Choosing Massage Therapy for Self-Care

Daily we hear all the buzz about “self-care” and the importance of health and wellness, but what about massage therapy? The constant scroll on social media viewing the hottest fitness trends, green drinks, and beauty treatments with the promise of a better you. We are inundated with tips and tricks on how to be well. How is that going for you? Are you taking the time to incorporate self-care activities into your routine?

Perhaps it is time to consider massage therapy.

What was once considered a luxury experience by many is now accepted as a basic need for wellbeing. More people are choosing to add it to their monthly maintenance health plan as research proves the positive impact. According to experts at the Mayo clinic “massage is generally considered part of complementary and integrative medicine. It’s increasingly being offered along with standard treatment for a wide range of medical conditions and situations.”

Massage helps to loosen the muscles allowing increased blood flow, improvement of circulation and lymphatic system, as well as improve sleep, decrease pain, and increased flexibility, to name a few. When pressure is applied to the body, the skin’s nerve cells signal the brain to release endorphins, our “feel-good happy” chemicals that boost a natural high and positive mindset.

Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment for:

  • reducing stress, anxiety, and depression
  • minimizing fatigue
  • improving flexibility
  • releasing toxins
  • improved circulation
  • rebuilding immunities
  • decreasing inflammation
  • alleviating symptoms of chronic pain

Here are a couple of examples of massage therapy treatments and benefits:

Essentials Fusion Experience

Experienced as one of the world’s best massage techniques. Essential Fusion serves as a detox using herbal infused poultices and select Thai stretches. It provides relaxation with the warmth of heated stones and the rocking and rolling of Lomi Lomi techniques. Then hydrate with a warm cocooning wrap while receiving a scalp massage with Shirodhara oils.


An Ayurvedic treatment to balance and stabilize the mind and induce extreme relaxation. A soothing, steady stream of warmed herbal-infused oil is poured over the forehead and sixth chakra. This purifying treatment melts tension and calms the nervous system.

Want to learn more? 

At Essentials Medispa & Salon, in our state-of-the-art facility, we have licensed massage therapists that are well-trained, specialized, and experienced in a wide assortment of massage services. With contemporary and ancient techniques, from prenatal massage, aromatherapy, deep tissue, athletic rubs, to couple’s massage, we have something for everyone.

If you are ready to experience the benefits of massage, engage in your self-care journey, or simply want to indulge in a luxuriating and relaxing experience, consider a massage treatment at Essentials Medispa & Salon.

“We don’t fix a flat or line chase”

It happens to everyone…loss of facial fat pads in middle age. “I hear it all the time,” says Brian Whaley, ARNP-BC and Director of Rejuvenation at Essentials Medispa & Salon. Our patients “suddenly” notice that the firmness and lift in their faces have greatly diminished. It is normal in middle age for facial fat to decrease, which in turn has a hollowing and sagging effect. Indicators that most people notice are the deepening of the nasolabial folds and deepening of the tear troughs. These are both caused by a shrinking of the malar fat pads that lie just below the orbital bones of the eye. These are often called the apples of the cheek. Decreasing fullness here has a distinct elderly appearance and will continue unless corrected. “Filling in lines” is ineffective and amateurish – instead, an expert professional will treat the cause, not symptoms.

One may not be surprised at the treatments patients have undergone to address this problem, especially in this day and age. For some reason, providers are still injecting into the nasolabial folds. Whaley states, “This is a poor treatment choice that wastes money and does not improve the underlying problem of volume loss. The first thing I have taught my students is that A LINE IS A SYMPTOM, NOT A CAUSE. Fillers belong below the skin, not in the skin. The nasolabial fold is the medial margin of the flap over our oral cavities. This flap hangs under our eye which can cause tear troughs and flatten over the cheekbone, which can cause drooping of the corners of the mouth and marionette lines and the lowest tip of the flap is the jowl. The skin is a highly multifunctional organ system which renews every 60 to 90 days. Products injected into the skin are rapidly eliminated and also add weight, therefore dragging the skin downward even further. It is a mediocre cover-up and adds nothing to the improvement of contour. The line filling technique is antiquated and average; it is like using caulk in the bathtub!

Facial fillers that are properly injected deeply, just above the periosteum, replaces lost volume and adds the beautiful contours of youth. It can last up to two years, depending on the quality of the product. It is safer, more beautiful and less expensive than any “caulking approach” to a contour issue. Artistically placed filler, safely and meticulously performed, can bring back years of contour and make you appear younger, more attractive, and boost self-confidence! Interested or want to hear more? Schedule a free consult with Brian Whaley, ARNP-BC. You can age gracefully and modernly, subtle yet dramatic. Making Faces for 20 years.

What is Leptin resistance?

Leptin resistance may be a leading cause of weight gain and a primary reason why we have difficulty losing weight.

Leptin is a type of hormone produced by our bodies fat cells. This hormone works with the hypothalamus in our brain to tell us when we’ve had enough to eat to allow our bodies to burn excess calories. The more fat we carry inside our cells, the more leptin they produce which signals your brain to eat less. When our fat cells produce lower levels of leptin, our brain signals us to eat more. It is a type of negative feedback loop system similar to how we breathe, regulate blood pressure, and regulate body temperature.

Naturally, people who are overweight and obese have a lot of body fat stored in their cells. Their levels of leptin hormone are very high. It would make sense that an individual who has excess body fat would limit their food intake because they have plenty of excess calories stored. In this case, leptin signaling (through the negative feedback loop) may not be working. The brain sometimes will not recognize high levels of leptin. This is a condition known as leptin resistance. When your brain doesn’t receive the signals given by leptins your body responds oppositely. Your body is telling you to go into “starvation mode” therefore you start to eat more, and your energy level decreases. This leads to reduced calorie expenditure. Some causes of leptin resistance are obesity, chronic inflammation, poor diet, lack of exercise, or lack of sleep.

If you’re concerned you have leptin resistance, here at Essentials Medispa and Salon, our nutritionist can help you focus on an overall healthy lifestyle to reverse diet-induced leptin resistance. Essentials Medispa and Salon offers nutrition visits in conjunction with (BHRT) Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy, our Lypoburn weight loss program, or an overall Wellness plan.

How important is vitamin B12?

Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin necessary for the production of red blood cells, nerves, DNA, and weight loss. Vitamin B12 plays an essential role in cellular health by aiding in the formation of new red blood cells called hemoglobin. Hemoglobin can then help transport oxygen from your lungs to your muscles and vital organs such as your brain and lungs. Another essential role of vitamin B12 is the metabolism of macronutrients and micronutrients. It is a coenzyme needed for the metabolism and absorption of these nutrients which are required to carry out cellular functions.

Vitamin B12 is not manufactured by our bodies, but it can be found in foods like meat, eggs, poultry, dairy products, and fortified grains. If we aren’t eating these types of foods regularly, we are unable to reach our daily recommended dosage. Certain conditions may interfere with the absorption of B12, specifically digestive diseases such as celiac or Crohn’s disease.

The most common side effects of vitamin B12 deficiency are weight gain, lack of energy, and feeling weak or fatigued. Vitamin B12 deficiency also has an impact on our nervous system as well. Long term vitamin B12 deficiencies can cause confusion, memory loss, feelings of depression, and numbness or tingling in the hands and feet. Research shows that long term deficiencies of vitamin B12 can also lead to heart disease, Alzheimer’s, anemia, infertility, and other unwanted conditions.

It’s always important to supplement B12 from outside sources such as over the counter supplements or injections. Recommended daily allowances of Vitamin B12 range from 25mcg up to 1,000 mcg for more severe deficiencies.

Here at Essentials Medispa and Salon with offer Vitamin B12 injections as single service, add-on to any service, or purchased as a package of five.

Benefits of CBD Oil

What is CBD Oil?

CBD is the abbreviation used for cannabidiol, which is a compound extracted from the cannabis plant. By diluting the extract with an oil, such as avocado, coconut, or hemp seed, CBD can be used for therapeutic use. Even though CBD is derived from the cannabis plant, it does not contain THC (the psychoactive compound that is found in marijuana). Just as many flower families include several variations, there are different forms of hemp in which these compounds derive. CBD oil can provide therapeutic relief in many ways, with many individuals reporting feeling healthier in areas of sleep, appetite and digestion, mood, immune function, pain, motor control, as well as pleasure and reward centers in the brain.

How Does CBD Oil Work?

After several decades of research, scientists have discovered that the mammalian body and brain house an endocannabinoid system (ECS) with specific receptors located in the brain, central and peripheral nervous systems, digestive tract, immune system, and endocrine system. This is a unique communication system within the body that affect many functions, including how a person may react, think, and move. It is similar to a lock and key model with two primary receptor points. The first primary cannabinoid receptor is CB1 and the second is CB2, both functioning as lock models. CB1 receptors are abundant in the central nervous system, while CB2 receptors are more often found on immune cells, in the gastrointestinal tract, and in the peripheral nervous system. Endocannabinoids are specialized keys that unlock the possibilities of the ECS and strive for optimal balance, or homeostasis, within the body and brain.
Most people don’t know that cannabidiols naturally exist within several systems of the human body.

How Do I Use CBD Oil?

There are multiple methods in which CBD can be administered. Sublingual drops under the tongue and using a vape pen are the most popular among CBD users. These methods have the quickest delivery of symptom relief, due to the high levels of bioavailability. Capsules are also available for oral use; however, the effects may take longer to notice. This is because it is reliant on digestion and absorption factors. Topical application for various skin conditions, as well as chronic pain, and inflammation are becoming more and more popular because the CBD is well absorbed into the skin and tissue.

Among many CBD users have been shown to result in faster relief and relaxation is muscle tissue.

Why Choose Sculptra Over a HA Filler

Sculptra is a stimulatory injectable filler composed of poly-L-lactic acid. It is biocompatible, meaning it is not harmful to the surrounding living tissue. It works by way of neocollagenesis, or stimulation of the body to produce its own collagen at the site of injection. Neocollagenesis triggers the targeted area to firm, tighten, lift and smooth the overlying skin. This is beneficial in areas of depressed skin caused by facial lipoatrophy (fat loss). This includes skin creases, wrinkles, folds, scars, and overall aging.

The injection itself is biodegradable and is absorbed by the body within one week. It is the response it creates that leads to the volume increase. The poly-L-lactic acid causes a localized inflammatory reaction, causing fibroblasts to infiltrate the area, encapsulating the injected implant with thin-walled collagen. The poly-L-lactic acid, itself, degrades into lactic acid leaving behind residual crystals. Over time, the crystals lead to collagen production causing the formation of fibrous connective tissue around the implant (fibroplasia) and thus a gradual thickening of the dermis.

This differs from other injectable fillers, such as hyaluronic acid, which cannot stimulate fibroblasts but instead stretches the existing collagen fibers through displacement of the area, leading to a short-term fix. Though the volume increase in Sculptra may take anywhere from three to six months to develop, the results persist upwards of two years. For this reason, Sculptra should be considered one of the first options for cosmetic rejuvenation.

Elizabeth Sippey PA-Resident
Essentials Medispa & Salon

The Verdict on Botox

It is not infrequently that I hear the comment, “I’m not vain’ or “I want to grow old gracefully,” or “at my age, what does it matter? What is implied in all these comments? Is there a commonality amongst them? Should we not care about how our faces decline as they age? Don’t we have a choice besides watching our looks transform and do nothing, of course, we do! Science and medicine have improved our lives in so many ways, this is just another way of remaining well.

First, instead of answering these questions directly, I might ask a woman patient about the beautiful clothing they were wearing, or maybe I would compliment them on their hairstyle or how perfectly polished their nails are. With a man maybe comment on the level of fitness, head of hair or his nice watch. My question is, are these measures vain? Is it a character flaw, wanting to present oneself in the best light? Is it “not okay” to wear nice clothes or to pamper ourselves?

Folks will spend hours and hours at the gym reshaping their bodies, buy great gym clothes and the best supplements. Hire top trainers and fitness and diet coaches. They spend thousands of dollars on lotions and potions and over the counter anti-aging “medicines” and herbs. Runners buy shoes and pedometers and join health clubs. The quest for the beautiful body of our dreams seems to be widely accepted without question. So, why is the advanced, safe and proven treatments in medical aesthetics somehow vain?

Well, the fact is that self-improvement and investing in medical aesthetics has been found to build self-esteem and confidence. Medical aesthetics has proven to be reliable, safe and much more affordable than ever. Some studies show that an attractive face, scores higher on attraction models than those of the body, especially as we age.

There is nothing else that can halt the progression of the aging face. No cream can counteract the effect of facial volume loss. Rhytids (wrinkles) are inevitable unless the muscles are relaxed, long term Retin-A or skin resurfacing device is used. The advancement of this specialty over the last decade has been amazing. The melding of long-term corrections for the aging face and regenerative medicine holds great promise. We are living longer, and it is just logical that we want to look as good as we feel. No one says “I have a migraine but I want to tolerate it gracefully, we take the Excedrin”!

I recall a patient explicitly saying, “I have earned every wrinkle on my 60-year-old face.” I say, “That may be true, but what about the grey hair on your head”? (as blonde highlighted auburn locks shine, ( from afternoon re-coloring), the twinkle in my eyes evident to her, she laughs out loud!

I rest my case.

Best of health,

Brian Whaley ARNP-BC
Rejuvenation Director

Is Laser Hair Removal Right for You?

Is Laser Hair Removal Right for You?

Laser hair removal allows you the freedom to stop shaving, waxing, plucking and pulling unwanted hair from your body. Laser hair removal is appropriate for men or women and most parts of the body. The procedure works best on patients with naturally dark, coarse hair and usually do not work with very light, or fine hair. Regardless of whether unwanted hair is due to a personal preference or is a source of shame, let Essentials Medispa and Salon help eradicate your unwanted hair!

What is laser hair removal?

Laser hair removal is the process of using a pulsating laser beam to remove hair from your body permanently. It is non-invasive and performed by a licensed skin care expert. It is entirely safe for any healthy adult and is successfully on many areas of the body.

What parts of the body can be treated?

Extra Small Area: Upper lip, chin, sideburns, cheeks, areolas, nose, forehead, hands, eyebrows, feet or ears
Small Area: Underarms, bikini line, happy trail, upper lip and chin, inner or outer thigh, jawline, upper or lower arms, or two extra small areas combined
Medium Area: Brazilian, buttocks, upper back, upper legs, lower legs, back neck, front neck, upper chest, full face, full arms or two small areas combined
Large Area: Full legs, full front, full back, or medium and small area combined

How does laser hair removal work?

During your procedure, our staff will hold a wand on your skin which contains a laser. When initiated, that laser beam will pass through your skin to the hair follicles. The light from the laser is absorbed by the melanin (or pigment) in the hair and converted to heat which damages the hair follicles. This damage makes future hair growth from that follicle difficult or impossible thereby leaving you hair free in that area. Although the procedure may sound painful, it is not. There may be some minor discomfort during the process which you should indicate to your skin care specialist.

What happens after the procedure?

Redness or swelling of the treated area may be noticeable for the first few hours after the procedure. Ice or cooling gels may be recommended immediately after laser hair removal to reduce pain. Over the next days and weeks, you will begin to shed the hair from the treated area. Since hair has four stages of the growth cycle, you will need subsequent treatments to make sure you have addressed hair in each stage. Typically, a series of two to six treatments are required based upon the location of the area being treated.

What are the risks of laser hair removal?

The risks vary based upon skin type, hair color, treatment plan and adherence to pre-treatment and post-treatment care. The most common side effects include temporary discomfort, redness, swelling, skin irritation, changes in the pigment of the affected area. In rare cases, laser hair removal can cause blistering, crusting, scarring or excessive hair growth around the treated areas. Laser hair removal should never be performed on eyelids, eyebrows or surrounding areas as the laser beam could cause severe eye injury. (1)

Ready to try laser hair removal?

Stop fighting unwanted hair with messy and painful treatments. We have a better solution for you! We offer a convenient monthly payment plan that is interest-free to get you on your way to being hair free. Contact our office today to schedule your initial consultation for laser hair removal. We will perform our state-of-the-art laser technology on that pesky hair and leave you feeling pampered and ready to bare all. Our laser hair removal treatments come with a 2-year guarantee. If you are not entirely hair free within two years, your additional procedures are free. Essentials Medispa & Salon in Melbourne, FL serves patients in the Orlando and Central Florida area.


  1. Retrieved from