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Managing everyday relationships with friends and family alongside study or work can be stressful for everyone but especially so if you are feeling low, down or tired.  This can sometimes lead to a build up of tension in the body which you may not always notice at first. 

Many find that taking time out to have a massage can help relieve some of the stress or tension they are feeling and different people find different sorts of massage relaxing.  And you don't always have to pay for a professional massage.  You might want to swap a simple hand or neck massage with a friend.  Tennis balls have also been found to be an effective massage tool though there are other devices you can find online or in the shops which can help you relieve tension in the body.

There have been only two studies looking at massage for young people with depression. Both found some short term positive benefits but no long term differences from other sorts of relaxation. 


There isn’t much academic research in the area of self-care for young people who are living with mental health issues. We are trying to find out more about what works for different people so we can better advise other young people what to try.

If you’ve tried this activity when you were struggling in relation to your mental health, please let us know if it helped you and how by clicking on the ‘Did this activity help you’ button.