Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD)
Manual Lymphatic Drainage can be helpful:
- In reducing swelling eg after injury or surgery
- After cosmetic surgical procedures including liposuction
- As a key element of Decongestive Lymphatic Therapy in the treatment of lymphoedema
- After most surgical procedures involving an incision where oedema (tissue swelling) is expected during healing eg joint replacement, ceasarean section, gender reassignment surgery etc
(read more about Post-surgical MLD)
- For managing inflammatory response in lipodema
- For improving cellulite and skin anomalies
- As a parallel treatment to scar-tissue reduction massage
- For those detoxing and/or on rapid weight-loss programmes and wanting to flush waste products from their system
- To those suffering from limb fluid-retention due to a sedentary lifestyle, eg the elderly, wheel-chair users
- In managing the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia
- For lingering sinusitis and allergic-response congestion (but not acute allergy)
- For those who experience frequent colds, chest infections, sore throats etc
- Before & after long-haul air travel
- As a relaxation aid for people experiencing anxiety, depression or insomnia
- For those who often get migraine headaches
- For managing arthritis symptoms such as joint swelling and inflammation
I am trained in the Vodder Technique for MLD and my qualifications are accredited by the Dr Vodder Academy International. I am qualified in Decongestive Lymphatic Therapy (DLT) to work with people with lymphoedema and am a full member of MLD UK.
Please note that MLD treatments booked online are suitable for people with a functional lymphatic system; people diagnosed with lymphoedema require a more specialised and intense form of treatment (which may include compression bandaging etc) which involves a separate intake, consultation and treatment process. If you have a lymphoedema diagnosis, please get in touch with me by phone or email before booking.
How many treatments will I need? Treatment is always tailored variably to the goals of each client and how many treatments you might need will be discussed and explained in detail during your first visit following visual assessment of the issue - but it is important for all clients to understand that MLD works best with treatment repetition in close succession in order to increase lymphatic flow for long enough to have an effect on any tissue congestion. For example, if you have lower leg swelling which has built up over a long period of time, it may take 2-3 treatments on a daily (or every other day) basis before you notice a significant visible reduction, and you may require then further treatments to take the swelling down completely. Your onward course of treatment is then usually extended less frequently over the next few weeks to maintain. Feel free to ask what schedule is recommended for your particular goals in advance, but be aware that your response to MLD will very much be determined by the cause of the issue, its severity and your adherence to home care advice provided during the course of your treatment. A single treatment is good for relaxation purposes, but will not be maximally effective for achieving remedial therapeutic goals.
Prices (for treatments at the practice)
MLD 1st appointments: £80 (70mins)
A 70 min appointment is required for all 1st MLD appointments at Richmond Park Therapies.
MLD subsequent appointments: £70 (60mins) OR £80 (70mins)
Most subsequent & maintenance MLD appointments last 60 mins. If you are using MLD for deep-relaxation, have a complex medical case, or have had cosmetic surgery/liposuction to several body areas at the same time however, you will require 70 mins for follow-up appointments. In each of these cases, please call/email before booking to check, also see more info on Post-Surgical MLD.
a) 10 appointments (1st 70 mins + 9 subsequent 60 mins): £675
b) 10 appointments (10 x 70 mins): £760
Packages & off site appointments are not available via the booking system & should be booked either by phone or email.
Terms & Conditions for MLD packages & multiple appointments:
When booking more than one MLD appointment, you will need to transfer a holding fee at the time of booking them, this includes Packages if you do not intend to pay in full amount immediately. The holding fee will be used to pay for your final treatment/s (unless there have been deductions for no-shows, late cancellations etc).
For MLD Package's you will need to have paid the full cost of the entire package by bank transfer at least 24 hours before your 1st appointment.
Packages cannot be taken out retrospectively and must be requested and confirmed by email prior to booking your first appointment.
Package appointments must be taken within 10 months of the date of the first appointment.
MLD for Lymphedema (& Combined Decongestive Therapy): has a separate pricing structure due to longer appointment times being required. In the first instance a Consultation Appointment will be required following which a quote for a treatment schedule (comprising intensive and maintenance phases) will be provided. Please get in touch to discuss.
What is Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD)?
A specialist light-touch therapy which increases the flow of lymph around the body, aiding the removal of toxins, excess water, bacteria, metabolic waste and foreign substances from congested tissues or generally sluggish systems.
The lymphatic system is strongly involved in our bodies' immune response, so when it becomes less effective, eg due to poor diet, injury, infection or sedentary lifestyle, manual encouragement of lymphatic flow can be beneficial in boosting immunity and for the maintenance of good health.
Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) is extremely safe and non-invasive. It does not involve the 'massage of muscles', but the systematically applied stimulation of skin-receptors. In turn, these generate tiny muscular pulse-activity in lymphatic vessels beneath the skin surface, which then pump lymph through the body at an increased rate. Manual Lymphatic Drainage therefore feels super-light in comparison to other types of massage therapy and due to its rhythmic application is also incredibly soothing and relaxing.
Treatment is always tailored to the goals of each client, but is usually best, especially in cases involving edema (swelling caused by excess fluid) daily in the first week in conjunction with excellent self-care (eg gentle exercise and the avoidance of alcohol and salty/processed foods). The course of treatment is then usually extended less frequently over the next few weeks.
You should not receive Lymphatic Drainage when you have:
- Untreated malignant disease, including tumour recurrence or metastases.
- Acute inflammation eg caused by bacteria, viruses, chemicals etc.
- Acute allergic reaction.
- Cardiac insufficiency of any kind
- Acute phlebitis or thrombosis (incl. DVT)
There are other health conditions which require modification of MLD treatment, which will be discussed with you at consultation if applicable to you, as identified via your Health Information Form.
What happens during Manual Lymphatic Drainage?
The client relaxes on a massage couch whilst their therapist employs highly accurate, rhythmic, 1mm-deep skin movement techniques over key lymphatic sites across the body. The flow of treatment draws lymph along its natural anatomically-directional pathways, clearing blockages and encouraging increased lymphatic flow. No massage oil is used although in some cases a fine (chalk, talc or corn-based) powder may be used to improve the therapist's slide across the skin.
At the time of making your appointment, you will be asked about your reason for booking Manual Lymphatic Drainage, as it is helpful for me to understand in advance what sort of treatment you need. If you require a longer course of treatment, eg following cosmetic surgery or liposuction, more detail about the type of surgical procedure you have planned will be required via a telephone conversation in advance of booking and it is recommended that you do this - and book your appointments in full - as much in advance as possible to ensure therapist availability in line with the schedule of manual lymphatic drainage prescribed by your surgeon.
Before your first visit, you will be asked to complete a health consultation form so that I understand if there are any issues that may affect your treatment. There may be follow-up questions from that which will either be emailed to you or discussed further when you arrive. If you have a complex health history or would simply prefer to have a conversation rather than fill out a form, a telephone call can be arranged prior to your first visit and takes approx 10-15 minutes (and is free of charge).
At any subsequent appointments, we will review any health changes since your last appointment when you arrive, before proceeding with treatment.