Geriatric Massage To Improve Circulation In The Elderly

Designed to meet the specific needs of the older people, geriatric massage involves the use of a therapist’s hands to manipulate the soft tissues of the body to improve blood circulation, amplify the range of motion and relieve pain.

Passive or active movement of the joints can also form part of geriatric massage.

Often older people suffer from age-related issues like arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes and heart disease. These problems cause inadequate physical activity and reduced blood circulation.

The geriatric massage will help to maintain and improve the overall health of the patient and also to regain the ability to perform physical tasks that have been reduced or lost in the ageing process.

Benefits of geriatric massage:

  • The therapy offers improved blood circulation which helps to prevent the complications of diabetes like leg ulcers and gangrene.
  • The massage lessens the intensity of severe headaches and reduces pain in general.
  • Offers mental and physical relaxation.
  • There is great improvement in lymphatic flow that increases the emission of toxins from your body.
  • Duration and quality of sleep improves.
  • Offers improvement in quality of life and higher self esteem.
  • Offers relief from anxiety, depression, loneliness and stress.
  • Speeds up healing ability from illnesses and injuries.
  • Restores lost mobility from Parkinson’s disease or arthritis.
  • Increases vitality and enhances memory.
  • Improves condition of the skin.
  • Geriatric massage therapy helps reduce high blood pressure and aids stroke patients and people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, sleep disorders, bursitis, and even tendonitis.

Precautions to consider before undergoing geriatric massage:

This type of massage therapy is not suitable for everyone and it should not be used as a substitute for medical treatments or exercise programs. In addition to these conditions, the therapy should not be practiced on older people suffering with the following conditions:

  • Varicose veins;
  • Severe acute pain;
  • Drug healing with blood thinners;
  • Some forms of cancers;
  • Certain heart conditions;
  • Open or unhealed bed sores;
  • Recent surgeries;
  • History of blood clots.

This gentle form of massage therapy rarely leads to adverse effects because the therapist uses gentle hand movements which soothe and comfort the body.

Passive movements and gentle stretching of the legs, feet, and shoulders offers you improved flexibility and joint mobility. Massaging your feet and hands gently helps to alleviate stiffness and relieve pain.

Occasionally stronger movements like friction and pressure strokes are used to massage areas like the shoulders in order to offer improved flexibility.


Posted in: Massage Therapy

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  1. Glenda Magloire says:

    Thank you so much for your article on Geriatric Massage. I live in the Netherlands and I have been doing some elderly care during the last few days. In my practice I do Ayurveda Wellness massages and I am working towards becoming an Ayur Wellness Therapist.
    The nursing homes or other elderly facilities do not provide massages so I want to present enough information about the benefits from such a massage and your article helps me very much in formulating this information.

    I would appreciate any additional info you may have like the frequencies e.g how many times a week and for how long should I massage. I would also like to know the different oils that I should use. This information will be most helpful for my report.