Massage Therapy For Seniors
Massage therapy is particularly valuable for the aches and pains associated with growing older. Currently, with the drastic rise in the number of aging baby-boomers, many massage therapists are opting to learn massage techniques that are specifically designed to help the elderly achieve mind-body harmony. This age-specific massage is either called senior’s massage or geriatric massage.
Seniors massage doesnt differ much in technique compared to massage for younger adults. However the techniques used must keep in mind that an aging body requires a little extra tender loving care. Specially trained geriatric massage therapists are aware that an elderly body must be positioned carefully on a massage table, compared to a healthy 30-year-old body. Great care is taken in the positioning of an elderly client, and once positioned on the massage table, a senior will rarely ever be asked to move, as is so typical with other types of massage.
Seniors massage sessions will typically range from 30-mintues to an hour. However, when mobility is an issue for example the client is wheelchair-bound the massage therapist will be forced to adapt and the massage can take longer. For example, if the client is confined to a wheelchair, the massage therapist will administer massage to the client right in the chair.
Geriatric massage practitioners will often spend more time on the hands and feet of their clients - especially if the client doesnt walk or doesnt have full use of their hands. In cases such as these, a hand or foot massage can enhance body awareness, sensation and circulation in certain parts of an aging body.
The benefits of geriatric massage are numerous. Massage does the usual for seniors by encouraging circulation, decreasing muscular stiffness, and helping to decrease inflammation that may rest in the joints. However, it also treats so many of the typical conditions that arise with age - such as muscular stiffness, arthritis, skin discoloration, muscle and bone deterioration, tendonitis, bursitis, and respiratory problems such as asthma and emphysema.
Furthermore, the benefits of enjoying the simple pleasure of human touch and company for just a brief period of time is priceless for many lonely and depressed seniors. Careful massage can help provide the elderly with symptomatic relief and enable seniors to extend the vitality in their lives.