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Interpersonal Skills 101: Enhancing the Value of Our Patient Interactions
Recently, I read an interesting article in our local newspaper titled "The Value of Human Interaction." The article presented comments from a senior editor for Fortune magazine who discussed "Civility in the Business World."
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
A Reality Check – and a Chance to Educate
Imagine working in the public relations department of nutrition retailer General Nutrition Corporation (GNC) and reading the The New York Times announce...
Avoid Random Treatment of Trigger Points (Part 2)
We must acknowledge that the fascia, which surrounds literally everything in our bodies, including every muscle fiber, is more than just a covering.
Low Back Pain: Posture and Movement Analysis
When performing static and dynamic movement analysis of the lumbopelvic hip area, begin with standing visual posture analysis of the pelvis, and then perform lumbar range of motion and assess what you might see during normal versus abnormal lumbar flexion motion.
B Vitamins Improve Memory, Prevent Brain Atrophy
The 2010 OPTIMA study showed that the accelerated rate of brain atrophy in elderly with mild cognitive impairment could be slowed via supplementation with homocysteine-lowering B vitamins, which included folic acid, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Expanding Access, Branch by Branch
The big news coming from Capitol Hill isn't merely the recent introduction of a pair of bills designed to expand chiropractic services in the Veterans Affairs and military health care systems; after all, similar legislation has made its way through Congress before, never reaching the Oval Office for presidential signature.
Primary Spine Care: Addressing Concerns & Criticisms
The Dec. 1, 2013 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic included an article describing the implementation of a training program for primary spine practitioners (PSP) within a metropolitan region and supported by a large BC/BS plan.
Atypical Femoral Fractures and Bisphosphonate Use: What to Watch For
Bisphosphonates (BP) are popular drugs, with more than 8 billion in sales in 2008; however, profits have declined as patents began expiring. Nonetheless, BP remain the most commonly prescribed drugs for patients at risk of osteoporotic fractures, with several million prescriptions written every year.
Help Update the LBP Practice Guideline
The Council on Chiropractic Guidelines and Practice Parameters has announced the release of an updated Clinical Practice Guideline for Chiropractic Management of Low Back Pain for stakeholder review and comment.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Impacting Chiropractic's Future With Technology
When it comes to electronic health records (EHR), Robert Moberg and Dr. Steven Kraus are two of the leading industry experts on the topic.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
September, 2009, Vol. 9, Issue 09
How a Child's Drawing May Enhance Hands-on Comprehension
By John Upledger, DO, OMM
Can a simple picture of a person, a house and a tree help you become a better CranioSacral Therapist for kids? Amy Lewis, LMT, CST, is exploring that concept by using an exercise drawn from the fields of psychology and Waldorf education to gain a better understanding of where her youngest clients may be physically restricted.
Amy frequently works with children who are struggling with a spectrum of conditions, from anxiety and ADHD to school transitions and developmental delays."The cranial work helps them let go of whatever they're holding on to from the inside so they can become calm, focused and grounded," she says. Before she ever puts her hands on a child, she gives them a set of crayons and asks them to draw a picture of a person, a house and a tree.
"I want to get an imaginative imprint of the child's relationship with his body and the space around him," Amy explains. "I start by having him do a clapping exercise that elevates the heart rate just a bit. After the clapping, even if the child is usually good at drawing, you'll get a great snapshot of what the non-conscious mind wants to bring forth about where he's stuck in his body."
Adding to the Therapeutic Picture
According to Amy, everything in the drawing, from the colors to the shapes, has meaning. "The tree trunk and limbs can represent the nervous system, the lungs or breathing. The foliage is the life force and how the child is bringing that in.
"And the person tells me where he's physically blocked. If there's no neck, he may be in compression. If one arm is shorter, longer or smaller, it may not be innervated or something there may be blocked. If there are no arms, hands or feet at all, that tells me something, too. And the house indicates the relationship between the child and his environment."
Amy first learned about the person-house-tree exercise from the Waldorf schools her two daughters attended in Hawaii and California. Developed by Rudolf Steiner in 1919, Waldorf education relies on a deep understanding of human development to better address the needs of children as they grow. Out of this educational model grew a concept called "The Extra Lesson," which is designed to aid children who may have physical blocks that are compromising their ability to learn.
"In this Waldorf environment, teachers use the person-house-tree drawing to see where the child is developmentally," Amy says. "To me it's a tool, an indicator that's just like tapping into the cranial rhythm. The picture gives me information that comes from the child's non-conscious mind, where the truth resides."
A Young Boy Gets Stuck in His Head
Recently, Amy has been working with a 5-year-old boy. "He colored his whole picture in green," she says. "That tells me he's probably too intellectual, especially at age 5. He drew his body floating in the air like a cloud. His tree wasn't in the ground and its limbs were chaotic, giving me an indication of what might be going on in his nervous system. His house had no door, no windows, and a roof with four dots in it but no chimney."
Amy combined all these indicators with what she was picking up from his cranial rhythm, and she went to work. "After a few sessions, I asked his parents for a new picture so I could get the child's impression of where he was going with all this. In the new drawing he has one foot touching the ground, but his hair is barely attached. In our sessions now, he doesn't want me to touch his head.
"His tree, his nervous system, looks better. And he has a window in his house now, but still no door. The door shows me how he's bringing in and filtering information from his surroundings. So this is telling me he still feels like he has no filter. But he did draw grass, a sky and a rainbow across the top. That tells he's getting some symmetry above and below, and he's bringing in more life force."
A Teenage Girl Finds Balance
Another one of Amy's clients, a 15-year-old girl, drew herself on a swing in her picture. "In real life she was having trouble standing up," Amy says. "Her parents brought her to see me because she was always bumping into things. It was all on her left side.
"It turns out that when she was in utero, the doctor did amniocentesis and she kicked the needle with her foot. She still has tiny white lines on her left foot from the needle. It affected her L4 and L5, and there's a break in her vortex. But she's been working through it. Her balance is starting to come back in."
Amy says she likes to begin a series of six CranioSacral Therapy sessions with the person-house-tree drawing. "It's a nice way to start the therapeutic connection as soon as a child comes into my office."
As an assessment tool, "It's just an indication, an additional source of information," she adds. "I always tell parents, 'It's not set in stone. It's information based on this particular school of thought.'" Yet it's one tool Amy continues to learn from as her CranioSacral skills evolve.
Click here for previous articles by John Upledger, DO, OMM.
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