As a form of physical therapy, massage isn’t limited to adults. Massage can also be performed on children, and it can also be given to elderly. Here’s what you need to know if you’re a senior interested in getting a massage.
How is Massage different for the elderly?
Massage for those in their twilight years slightly differs from massage given to someone younger. For the elderly, gentle strokes are needed, including some light stretching to not hurt their bodies. Sometimes a small amount of essential oil can be applied to help work the muscles. When massage is given, it can help boost blood circulation, increase flexibility, reduce arthritic pain, improve posture, induce relaxation, and provide a better sense of health and well-being.
Why is Massage good for the older generations too?
We humans are social creatures and the need for comfort and care doesn’t disappear as we get older. More often than not, elderly people can feel alone, especially if they are widows or widowers, or do not see their family regularly. Massage offers closeness, comfort, and can help relieve symptoms of anxiety in the older generation. It also allows them to experience the compassionate touch of another person which sends out neurotransmitters making them feel good.
A special way of communicating between bodies
Receiving massage as an older person means getting clearance from a doctor especially if a health condition is present. Since not all bodies are the same, no matter the age, communication is essential with any massage therapist. This involves verbalizing what shouldn’t and shouldn’t be performed, as well direct feedback if any part hurts during the massage therapy. For many older people, stretches and joint mobilizations cannot be performed as easily, so ensuring the massage is safe is absolutely vital. Massage sessions also don’t need to be as long as a standard one. This is because longer massages can overload the nervous system or other organs. Thankfully a shorter massage for 20-30 minutes gets all the benefits without any issues.
Get a Massage regularly!
Regular massage with a senior citizen often extends the boundary typically found in relationships between massage therapists and young or middle-aged clients. The older generations often open their lives to the therapist who make house-calls or visit nursing homes for the massage. During this time, the bond between the two can develop and become quite strong as both learn to adjust to each other.
If you’re older than 65 and are interested in a massage, you won’t just improve your well-being, you could potentially make a friend with your health and care at the top of their mind.