resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
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.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
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.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
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.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
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.
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.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
August, 2008, Vol. 08, Issue 08
A Wrinkle in Time
By Rita Woods, LMT
Anyone wanting to get involved in the anti-aging boom must understand wrinkles. While wrinkles certainly are not the only thing with which we should be concerned in any good anti-aging regime, it's what most people think of first.It's what we see everyday. I suppose if we could see our liver or intestines, we probably would approach anti-aging with a new focus. Be that as it may, we see our skin so our "looks" take on greater importance.
As massage therapists, we see all types of skin - from young to old and from healthy to sick. We also know we can tell a lot about a person's health simply by putting our hands on their skin and feeling the underlying tissue. We know if they are properly hydrated, if they smoke, if they are active or inactive, and if they have sun-damaged skin.
Changes in the physiology of the skin dictate the development of wrinkles. Heredity plays a big role in skin health as well. If you've been blessed with good skin genes, congratulations! If your mother, grandmother and great aunt Mildred had no wrinkles when they died at the ripe old age of 93, you're in luck. But for most of us, we have to look at the factors that contribute to wrinkles and try to avoid them. Your clients probably have asked you about this already.
To form a wrinkle you need loose skin. Loose skin comes from physiological changes, toxic influences and from shrinking bones. For instance, after age 70, the bones of the skull begin to shrink, causing even more sagging skin. Wrinkles appear to start in the dermis as changes in the elastin structure cause the elastin to lose its snap. Fibrils of elastin running through the layers of our skin are what help hold the skin and muscles together. When this system can no longer do its job, you will begin to see wrinkles form. Decreased production of both collagen and elastin play key roles in the formation of wrinkles.
If you are doing any facelift massage work, there is some crucial information you need to know to assist you in releasing some of the expression lines. Wrinkles form perpendicular to the long axis of facial muscles. Forehead furrows run horizontally to the vertical axis of the frontalis. Wrinkles around the circular muscles of the eyes and mouth form in a spoke-like fashion; specifically, the crow's feet and upper lip vertical wrinkles in the orbicularis oculi and orbicularis oris.
As with any other muscles in the body, working the fibers in a gentle cross-friction fashion will help to release adhesions and working in the direction of the muscle fiber will help re-educate the muscles for proper positioning and function. Next time you look at a face, really look at it and I'm sure you'll be able to see how the wrinkles have formed. Folds in the skin that run parallel to the underlying muscles are natural crease lines and are not technically wrinkles. They might come from the loss of fat in the underlying dermis or result from severe sun damage. These actually are referred to as "crinkles" by some skin care experts.
These changes are going to happen whether we like it or not. After all, we're only human. However, we can slow these changes and reverse some of the damage. Age isn't the only culprit; research shows the following key factors to aging skin. They all appear to damage the cellular structure in such a way as to alter its ability to perform.
First and foremost is sun exposure. It's the number one "bad guy" on the list. Every sunburn you have ever had damaged your skin, and it might take 15 to 20 years before you see visible signs of that damage. Ouch. The sun's rays denature proteins and enzymes through a cascade of events; even the DNA is changed and the cells undergo profound structural changes. Preventing damage from sun exposure is easy with sunscreen, hat and long sleeves. Remember, a tan now will become a wrinkle in time.
Smoking cigarettes is number two on the list. Surely you have noticed that people who smoke have a lot more wrinkles than people who don't. The damage comes from free radicals. There is growing evidence in the dermatology field that free radicals are one of the major causes of abnormal proteins in the body. These abnormal proteins produce damage to the various tissues of the body. It's estimated that with every inhale of cigarette smoke, there are more than 10 thousand trillion free radicals. That's many times more free radicals than there are cells in the body. I'm sure you've noticed the dull yellowish hue and lack of luster in the skin of a smoker. It is aging at an accelerated rate. Trying to get rid of wrinkles in a smoker is wasting time and money. Telling that to a client might not endear them to you, but you need to know it's a losing uphill battle unless they quit smoking.
Alcoholic beverages also produce a complex set of problems for body tissue. It's toxic to the body at a certain level. Heavy drinkers have a dull, yellow skin tone that is very dry. This shows the ravaging taking place on the underlying tissue. Once again, this situation makes it difficult to achieve good skin care.
Soap-based cleansing products are no doubt a contributing factor to the formation of wrinkles. But why and how much has not been determined. Soap is, however, consistently cited as contributing to dry and prematurely aging skin. Soaps must remove oil and dirt to clean. The drawback is they also can strip the skin of its natural lipids. Natural lipids are essential for maintaining skin integrity and for protection of the dermis. Most soap adversely affects the pH of the skin. That's why a toner is traditionally used after cleansing - to balance the disrupted pH. Just stay away from toners with alcohol. Soaps also adversely react with keratins in the skin, resulting in a dry, tight feeling. There are good cleansers that don't strip the skin but actually hydrate as they clean.
Good luck with your next face massage. Perhaps you'll view it with a different perspective. And when your clients ask for suggestions concerning their skin, remember it's what they don't do, rather than what they actually do.
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Click here for more information about Rita Woods, LMT.
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