Some of the most rewarding work for massage therapists and bodyworkers is interacting with people afflicted with dementia. What makes it so rewarding is how beneficial it is to the clients.
In their search for the fountain of youth, the age-crazed have dwindled fortunes and even tried bizarre “treatments,” all in the name of perpetuity. The irony is that the best age-defying elixir we have is as accessible as our kitchen faucet.
More than 60 percent of Americans over age 50 are using complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), according to a recent study conducted at Ohio State University. This appears to be a larger percentage than within the general population.
When it comes to the abundance of health information on the Internet and the number of elderly readily accessing this information, a “digital divide” exists, according to a study by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Only 30 percent of adults 65 and older have ever gone online, and, of those, only 21 percent has specifically searched for advice on health-related topics.
Loneliness Can Find Us All
A Crabbèd Old Woman
The body it crumbles. Grace and vigor depart.
There now is a stone where I once had a heart.
But inside this old carcass, a young girl still dwells,
And now and again my battered heart swells.
I remember the pain, and I remember the joys,
And I’m living and loving all over again.
And I think of the years, all too few, gone too fast,
And accept the stark fact that nothing will last.
So open your eyes, nurse, open and see
Not a crabbèd old woman,
Look closer: See me.
The body movements of tai chi, so graceful and fluid, have long been practiced by both young and old in Eastern cultures. This ancient conditioning exercise, also referred to as tai chi chuan (T’ai Chi Ch’uan or TCC), is rooted in martial arts folk tradition, with “chuan” meaning “boxing,” sometimes referred to as shadow boxing. An exercise in mind and consciousness, the movements are representative of the circular, encompassing state of the universe, bringing “serenity in action and action in serenity.1