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Massage, Now More Than Ever!

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 9:00 PM Comments comments (131)

A Few Good Reasons Why Massage Should Be Part Of Your Health Routine!



Consumers may be tempted to trim their wellness budgets when economic times are tough. Yet a recent national consumer survey showed most massage-minded Americans are committed to maintaining the health benefits they experience with massage.

It just makes sense — the better you feel, the better job you can do of caring for yourself and your loved ones. Massage should play a role in reducing stress and strengthening the health of Americans. When people feel their best, they are more likely to be able to face the challenges difficult times present. With greater health and peace of mind, consumers can face difficulties with poise, clarity of purpose, and strengthened emotional reserves.


Truly, massage is more than a luxury—it’s a vital part of self-care that has a positive ripple effect on us as we work, play, and care for others.

In economically challenging times, it is vital to invest in preventative healthcare. The last thing you want is to get sick, have to take time off work, and pay expensive medical bills. 

Following are health reasons all American adults should be including massage in their family budgets and schedules. 


Massage therapy

Boosts the immune system.



• Reduces anxiety.

• Reduces the flow of stress hormones.

• Improves sleep.

• Improves energy levels and reduces fatigue.

• Improves concentration.

• Increases circulation.

• Improves self-esteem.

• Reduces frequency of headaches.

• Releases endorphins. 



Research Shows

• Massage can reduce sports-related soreness and improve circulation—good to know when you may be exercising more to reduce stress.

• Deep-tissue massage is effective in treating back pain, and arthritis.

• Fibromyalgia patients receiving massage have less pain, depression, anxiety, stiffness, fatigue, and problematic sleep.

• Massage reduces symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

• Oncology patients show less pain, fatigue, nausea, anxiety, and depression following massage therapy.

• Stroke patients show less anxiety and lower blood pressure with massage therapy.

• Massage therapy is effective is reducing

       post surgical pain. 



As always, I will be more than happy to answer any questions about how massage can help you live a happier healthier life.


Have a great day everyone!


Your massage therapist,


Healthy Tips for Safe Gardening

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 8:55 PM Comments comments (663)

Healthy tips for safe gardening & how massage can help!

Here are some simple tips on the do’s and don’ts of gardening, and how massage therapy can help you with pain relief when you overdo it.



1. Warm up with light movement or a brisk walk to loosen your muscles and increase your flexibility. The smooth coordination of your muscles and ligaments is an important part of safe exertion in gardening and avoiding aches and pains.

2. Know your strengths and limitations. Do not overexert, vary your activities, and take regular rest breaks and drink plenty of water.

3. Avoid bending over repeatedly while standing upright when performing ground-level work like weeding. Kneeling closer to the ground or sitting on the ground or a gardening bench, rather than bending and twisting from the waist.

4. Keep your back protected when you stand up from a sitting or crouching position. Rise up by straightening your legs at the knees, not by lifting your torso at the waist.

5. Lift dirt and plants by letting your arms, legs and thighs carry the load: bend and straighten at the knees instead of the hack and hips. Lift the load close to the body’s torso and handle smaller, more manageable loads at a time.

6. Use long-handled tools to give you leverage and help avoid having to stoop down while raking or digging.

7. Switch hands frequently when doing prolonged raking, or digging actions. Repetitive motion on one side can bring on progressively serious joints imbalances and may produce postural misalignments and pain, including muscle spasms in the neck, shoulder and lower back.

8. Don’t work too long in one position, especially one that is awkward or unusual. This can reduce circulation, restrict mobility, and promote strain injuries.


If you should find yourself with painful joints and muscle because of gardening, remember that massage therapy provides significant reduction in back pain, including lower back pain, migraine headaches, neck aches, shoulder pain, joint pain, overused or sore muscles, arthritis, and muscle injuries.


Massage sessions at Iris' Massage Studio are always tailored to your needs, whether you've been gardening or just overdid it at the gym or work.


Arthritis & Massage Thearapy

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 8:50 PM Comments comments (472)

Arthritis & Massage 



Massage can ease your arthritis symptoms. 


Recent studies on the effects of massage for arthritis symptoms have shown regular use of the simple therapy led to improvements in pain, stiffness, range of motion, hand grip strength and overall function of the joints.

Massages come in all shapes and sizes. From the 15-minute chair massage at the mall to the 90-minute seaweed mask and aromatherapy massage at the luxury spa in town, there are all types of massage available to you. 


Traditional Swedish massage involves long, fluid stroking of muscles and tissues, while deep tissue massage focuses on manipulation of both top and deeper layers of muscles and tissues, often requiring intense, focused pressure by the therapist. Other types include hot stone massage, reflexology, trigger point massage and more.Do your homework. The American Massage Therapy Association recommends that you ask any prospective therapist if they are licensed, if they are certified by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB), where they received their training or if they graduated from a program accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation, and if they’re trained in any specific massage techniques.

Massage is not medicine. It’s a complement to your doctor-prescribed arthritis treatment. You should enjoy experiencing a massage, and it should not increase your pain or anxiety. 

Communication with your doctor and massage therapist beforehand can ensure that massage is right for you and help you achieve beneficial results. Remember: Massage should make your arthritis pain and stiffness feel better, not worse.

Communication is the key to an enjoyable and relaxing massage. If you have arthritis, it’s very important to find a therapist who communicates with you about your disease. Tell your therapist you have arthritis, and be as specific as possible, when you book your appointment. Let her know if your arthritis affects your knees, hips, or back, for example, so she can use care when applying massage to those areas, or avoiding them altogether.



At Iris' Massage Studio you are in good hands. 

I am licensed in Florida & Virginia and nationally certified. With medical massage training I am able to work with you to relieve your arthritis pain, whether its your neck, spine or hands that are affected. 


Call to book your appointment today and experience the difference!


I look forward working with you,

Iris :0)

Published by the Arthritis Foundation.


Foods for a Healthy Back

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 8:45 PM Comments comments (45)

Foods for a Healthy Back


Inflammation often causes pain and swelling. If you cut your finger, it usually doesn't hurt very much at first. A day or so later, though, your cut and the somewhat swollen area around it feels worse. That's because your body's defense system, otherwise known as your immune system, started an inflammatory process to heal the cut. The chemicals sent to heal your injury are actually irritating the nerves around the cut. 


Sometimes this inflammation response is too strong, causing even more pain. Let's say your brain is sending chemicals to repair a slight tear in a back muscle due to a lumbar sprain-strain. This inflammatory-response team sends cells to the area to help it repair, but the chemicals the cells release can irritate the nerves, which causes more pain and increases muscle spasms. If the response is too vigorous and goes on too long, it can result in scarring, which makes the tissue less flexible and more prone to injury. 


Fortunately, you can modulate your body's inflammatory process through diet. Through simple changes, you can decrease your likelihood of generating an overly high inflammatory response. This may not only ease the pain caused by your low-back injury, but might also positively affect other health issues related to inflammation. 


How Diet Helps

Several elements in your diet determine the level of your inflammatory response, including types of fat in your body, as well as the amount of antioxidants and phytochemicals available for your body to use. Below are diet suggestions that can help regulate your immune system, so that the next time your low-back pain flares up, there is less pain and swelling during the healing process and less chance of scar tissue forming in your body. 


Eat These Foods


• Cold-water fish. 

• Turmeric Root Paste

• Fruits and vegetables. 

• Whole grains and high-fiber foods. 

Avoid These Foods

•  Flavored drinks.

•  Processed foods.

•  Red meat and high-fat dairy products.

•  Sugar.

• White foods. 

Turmeric Paste Is easy to add to ones diet.



Golden Milk

Anti inflammatory Paste Video inserted

You need Adobe Flash Player to view this content.


Astrid Pujari, MD, is an internist and medical herbalist who 

received her medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine and medical herbalist degree from the Royal College of Phytotherapy in London.



Nancy Schatz Alton is a freelance writer and editor who specializes in health and nutrition topics.

By Astrid Pujari, Nancy Schatz Alton and Iris Riebsam


Amazing Juniper Essential Oil

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 8:20 PM Comments comments (103)

Juniper Essential Oil

Juniper is an evergreen shrub that is very common in Europe with  impressive health benefits.

Holistic medicine also embraces juniper, and considers it a highly versatile and therapeutic oil.



Therapeutic uses of juniper essential oils:


Acne, arthritis, appetite regulator, anxiety, cellulite, colds and flu, detoxify, disinfectant, drowsiness, eczema, gout, hair loss, headaches, immune system, infections, mental exhaustion, menstrual problems, muscle cramps and spasms, nervous tension, oily complexions, rheumatism, skin toner, stress-related conditions and wounds.


Antiseptic: Juniper essential oil used to be a well known antiseptic in the past and people wounded or injured in wars or athletics were treated with it. 

It efficiently protects wounds from becoming septic or developing tetanus.


Anti rheumatic: Juniper essential oil promotes and improves blood circulation. It also helps in the removal of toxins like uric acid from the body. Both of these properties help fight ailments like rheumatism, arthritis, gout, and renal calculi, which are related to improper circulation and the accumulation of toxins in the body. This essential oil also relieves swelling.


Antispasmodic: Juniper essential oil is also effective on nearly all forms of cramps, whether it is muscular, intestinal, respiratory or any other area. It relaxes muscle cramps and helps cure spasmodic cholera as well. Being an antispasmodic, it helps cure many of the other problems related with cramps or spasms.


Astringent: Being an astringent, juniper essential oil helps cure toothaches, stops hair loss, strengthens the grip of gums on your teeth and protects them from loosening or falling out. It also tightens loose muscles and gives a feeling of firmness, fitness and youth. This property can also be used to cure diarrhea as well. The most important benefit of this property is in the fact that as an astringent, it can cause blood vessels to contract and reduce the chances of hemorrhaging.


Carminative: Carminative agents help in the removal of gases from the intestines. Gas, when trapped in the intestines and forced upwards, can be very dangerous, and sometimes can even be fatal. When gas pushes upwards, it can choke a person, create chest pain, indigestion and uneasiness, raise the blood pressure, threaten your heart health and give acute stomach aches. In this respect, juniper oil can help you a lot. It effectively removes gases through the downward passage and does not let additional gases form. Juniper oil is also very good for those who are suffering from chronic gas trouble.



Depurative: The essential oil of juniper cleans the blood of toxins and thus acts as a detoxifier or blood purifier. This property is also known as depurative, meaning ‘One which purifies’. It helps to remove the common toxins like uric acid, heavy metals, pollutants and certain compounds and hormones produced by the body itself. It empties the blood of these common toxins as well as other foreign toxins which get into the blood accidentally.


Diuretic: Juniper oil is diuretic in nature, meaning that it promotes urination. It also helps people lose weight because each time you urinate, some fats are lost from the body. This reduces blood pressure, removes extra salts and dangerous toxins like uric acid from the body.


Stimulant: This stimulating effect also helps overcome fatigue, dizziness and depression. It increases the activity of the brain and neurons, nervous system, secretions from the endocrine and exocrine glands, which includes secretion of milk, sebum, sweat, tears, urine and discharges during menses, digestive system and the excretory system.


Tonic: Juniper oil is also considered a tonic, because it tones up everything, including the muscles, tissues, skin, and various other systems functioning inside the body. This includes the respiratory, circulatory, nervous, digestive and excretory systems. This tonic effect helps retain youth for a long time and maintains proper health for all your years.


Vulnerary: If a diluted solution of this oil is applied on wounds or blended with a skin cream and applied, it helps your wounds heal faster and keeps them protected from infections. This oil is equally beneficial in healing internal wounds, cuts and ulcers.


Other Benefits: It disinfects air and helps cure kidney stones, inflammation, urinary tract infections, acne, eczema, skin diseases, dandruff and enlargement of the prostate gland.


A Few Words of Caution: It should be avoided during pregnancy and by those who have kidney problems, and it should always be used in low concentrations.

Some of many essential oil applications: 

To alleviate anxiety, nervous tension, and combat stress-related disorders, use 8-10 drops in bath water. Can also use 2-3 drops in a diffuser.

For arthritis and rheumatism, add 2-3 drops to 1 ounce of carrier oil and massage into affected areas.

For cellulite and detoxification, add 2-3 drops to 1 ounce of carrier oil and massage into affected areas regularly. Can also use 8-10 drops in bath water.

To fight colds, flu, and infections, use 3-5 drops in a steam inhalation. Can also use 8-10 drops in bath water, or 3-5 in a diffuser.

To help prevent hair loss, mix 3-5 drops in unscented conditioner. Leave on hair for 3-5 minutes, rinse as normal. Use regularly.

For headaches, use 2-3 drops in a diffuser or 8-10 drops in a bath. Can also use 2-3 drops in one ounce of carrier oil, and massage gently into temples. Increase benefit by adding lavender.

As a home disinfectant, use approx. 5 drops in a quart of water. Transfer to a spray bottle, and shake before using.

To boost the immune system, use 8-10 drops in bath water, or use 2-3 drops in a diffuser.

To regulate period and to fight cramps, use 2-3 drops in one ounce of carrier oil and massage on lower abdomen.

As essential oil of the month, Juniper berry is blended into some of the massage oils and creams used at Iris' Massage Studio. 

Book your massage today and experience a relaxing treatment with Juniper essential oil.

(757) 272-7071


See you soon,



The Benefits of Massage

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 1:25 AM Comments comments (37)

Bodywork Goes Beyond Relaxation

As you lie on the table under crisp, fresh sheets, hushed music draws you into the moment. The smell of essential oils fills the air and you hear the gentle sound of massage oil being warmed in your therapist's hands. Once the session gets underway, the daily stressors and aching muscles fade into an oblivious 60 minutes of relief, and all you can comprehend right now is not wanting it to end.

But what if that hour of massage did more for you than just take the pressures of the day away? What if that gentle, Swedish massage helped you combat cancer? What if bodywork helped you recover from a strained hamstring in half the time? What if your sleep, digestion, and mood all improved with massage and bodywork? What if these weren't just "what if's"? 

Evidence is owing that the more massage you can allow yourself, the better you'll feel. Here's why:

Massage as a healing tool has been around for thousands of years in many cultures. Touching is a natural human reaction to pain and stress, and for conveying compassion and support. When you bump your head or have a sore calf, the natural response is to rub it to feel better. The same was true of our earliest ancestors. 

Healers throughout time and throughout the world have instinctually and independently developed a wide range of therapeutic techniques using touch. Many are still in use today, and with good reason. We now have scientific proof of the benefits of massage -- benefits ranging from treating chronic diseases and injuries to alleviating the growing tensions of our modern lifestyles. Having a massage does more than just relax your body and mind -- there are specific physiological and psychological changes that occur, and even more so when massage is utilized as a preventative, frequent therapy and not simply mere luxury. Massage not only feels good, but it can cure what ails you. 

The Fallout of StressExperts estimate that 80 percent to 90 percent of disease is stress-related. Massage and bodywork is there to combat that frightening number by helping us remember what it means to relax. The physical changes massage brings to your body can have a positive effect in many areas of your life. Besides increasing relaxation and decreasing anxiety, massage lowers blood pressure, increases circulation, improves injury recovery, encourages deep sleep, and increases concentration. It reduces fatigue and gives you more energy to handle stressful situations 

Massage is a perfect elixir for good health, but it can also provide an integration of body and mind. By producing a meditative state or heightened awareness of the present moment, massage can provide emotional and spiritual balance, bringing with it true relaxation and peace.

The incredible benefits of massage are doubly powerful if taken in regular "doses." Researchers from the Touch Research Institute (TRI) at the University of Miami, found that recipients of massage can benefit even in small doses (15 minutes of chair massage or a half-hour table session). They also note that receiving bodywork two to three times a week is even more beneficial. While this may not be feasible, it's nice to know that this "medicine" only gets better with frequency.

What It does in an age of technical and, at times, impersonal medicine, massage offers a drug-free, non-invasive, and humanistic approach based on the body's natural ability to heal itself. Following is a brief list of the many known, research-based benefits of massage and bodywork:

- Increases circulation, allowing the body to pump more oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs. 

- Stimulates the flow of lymph, the body's natural defense system, against toxic invaders. For example, in breast cancer patients, massage has been shown to increase the cells that fight cancer. Furthermore, increased circulation of blood and lymph systems improves the condition of the body's largest organ -- the skin.

- Relaxes and softens injured and overused muscles;

- Reduces spasms and cramping;

- Increases joint flexibility;

- Reduces recovery time and helps prepare the body for strenuous workouts, reducing subsequent muscle pain of athletes at any level;

- Releases endorphins -- the body's natural painkiller -- and is proving very beneficial in patients with chronic illness, injury, and post-op pain;

- Reduces post-surgery adhesions and edema and can be used to reduce and realign scar tissue after healing has occurred;

- Improves range-of-motion and decreases discomfort for patients with low back pain;

- Relieves pain for migraine sufferers and decreases the need for medication;

- Provides exercise and stretching for atrophied muscles and reduces shortening of the muscles for those with restricted range of motion;

- Assists with shorter labor for expectant mothers, as well as reduces the need for medication, eases postpartum depression and anxiety, and contributes to a shorter hospital stay.

The benefits of massage are diverse. No matter how great it feels, massage isn't just a luxury; it's a health necessity. 

Call to make your appointment today and start your journey to a healthier you!