Ruth is 86 and has Arthritis, otherwise she is healthy for her age, her mind is active, she has friends and lots of interests that keep her as busy as she wants to be, at least on her good days.
On her bad days the pain is not just overwhelming, it is stressful and makes her grumpy, and keeps her inside so she feels like a trapped rat.
Ruth feels some pressure too from her family, she knows that they worry about her and that comes out of love, but the idea of moving away from the home she loves, and the neighborhood she has lived in for 60 years is really distressing.
She has decided she is not moving as long as she can help it; and so when she talks to her kids, she doesn’t want to tell them about her daily struggles, that some days cooking is almost impossible because her hands have no strength in them at all.
Not being able to talk to her kids, especially her daughter about daily struggles makes her feel alone with her problem and lonely, and when she does talk about it she thinks all she ever does is complain, and she is impatient with herself for this.
Her kids aren’t dumb and they know she is struggling, but she is so flipping touchy about it all, it is impossible to bring it up, and because it is hard to talk about it is hard to find solutions.
Her daughter in law, looking for something to give for Mother’s day stumbled on Health Span – mobile massage therapy that would come right to her home, and booked her an appointment.
Massage Therapy for Arthritis Pain and stiffness
The arthritis foundation recommends massage as studies have shown that hand massage not only decreases pain, but it also increases grip strength, and agility. And for arthritis in the knees it improves not just stiffness, range of motion and the ability to walk, but it both decreases pain, and because it improves range of motion and stiffness it also can help prevent falls.
Improves mood and anxiety
Perhaps the most important improvement that happened when Ruth decided to get weekly massage appointments, is her mood began to improve. Once a week she had someone come to her home, and listen to her vent about her pains and aches for a few minutes before she lay down on the table, and was the complete focus of nuturing, caring attention and touch. She told her daughter it was the best she felt all week.
Almost every study that has ever been done on Massage shows improvements in moods and a decreased level of all the yucky hormones that indicate stress and anxiety. And these benefits can last for several days, and are cumulative, so every week when Ruth gets her massage the benefits add up.
Is it a miracle- of course not, there are still bad days, and aging is aging. As time goes on symptoms will change and health will get worse, but Ruth knows that the studies are right, and Massage does make coping day to day easier, she is still grumpy but much less miserable, and feels way, way less lonely.