How stomach massage for gastroparesis can get things moving again
August is Gastroparesis Awareness Month. The disorder affects stomach muscles, making it difficult for the body to process food. There can be many causes for gastroparesis. It is often associated with Lyme disease and related infections. Guest blogger Savannah Marcum writes about what has helped her manage the condition.
By Savannah Marcum
I’ve had stomach issues my whole life, but after I became chronically ill with tick-borne diseases, things became much worse. For years, I had lots of daily stomach pain, nausea, reflux, and eventually I developed food allergies with mast cell activation syndrome too. That forced me to get serious about changing my diet. (See my videos about food and diet.)
On top of all of that, at my worst I developed gastroparesis. With this condition, the stomach cannot empty itself of food in a normal fashion. In severe cases, the stomach and intestines essentially become paralyzed.
A life-changing technique
In my case, the only things that “got things moving” were getting a saline IV, using glycerine suppositories, and doing this truly lifesaving stomach massage.
My physical therapist tried this technique on me, with good results. She then advised me to continue doing it for myself as needed. Her instruction: “Do this massage for 10 minutes and in 30 minutes you’ll have a BM. Works every time.” I was doubtful, but now I swear by it too.
Granted, at the very worst of my stomach motility issues, I didn’t always see immediate results with this. But it would always get my stomach gurgling or bubbling and things would slowly get back to moving. I would perform this massage for a few minutes before and after every meal (or snack), when I woke up, and before bed. I used this massage to manually retrain and regulate my digestive track, and it was amazingly effective. I’m super regular now and rarely need this massage anymore. And when I do, it indeed works within 30 minutes.
This massage technique can help digestion, constipation, and general detoxification. Best of all, it’s easy to do on your own at home too, or to teach a loved one to do if you’re too tired to do it yourself.
Using two fingers, your whole hand, or both hands, you gently massage around the stomach following over the intestines and going in the direction that digestion moves. Check out the following video for specific instructions.
This post is adapted from Savannah Marcum’s blog “Heyo, It’s Mayo.” She also has a YouTube channel with the same name. Savannah lives in central California.
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