Touch is used in our daily lives to express feelings, opinions, and emotions. It’s part of the unique system humans use to convey what they are thinking to one another. Through actions as simple as a handshake, high-five, or hug, a multitude of emotions can be relayed.
In our increasingly fast-paced and technologically savvy world, oftentimes the importance of touch is swept aside. There is growing research finding that when individuals are deprived of human touch, their mental health and well being can suffer and as a result, many people experience depression or other emotional issues. In contrast to these findings, most people know that healthy forms of touch from trusted and caring individuals can help reinforce a positive connection.
The healing power of touch can be harnessed through the art of massage for many different age groups. From babies and children, to teenagers, adults, and the elderly, massage can have different positive effects on individuals within any age bracket. As massage becomes more commonplace within medical communities and hospitals as a form of supplemental treatment, it is beginning to receive more recognition for helping people feel connected and happier with life.
Several of the positive benefits of touch for various age groups are as follows:
-Infants and children
As touch is one of the first ways babies learn to communicate, massage can help establish lifelong healthy and positive relationships between the parent and their child. Light and gentle massage is a great form of nonverbal communication that can be explored to help infants develop their mental skills after they are born.
-Adolescents and young adults
Teenage years can be awkward, overwhelming, and hindered by inhibitions. This means that healthy touch can be infrequent given that it is too often linked to sexuality. Massage for this particular age group can help establish healthy body awareness and promote positive self awareness.
The elderly benefit greatly from experiencing healthy forms of touch. For aging adults, massage can help create feelings of purpose, wellbeing, and reinvigoration.
Harnessing the healing power of touch is steeped in rich historical traditions across a variety of cultures. From relieving stress levels, and decreasing pain and anxiety, to helping to promote feelings of connectedness and rejuvenation, massage is an excellent tool at our disposal to treat people from a variety of age groups!