Therapeutic massage has dozens of health advantages for everyone of every age, but there are special benefits the elderly receive from hands-on therapy. I have listed just a few of the most important advantages, below.
1. Pain Relief
Massage increases circulation, which brings oxygen and nutrients to the tissues while also carrying away cellular waste. This decreases pain in the muscles and joints, reduces swelling and water retention and helps to boost the immune system. All equaling less pain and improved health.
2. Improved Flexibility
Often times, the elderly have more difficulty with movement and flexibility. Sometimes this is due to the natural effects of aging or to conditions such as arthritis. Massage helps to keep joints lubricated and the muscles loose and supple, helping to prevent stiffness and keeping the body more limber and free moving.
3. Enhancing & Uplifting Mood
The many life changes that seniors experience, such as daily pain, death of friends and family, decreases in social life and sometimes, isolation – can all lead to high stress and depression. Massage increases and balances hormones such as oxytocin and endorphins, the bodies ‘feel good’ chemicals. It also assists in releasing blocked emotions and allows the senior to feel and experience a healing, loving touch. Enhancing their well-being and uplifting their mood.
4. Faster Healing From Injury Or Surgery
As we age, our bones become more brittle and injuries can take place more often – sometimes requiring surgery. Massage eases stress related to the trauma, brings needed nutrients to the injured area for faster cellular repair and helps to alleviate the pain that comes with the injury or surgical recovery.
Physical, emotional and psychological changes take place during massage that can greatly enhance the quality of life for the elderly. However, there are also a few times that bodywork may not be appropriate. If you have any of these conditions, please consult your doctor before receiving a massage.
- If you are taking blood thinners or have a history of blood clots.
- If you have Kidney problems or heart issues.
- If you currently have any infections or contagious skin conditions.
- If you have or are recovering from cancer.
Massage therapy for the elderly is a tremendous healing tool with a great many health benefits, both physically and emotionally. Approached with care, it can truly be a huge boost in improving a seniors quality and enjoyment of life.