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Thursday, July 4, 2013

Mobile and Chair Massage for the Elderly and Infirm

Perhaps you have never considered providing mobile massage for your elderly patients or those you give care to. It is actually a very worthwhile consideration for many reasons.

(Photo from YODCOX! on flickr)

First of all, elderly patients, especially those in assisted living and nursing home facilities, tend to be very lonely. They may go for many days or weeks without being touched in a meaningful way, either by loved ones or by the nursing staff. At most nursing homes or assisted living facilities, nurses provide the care necessary for their elderly patients, but that more often than not does not include touch of any kind.

Touch can include hugging the person, holding them around the shoulders, and other gentle types of touch. Consequently, the loneliness that many of the elderly already feel can be intensified by the fact that they are not ever touched. Mobile therapeutic massage can provide that kind of meaningful and therapeutic touch that we as humans all crave.

(Photo from quinn.anya on flickr)

As an example of the need for touch, there is a now famous study using rhesus monkeys who never received touch from anyone, compared to a control group that was given normal touch and care by their mothers or handlers. The monkeys who were not touched exhibited aggressiveness, anger, rage, and other abnormal social behaviors. This study, as well as others that have been done in recent years, have shown that touch is essential to mental and physical health in humans.

Second, many elderly patients experience pain of varying types and intensities. Many of them have tense shoulders, arms, and hands, which can lead to thoracic outlet syndrome and other conditions. They may have tension and pain in their lower backs, which is one of the most common types of pain that people experience. Mobile massage can help with both of these conditions, as well as many others. Many elderly patients suffer from pain and numbness in their extremities, which when left untreated, can become debilitating.

Third, and perhaps the most important, many elderly patients are homebound. That means they cannot travel to the spa or to a chiropractors office to get a massage. These people, perhaps more than any other population, would benefit a great deal from having mobile massage at their nursing home or assisted living facility.

There are many other benefits from massage therapy aside from pain relief, many of which can be found on our massage benefits page, by clicking here. If you are interested in scheduling a mobile massage session, you may visit our website by clicking here.

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