Osteopathy As We Age
We’re all getting older, being elderly is what happens to other people, after all we all feel pretty much the same on the inside. Having said which, despite all the valiant efforts that we may make to defeat the aging process -there are inevitable consequences: We simply cannot perform at the same level as when we were in our prime;
- Things take a little longer
- We feel the effects afterwards, just because we can manage to do something doesn’t mean we won’t pay for it afterwards!
- There is often an inertia or increased fatigue.
How Can Osteopathy help
Joint Pain/ Arthritis
Joint stiffness and aching are a part of the aging process, we can’t change the effects of time on worn joints, but we can often help the body to function better with the wear that it has by ensuring that the joint is moving well through it’s whole range of movement and removing patterns of muscle tension caused by the habits of life. The more function that you retain the easier you will find it to maintain a healthy exercise regimen, nothing is as discouraging as discomfort and pain. Osteopaths treat the elderly with the appropriate techniques for the individual:
- Soft tissue manipulation
- gentle articulations
- rhythmic joint gaping and pumping techniques
- subtle functional releases
It is important that the practitioner as a long enough session to apply these gentle techniques. As we age the body requires a different kind of input as we no longer heal like a twenty-something.
Keeping you mobile and pain free makes it easier for you to do your part…
Regular exercise/ Activity
Keeping physically active is probably the single most important thing we can do to maintain a good standard of life and reduce the effects of chronic illness. There is a growing body of evidence that exercise help maintain blood flow and reduces the chances of dementia. Regular exercise can help decrease the effects of depression it also helps to stimulate the digestive and eliminative systems.
If exercise was a drug then it would cost a fortune – the only cost to you is the effort.
If you feel defensive about the idea of exercising, you feel that you are ‘not an exercise person’then you really should consider why it is you have those issues and what you can do about them.
Everyone is different, some people who are highly competitive may well be overusing this bodies by engaging in high impact sports that damage cartilage unnecessarily. We only have a certain amount of joint cartilage, it is slow to repair and healing rates decrease as we age. This means that people that can maintain a flexible mental approach and change their sporting activity are likely to fair better than those that can’t.
Exercises to consider:
- Specific classes aimed at the elderly provided by your local authority- often at reduced rates
- Swimming or pool based exercise classes
- Tai Chi
Why not look at these relevant information sheets?
Exercise for the Elderly