How to prolong the positive effects of your MLD

Manual Lymphatic Drainage can bring many benefits, one of which may be a wonderful feeling of wellbeing after your treatment. You may also feel the need to rest as lymphatic system and other systems within your body are required to work hard during and after MLD. In order to help yourself get the most out of your MLD treatments I recommend the following...


Wear Loose Clothing

On the day of your MLD treatment I would recommend wearing loose clothing. Your body will thank you if you don't have to squeeze it into tight fitting jeans or belts afterwards.

Bras are the lymphatic systems enemy! Particularly tight fitting bras. You have a lot of lymph nodes around your axillary area - that's your armpit! These nodes can be squeezed by tight/ill fitting bras. Consider getting re-fitted for a new bra or - if it's possible for your body type - go bra-less every now and then?



Hydrate!

(yes, I do say this all the time!) Lymph is a fluid, it is predominately water. A massive 96% of our lymphatic fluid is water so if we are dehydrated our lymph fluid will be dehydrated. This means it will struggle to flow through the vessels and to the nodes. Don't forget that caffeine dehydrates too. As well as increasing your water intake, take a look at how much caffeine you drink in a day, maybe this is something you could cut down.


Rest

Hopefully you will be able to give yourself some time to rest after your MLD. Whilst resting, try lying with your legs elevated and do some deep diaphragmatic breathing. This will help to improve your lymphatic flow and both actions tend to be very relaxing. This is something that I would recommend people every day to help maintain good health, if you practice this in the evening you may also find it helps to improve your sleep.


What to Avoid

A few things to avoid in the day or so after your MLD treatment -

  • hot baths

  • saunas or similar

  • alcohol

  • rushing about - ideally book your treatment on a day when you can really rest afterwards

  • smoking - this may be a tough one for you, but see if you can cut down a bit after a treatment

  • heavy meal - a poor diet can be a factor that contributes to poor lymphatic health so this could also be an aspect of your life that you may want to improve on a longer term too