therapy brief



Performing Your Own Lymphatic Massage

Improve Lymph Flow, Reduce Fatigue, Anxiety and Swelling


The lymphatic system, a crucial part of the immune system, circulates lymph throughout the body to fight off infection and bacteria. When lymph flow is insufficient, you may feel very tired, anxious, or experience water weight gain and swollen feet and ankles. The good news is, you can perform your own lymphatic massage to help improve lymph flow and alleviate these symptoms.

Benefits of Lymphatic Massage:
• Reduces fatigue and anxiety
• Helps manage water retention
• Reduces swelling in feet and ankles

Lymphatic Massage in the Shower:
Neck: Use a scrubby or brush. With light pressure, wash the side of your neck from the hairline down to the collarbone, following the large muscle. Do one side at a time.
Chest: Scrub your breasts lightly from your chest to the nipples.
Arms: Raise your arm and wash backward towards the armpit. Start a few inches below your armpit, then from the elbow, then from the wrist. Repeat on the other arm.
Legs: Start a few inches from the top of your thighs and wash towards the groin. Continue from the knees, then from the ankles. Gently slip-slap behind the knees with a relaxed hand.
Back: Place a towel diagonally across your back. Hold each end of the towel and perform a “rug burn” motion to massage your back.

• Drink plenty of water after the massage to help the lymph start moving and to stay hydrated.

Instructions for Lymphatic Massage While Seated:
Neck: Use two fingers and a circular motion from below the ear, following the large muscle to the collarbone. Repeat on the other side.
Arms and Legs: Use your hands very lightly, following the same technique described for the shower massage.

• You can perform this massage every day.

By following these steps, you can easily perform a lymphatic massage at home, whether in the shower or while sitting fully clothed. Regular practice can help improve your lymph flow, reducing fatigue, anxiety, and swelling.

Contributed by Jaya Tatum of Jaya’s Healing Bodywork in Rochester / Washington Township, MI. For more information visit JayasBodywork.com

  • Issue: July 2024


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The information contained herein is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease or medical condition. Always seek the advice of your medical professional.

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