What is Lymphatic Drainage?
Lymphatic drainage is a technique designed to stimulate the movement of lymph (a fluid that transports oxygen, nutrients and white blood cells to body tissues). It involves a gentle light massage to help direct lymphatic fluid towards the lymph nodes. A very common use of lymphatic drainage is to help with lymphedema resulting from lymph nodes being removed as a part of breast cancer surgery. Other conditions it can help with include arthritis, orthopedic injuries or surgery, swelling and fibromyalgia.
What is the Lymphatic System?
The Lymphatic System is an extremely important system in our body, made up of lymph, lymphatic vessels, lymph nodes and other accessory organs and tissues. Lymphocytes (which are white blood cells) aid in attacking bacteria and other metabolic waste products). Thus, the function of this particular system is to filter and clean out the waste products in the blood. Our body then drains these products into the right and left subclavian veins, leaving a cleaner, healthier, more physically active and happy body! Without the proper functioning of the lymphatic system, edema (swelling) can develop and the waste products in the blood do not get filtered out as they should.
How Manual Lymphatic Drainage Helps
Lymphatic Drainage, in addition to skeletal movement, aids in the movement of lymph throughout lymphatic system. Lymphatic drainage strokes, which are very light and rhythmic, following the unidirectional roadmap of the lymphatic vessels. By assisting in the movement of lymph, this massage technique aids in the filtration process.