resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
April, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 04
Palpating the Craniosacral Rhythm
By John Upledger, DO, OMM
Palpation is the art of using touch to examine the body and explore the structures beneath the skin - their forms, movements and relationships to each other. Through palpation, you can discover the normal or abnormal function of an organ; the mobility of a joint with its muscular, ligamentous and tendinous attachments; the motion of one bone compared to another; and the flow of body fluids. You can even use palpation to monitor the electromagnetic field surrounding the body.
The practice of CranioSacral Therapy relies on your ability to use sensitive palpation to feel the craniosacral rhythm - the subtle pulsation of the craniosacral system as cerebrospinal fluid circulates through it in a dynamic loop. While this skill is taught at CranioSacral Therapy workshops, you can get an idea of what the craniosacral rhythm feels like by palpating your own.
First, you'll need to "calibrate" your touch to 5 grams. You can do this by placing a nickel somewhere on your body, such as your forearm, and then placing your hand next to the nickel. As you do this, lighten your touch until it feels comparable to the weight of the nickel. You also can imagine gently placing your hand on a newborn's face, and then touch your body that lightly. Notice how much softer this touch is than the way most people typically touch or palpate.
Once you're comfortable with your ability to touch with 5 grams of pressure, you can practice palpating the craniosacral rhythm. To do this, simply rest your elbows on a table and lightly place your hands on either side of your head so the full surfaces of your palms and fingers are gently in contact with your head. You can now use that very light, 5-gram touch to feel the movement produced by the circulation of cerebrospinal fluid in the craniosacral system.
Just like a water balloon expands and contracts if the fluid within it increases or decreases, the membranes of the craniosacral system expand and contract ever so slightly in response to the fluid changes within the system. You can feel this movement as the system softly pushes against your relaxed hands when it's expanding and then pulls away from them when it's contracting. The movement is extremely subtle, so if your touch is too heavy it's more difficult to feel.
Once you practice enough to become aware of the craniosacral rhythm, you can begin to notice the characteristics of that movement. Is it symmetrical and balanced? Is it big and strong? Is it slight and weak? Observe whatever you can at the head, and then move your hands to another location, perhaps the thighs, and repeat the process. Palpate the subtle movement and notice its characteristics. Compare the rhythm at the thighs with the rhythm at the head, and then continue that process on other areas.
Observing the differences in the craniosacral rhythm on various parts of the body gives you key information to help you locate areas of restricted tissue. Like a dry sponge placed in a pool of water, nonintrusive palpation allows you to absorb an enormous amount of information so you can more effectively help the tissues release -enabling the body to self-correct on a multitude of levels.
Click here for previous articles by John Upledger, DO, OMM.
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