Like few other professions, the effectiveness of massage therapy is not limited by age. Young and old alike are able to experience the benefits of therapeutic massage. However, this is not to say that massage is a “one size fits all” option. The techniques used by a therapist will vary from person to person, even if that particular client has no conditions. The idea of individualizing massage therapy is even more important when it comes to working with different demographics. When it comes to working with the elderly, massage therapists may target specific age-related issues by selecting the techniques that will work the best.
Some of the changes that come with an aging body are obvious on the surface like the slow formation of wrinkles and loss of tightness, but there are other, less obvious changes that come with age as well. Respiratory systems slow down as people grow older, and digestive systems as well. Also 90% of the elderly live with at least one chronic illness, many of them have more than one, which needs to be treated with medication. To a massage therapist, this requires an understanding of how to be flexible and work with the patient in the way that will bring them the most benefit.
Massage therapy has a great deal of benefits for ameliorating the aches and pains associated with aging, and this is achieved through the care modification of techniques by the therapist to best suit the client’s needs. In the case of an elderly patient, this means using less pressure and shorter sessions, while targeting areas identified by the client. Massage therapy and its benefits are not just for the under sixty-five crowd. Everyone can see an improvement in quality of life with regular massage therapy when used in conjunction with the regular treatments proscribed by your medical health professional. Talk to your doctor about how you can incorporate therapeutic massage into your health routine – regardless of whether you’re 25 or 85!