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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
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.
September, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 09
Healing From the Core: A New Paradigm, Part I
By Dale G. Alexander, LMT, MA, PhD
Since ancient times, we have endeavored to describe the essential elements of how the body and psyche dance together in the healing process. Inherent in my life's purpose is the desire to contribute to this momentum and to ideas that illuminate the many dimensions of healing.Sometimes ideas come together into simple, obvious paradigms that have not been clearly defined. In this spirit, I invite you to consider a new paradigm that reflects my learning over the past 23 years.
Conceive of working with the body from the "inside-out." Imagine a quality of touch that accesses the body's core and assists the discharge of its tensions more effectively. Consider an approach that helps to unravel the body's sophisticated capacity for distributing strain, thus bringing to the surface physiological problems that have been degrading your clients' quality of life for years. Appreciate your sense of satisfaction when clients, whom you have sensed needed additional medical intervention, actually receive this care. Feel confidence in your competence when clients make steady progress in healing from chronic problems. This article serves as an introduction to this "inside-out" paradigm. The short form has four basic tenets:
When a client comes to your office with an acute or chronic muscle spasm, or other problem without evidence of recent injury or illness, the sequence described above has predated its occurrence. Thus, when our attention is focused principally on the extrinsic musculature, we are only working with the tip of the iceberg.
All touch techniques assist the body to "feel" itself, enhancing the feedback loops, which stimulate the body's self-corrective capacities; however, I propose that the models that govern most technique applications are incomplete.
The premise of this new paradigm, which advocates working from the "inside-out" postulates that "healing from the core" involves enhancing the suspension and function of the visceral organs. Their improved efficiency represents the "tipping point" in building momentum toward healing. Without the appropriate absorption of nutrients, oxygen and the timely elimination of wastes, one cannot help but lose ground in the face of traumatic incidents, immunological challenges or the grinding effects of daily stress.
The visceral organs are central to our ability to survive as infants. They are composed of smooth muscle, the first kid on the neocortical block, since the job of a baby is to ingest, digest and excrete during the phenomenal growth of infancy. The functioning of visceral organs is key to an infant's capacity to thrive. Infants have no psychological sense of separation between self and other. They are physically dependent and vulnerable, yet they experience everything around them as an extension of themselves.
Consider how an infant reacts to family tension and conflict. It becomes upset, its body contracts and writhes, it cries and screams. What is happening to the visceral tissues? They are contracting -- it is the smooth muscles that initiate those movements. This does not suggest that the baby's extrinsic musculature has no tone or function; rather, the visceral smooth muscle is predominant.
In my opinion, this is what has been overlooked in our focus on the musculoskeletal system and on structural models that view the human body from the "outside-in," rather than developmentally from the "inside-out." Contracting visceral smooth muscle predisposes the eventual capacity for gross-motor movement.1 It is a simple idea with many implications related to human development.
Click here for more information about Dale G. Alexander, LMT, MA, PhD.
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