Breasts aren’t really a part of the self-care party, but it turns out that massaging your breasts has some major health benefits. The natural beauty expert Jessa Blades said that massage is a wonderful, stress-relieving, detoxifying practice for the whole body.
And Blades also said that you don’t need to be pregnant or nursing to reap the rewards and that in Ayurveda, if you get a full-body massage, your breasts are massaged too and it’s odd that we don’t massage the breasts [in the West].
The case for massaging your breasts
The lymphatic system of the body is highly concentrated in the underarm and chest regions. Katinka Locascio, a licensed massage therapist and founder of New York City-based wellness center Earth & Sky Healing Arts said that stimulating these areas helps keep this key detox mechanism running smoothly and she also explained that wearing a bra can keep our lymph circulation from draining easily out of the breast. Massaging the breasts at the end of the day can help drain the stagnant lymph fluid and bring in fresh blood supply.
Locascio also adds that this is a good way to reduce hormonal boob tenderness and reduce swelling. Another pretty effective preventative care measure is the massage. Blades said that if you’re in touch with your breasts, you’ll be the first one to notice if something’s different. She also adds that we only really think about our breasts as they relate to nursing, pregnancy, or cancer.
How to massage your breasts
Locascio says that there’s no wrong way to do it, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Firstly, don’t be ashamed to get naked above the waist and apply some oil to your breasts and armpits. You can even find products that are specially made for these types of massages.
Locascio explains the massage by starting with cupping one hand just above your opposite breast so that your fingertips go into your armpit and your thumb is on the front of your chest, with that you are cupping your pectoral muscle. This area should be gently squeezed in a rhythmic pumping motion, then gradually move your hand down onto the top part of your breast. By using this same pumping motion, work around the outside, under, and inner part of your breast, around the nipple, and back toward the armpit. Your direction of pressure is to push fluid from your breasts toward your armpits.
If you want to change things up a little bit, you can alternate the squeezing or pump with some gentle fingertip circles. But the point of all this is that it should feel nice because this isn’t just a robotic activity to move fluid – it is a way of connecting with your body.
Locascio recommends doing this three to four times a week and going bra-less for a while after you are done with the massage. Blades says that breasts are amazing, that we should honor them and get to know them.
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