Children who bear the daily struggles of fighting cancer can benefit an appreciable amount with touch therapy massage. This can ease both physical symptoms as well as emotional discomforts associated with chemotherapy, radiation and surgeries, just to list a few. Massage is valuable for all types of cancer discomforts and is also one of the most commonly used pain management strategies for pediatric patients newly diagnosed with leukemia. In a study published in the International Journal of Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, researchers found that children with cancer or blood disease who received regular massage, showed significant physical and psychological improvement versus a group of sick children who did not receive massage. Children diagnosed with cancer are often overwhelmed, depressed or can find it difficult to cope. A little relief can mean a lot for these young patients!
Benefits for children with cancer
Increased white blood cells
Decreased pain, anxiety and fear
May help improve or stimulate circulation in those with lymphedema
Increased levels of relaxation
Improved immune function
Improved sleep patterns
Improved gastrointestinal function (regular bowel movements)
When a child is diagnosed with cancer, Everyone is affected!
In some instances, siblings or parents of the ill child can feel anxiety, depression, stress or even jealousy. The reasons vary, but regardless, I am more than happy to set up a massage time for them as well.
There are contraindications that come with massaging children with cancer as in all treatments. Some may keep the child from enjoying a massage at this time, but fortunately some can carry forward with special consideration to massage site and pressure. These will be discussed during consult.
* As discussed in the pediatric massage tab, your child has the right to refuse massage. If this issue arises, other options will be made available at that time.