Massage and Medication09 Jul
2019 Tagged as
Posted by Evolve College News
As a massage therapist, you may encounter clients who have ticked ‘yes’ to currently taking some form of medication. The question then becomes, what medications are okay to massage with and what are contraindicated?
Unfortunately, the answer is not as simple as a list of do’s and don’ts. There are many different medications to treat many different problems.
We have therefore put together the simple guide below.
Step 1. Ask yourself the following questions - Have you heard of the medication before? do you know what it does? If not, research. As a healthcare practitioner, you will need to have an understanding of what effects the medication is having on the body and why the client is using it.
Step 2. Look for current information/research in relation to the medication. Are there any guidelines on whether massage is okay or not in relation to the medication the client is using? Some may have warnings as others may specifically say it cannot be performed. If there is no information regarding massage and the medication, proceed to Step 3.
Step 3. Seek approval from the client's GP. This is best done through the client, but you will need to get a written letter for permission. The doctor knows why the client is using the prescribed medication and with their medical knowledge will be able to assess whether massage is appropriate and safe or not.
For general over the counter painkillers, such as Ibuprofen or Paracetamol, massage is permissible but as a massage therapist, you need to be aware that the client’s pain receptors are suppressed and therefore they may not know what is hurting them or not. In these cases, proceed with caution and avoid hard pressure.
To help we have compiled some useful websites that contain detailed information on massage and medication contraindications. Keep these on hand as they will become useful in the future!