Sadly, sometimes yes! While in 9 cases out of 10, massage can only make things better (stress, pains, circulation, insomnia, you-time, etc.), there are some instances where it would be better to hold off.
Fevers and Infections: When you are running a fever from a cold or flu, or you are fighting an infection of some kind it can actually be harmful to get a massage. Massage moves the blood and lymphatic fluids through your body 3 times faster than usual. This is usually very good for us, but when we have an infection, it can work against our body’s natural tendency to isolate and eliminate the infection. If you are achy, with cold and flu symptoms, be sure and let the massage therapist know–after discussing your symptoms with you, they will be able to determine whether or not massage would be appropriate at this time.
Skin Conditions: Rashes, burns, boils, wounds, bruises, and blisters all need to be fully healed before the area directly around them can be massaged, but they’re often localized and easy for a masseuse to avoid.
Cancer: Western science teaches that Cancer is spread through the lymphatic system, and massage can significantly increase lymphatic circulation and potentially spread the cancer to other parts of the body. Eastern science believes that if you have cancer, you should get a massage with raw sesame oil (high in B vitamins) everyday, to reduce the stress that such an illness can bring. I recommend you discuss it with your doctor and massage therapist to make an educated decision about what would be best for you.
Some chronic or acute health conditions such as high or low blood pressure, varicose veins, broken bones, and inflammation require special consideration when receiving a massage. If you’re not sure if you’re in the right condition to receive a massage it’s always a good idea to disclose all health concerns before your massage, and better yet to check with your doctor.