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Lymphatic Drainage: An underutilized wellness tool

About the Lymphatic System

Most of us know that approximately 70% of the human body is water, the basis for every biological process. Liquid in the body is found within cells (intra-cellular) and outside of the cells (extra-cellular). The extra-cellular liquid, also called interstitial fluid, is the watery environment that surrounds the cells of our body and from which the lymph fluid originates.

Waste, toxins, bacterial cells, viruses, excess water and proteins of small molecular size find their way, or “leak,” out of the blood capillaries from connective tissue into the interstitial space and are then forced into lymphatic capillaries. This liquid is called lymph. The function of the lymphatic system, then, is to transport all substances that cannot be carried by the venous capillaries.

Hence, in as much as the lymph system is “obliged” to remove these substances, they are referred to as the Lymph Obligatory Load. Eventually, the lymph is moved to some of the more than 600 lymph nodes throughout the body, where it is cleansed and concentrated. The overall function of the lymphatic system is vital to our immune health.

The lymphatic system is present in every tissue of the body except the brain and the spinal chord. Unlike the parallel circulatory (venous) system, the lymphatic system lacks a pump. It is dependent on the particular and adequate movement of the body, the diaphragm and, of course, the effect of gravity. Consequently, the movement of lymphatic fluids can be erratic and lazy flowing

Lymphatic Drainage Methodology

Increasing the flow of lymph fluid via lymphatic drainage accelerates the removal of waste products and toxins while, concurrently, increasing blood circulation and delivery of nutrients to the area(s) treated. Apart from the broad systemic benefits of lymphatic drainage, facial and body treatments are significantly enhanced when combined with its application.

Stimulation is generally administered manually, or by a specialized machine. Our preference is a French-made biostimulating device. It is highly effective in reducing puffiness, bloating, edema and restoring better contour to the face and body. Moreover, a unique feature of this system is the ability to augment the treatment with a companion device that applies specific light frequencies to acupuncture points for a more energetic drainage that also balances the fluids.

Drainage can be done periodically for overall health, as well as to address specific issues, some of which are:

  • Cuperose
  • Sun damage
  • Cellulite
  • Circulatory problems
  • Wrinkles
  • General and localized edema
  • Pre and post operative cosmetic surgery
  • Accelerated healing

When might Lymphatic Drainage not be appropriate?

There are certain conditions which may preclude the use of Lymphatic Drainage and which should be discussed with the practitioner:

  • Malignant disease such as cancer-related disease, AIDS.
  • Acute infection.
  • When, or where there is a danger of dislodging a clot and causing an embolism.
  • Edema related to congestive heart failure due to the strain that extra fluid may put on an already stressed heart.