Discovering the Power of Massage Therapy

Michelle Haugen

By Michelle Haugen

At a turning point in my life, I decided that I wanted to change careers and do something that was a benefit to other people. As I was reviewing different paths within the many health professions, my first granddaughter, Eva, was born. This was a wonderful and exciting event! But there was one caveat — Eva was born two months premature and we were not sure whether she would make it.

As I was searching for information about preemies and what might benefit them, I discovered research being done by Dr. Tiffany Field at the Touch Research Institute, University of Miami. Her research found that a well-defined protocol of touch helped infants thrive in neonatal intensive care units, and significantly shorten their time in the hospital.

That discovery indicated to me just how powerful massage can be, especially since premature infants have no preconditioned notion of it. I had received massage therapy myself as a means to reduce neck strain, and found it therapeutic. As I researched the benefits of massage more extensively, I learned that it was beneficial for a myriad of health conditions, and could be useful for people of almost all ages. This was it! I had found my new career choice. Continue reading