In a rehabilitation setting, you may hear a health practitioner mention the term lymphatic system. More importantly, you hear of lymphatic drainage. What is lymphatic drainage? Why is there a benefit for those who have injuries to drain this system? Is there general benefit to drain this system outside of a rehabilitation setting? Here are some answers…
The lymphatic system is designed to filter and carry a clear fluid called lymph (recycled blood plasma) to the heart. This system is part of the circulatory system, and has its own network of vessels. It is not a closed system, and may be blocked due to trauma or poor circulation. Blockages cause a decrease in production of lymphocytes. Lymphocytes are an important part of the immune system as well as aid in the function of other systems including the spleen, thymus, bone marrow and digestive systems.
Drainage of the lymphatic system occurs through contraction of the lymphatic vessels, mainly through external force. An example would be through the contraction of skeletal muscles. Contraction of the lymph vessels moves the lymph throughout the body. The lymph is drained, or dispersed to various regions of the body such as the head, limbs and body cavity, or the abdomen and pelvis.
One of the most effective ways to reap the benefits of lymphatic drainage is through lymphatic massage. It is not only beneficial for those who have been injured to drain the lymphatic system, but those who are healthy can benefit from this type of massage. After surgery, massage aids in regenerating tissues to reduce scarring at the site of the surgical incision. It also promotes relaxation through personal touch, and reduces pain in the body. Reduction of pain and stress can further increase a person’s general vitality and well-being.
With all of the benefits that lymphatic drainage brings, the only question you should be asking is “have I drained my lymphatic system today”?
>> Contact BodyMend if you need rehabilitation to help mend you back to better health.