Your First Massage!

But Not Your Last!

I accept Regence Blue Shield and Premera Blue Cross. Both Companies require that you have a pain condition AND a loss of function. 

That means that you MUST also  have some degree of not being
able to sit, stand, walk, stair climb, lift, work, personal care, drive, or sleep because of or in addition to your pain.

Each has different requirements and benefits that you will need to know and be responsible for. Please read more at these pages: Regence Blue Shield and Premera Blue Cross

ALL Plans require that massage therapy be medically necessary and each plan has their own specific definition of what that means. Check your policy.  Here are some sample definitions of medical necessity.

All insurance claims must have a prescription from your doctor with a diagnosis in order to be processed, no matter what the insurance company says. A prescription is different from a referral.  Some plans will say that you do not need a referral, but you still will need a prescription.  A prescription will provide a diagnosis code and a treatment plan stating the number of sessions the doctor is prescribing and the duration. (Example: 1x a week for 6 weeks)

You will be allowed 6 sessions to be completed without prior-authorization. After that, your insurance requires that I obtain a prior-authorization from a company they have hired called eviCore, before completing more sessions.

Insurance will only cover massage if there is an injury or condition that makes it medically necessary to get a massage.  Medically necessary massage therapy is done once or twice a week depending on the prescription and condition.

It does not cover massage just for stress, anxiety or depression.

It does not cover maintenance or preventative massage. Each insurance company has their own definition of maintenance massage.  I define it as massage therapy done once a month, every three weeks or every other week.  Massage must be done (time allowing) once a week for massage to give the best benefits. I have to show that there is improvement in your condition.

It does not cover soreness due to exercise.

Some of the conditions that massage can help and that your health insurance will cover are:

Use this handy insurance verification form (PDF) if you call your insurance to investigate your massage therapy benefits.

Getting your first massage every may create a little bit of anxiousness not knowing what to really expect. Everyone also thinks that their first massage will be relaxing and take care of all of their tightness and pain.

Well it isn't quite like that. Most people wait until they are in pain of some sort before seeking out their first massage. When you are in pain, a massage may not be as relaxing as you might have imagined. The areas that are tight may feel slightly painful when massaged.

This is due to the restrictions in the muscle fibers. When a muscle is tight the fibers actually are sticking together somewhat like glue. Massage works to break apart this tightness.

After you first massage, some people report feeling slightly bruised or sore. If that is that case, know that it is normal and that it is an indicator of just how tight the muscle is in the first place.

Getting regular massage can help reduce this tenderness along with helping to alleviate and even prevent further pain.

Some things you can do after a massage to help continue the relaxation process are to:

  • Get there on time or a few minutes before so you are not rushed or stressed from just getting there!  I will have you fill out a few forms.
  • I will do a interview about your over all health and assess your needs and condition.  There are also some things that make massage contra-indicated such as having a cold/fever, contagious skin conditions and other contagious diseases.  
  • You will be laying on a massage table covered by sheets and kept warm with a infrared lighting system.   You will undress to the level of your comfort.  If you are concerned about anything - just ask!  
  • Your massage is done just for you!  I tailor each massage to your specific needs that day.
  • Be sure to speak up when I ask you about the amount of pressure being applied.  I can usually find tight spots/muscles but I don't know how it feels to you.  Some people think that they have to just get through it!  It isn't that way at all!  I want to work with you to achieve the best results!
  • Be sure to speak up if you are too cold, too hot or if you hate the music!
  • Drink plenty of water. If you wake up the next morning feeling tired or even exhausted - just start drinking water until you feel better.
  • Take a bath after your massage in epsom salt and baking soda or some combination of relaxing bath salts like Batherapy.
  • Eat lightly before and after!
  • As you leave the office pay attention to the new feelings in your body and the new relaxed state of your muscles. You will feel your feet hit the pavement differently and can often hear it in your footsteps.
  • Take a nap if you can. (This is my favorite thing to do directly after a massage - take a nap!) If you have continued soreness, put an icepack on any specific areas that feel tender. You can also take your favorite pain reliever if the pain is too annoying.

Call or email me if you have any questions or concerns or ask me at the time of your session.