It’s Been Ages Since I Last Visited My Massage Therapist!
The last time I had a proper massage was back in August of 2020 when COVID cases weren’t all that bad. From that point on, however, things quickly went downhill and with the new restrictions and lock-downs, getting an in-person massage slowly became impossible.
I do hope all of you are staying safe and doing your part to ensure yourself and everyone around you remains well. Don’t fret too much about massage and other restrictions, these things will all slowly start coming back in due time.
But My Last Massage Got Me Thinking…
Should massage therapists be wearing gloves once restrictions start to ease up during the COVID-19 pandemic? By wearing gloves, there is definitely an added layer of protection in terms of transmission, no doubt about this. But…..
When I went to get my massage in late 2020, the therapist I was seeing was wearing a face mask. However, gloves were not part of the attire. To be quite honest, I didn’t see it as a big deal, because I too was required to wear a mask.
However, that’s just my opinion and I know that some folk will feel differently. Some may feel more safer with gloves, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with this!
If Not Gloves, Then What Should Massage Therapists Do To Protect Their Clients?
Should wearing gloves be enforced when it comes to massage? I don’t think so. If all the massage therapists start wearing gloves, the joy of getting a massage will quickly disappear.
It’s not just about a therapist not being able to perform their best strokes, it’s also about the human touch. Human touch is much more than just the physical, but there’s also psychological aspects to it. All of these important benefits would disappear if gloves were deemed to be required.
I think more important than wearing gloves is for massage establishments to ensure their clients feel safe and at ease. There’s a few measures both establishments and therapists alike can take to ensure this. For example, ensuring the sheets and bedding are all clean, and reiterating the same to the patient.
If a patient can do away with a face mask, that might make the massage more comfortable and therefore more enjoyable. However, this is easier said than done. I think in order for this to happen, COVID cases will have to be really low. Of course, I feel like we are very far away from reaching this!
Latex Gloves & Allergies: Something To Think About!
One point that definitely warrants further discussion is allergies surrounding latex. In case you didn’t know, some of the disposable gloves are made of latex. If these gloves are used on someone who is allergic to latex, the consequences could be dire.
Basically it varies from itchy skin to something as serious as anaphylaxis. If gloves are made mandatory, then the health agencies will definitely need to consider alternatives to latex. It’s not only a patient who could be allergic, but also the person delivering the massage. Either way, the consequences are the same.
While gloves do provide an added barrier against transmission of viruses, the ability to break up fascia and perform deep tissue work is impacted. Essentially, a large element of human touch is also lost.
For example, wearing face masks, ensuring frequent cleaning of bedding and pretty much all surfaces, frequent cleaning of the floors etc.
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