best of both worlds.
We then incorporate techniques such as kneading, tapping, and friction to customise a treatment that focuses on the areas where you feel tension or discomfort.
Massaging your head has many benefits, some of which are unique, and the good news is that as new research is done, they keep finding more. Here’s a quick list of some of the distinct health advantages you get from a head massage.
1. Reduces stress and anxiety
A head massage is one of the best ways to reduce your stress levels and feelings of anxiety. It reduces the amount of a stress hormone called cortisol right around the body, leading to decreased tension and feelings of apprehension.
2. It Gives You Relief From Headaches And Migraines
A migraine is one of the most debilitating conditions you can suffer from. And although a good head rub won’t get to the root of the problem, it can help alleviate some symptoms. That’s because it improves circulation, which reduces inflammation and relaxes muscles, the cause of that searing pain right behind your eyes.
3. Improves circulation
Its been proven a head massage can help to increase blood flow to the scalp, neck, and shoulders, leading to improved circulation and oxygenation of the tissues.
4. Improves Your Concentration And Mental Clarity
Because a massage gives you better blood flow around the head and into your nervous system, you’ll reap the rewards of better concentration, improved memory and brain function.
5. Relieves muscle tension and stiffness
At the end of your session, the muscles around the scalp, neck, shoulders and back should be less stiff, and you’ll have a better range of motion. Again this is down to better circulation and blood movement.
6. Enhances sleep quality
Head massage can help to promote relaxation and improve the quality of sleep.
7. It Can Bring Down Your Blood Pressure
Remember that stress hormone we talked about earlier, called cortisol? Well, research has shown it’s also partly responsible for giving you high blood pressure. So the less you have in your body, the better.
Head Massage For Hair growth
Chances are you’ve heard about this one, at least anecdotally and wondered if there was any truth in it.
It’s a big thing for bald guys because a boost in hair health is one of the supposed benefits of an Indian head massage.
Well, it turns out there might be something in this. A study from 2018 found that a regular scalp massage increased the thickness of hair.
It’s thought that better blood flow to your scalp strengthens your follicles and can promote growth.
But don’t get too excited because it won’t magically make your hair grow back if you’re bald already. And a head massage has absolutely no effect on hair loss due to hormonal factors.
What To Do Before Your Appointment
Getting ready for a head massage is pretty straightforward.
It goes without saying that your hair should be clean, dry and free from any oil or styling products. This allows our therapists to work more effectively on your scalp without any barriers.
Don’t worry if your hair is dyed. That’s fine
Try arriving early so you can communicate any specific concerns or areas of tension that you would like addressed. And pick something loose-fitting to wear that’s comfortable and allows for easy movement.
After that, all you need to do is sit back, relax and enjoy the whole experience.
What To Expect From Your Head Massage With Us
During a head massage at Diamond Thai, you can expect a deeply relaxing and rejuvenating experience customised to your unique needs and preferences.
We start by soothing your shoulders and relaxing your neck. These areas hold your head up, and massaging them leads to lease pressure.
Your therapist will then use light strokes to manipulate the tendons in your scalp and skull, focusing on those all-important acupressure points to aid relaxation in the central nervous system.
Finally, it’s on to the forehead and the area around the eyes where we use tapping and circular motions to stimulate circulation and release tension.
The Techniques We Use
Our therapists are trained in traditional techniques such as Indian head massage, Thai head massage, and Swedish massage, as well as more specialised procedures like acupressure.
And they’ll use them all to target problem areas of tension and stress in the scalp, neck, shoulders, face, and ears, promoting improved circulation, reduced pressure, and enhancing relaxation throughout the body.
You’ll find a head massage is a lot more soothing and gentle than most other types. We like to go easy so as not to tangle or damage any follicles in your hair.
This will all take place in a peaceful and serene environment, complete with soothing music and aromatherapy, while our skilled therapists work to provide a luxurious and indulgent experience.
The Areas We Target
The parts of the body we target ultimately come down to what you’re after and your treatment goals. For example, if you’ve got a headache, we’ll focus on your temples and forehead, while if your neck is stiff, we can go after that.
But if you just want to indulge yourself in a luxurious event and go the whole nine yards, then we will target all of the following.
The scalp is the primary area targeted during a head massage. Our therapists use gentle kneading, circular motions, and pressure point techniques to stimulate circulation, relieve tension, and promote relaxation in the scalp.
The neck is another key area targeted during a head massage. Our therapists use a combination of effleurage and petrissage techniques to release tension in the neck muscles and improve the range of motion.
Shoulders are a common area of tension and stress and are often targeted during a head massage. Our therapists use a combination of kneading and pressure point techniques to release tension and improve circulation in the shoulders.
The face is another area that we can include in your head massage. So you can expect your therapists to use gentle circular motions and tapping techniques to promote relaxation and reduce tension in your facial muscles.
The ears may also be targeted during a head massage, particularly in techniques such as auricular massage. Our therapists use gentle pulling and kneading techniques to stimulate circulation and promote relaxation in the ears.
Your Temples And Forehead
If you’re stressed or have a headache, you can expect your therapist to spend a fair bit of time on your temples and forehead. We use gentle circular motions and pressure point techniques, which can help to alleviate tension and melt all that stress and pain away.
What To Do After Your Head Massage With Us
When it’s all over, take some time to allow your body to absorb the benefits of the therapy. Try not to get stressed out, and don’t do anything too mentally taxing…just chill out.
Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, and try to avoid caffeinated drinks.
Keep your head warm too. Because after a massage, it might feel a bit cooler than usual due to the increased blood flow.
Don’t wash your hair or use any styling product for a few hours afterwards for the same reason. Some have chemicals that could irritate the scalp.
One of the best things about a head massage is that you can do it yourself at home or if you’ve got a spare five minutes in your car.
Because that’s all the time it takes to get a little mental and physical benefit, and there are a ton of videos online that can help you improve your technique. Just go and check out youtube.
But if you come down to us at Diamond Thai, our skilled therapists provide a luxurious and rejuvenating escape from the stresses of daily life.
So, if your head’s wrecked, come down and let us sort it for you!