What it does for your body
Your lymphatic system is not just one organ or system. It is a combination of both and is one of the eleven organ systems that group different organs and tissues, all having their own particular function, but working together as a biological system.
Other organ systems you might easily recognise include the respiratory system, digestive system, cardiovascular system and nervous system. What makes them distinct from other systems of the body like the immune system is that they include different organs as part of their system.
The lymphatic system’s organs include lymph, lymph nodes, lymph vessels, tonsils, spleen and thymus and it is also part of two other groups of systems. The circulatory system, or cardiovascular system, and the immune system, which is not an organ system!
Yep, that’s a lot of systems! More to come!
What happens when our lymphatic system isn’t working
If our lymphatic system isn’t working or is blocked this can lead to a build up of fluid which is called lymphedema. Symptoms of lymphedema include swelling of the legs and arms but can also have swelling in your chest, genitals or head.
Getting older, being overweight or obsese and having rheumatoid or psoriatic arthritis can add to the risk factors for the cause of lymphedema.
Other causes of a compromised lymphatic system or lymphedema can include:
Your lymph nodes can become infected by virus or bacteria and this is called Lymphangitis. These germs can enter your body through a cut or injury or from an existing infection.
Cellulitis is another bacterial skin infection that can be attributed to a compromised lymphatic system.
Lymphatic filariasis is a parasite disease of the lymphatic system that is generally found in subtropical and tropical countries. It is not easy to catch as these worms are passed on by mosquito bites over several months.
How can we unblock the lymphatic system
Lymphatic drainage massage
Manual lymphatic drainage massage is the perfect way to reduce the fluid retention in your body caused by lymphedema. This gentle technique is safe and is recommended for people both pre and post surgery.
Using mild and gentle movements the specialist practitioner is able to promote the circulation, activate the lymphatic vessels, reduce swelling and aid in recovery and healing.
It is a relaxing massage that should not cause you any pain.
If you have lymphedema, have had cancer treatments or are suffering from fluid retention in your body please do not hesitate to contact us to book a lymphatic drainage massage with one of our specialist practitioners.
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