Getting older is rarely fun, especially when doing so means experiencing more health and mobility issues. For many, the final decades of life may see a decline in health and be painful and uncomfortable, even with appropriate medical care. If someone you love is struggling with the effects of aging, massage therapy may be a way for them to see real improvement in their quality of life.
Aging often equals a reduction in healthy circulation, leaving some seniors to deal with reduced blood flow to their feet, hands, arms, and legs. Regular sessions of massage therapy can help to restore circulation to these areas of the body. This can result in a more active lifestyle and less issues with infections, edema, and skin conditions that are commonly related to poor circulation.
Offering relief from stress
Younger generations are not the only ones who deal with some type of stress in their lives. In fact, seniors also battle the effects of stress complicated by pain, which often manifests as knotted muscles and joint, head, and body aches. Massage therapy sessions performed by a skilled massage therapist can help seniors reduce their stress levels, relieve pain, and feel more relaxed.
Improving muscle tone for better strength and balance
Declining mobility is one of the side effects of aging that seniors are very concerned about. This often happens, in part, because of other health issues that prevent the muscles required for balance and movement from receiving enough use to keep them strong, toned, and supple. This lack of use can lead to painfully knotted or contracted muscles, which can make it even more difficult for seniors to be able to move about safely. Stimulating these muscles regularly through massage therapy will help to increase blood flow to these tissues, making them stronger and more capable of moving freely and reliably.
Helping with recovery from stroke and serious illness or injury
Stroke is a major health problem that affects thousands of seniors each year and often results in some level of paralysis to the body. New treatments for stroke favor helping the patient to move or be as active as possible, instead of remaining in bed. This can be extremely difficult for stroke victims who are left unable to move one or more of their extremities.
In addition to physical therapy, massage therapy can help to bolster circulation to the damaged areas, which will help to improve blood flow and allow faster healing. An additional benefit is that massage therapy can be continued long after formal physical therapy sessions have stopped.
Older patients who develop cancer, face joint replacement surgery, or are recovering from other major health issues can also benefit from massage therapy. During a massage session performed by a licensed, highly skilled massage therapist, endorphins are released that help to alleviate pain, reduce stress, and help the patient heal faster and more successfully.
Improving sleep quality
Insomnia is another common health issue experienced by seniors as they ages. The lack of high-quality sleep is particularly troublesome for seniors who are struggling with dementia. In some instances, the lack of sleep is believed to worsen dementia symptoms. Seniors who are struggling with insomnia or dementia and failing to get the amount of quality sleep they need may see very real results from a frequent, regular schedule of massage therapy.
Building up the immune system
The simple act of having regular massage therapy sessions may even be instrumental in helping seniors restore or improve their immune systems. Massage therapy is known to stimulate muscles and other tissues, helping them to release toxins and support the functions of the body's immune system.
Before embarking on a regimen of massage therapy, seniors should always discuss their intentions with their medical professional. Chiropractors are another excellent source of information about massage therapy, and many now offer the services of a licensed massage therapist at their office, along with chiropractic care. To learn more about massage therapy, contact a chiropractic office like Progressive Chiropractic.