Another example is working with clients with visual or hearing impairments. How will you communicate with your client if it is difficult for them to see or hear you? For clients who are hearing impaired, massage therapists should always know to establish a set of mutually agreed upon hand signals, or have a piece of paper and pen prepared to write down questions or statements. Just because special needs clients may not be able to hear you is no reason to not attempt to communicate things during the massage therapy session like “are you too hot or too cold?” “Is the pressure ok?” “Are you ready to roll over?” As with hearing impairments, massage therapists should also be prepared to modify their method of communication with special needs clients who have visual impairments. Before you begin the massage, describe the room, assist the client to the table, and explain where everything is. Do not move anything once you have described the layout, as this can be disorienting to your client. During a massage therapy session, clearly describe everything you are about to do, and give the client a moment to give his or her consent.
One more example is working with special needs clients who have medical conditions that may be ambiguous to the massage therapist. In school, massage therapists are educated about working with clients with autoimmune disorders, and communicative diseases. But what about clients with full-back skin grafts? What about a client who discloses that she occasionally has seizures? What about working with a terminally ill client? These special needs clients are examples of conditions that massage therapists will likely encounter during their practice, and each therapist should anticipate these concerns and prepare accordingly to provide quality massage therapy.
Preparing Your Practice for Special Needs Clients
For a standard massage therapy session, many https://xn--2i4b25gxmq39b.net/%ec%84%9c%ec%9a%b8-op-%ec%97%ac%ea%b8%b4%ec%96%b4%eb%95%8c/ massage therapists have a room set up with at least a table, a bolster, extra sheets, candles, and a headrest. But fewer massage therapists have a closet full of bolsters of various shapes (triangular, thin, thick, circular, flat), a massage chair to accommodate clients who cannot lie supine or prone, lights that can dim or brighten depending on a client’s visual needs, or an erasable board to communicate with clients with hearing impairments.
Physically preparing accessories and the layout of your room for a massage therapy session can increase the positive experience had by special needs clients exponentially. Additionally, massage therapists should consider how clients will even get to your massage room. Are the hallways in your practice large enough to accommodate clients of all sizes, and clients in wheelchairs? Is your practice ADA compliant with stairs and a ramp to the front door and a method of moving from one floor to another such as an elevator?