Chronic disease prevention or care: Few of the several benefits of massage
The benefits of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) (including massage) are readily apparent and have been shown, for
example, through a systematic review to be safe, efficacious vs. placebo, and cost-effective .
Massage is a treatment which has been shown to be efficacious when used on the practitioners themselves .
Regarding chronic care, pain was reduced and mood improved for nursing home residents with cancer . Massage is recommended to
be integrated in physical therapy for elderly; especially nowadays with the rising elderly population requiring prevention or treatment of
arthritic conditions . And among a large proportion of veterans experiencing non-cancerous chronic pain, CAM appears to have a
broad appeal after responses indicated that almost all in the study had a willingness to try CAM; with massage being the most preferred
Massage thus appears to have a benefit for both practitioners (they need care too!) and patients and is promising for chronic and elderly care. Due to its obvious cost-effectiveness (if you want to scratch out any expensive oils and just consider the most important tool: hands); ability to reduce pain and stress; and even the possibility of preventing or treating inflammation, blockages or arthritic manifestation, massage should be an essential component in general health and should be considered for incorporation into all forms physical therapy wherever possible.
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