What Type Of Massage Is Best For Neuropathy

Neuropathy, a condition that affects millions of people worldwide, can significantly impact one’s quality of life.

It’s a complex condition with various causes and symptoms, often leading to discomfort and pain. 

However, there’s a beacon of hope in managing neuropathy symptoms – massage therapy.

This natural, non-invasive approach has shown promising results in alleviating neuropathy symptoms, offering a ray of relief to those affected.

Key Facts At A Glance

  • Neuropathy is a complex condition affecting the nerves, leading to various symptoms like pain and numbness.
  • Massage therapy can help manage neuropathy symptoms by increasing blood flow and reducing inflammation.
  • Types of massage therapy beneficial for neuropathy include connective tissue massage, therapeutic massage, and reflexology.
  • Choosing the right massage therapy depends on individual symptoms, comfort level, and professional advice.
  • Massage therapy for neuropathy is generally safe but should be performed by a certified professional for optimal results.

As we delve deeper into this topic, we’ll explore what neuropathy is, how massage therapy can play a role in managing its symptoms, and the different types of massage therapies that can be beneficial.

We’ll also guide you on how to choose the right massage therapy for your specific needs and what to expect during a massage therapy session.

Whether you’re newly diagnosed, seeking alternative treatments, or simply looking to understand more about neuropathy and massage therapy, this article is for you. 


  1. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
  2. Mayo Clinic
  3. Neuropathy Treatment Clinics of Texas
  4. American Massage Therapy Association

Understanding Neuropathy

Neuropathy, often referred to as peripheral neuropathy, is a condition that affects the peripheral nerves.

These nerves are responsible for transmitting signals between the central nervous system (your brain and spinal cord) and the rest of your body. 

When these nerves are damaged or not functioning correctly, it can lead to a range of symptoms, from tingling and numbness to severe pain.

The causes of neuropathy are varied. It can be a result of systemic diseases like diabetes, infections, or even exposure to certain toxins. In some cases, the cause of neuropathy remains unknown, a condition referred to as idiopathic neuropathy.

The symptoms of neuropathy can significantly impact a person’s quality of life. They can include:

  • Tingling or numbness, often in the hands or feet, that can spread upward into the limbs
  • Sharp, throbbing, or burning pain
  • Extreme sensitivity to touch
  • Muscle weakness or paralysis if motor nerves are affected
  • Heat intolerance and altered sweating
  • Digestive problems, dizziness, or changes in blood pressure if autonomic nerves are affected

Managing these symptoms is crucial to improving the quality of life for those living with neuropathy.

This is where massage therapy comes into play

By increasing blood flow and reducing inflammation, massage therapy can help alleviate some of the discomfort associated with neuropathy.

In the next section, we’ll delve deeper into the role of massage therapy in neuropathy management and how it can be a beneficial part of your wellness routine.


The Role of Massage Therapy in Neuropathy Management

For individuals living with neuropathy, massage therapy can be a powerful tool in their symptom management toolkit.

The primary way massage therapy helps in managing neuropathy symptoms is by increasing blood flow to the affected areas.

Improved circulation can help nourish damaged nerves, promoting healing and reducing the discomfort associated with neuropathy.

Massage therapy can also help reduce inflammation, another key factor in neuropathy pain.

But the benefits of massage therapy for neuropathy don’t stop at physical relief.

The relaxing nature of massage therapy can also have positive effects on mental health – and living with chronic pain can be stressful, leading to anxiety and depression.

Regular massage therapy sessions can help reduce stress levels, promoting overall mental well-being.

It’s important to note that while massage therapy can be beneficial, it’s not a cure for neuropathy.

It’s a complementary therapy that can help manage symptoms and improve quality of life when used alongside other treatments recommended by your healthcare provider.

In the following section, we’ll explore different types of massage therapies that can be beneficial for neuropathy and how to choose the right one for your specific needs.


Types of Massage Therapy for Neuropathy

When it comes to massage therapy for neuropathy, one size does not fit all.

Different types of massage therapies can be beneficial depending on the specific symptoms and personal preferences.

Here are three types of massage therapies that can be particularly beneficial for neuropathy:

1. Connective Tissue Massage

Connective tissue massage focuses on the fascia, the connective tissue that surrounds the muscles and organs.

By applying gentle pressure and stretching techniques, this type of massage can help increase blood flow and reduce inflammation, providing relief from neuropathy symptoms.

2. Therapeutic Massage

Therapeutic massage is a general term that encompasses various massage techniques designed to relieve pain, reduce stress, and work on specific problem areas.

A therapist can customize this type of massage to address the specific pain points associated with neuropathy.

3. Reflexology

Reflexology is a type of massage that involves applying different amounts of pressure to the feet, hands, and ears.

It’s based on a theory that these body parts are connected to certain organs and body systems. While more research is needed, some people with neuropathy find reflexology helpful in managing their symptoms.


Choosing the right type of massage therapy for neuropathy involves considering your specific symptoms, comfort level, and the advice of your healthcare provider or a certified massage therapist.

In the next section, we’ll guide you on how to make this decision.


How to Choose the Right Massage Therapy for Your Neuropathy

Choosing the right type of massage therapy for neuropathy is a personal decision that should be made with careful consideration. Here are some factors to consider:

1. Severity of Symptoms

The severity and type of your neuropathy symptoms can guide your choice.

For instance, if you have severe pain in specific areas, a therapeutic massage focusing on those areas might be beneficial.

On the other hand, if you’re dealing with overall discomfort or stress, a more general approach like connective tissue massage could be a good fit.

2. Personal Comfort

Comfort is key when it comes to massage therapy. You should feel relaxed and comfortable during your sessions.

If a certain type of massage doesn’t feel right or causes discomfort, it’s important to communicate this with your therapist.

3. Therapist Recommendation

A certified massage therapist with experience in neuropathy can provide valuable advice on the best type of massage for your specific needs. They can assess your condition and recommend a personalized approach.

4. Trial and Error

Sometimes, it takes a bit of trial and error to find the right type of massage therapy. Don’t be discouraged if the first approach you try doesn’t provide the relief you’re looking for. Be open to trying different types of massages until you find what works best for you.

Remember, massage therapy is a complementary treatment.

It’s meant to be used alongside other treatments recommended by your healthcare provider, not as a replacement. 

In the next section, we’ll give you an idea of what to expect during a massage therapy session for neuropathy.


What to Expect During a Massage Therapy Session for Neuropathy

If you’ve never had a massage therapy session before, or if it’s your first time seeking massage therapy for neuropathy, you might be wondering what to expect. Here’s a general walkthrough of a typical session:

1. Consultation

Your session will likely start with a consultation. Your therapist will ask about your symptoms, medical history, and any specific areas of pain or discomfort.

This is your opportunity to discuss your expectations and any concerns you might have.

2. Preparation

After the consultation, your therapist will leave the room to allow you to undress to your comfort level and lie down on the massage table under a sheet or blanket.

It’s important to note that you should only undress to your comfort level.

The therapist will only uncover the part of the body they are working on at any given time.

3. The Massage

The therapist will use a variety of techniques, depending on the type of massage you’ve chosen and your specific needs.

They might use their hands, fingers, elbows, or even special tools to apply pressure to your muscles and tissues. 

The pressure can range from light to deep, depending on your comfort level and the type of massage.

4. After the Massage

Once the massage is complete, the therapist will leave the room to allow you to dress. When you’re ready, they’ll return to discuss any observations they made during the massage and provide recommendations for future sessions.

Remember, communication is key during a massage therapy session. Don’t hesitate to speak up if you’re uncomfortable at any point or if you’d like the therapist to adjust the pressure.

In the next section, we’ll discuss the safety and precautions to keep in mind when using massage therapy for neuropathy.


Massage Safety and Precautions

While massage therapy can be a beneficial tool in managing neuropathy symptoms, it’s important to approach it with safety in mind. Here are some safety considerations and precautions to keep in mind:

1. Choose a Certified Massage Therapist

Always ensure that your massage therapist is certified and experienced in treating neuropathy. A certified therapist will have the necessary training to provide a safe and effective massage.

2. Communicate Openly

Don’t hesitate to communicate with your therapist about your comfort level and any pain you’re experiencing during the session. A good therapist will want your feedback to provide the best possible treatment.

3. Listen to Your Body

While some discomfort can be expected during a massage, especially when working on tense areas, it should never be unbearable. If you feel pain during a massage, it’s important to let your therapist know immediately.

4. Consult Your Healthcare Provider

Before starting any new treatment, including massage therapy, it’s important to consult with your healthcare provider. They can provide guidance based on your specific condition and overall health.

5. Stay Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water after a massage can help flush out any toxins released during the session and prevent dehydration, which can sometimes occur after a massage.

In the next section, we’ll wrap up our discussion on massage therapy for neuropathy.


Conclusion: Embracing Massage Therapy for Neuropathy Management

Living with neuropathy can be challenging, but it’s important to remember that there are tools available to help manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.

Massage therapy, with its potential to increase blood flow, reduce inflammation, and provide stress relief, is one such tool that can play a significant role in your neuropathy management plan.

From connective tissue massage to therapeutic massage and reflexology, there are various types of massage therapies that can be beneficial for neuropathy.

The key is to find the one that best suits your specific needs and comfort level.

Remember, it’s okay to try different types and to communicate openly with your therapist to ensure the best possible outcome.

As you navigate your journey with neuropathy, remember that you’re not alone.

There are resources and support available to help you manage your symptoms and maintain your quality of life.

Embrace the possibilities that massage therapy can offer, and take one step at a time towards better health and well-being.



Q: What is neuropathy?

A: Neuropathy is a term used to describe a condition where there is damage to the nerves, typically in the hands and feet. Peripheral neuropathy is the most common type of neuropathy and can cause symptoms such as tingling, numbness, and burning pain in the affected areas.

Q: Can massage help with neuropathy?

A: Yes, massage can help with neuropathy symptoms such as pain and discomfort, and can also reduce inflammation and promote relaxation.

Q: Which type of massage is best for neuropathy?

A: A gentle form of massage, such as Swedish massage or a reflexology foot massage, can be the most beneficial for people with neuropathy.

It’s best to choose a massage that focuses on relaxation and pain relief rather than deep tissue massage, which may aggravate symptoms.

Q: What are the benefits of massage for neuropathy?

A: Massage can help improve range of motion, promote relaxation, reduce pain and discomfort, and improve circulation and lymph flow.

It can also help relieve stress and anxiety, which can contribute to the development and progression of neuropathy symptoms.

Q: What are some of the symptoms of peripheral neuropathy?

A: Symptoms of peripheral neuropathy may include tingling or numbness in the hands or feet, burning pain, sharp or shooting pain, muscle weakness, and loss of coordination.

Q: What are some massage techniques used for neuropathy treatment?

A: Massage techniques such as gentle stroking, kneading, and circular movements can help relieve pain and promote relaxation.

Some massage therapists may also use techniques that involve working with the body’s fascia or lymph system to improve circulation and reduce inflammation.

Q: Can a foot massage be beneficial for neuropathy?

A: Yes, a foot massage can be particularly beneficial for people with neuropathy as it can help improve circulation and lymph flow, reduce inflammation, and relieve pain and discomfort in the feet.

Q: Are there any massage devices that can help with neuropathy?

A: Yes, there are massage devices such as electric massagers and percussion massagers that can help relieve pain and promote relaxation.

It’s important to choose a device that is designed for use on the feet and has adjustable settings to avoid irritating the nerves.

Q: What effects can a foot massage have on neuropathy?

A: A foot massage can help improve circulation and lymph flow, reduce inflammation, and relieve pain and discomfort in the feet.

It can also promote relaxation and reduce stress, which can help improve overall wellbeing.

Q: What treatment options are available for neuropathy?

A: Treatment options for neuropathy may include medication, physical therapy, and alternative therapies such as massage or acupuncture.

It’s important to talk to a healthcare professional to determine the best course of treatment based on individual needs.

This article is part of our ‘best type of massage for…’ series.