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The Short Leg Dilemma
When evaluating a new patient, it is common to note a relative shortening of one leg to the other. Some patients will even tell you they have one, and then pull out the store-bought heel lift they read about online.
Practice Policy (Gone Bad): The Sign
Every once in a while, you see something and think to yourself, That's a really bad idea. Case in point: I went to see my medical doctor the other day. Just after being "roomed," as they say, the nurse checked my vital signs. Then she left.
An Acupuncturist's View of Medicinal Marijuana
The use of cannabis for medical purposes is very controversial. Use as a panacea by physicians uninitiated to the proper application of herbal medicine, as well as an excuse for recreational use have greatly confused the issue.
More Chiropractors Required
An intriguing study published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine examines how "chiropractic care affects use of primary care physician (PCP) services."
The New Age of Communication
In the age of technology, everyone, including the patient, is seeking faster, easier ways to communicate. With a wealth of social media, blogs, websites and videos, we are constantly barraged with information – to the point of overload.
The Food Conversation: Nutrition and Your Practice
It's morning and your first patient rolls in with a triple espresso steaming in one hand and a frazzled, desperate look in her eye. "You gotta help me, doc, I am constipated unless I drink one of these, and I am exhausted and anxious all the time."
Patient-Centered Care vs. Payer Restrictions: Your Ethical Obligation
Do you have an ethical obligation to evaluate your patients, make a diagnosis and provide evidence-based, patient-centered health care, irrelevant to the payer restrictions?
Do Some Good and Grow Your Business with Cause Marketing
Cause marketing is truly one of the best ways that you can promote your services as a acupuncture professional. Cause marketing refers to a type of marketing where a business partners with a non-profit organization to help bring awareness to a charitable cause.
Dorsiflexion Dysfunction: Evaluation & Manipulation Techniques
Almost every condition from the foot to the hip can be attributed to the inability to dorsiflex the ankle mortice and other joints that participate in dorsiflexion. Let's start by understanding normal versus abnormal dorsiflexion.
Getting a YES: An Effective Strategy for Overcoming Patient Objections
Patients make more excuses for declining care from an acupuncturist than perhaps any other type of doctor. Various reasons hold them back from making a commitment to care.
Change Lives by Supporting Chiropractic Research: Are You In?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fund-raising campaign to support chiropractic research.
Healing Trauma: Cultivating Resilience and Presence Through Mindfulness, Part 2
In the last issue of Acupuncture Today, the first part of this article introduced the topic of trauma and resilience, and their relationship to the autonomic nervous system response and the concept of the spirit being grounded in the body, and suggested the importance of mindfulness as a tool for healing.
Fertility and Poly-Unsaturated Fatty Acids
Starting or expanding one's family is a major milestone. It's something that more and more people seek out health care advice and support for.
News in Brief
Call for Abstracts Announced - Parker Las Vegas 2016; Logan Adds Doctorate Degree; New Role for Dr. James Edwards.
Help: A Need at Every Level
One of the great gifts of training in acupuncture is the ability to take good care of oneself. I recently had a bout of frozen shoulder — an inflammatory syndrome which can be debilitatingly painful and take years to resolve.
Modernization of Chinese Medicine
Language – written, spoken, signed, or otherwise is learned as a means to express our individualized perceptions about the world around us. Language is designed to communicate our personal experiences.
Harvard Health References Flawed AHA Position Paper
In its special health report, "Stroke: Diagnosing, Treating, and Recovering From a 'Brain Attack,'" Harvard Health Publications includes information from the American Heart Association's 2014 position statement on cervical manipulation and cervical dissection – a statement the American Chiropractic Association emphasized in a letter to Harvard Health mixes "scientific facts with half-truths."
Practicing with Authenticity
To extrapolate from the above quote, patients love healthcare providers they can trust. One way to earn the trust of your patients is by practicing with authenticity. What does that mean, exactly?
Fish Oil: A Key Component of Positive Clinical Outcomes
Patients seem to be presenting with more complex problems, and many are responding to care more slowly or have completely unexpected results. Why?
A Chiropractor's Guide to Yoga
"Doctor, can I continue to do yoga while undergoing your care?" "Is it OK for me to go back to yoga while I'm getting my back treated?" "It is safe to start my yoga classes again after my neck pain improves?"
Oriental Medicine on the World Stage
"Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." This simple, yet powerful statement was lived out time and time again by so many of the athletes from around the world during the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.
What's Chiropractic Research Worth to You?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fundraising campaign to support chiropractic research.
Improving Communication Between AOM and Biomedical Providers
How comfortable do you feel talking to Western medical providers? If you are like me, you may not feel as comfortable as you would like. Some of my interactions with MD's haven't been the fruitful steps toward integrative medicine for which I had hoped.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 1
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
Nuts Reduce Risk of Heart Disease, Cancer and Other Health Problems
Several recent studies suggest regular consumption of nuts may provide a significant degree of protection against certain types of cancer, heart disease, possibly type 2 diabetes and some neurodegenerative diseases.
The Zen Art of "One Point"
We were always told in our Zen Shiatsu training (by Japanese and Japanese American instructors) that our ultimate aim was to to find that "One Point." To be so focused we could touch just one point to transform Qi throughout a client's body.
October, 2004, Vol. 04, Issue 10
The Significance Detector
By John Upledger, DO, OMM
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) relies on the therapist's ability to palpate subtle body sensations, particularly the rhythm of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) as it pulses through the craniosacral system at about six to 12 cycles per minute.That rhythm is a key indicator practitioners use to locate and release restrictions in the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord.
Another important way therapists use this rhythm is to gauge the significance of different types of internal physiological events. When a client's body is involved in a significant process, it has long been observed that the craniosacral rhythm will come to a sudden stop. We call this abrupt halt of the craniosacral rhythm the, "significance detector."
Unlike a "still point," in which the CSF seems to gently and naturally come to a rest, with the significance detector it feels as if the fluid has run into a solid obstruction. This sensation generally indicates that the client's body is going through some type of significant underlying event. It could be one of self-correction, practitioner-assisted correction, self-discovery or even practitioner- assisted discovery.
Whatever the case may be, as a CST practitioner, you can use the significance detector to determine when a client's physiological reactions are crucial to the therapeutic process and not merely resistance or a superficial distraction arising from the client's defense mechanism.
I take the significance detector to mean that something good is happening in the client's body, and whatever it is has either just arrived in the patient's conscious awareness or is just outside the boundary and about to enter. The instant I feel the craniosacral rhythm stop, I might ask the client, "What is in your mind right now?" I tell the individual not to worry about how silly it may seem, but ask them to tell me what was in their mind the instant I asked the question.
The client usually has some difficulty answering. It may feel like the thought was more like a dream, gone from awareness in a fraction of a second. It's a little like playing musical chairs. The music stops, and you awkwardly scramble for a chair. With practice, however, you get better. Soon, when the music stops, you know precisely where you are in relation to the chair. The same is true with clients and the significance detector. Initially, the client may not be able to tell you what is going on at the precise instant you ask, but with practice he or she can improve.
Often, when the craniosacral rhythm comes to an abrupt stop, it signifies that the client is in the same body position in which a physical trauma originally occurred. Again, it is common at this point for the client to begin receiving internal memories, visualizations, and even sounds.
When these therapeutic images occur, we offer them the chance to transmit their meanings by gently initiating dialogue with them. We do not use a demanding, questioning form of dialogue, but rather a friendly, conversational approach that allows the client's inner wisdom to lead the way. The stops and starts in craniosacral rhythmical activity then allow the practitioner to explore yes-and-no health-related questions in an effort to get to the root of the physiological problem.
Over the decades that I have used this system of exploration and verification, it has proven to be extremely reliable. It is also used and trusted by most practitioners of CST at the intermediate level and above. Clearly, the significance detector enables each client who receives CST to be a teacher to the therapist. Thus, the therapist experiences new adventures every day.
Click here for previous articles by John Upledger, DO, OMM.
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