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Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
January, 2005, Vol. 05, Issue 01
Medical Massage and More, Part II
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
In November, I shared my definition of medical massage, why I like the term "medical massage," and the importance of maintaining our status as first door providers (www.massagetoday.com/archives/2004/11/11.html).This generated some interesting responses. I want to share two of them. A physical therapist turned massage therapist wrote:
I find it amusing that as other health care professional like chiropractors, dentists, physical therapists, and even some MDs are fighting to get out of the insurance/government-controlled system and get back to cash practices, the massage profession is fighting to get in. Hoping for status, I guess, or recognition by the "gods of allopathy," or maybe ego gratification. I hope not just lust for money. There is no higher status than a first-door provider. Why not try learning our stuff - and maybe professionalism? A massage therapist, quite concerned about the egotism in medical massage, wrote:
I am one medical massage advocate that does not look down on relaxation therapists as a class and hope we never fit the Western medical model. It is just as much an art and skill to provide a high quality relaxation massage on the entire body, as it is to provide a high quality medical massage on the rotator cuff. The key words being "high quality." It is the individual's choice which area they want to specialize in. I do make a clear distinction between the two. If you look at them objectively, they share the same foundational techniques (strokes); however, they have very different intents.
Relaxation massage should intend to elicit the general parasympathetic response. It should soothe, nurture, promote and maintain wellness. If we had a health care system (we do not, we have a sickness care system), relaxation massage would be one of the premier modalities of wellness care. Relaxation massage therapists should be respected and well-paid primary providers of wellness health care; however, because I hold relaxation massage in high esteem, I believe relaxation therapists should know their anatomy, strokes, contraindications, and be very well trained, in general. It's not "just a massage"; it is wellness health care, and it should not be practiced by people with only a few weeks of training.
Medical massage exists because accidents and injuries do happen. Since wellness is not practiced in general, sickness occurs on many levels, including at the musculoskeletal level. Medical massage requires additional training, beyond the level of how to give a good full body massage. One must be able to address pain, injuries, dysfunctions, postural distortions, etc. Having knowledge about medical procedures and protocols is essential when working in a hospital, clinic, or other medical facility. So medical massage differs from relaxation massage in intent, direction (focus), scope, and quantity of training. Medical massage builds upon the foundation of relaxation massage.
However, the medical massage therapist should never lose sight of the wellness paradigm and always treat the whole person, not just the symptom. They should address the cause of carpal tunnel syndrome (in the neck and shoulder, for example) not just the symptom at the wrist. Of course, the first few appointments might focus on symptomatic relief for patient comfort, but the goal is to eliminate the cause. In the case of carpal tunnel syndrome, treatment should not be restricted to only the forearm by the prescription of a physician.
While medical massage therapists can work well with allopathic sickness providers, they should be there to provide an alternative, when appropriate, to more invasive procedures like surgery and drugs. Medical massage should also help with rehabilitation and recovery from surgeries and other injuries. If medical massage becomes controlled by the allopaths and insurance companies, it will most likely only be used like drugs to treat symptoms and not allowed to treat causes. Treating causes cures conditions, which allopaths hate because there is not as much money to be made in curing people as there is made treating symptoms.
Once they control massage, it will soon be eliminated from allopathic protocols, again. Drugs and technology phased out massage, or "manual medicine," during the 1950s. Massage has come back and now competes with their cash flow. The pharmaceutical cartel always tries to get control of a competitive procedure or discipline and co-op it. This is why I reject the Western medical model (sickness care) and hope we never get sold out to it. If we do, history shows it will be by the leadership of the profession. More on scope of practice in March.
Try this: When treating tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis) and golfer's elbow (medical epicondylitis), remember that the involved muscles run all the way down to the hand and fingers. By examining and treating the entire muscle, you will get much better and faster results than just treating the injured tendons at the elbow where the symptoms manifest. Adding active movement of the muscles (flexion - extension of the hand) as you massage them will increase your therapeutic impact. Stretching both flexors and extensors of the forearm, for either condition, using Active Isolated Stretching - Mattes Method© should be done before and after massage. And don't forget to address the superficial fascia, preferably first.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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