Massage is more than a luxury treatment at the spa. It can have positive benefits both for body and mind, especially after you put yourself through a strenuous occasion, like a long-haul flight. Some flights can last for hours, across different time zones and of varying comfortableness. While you can use neck support, face mask, and move around to make the flight more bearable, there is nothing better than an after-flight massage to feel like yourself again.
Low oxygen can make you sleepy
People travel by plane all the time, but even the most frequent flyers experience the effects of high altitude. The pressure inside the plane will prevent the onset of full-blown altitude sickness, but you can still have some of the symptoms, like sleepiness and headaches. A head massage can calm down the ache and help you get some real rest to help the body regenerate after a long-haul flight.
You may experience a stiff neck
Stiffness of neck is one of the most common consequences of long-haul flights. It happens because you fell asleep in an uncomfortable position or spend too much time holding one posture. If you have a stiff neck, it can expand to your shoulders and cause a mild headache, as well. While on the plane, massage your neck gently a few times during the flight. With only a couple of minutes of self-massage, you will feel better and release the tension. As a way to prevent this, you can use a neck pillow and do some simple stretches of the neck while sitting down, like moving your head gently left and right.
All the sitting can lead to back pain
Traveling on a long-haul flight means a lot of hours sitting down. This means you will put significant pressure on your back leading to discomfort and pain. Some people even experience trouble straightening their posture and had to do it slowly. Massage therapy has shown as a great way to relieve that pain and stiffness. It will return mobility to your lower back almost immediately and you will feel soreness going away. Pair massages with some light stretching or yoga, and you will be good as new to explore your destination and go on sightseeing walks.
Long-haul flight can be stressing
Spending so much time in one place surrounded by strangers can cause anxiety in some travelers. If you are usually stressed out when flying, traveling on long flights can only heighten that feeling. Listening to music, watching movies, reading, and even meditating can help during the flight. But once you land, the mood you are in can stay and ruin the first moments at your destination. Having a massage is known to reduce stress and help with anxiety. It will also help with the pain from the long-haul flight which can also be one of the sources of your stress.
Your blood pressure can get high
Traveling is stress by itself and when combined with prolonged periods of sitting, it can cause your blood pressure to rise. There are some self-massages you can do during the flight to reduce your blood pressure and relax the mind. However, the best result for your blood pressure will come from the massage after the flight. Some travelers can feel panic or be overwhelmed by flying leading to a psychological precursor for hypertension. If it’s your first time going on a long-haul flight, get a good night’s sleep before your trip and don’t eat foods that will bloat you and make you retain water. This can eliminate physical reasons for elevated blood pressure, and leave you to worry only about the psychological ones, where massage can help.
Water retention often happens
Lymphatic drainage massage is just what you need if you have just get off the long-haul flight. Being immobile for hours can lead to retaining fluids and the build-up of toxins in your body. This type of massage is gentle and will help your lymph fluids to move around the body. The lymphatic system is responsible for removing toxins and this type of massage will prevent them from accumulating in certain areas of your body and causing swelling. After the lymphatic massage you will feel lighter, less stressed, and be able to sleep better, especially with a jet-lag.
Headaches are common after a long-haul flight
Massage therapy can ease up the headache which commonly happens during flights, especially long ones. The great thing about head massage is that you can do it while still on the plane and lessen the ache a bit. You can gently rub the temples with circular motions and massage the lower back of your head, just above the neck. Use all your fingers to massage the scalp, especially top of your head and do it with light pressure. You can do this self-massage as many times as you want during your flight just to de-stress or when you feel the headache starting.
Your legs may get swollen
Long-haul flights can affect your circulation and cause swelling of your feet and ankles. This also comes with a health risk known as deep vein thrombosis that can lead to the creation of blood clots. While walking between the isles may help at the moment, that’s not enough. In order to completely decrease the swelling and discomfort you can, for example, use an ergonomic leg massager. This is an excellent way to bring back blood flow into your limbs after the long flight. If you know to have this problem, you can also try wearing compressing stockings during the flight and do simple movements, like rotation and extension.
You may experience jet-lag
Jet-lag is quite normal for long-haul flights, especially when you travel from one time zone to another. You won’t feel it during the flight, but once you land you can experience headaches, fatigue, nausea, and other conditions that will make you nonfunctional. This can happen both when you travel to your destination and back from it, so massage is one of the practical solutions. It will get your blood flowing, relax your muscles, and take care of the jet-leg symptoms. Taking melatonin and staying hydrated before, during, and after your long travel. An eye mask can help you block the sunlight which will most likely keep you awake and disturb your circadian rhythm.
Your whole body can feel uncomfortable
Sitting down in one position for hours, even with the possibility of a short walk or stretching will still take a toll on the whole body. The muscles get stiff and sore, so having the entire body massage is a nice way to ease the tension. You may feel cramps, aches, and even painful spasms in the neck, back, shoulder, and other spots with joints. This is why the first thing you should do after getting off the plane is booking a massage and saying goodbye to all that discomfort.
All in all
Long-haul flights can be tiring and stressful, leading to discomfort and sometimes even different body aches. A body massage may be just what you need to feel better after spending hours on the plane mostly in one position. So, use your portable massager or book a masseur the moment you land to start feeling like yourself again and chase away the consequences of the lengthy travel.