Aging Gracefully – Massage for the Elderly
Health & Beauty
October 20, 2006

Aging Gracefully – Massage for the Elderly

Many elderly people live full and active lives, and aromatherapy massage provides a valuable contribution to the maintenance of their physical and emotional health. The contact of touch through the medium of massage is especially important for alleviating feelings of isolation, which may result from loneliness or bereavement.

Whole body massage is beneficial to older people, but if they are uncomfortable about undressing, then massage on the hands, feet and face is equally helpful. Still, hands-on holds, to induce feelings of calm and peace, can be applied to the body while the person is fully clothed. {{more}}

A condition commonly affecting the elderly is the onset of osteoarthritis, a degeneration disease of the joints caused by wear and tear. One or several joints of the body may be affected. Gentle massage with the recommended essential oils brings great relief. However, it is not advisable to massage over the joints if they are inflamed, swollen or disintegrated. In these circumstances, still holds will allow the warmth of your hands to subtly comfort the affected area.



Using essential oils for the elderly presents no particular difficulties, yet it is advisable to bear in mind two general points. First, as we age our metabolism slows down, so that any chemical introduced into the body will remain there slightly longer. Second, because of this slower metabolic rate and a less physically active life, the whole system can become more toxic. This is particularly true for those people who must necessarily live a more sedentary life, or are in residential homes or hospitals.

With these points in mind, it is best to avoid the highly stimulating oils and make use of the gentle essential oils that have similar uses. A more diluted blend of the essential oil should perhaps also be considered. Oils that are particularly appropriate are frankincense, geranium, ginger, grapefruit, jasmine, juniper, lavender, marjoram, nutmeg, neroli, rosemary and sandalwood.

For arthritis, try benzoin, black pepper, chamomile, cedar wood, eucalyptus, ginger, juniper, lemon, marjoram and nutmeg;

For aches and pains, try ginger;

For grief and loneliness, choose from marjoram, rose and nutmeg;

For constipation, try fennel, ginger, marjoram or black pepper;

For mature skin, try frankincense;

Contributed by Oasis Spa & Wellness Centre

Mind ~ Body ~ Release ~ Peace

Tel: 456-2555/493-0793