Electric massagers offer access to regular treatment for chronic pain and persistent stress. They cost next to nothing when compared to the price of professional massage, and while they will always be limited in the type of massage they can offer, the benefits of different types of massagers form an important part of home care for most users.
In this article, we’ll look at how, and why, these useful home treatment tools work, and share some of the most important things to check for to help you understand what you’re looking for in terms of treatment because the benefits of electric massagers change from product to product.
There are countless types of massage machines out there, but they all fall roughly into a few categories; chairs, pads, and targeted pain relief. We’re dedicated to finding you the best possible massage tools for your specific needs, so check out a breakdown of the best types of massagers and their benefits below.
Hopefully you’ll find what’s right for you, and if you do, check out the links to articles with more detail on each different type of electric massager.
Different Types of Massager Machines
Massage chairs are the closest to full body massage you can get at home without hiring a live-in masseuse. Depending on price, size, style, and brand, some massage chairs have integrated foot massagers, vibrating bases, and heated nodes right the way up to the back of the head and neck.
Obviously, full-size massage chairs take up a lot of space in any home, but if you require regular massage therapy, or feel significant benefits to your emotional well-being and mental health as a result of massage, they are worth the space and worth the money.
Face massagers are surprisingly versatile and incredibly diverse, but they can be quite claustrophobic for some. For others, they are the lifeline they need to tackle headaches, migraines, and the symptoms of screen fatigue, particularly around the eyes.
In terms of targeted face massage, eye massagers are the most sought-after massage devices for home use, relaxation, and physical therapy.
Head massagers and scalp massagers, often integrated into face massagers, stimulate ASMR through the whole body. This can be done with manual scalp massagers, but having the scalp gently stimulated by a machine, or by your partner is the most effective way to elicit the relaxing ASMR sensation.
Back massagers are the most varied and include massage chair pads, which are a great replacement or alternative for bulky massage chairs. They don’t offer the same intensity of massage or vibration but are incredibly effective for regular users in tackling chronic pain as well as persistent stress.
Massage cushions and massage pads are also very affordable and adaptable electric massage tools with all the same benefits as manual kneading massage. These electric massages, particularly chair pads and cushions can be used as neck massagers too, though purpose-built neck and shoulder massagers tend to be the most effective pain relief for that area, thanks to weighted sleeves.
Foot Massagers, and Foot Circulation Massagers
Foot massagers are great for general relaxation, and can even mimic the benefits of reflexology. As well as relieving tired feet for long days at work, foot circulation massagers are brilliant for stimulating improved blood flow around the entire body.
Leg massagers come in all shapes and sizes, but the easiest way to use them is when they are integrated into massage chairs. However, for therapeutic use, or targeted pain relief, you can use everything from purpose-made leg massagers to massage guns with percussion massage settings to help improve blood flow, muscle performance, and recovery.
Hand massagers are designed to ease the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, arthritis, and other joint pain that is most relevant in the hands, particularly in its early stages.
By improving blood flow, and easing muscle inflammation through heat therapy and pressure, hand massagers can slow the development of chronic pain as well as ease existing symptoms.
Electric Massage Frequently Asked Questions
Is electric massage good for the body?
Electric massage is good for the body. It supports sleep, and relaxation, and can be incredibly effective as part of a course of physical therapy, particularly where regular or even daily treatment is required to ease symptoms of inflammation or chronic pain.
Are there any side effects of electric massage?
The most common side effect of electric massage is skin irritation. Anybody with dry, cracked, or sensitive skin should place gentle barriers between themselves and electric massagers, particularly those with rubber or plastic surfaces.
Who should not use an electric massager?
If your doctor advises against using an electric massager, avoid them. They are useful for the treatment of chronic pain, for targeted treatment of sports injuries, and for relaxation, but should not be used as a replacement for expert medical support.
How long should you use an electric massager?
Most electric massagers have in-built timers, which limit you to 15 minutes of use at most, but this will differ depending on the function and purpose of each tool. For example, eye massagers are relatively gentle, and can be used for up to half an hour without any ill effects, while full body shiatsu electric massage should be limited to around ten minutes to avoid overworking or bruising tissue.
Why am I so tired after a massage?
Massage is innately relaxing, so you will likely feel sleepy or tired after any electric massage therapy. It is normal and is actually a sign that the treatment is working.
Is vibrating massage safe?
Vibrating massage is not only safe but one of the safest forms of electric massage therapy you can undertake. Gentle or intense vibrations cause the body to relax, particularly with surface tissues and inflammation, which can be directly and quickly relieved as vibration stimulates blood flow.
What is the best time to use an electric massager?
You will feel the maximum benefits of an electric massager by using it as soon as possible after exercise. This will stop the development of pain, and disperse painful acids that can build up in your muscles before they begin to cause pain.
Is it safe to use electric massagers every day?
It is safe to use electric massagers every day, but for some users, it is important to take breaks. For example, if you use an electric massager after exercise, you should take a break from a massage every other day, or every third day to allow your muscles to recover on their own.
Is a one-hour massage equal to eight hours of sleep?
A one-hour massage is not equal to eight hours of sleep. In fact, a one-hour massage is not equal to any sleep. Sleep is a complete resetting of your mind and body, so while massage can help you relax and improve your quality of sleep, it is not a safe replacement.
How often should I use my massager for knots?
Kneading or shiatsu massagers for knots should be used at least weekly if you suffer from regular knotting of muscles in the back, shoulders, or neck. Use your massager for short intervals to avoid bruising the area or increasing inflammation.
Wrapping Up Our Guide to Different Types of Massagers
The benefits of electric massagers change depending on the massage tool, brand, and frequency of use, but it’s important not to conflate electric massagers with medical therapies. They are a useful way to boost and supplement your care and can be a lifesaver for many people with chronic pain.
Personally, I use a combination of massagers to support knee pain and shoulder pain from historic injuries, but their main benefit is always relaxation, helping me to relax and recover regardless of the stresses of a day at the office.