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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.
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.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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?
January, 2006, Vol. 06, Issue 01
It's About Health
By Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB
What a year 2005 has been - and 2006 should be really interesting. There are several themes I hope to discuss as the year unfolds. I hope my columns stimulate you to think and, ultimately, to act, not just react.By shining the spotlight of this column on topics I consider to be important challenges facing our profession and sharing my views on them, I hope to start discussions that bring about positive change. I do not expect everyone to agree with me. Not only would that be boring, but it would not bring about the debates our profession needs to grow and improve. For too long, the open discussion of various viewpoints has been discouraged and stifled by our professional organizations, whose elite carry on their discussions behind closed doors. Massage Today is the only forum in our profession where different ideas can be presented and discussed openly. Hopefully these discussions continue beyond the pages of Massage Today and into your lives, practices and associations maybe even into laws and rules.
This year, I shall discuss licensing, research, the new Federation of State Massage Boards, and of course my favorite topics: education, insurance and medical massage. Along the way, I shall provide you with some therapy tips and general health information, including health freedom issues. Keep an open mind and a sharp memory, and take action on whatever you feel passionate about. Get involved. You will get out of this profession what you put into it.
Sweet Gone Sour
In the interest of promoting health, which I feel should be one of the primary goals of the massage profession, I thought I would share some interesting information that has crossed my path lately. Hopefully, it will help you and might help you help your patients.
For those of you trying to be healthy by going sugar-free, be aware that aspartame has now been found to cause cancer in rats, at levels currently approved for humans. Aspartame is the artificial sweetener used to make diet pop and most commercial sugar-free foods taste sweet. It seems the incidence of malignant tumors, lymphomas and leukemia go up significantly at only 20 milligrams per kilogram of body weight. The United States government says the acceptable rate for humans is 50 mg/kg. Europe only allows 40 mg/kg. You can find the whole story at www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=34040#. The connection seems to be that aspartame turns into formaldehyde, particularly in soda pop, if allowed to get warm. This has been linked to MS-like symptoms in some patients. Now, it appears the cancer connection has been made. So, if you think your government cares about your health and is trying to protect it, think again. The FDA, which I call the "Fools for Drugs Administration," is made up of soon-to-be or former executives of pharmaceutical and agribusiness companies. The only health they are concerned about is the health of the balance sheets of their soon-to-be or former employers. Don't trust them, and don't for one minute think they care a hoot about your health or anyone else's. A former head of the FDA testified before the U.S. Congress that he would not stand by and allow the rapidly growing natural health and supplement movement to negatively impact the sale of pharmaceuticals.
To further demonstrate the lack of care and compassion by your government and mine, I offer the proposed new rules by the EPA which, if enacted, will allow chemical and pesticide testing on children. Yes, that's right, children, but as they point out, testing only will be allowed on certain groups of children. Let's see; those groups are mentally handicapped, orphaned newborns, rejected or abused children, and children not in the United States. See what compassion our bureaucrats have? (For more, see www.organicconsumers.org/epa6.cfm.)
Anyone for Health Freedom?
On a more positive note, there is a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives that needs the support of all who cherish their health freedom. Hopefully you do. It's the "Health Freedom Protection Act" (H.R. 4282), introduced Nov. 9, 2005. The act specifically will: 1. Stop the FDA from censoring truthful claims about dietary supplements; 2. Stop the FDA from prohibiting the distribution of scientific articles and publications regarding the role of nutrients in protecting against disease; and 3. Address the FTC's violations of the First Amendment by preventing the FTC from trying to control what is communicated about nutrient-disease associations. If you believe in this effort, please write your representatives in Washington, D.C., and request that they become a co-sponsor and vote for the bill
What does this have to do with massage? In my opinion, massage is about health. Massage is an alternative to the sickness care system. Part of the massage therapy exchange should include the sharing of information on health. As alternative providers, we should be resources to our patients on alternative health information and practices. Quality food is one of the major components of a healthy lifestyle. You cannot have health for long without quality nutrition. Access to alternative health and nutritional information is essential. Remember, massage is an alternative therapy for many conditions. We, as alternative providers, must support freedom of choice in health care and freedom of access to alternative health information. We must do it now, and constantly, or the pharmaceutical/sickness industry will stomp out the alternative health movement. We already are well on the way to being co-opted and controlled by insurance companies and gatekeeper physicians. (For an enlightening look at where your health insurance dollars go, see www.bolenreport.net/feature_articles/feature_article017.htm.)
A significant segment of the massage/bodywork profession needs to get over the idea that this profession is nothing more than a trade that smears oil over skin, which anyone can do with little or no training. The "come on, it's just a massage" segment of our profession either needs to take some self-esteem pills or be relegated to a bottom tier of a segmented profession that is clearly defined and strictly restrained. We have the opportunity to become the premier, first-door health care providers in the alternative health movement. Do we have that big of a vision, or not? This really is about the health of the planet and all of humanity, not just a massage or the profession itself. If we do not stake our claim to this potential for our profession soon, a huge opportunity will be lost. We can never accomplish it by modeling the current failed power structure of the sickness care industry, or molding into it.
So much to think about, so little space. Hope your New Year is off to a great start. Best wishes to each of you for a successful, happy year. More in March. Bring your kite.
Click here for more information about Ralph Stephens, BS, LMT, NCTMB.
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