Massage comes with so many benefits, like relaxed muscles and better sleep. For this reason, getting massages is a great idea for older adults who may be beginning to feel stiffer and less energetic than they once felt. Here are a few tips you should follow for a better, more effective and enjoyable massages as an older adult.
1. Look for Swedish or trigger point massage.
Pay attention to the type of massage being offered by the practitioner. Some massage therapists specialize in deep tissue or sports massage. While these modalities certainly have their place, they tend to be a little aggressive for older bodies and are better-suited for athletes. Swedish massage is a little lighter and more relaxing, and trigger point massage is another lower-key option that tends to work well for seniors. The therapist will focus on specific areas that are affected by pain and have a limited range of motion. Remember, too, that you can always tell your massage therapist to use less pressure if you feel the massage is getting too intense.
2. Tell the massage therapist about any ongoing health problems.
If you have any ongoing medical conditions, like arthritis, make sure you tell your massage therapist about them. This way, they can target the massage to help with these ailments. For example, if you have arthritis in your hips, they can spend more time focusing on that area. This is important for patients of any age, but especially for seniors who tend to have more chronic health conditions.
3. Keep it short.
Most massage therapists will let you choose how long you want the massage to last. When you're an older adult, you are better off going for shorter massages more often. For instance, you could get a 45-minute massage every other week instead of a 90-minute massage once a month. Older adults don't tend to have as much muscle mass as younger adults, so it does not take as long to get a good massage. Plus, keeping things a bit shorter prevents you from getting too uncomfortable laying in one position on the table.
4. Consider a traveling massage therapist.
If you have trouble leaving your house, consider looking for a massage therapist who travels and will come to your home. This is becoming more and more popular, and it saves you the hassle of having to drive to an appointment or ask a friend to drive you.
To learn more about the benefits of massage therapy, contact a massage therapist near you.