Family caregivers are often looking for ways to bring comfort and happiness to their aging relative. When their bodies start to decline due to age-related issues, seniors may struggle to walk, get up and down, or sleep all night due to aches and pains. They often need the help of family caregivers and elder care providers for day-to-day assistance. Many seniors are finding that a few massage therapy sessions can work wonders on their aching bodies. Studies show that massage therapy really does work for seniors.
Massage therapy is proving to have many physical and mental benefits for elderly adults. With age, many elderly adults must deal with chronic health conditions, injuries, illnesses and more. Massage therapy, when coupled with a treatment plan outlined by a doctor, can be an excellent complement to any senior’s life. Family caregivers and elder care providers can either take the senior to the massage therapist or plan for them to make a house call.
When family caregivers make it a priority to get their aging relatives to a professional massage therapist that specializes in geriatric massage, they will soon notice a difference in their loved one’s health and well-being. Here are a few of the benefits that massage therapy brings to an elderly person’s life.
An aging body doesn’t transport blood as efficiently as it used to, due to weakened muscles, blocked arteries, respiratory issues, and chronic illnesses. Poor circulation can lead to less energy, blood clots, slow wound healing and more. Massage therapy increases circulation, especially in the extremities, boosting the elderly adult’s overall health.
Warms Up Muscles and Joints
Most seniors have arthritis, which can range from uncomfortable to painful. Massage therapy manipulates the joints effectively, so they are not so tight and warms up the muscles, increasing flexibility and reducing pain. Massage therapy also improves balance and flexibility, keeping seniors more in tune with their body.
Effective Pain Management
A majority of elderly adults deal with chronic pain at some level, but massage therapy is often used as part of a comprehensive pain management plan. Massage triggers the brain to release hormones that help block pain receptors in the brain. The feel-good hormones of serotonin and dopamine are natural and effective in helping aging adults feel better.
Reduces Loneliness and Isolation
Touch deprivation is a very real condition with many aging adults. Even though they have family caregivers and elder care providers to assist them, too many seniors don’t get enough physical touch, which is essential to overall health and wellness. Massage therapy satisfies the body’s need for physical contact as well as social interaction.
When it comes to non-medicinal approaches to an elderly loved one’s health, massage therapy tops the list. Family caregivers and elder care providers should always get clearance from the senior’s doctor before starting a massage therapy regimen. However, most seniors really do benefit from massage therapy and most doctors will happily endorse it for their elderly patients.