Gentle massage can be used to soothe conditions such as muscle
stiffness and soreness, loss of flexibility, arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis, and help with respiratory disorders
such as asthma and emphysema. But, perhaps most important of all, for elderly people who have lost their partners
and live alone, massage provides the sense of nurturing that comes from being gently and respectfully touched.
Elderly people with Alzheimer’s or who have had a stroke and find it hard to communicate verbally benefit greatly
Health practitioners often recommend massage for their elderly
patients because of the good benefits which are helpful in a number of ways as follows:
· For Improving Circulation
Massage therapy can actually help to improve circulation in the elderly. According to Northwestern University,
massage therapy helps to stimulate blood and lymph circulation and this helps to deliver fresh oxygen to the
muscles around the lower leg and feet. In addition, this can help to flush out waste products that might linger in
these areas. Also, improved circulation can also help to improve blood sugar and blood pressure levels. Massage can
also help an elderly person an alternative way to maintain control of medical conditions, such as diabetes, that
can sometimes be hard to manage on their own.
Reduced swelling from excess water retention. Massage gently moves fluid into circulation system where it can be
eliminated helping to reduce swelling of excess water retention.
For Improving skin care
With age, the skin becomes thinner, losing its elasticity. Massage has a two-fold benefit: it increases the
circulation, "feeding" the skin by bringing more nutrients to it in the bloodstream, and the oils used in massage
soften the skin. Massage and essential oils can also help to heal ulcers and to relieve other skin conditions that
may occur with age.
For Improving Relaxation
Massage helps to give residence more restful sleep and reduces muscle tension. This increases comfort and deepens
· For Easing Depression
Depression can plague the elderly as they age. Depression may become so severe that it can
interfere with daily activities and the enjoyment of life. The elderly can experience depression related to
deaths of loved ones, decreased mobility or isolation. Massage therapy offers an alternative way to help
treat this sometime According to the National Library of Medicine, massage can help to improve stress and
tension and this can have direct emotional benefits. Massage therapy can also stir strong emotions for the
recipient of the massage. This release of emotions can help to improve psychological distress and depression.
According to the National Library of Medicine this release of pent up emotion is caused when a hormone called
oxytocin is released from the body during massage.
·For Improving Flexibility
Aging can bring about problems with mobility and flexibility. As a result,
the elderly sometimes have more difficulty performing normal daily tasks. Some elderly even suffer from
medical conditions like arthritis and this can add to the difficulty of performing hobbies that they love
doing or their daily chores. Massage therapy can help an elderly person to keep their joints from becoming
stiff and unmanageable.
Massage for the elderly, very frail or modest clients can benefit just as much from a foot, hand or face massage as
they might from an all-over body massage. It’s important to make sure that the therapist is told about any
medication the elderly client is taking.