Massage Therapy Benefits Alzheimer’s Patients

MASSAGE THERAPY BENEFITS ALZHEIMER'S PATIENTS

Alzheimer’s is a debilitating brain disease that causes memory, thinking and behavioral problems.  Amongst its symptoms are “disorientation, mood and behavior changes, deepening confusion about events, unfounded suspicions about family, friends and professional caregivers, more serious memory loss and difficulty speaking, swallowing and walking”.1  In some cases, with these symptoms comes an increase in aggression.  

Dementia is the loss of brain functioning typical in Alzheimer’s patients.  In a study of elderly patients with dementia, researchers from Hamamatsu University’s School of Medicine provided tactile massage therapy treatments to patients 30 times, for 20 minutes each, over a six-week period.  The objective of this study was to observe the changes massage therapy would have (if any) on the physical and mental functioning and symptoms of these patients.  The research concluded that CgA, which measured stress levels, and aggression levels, both decreased significantly.  Therefore, massage therapy can aid in the reduction of stress and aggression in dementia and Alzheimer’s patients.  To learn more about our massage school visit www.NMTI.edu or to schedule an appointment at our student massage clinic visit www.NMTIstudentclinic.com.

1 http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_what_is_alzheimers.asp#symptoms 2 http://www.massagemag.com/News/massage-news.php?id=10147&catid=&title=re...