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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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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 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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
June, 2009, Vol. 09, Issue 06
Massage Therapy Offers Rest and Respite
By Tracy Walton, LMT, MS
A while ago, on a single day, I worked with several clients who were in cancer treatment, or recently completed treatment. As I updated their health histories, each client told me stories of loss, strength, terror, uncertainty, and exhaustion.There was a relentless quality to what they described. As I moved my hands across them, and as I was still and held each one quietly, two words kept coming into my head: rest and warrior.
These words continued to echo as I worked. On that day, I came to understand, more deeply than ever, the role of massage in helping people truly let down. Skilled touch says: Let down the fight, drop the battle dress, and give up the endless drive. Let down appearances. Stop, now, and catch your breath. Rest.
In Swedish massage, the simple removal of clothing, designed for smoother strokes and more meaningful engagement of the muscles and skin, is a gesture of letting go, in and of itself. I know when I have received massage, removing my own clothing means that for an hour I give up clothing figuratively as well as literally. This gesture has great significance: I also stop trying to hold everything together, to appear intact, or to act as though I'm on my way somewhere else. For a brief, nourishing time, I do not plan, or scheme, or fight; I simply rest. I let someone else care for me; I let myself fall, be caught, and be carried. Through this act of trust, I am recharged. Rest, warrior.
While the warrior image seems accurate, it is not the whole picture. I know many people who claim that cancer is much more than a fight; that in reality, the fight is the simplest part, and sometimes the least of it. Instead, as a colleague pointed out, cancer can be even harder to ignore, abide, and transcend than it is to fight. My clients tell me that they don't just fight cancer: they endure, yield, pray, grieve and persevere. Cancer requires people to spend time in confusion, terror, and mystery.
And during illness, an added burden can come from others' expectations that the fight will be heroic. Moreover, there is pressure to feel cancer as a gift, to emerge from the experience with a prize, and that one has failed at it if he or she has no greater meaning to show for their experience.
As a massage therapist, my own response to these pressures is uncomplicated: to welcome my clients, regardless of their experiences. Some people tell me that the gifts that came to them along their cancer journey were immeasurable, that blessings came to them in strange disguises and new depths of experience, and that they feel gratitude. I believe and honor their stories without question. Others say that they find no gift and no gratitude, only pain, and that the pressure to be optimistic, cheerful, and blessed can be an enormous load, adding pain to what they already face. I believe and honor their stories, too, without question. Rest, warrior.
It is my job to be present to each client, and each client's story. It is my job to respect the range of human experience. With my hands on people, I have learned much about the various ways we humans go through life. There is no one way. We live differently, and get sick and well differently. We cope with medical treatment differently, and manage pain and suffering differently. We die differently. And when we seek massage therapy, giving ourselves over to someone's full attention, one of the most healing things we can receive is respect for our uniqueness: the uniqueness of each path, each burden, each loss, and each choice. It's been said before, but it's worth repeating: Being welcomed, right where we are, is healing.
And no matter what our differences are, we all need our rest. The care of massage therapy, offered without judgment or expectation, can offer some of the deepest rest of all. Rest, warrior; rest.
Click here for more information about Tracy Walton, LMT, MS.
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