Scar Massage and Desensitization Techniques

Whether due to injury or surgery, scars can sometimes bother us for a long time. Scar massage is a technique used by therapists to soften and smooth scar tissue, to desensitize sensitive areas, and to "break up" scr inside to allow tissues to move more freely.

Therapists will use a massage cream to create a gliding motion and avoid irritation of rubbing skin on skin. When the area with stitches has healed, a firm pressure is applied in a circular motion. Your hand tehrapist can guide you as to whether and how you should be doing this.

Desensitization techniques are used to "calm down" really sensitive areas, such as fingertip amputation sites or sensitive scars. These can include:

-Rubbing various textures on the hypersensitive area (for example, flannel, velvet, wool, terry cloth, polyester, corduroy, and cotton)

-Tapping on the sensitive area with the base of a pen or a pencil eraser

-Usuing a small vibrator to massage the sensitive area

-Placing your finger or hand into separate containers of various objects (sand, dry rice, ball bearings, dry lentil beans, dry kidney beans, dry pinto beans)