resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
June, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 06
Age-Related Changes and Conditions, Part 1
By Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR
Older adults make up a growing clientele for massage therapists. According to the 2006 AMTA consumer survey, the use of massage among older adults has tripled in the past 10 years. Serving clients who are over age 65 requires that you have a basic understanding of age-related changes and the conditions many older adults are living with.While no two older adults are exactly alike, there are more or less typical changes that occur in physical and mental condition and function as we age.1,2
Vision: Changes in eyesight often are one of the first noticeable signs of aging. The eye lens stiffens, making focusing on close objects harder and seeing in dim light more difficult. The eyes produce less fluid, making the eyes feel dry. Depth perception can be impaired as the number of nerve cells decrease.
Hearing: Many people experience a decreased ability to hear high-pitched sounds, including consonants, making it difficult to understand words or certain tones in music.
Taste: The sense of taste is duller because the taste buds decrease in number and are less sensitive.
The skin tends to become thinner as the fat layer under the skin thins. The body produces less collagen and elastin (the fibrous tissue that makes skin strong and flexible) resulting in skin that tears more easily. Circulation in the deeper layers of the skin decreases, making the skin slower to heal when injured. There are fewer nerve endings in the skin, leading to diminished sensitivity to pain, temperature and pressure. Blood vessels become more fragile and the skin is more easily bruised. The skin also might be more vulnerable to chemical irritation.
Changes Affecting Physical Activity
Bones and Joints: Bone density tends to decrease somewhat in both men and women; however bone loss increases in some women after menopause due to lower estrogen levels. Less synovial fluid in the joint capsule is produced, leading to stiffness and decreased joint mobility, especially in weight-bearing joints such as the hips, knees and spine. The tendons and ligaments around the joints become weaker and stiff. The joint cartilage might erode.
Muscles: Muscle mass and strength decrease due in part to changes in hormones that regulate muscle development. The degree and impact of muscle loss is affected by the activity level of the individual. Those who do some form of weight-bearing exercise lose less muscle mass.
Balance: Unsteadiness might be a problem when structures in the inner ear that help regulate balance deteriorate. Some people experience dizziness upon standing because the heart pumps less blood to the head, and blood pressure is less able to respond to a change in position.
Changes in Mental Function
The number of brain nerve cells tends to decrease; however, the brain can compensate for this loss by establishing new pathways and connections. Levels of neurotransmitters change and blood flow to the brain decreases. There might be mild decline in some mental abilities such as short-term memory, recalling words, the ability to learn new material or performance under pressure. However, these normal changes do not greatly impact the person's daily functioning.
The motility of bowel contents slows, increasing the risk of constipation. Liver cells tend to decrease in number, decreasing blood flow through the liver, and liver enzymes work less efficiently. The liver then might eliminate toxins less effectively.
The kidneys become smaller and they remove wastes from the blood less efficiently. The bladder holds less urine, causing the need for more frequent urination. For some, this might interrupt restful sleep. The urinary sphincter may be weaker and less able to prevent urine leakage.
Immune System Changes
Immune cells tend to function more slowly, contributing to greater susceptibility to infectious disease such as pneumonia or influenza.
Massage therapists have much to offer older adults living with these changes. Aging, like massage, is a holistic event, not just a physical one. Physical changes are accompanied by psychological, social and spiritual alterations and adjustments as the gradual process of aging unfolds over time. For the older adult receiving massage, the benefits include decreased physical discomfort, greater ease of movement, an improved immune system, emotional support, spiritual acknowledgement and the empowerment of self care.
In Part 2 of this article, common conditions and disease in older adults will be explored, along with considerations for assessing the needs of older clients.
Click here for more information about Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR.
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