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How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
April, 2001, Vol. 01, Issue 04
Touch and Rapport
By Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB
There go my people. I must hurry and catch them, for I am their leader
- Mahatma Ghandi.
The Path of Touch Unfolding
Facilitation, like true leadership, is paradoxical in that it often requires us to chase after those supposedly being led.Within such facilitation, there is a deep appreciation for the abilities and resources of the client, and an acknowledgement that the full outgrowth of the interaction will only become apparent as it unfolds. It is an orientation that obliges us to be flexible in our attitudes and approaches.
Depending on our therapeutic orientation, we may approach a client from a sensory-driven perspective of finding and gently releasing areas of unconscious holding and restriction. More formally, we might take the orthopedic perspective of assessing painful lesions stemming from structural and functional dysfunctions, then proceeding to systematically alleviate them. In any approach, having our interventions take hold often requires a change in body perceptions and use from our clients. I am particularly struck by Deane Juhan's (Job's Body) comments about massage opening a window for the client toward a new, less strained way of experiencing their body, and by his repeated emphasis on the importance of bodywork as client re-education:
Beyond what Juhan provides, there are several paths along which we can delve into underlying mechanisms and clinical experience. Pain researcher Ron Melzack continues on from the gate theory of pain (Melzack and Wall) in considering the neurological basis and implications of phantom limb pain. He conjectures that we possess an inherent neurological analog of our physical bodies . This analog system, he theorizes, can independently generate perceptions of pain until it is reorganized by new coherent sensory input, such as that provided by bodywork.
A second perspective is provided by psychologist E. L. Rossi's review of the new field of psychoneuroimmunology. In The Psychobiology of Mind-Body Healing, Rossi discusses research indicating that stress on the nervous system produces chemical messengers that have profound effects on immune system functioning. In providing a supportive emotional environment and nurturing touch, we address the effects these neurochemical systems have on perceptions of pain and quality of embodiment.
Choreographer Eric Franklin (Dynamic Alignment through Imagery) is one of a line of dance movement instructors who have achieved their results working with the interrelations of imagery, body use, and neuromuscular patterning. These dance educators have noted the role our mental imagery plays in organizing the neuromuscular patterns that facilitate the ease or strain of our posture and conscious movements. We have only to think of movement or conflict and our body has responded, beyond the speed of our conscious thoughts. Just imagining a movement or a posture causes the body to activate muscles and to integrate optimal pathways towards that vision. Our positive body images can act to alleviate tension that results in unnecessary limitations and wear as equally as our negative body images can limit our effective use of space and increase the effort of our movements. We begin to understand the wisdom behind Juhan's assertions that bodywork can add new possibilities to a client's world of embodiment.
The Dance of Rapport
Psychiatrist Milton H. Erickson was notable for his abiding faith that, apart from unnecessarily limiting beliefs and lack of experience, clients possess all the resources they need to live full and rewarding lives. Starting from an attitude of accepting and utilizing the client's worldview and abilities, Erickson was a master at providing the needed experience and flexibility that allowed positive changes to evolve naturally for his clients. Neuro-Linguistic Programming originators John Grinder and Richard Bandler similarly stress the importance of pacing and leading. Pacing is a process of acknowledging and matching a client's current experience in a manner to establish rapport. If we attempt to lead without rapport, our efforts will fall short. Likewise, if we limit ourselves just to pacing, we lose the opportunity to effect positive change.
Part of the skill of pacing is simply to be fully present with our clients. To promote this skill, I teach my students a simple yet unexpectedly profound exercise; actively pacing a supine client's breathing with a hand on their anterior torso while staying conscious and present to observe subtle changes in their appearance and position. It is hard to over emphasize the emotional impact of such quiet presence and support in a culture in which it is so rarely encountered. This exercise draws on our skill at pacing and leading our clients in their perception and use of space, effort, and time. These are ways of organizing our embodiment that are used by dance instructors such as Constance Schrader (A Sense of Dance). I find they provide useful frameworks for understanding a client's body image and use. Each can be further refined, such as dividing time into tempo, beat and rhythm.
When we work on people, we act to increase the ease and comfort with which they inhabit their body. Amid the gentle stretching of fascia and facilitation of muscles, we send countless sensory signals throughout their nervous system. We focus intently on them, pacing, nurturing and supporting their emotional needs. In so doing, we provide them with a new sense of themselves as embodied human beings.
Click here for previous articles by Keith Eric Grant, PhD, NCTMB.
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