Abdominal massage was once an accepted treatment for constipation, it was forgotten for a while and now parents and researchers have a renewed interest in this alternative treatment for constipation. After a review of former studies, the National Institutes for Health (NIH) discovered that scientific evidence does exist that massage to the abdominal region does work.
The first studies that researchers reviewed did have problems with the methodology and lacked strict adherence to scientific method. Subsequent studies, however, used randomized controlled trials and the conclusions supported the findings that abdominal massage is an effective treatment of chronic constipation. As recently as February 1. 2013, the NIH published a study supporting this type of massage with abdominal muscle training and breathing exercises, did increase defecation.
Constipation is a common condition affecting people with disabilities and especially those with mobility issues. The common regimen of laxatives and stool softeners has a mixed success rate and many parents are uncomfortable dosing their children at such a young age. Abdominal massage, although it does not replace evacuation medicines, it does appear to increase bowel movements and decrease gastrointestinal discomfort.
Massage therapists spend months learning techniques to ensure they help, not harm the body and massage is not always covered under insurance plans. Engaging with a qualified therapist to teach you some simple techniques to use with your loved one is the safest approach.
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