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The Modern Acupuncturist
You studied ancient Chinese medicine, but I'll bet you don't practice it! Contrary to popular belief, our medicine has evolved A LOT over the years. Let's take a brief walk through history and discover the differences between ancient and modern acupuncturists.
Use Technology to Gain New Patients and Improve Efficiency
From the smartphone in your pocket to your microwave oven, advancements in technology have made almost every aspect of our lives easier.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
Professional Credentialing and Board Certification: An Ethical Faux Pas
Because of the Affordable Care Act, health care systems are coordinating care through accountable care organizations (ACOs) in order to reduce the cost of care and improve quality of care.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
Acupuncture in the U.K. Today: A Personal View
When asked to write a short piece on the current state of the U.K. acupuncture profession, my first response was to say it has all been relatively quiet.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients, in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2 to 4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
The Nectar of Plants: Essential Oils and Chinese Medicine
Essential oils are a very hot topic these days, especially with the likes of the Ebola virus and the resurgence of measles lurking in our awareness, but when I first became interested in Chinese medicine, essential oils weren't on the radar screen for acupuncturists.
Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
The Source-Luo Point Combination
The luo collaterals are part of the acupuncture channel system presented in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu (The Nei Jing). The function and clinical application of the luo mai are primarily presented in chapter 10 of the Ling Shu, however, they are also found in others chapters in the Su Wen and the Ling Shu.
How One Little Symbol (#) Gets You More Patients
Are you struggling to get more fans or followers for your acupuncture practice? Or are looking for ways to simply connect with your patients? Or do you just want to know how to keep them engaged (comments, retweeting, liking and sharing)?
TMF 2015 Scholarships
The Trudy McAlister Foundation (TMF), a nonprofit organization established to support students who are on track to make contributions either to clinical practice and/or to the understanding of the role of Traditional Oriental Medicine, has announced the 2015 scholarship recipients.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
Breath: The Movement of Oxygen and Energy
I remember with surprising clarity the first time a patient started crying during an acupuncture treatment I was giving. This is now quite a long time ago, back in 1999, when I was a student.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
Acupuncture and the Pulse
In 1991, I attended a martial arts workshop hosted coincidentally by Sung Baek, a martial artist and the head of his lineage as a Korean trained acupuncturist. I was enamored by the details Sung could attain from the pulse, as told to me by some of his apprentices.
Calculating Billable Units
I recently learned of an office that was audited based on the number of acupuncture sessions performed in one day. Is there a maximum number of sessions that can be performed in one day?
What Does Success Mean to You?
Recently, I was asked to speak to young, budding businesswomen about running a successful business — and at first I thought, "Me? You want me to speak to others about success?!"
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
April, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 04
The Current Emphasis on Clinical Research and Essential Oils
By Shellie Enteen, RA, BA, LMBT
The use of essential oils to benefit body, mind and spirit greatly predates the modern era, the term "aromatherapy" and the current emphasis on clinical research. Empirical evidence and information passed down through generations and occasionally recorded in books was the norm.Despite the advent of the microscope and aromatherapy research pioneers such as Rene Maurice Gattefosse, scientific investigation into the affect of essential oil components was not common. And of course, the recipients of essential oil blends responded in a positive way, even before the chemical components were identified and classified.
But as we massage therapists know, today it is important to have evidence backed up by scientific studies to create agreed upon facts and practices. Those branches of the healing arts that are given the Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) designation are working hard to present these facts. For aromatherapists, especially when they are hoping to teach this modality to other health professionals, the need to produce verification through research is paramount. The scientific community just won't respect this field without evidence that meets their criteria.
In the aromatherapy community, the idea of research and even the emphasis on the chemistry of essential oils has produced widely divergent points of view. Just as it would seem odd to have to prove the soothing effect of gentle effleurage, to some aromatherapists the historical evidence for the relaxing affect of lavender is enough. Some even fear that going the scientific route is an attack on the basic human element which is so important in both the selection and blending of essential oils. Some are in favor of the clinical case study as a middle ground for proving the reliability of their art. But, there is a growing movement in the aromatherapy community to investigate the chemicals on their own and find personal justification and acceptance through studies proving effects.
Salvatore Battaglia tells us that while research can help create clients who need this proof and that it can also provide recognition and legislation in favor of essential oils there are some basic problems when approaching research in this field. In my opinion, the most important is this: "The essential oils are complex pharmacologically active chemicals. The whole essential oil will have different properties from that of any single constituent alone. Most pharmacological studies involve the use of individual chemical constituents." (The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, 2nd Edition, 2003.)
A principle that describes this is called the "quenching affect," wherein the presence of all chemical components may reduce the potential intensity of one component. An example would be the chemical limonene. Considered a strong skin irritant, limonene is present in many citrus and citrus note oils where it is brought to a manageable level due to its amount relative to the other chemicals present. However, the focus on the effect of limonene on its own has resulted in legislation in Europe that leaves perfumers with the great problem of no longer being able to use the essential oil of lemon (Citrus limon) in their formulas because it contains limonene. Many of these perfumes have been worn for hundreds of years without ill effect.
Another issue for research in the field of aromatherapy was simply lack of funds. Much of what we knew about physiological and skin care properties of essential oils came from research conducted for the cosmetic and food industries, where the funds and the need for specific research on affects have been vital to ensure public safety. But, as the need for more effective methods of treating chronic pain, anti-biotic resistant bacteria and other health related problems has grown, more research has been going into the relevant properties of essential oils.
If there is a need to find research regarding essential oils, there are some online resources that will yield results. PubMed is one: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed. And there are good texts that provide research information as well. These include the Aromatherapy Practitioner Reference Manual by Sylla Sheppard-Hanger, Natural Aromatic Materials – Odours and Origins by Tony Burfield, Essential Oils 2008-2011 by Dr. Brian Lawrence. Aromatherapist Jane Buckle, PhD, RN teaches clinically based aromatherapy and has two books, Clinical Aromatherapy and Clinical Aromatherapy for Nurses. She has also authored an article on how to conduct clinical research for aromatherapy that can be found in a special e-book, published in 2012 by the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy on the topic of research and essential oils.
On a happy research note, it can be said that the scientific conclusions about the dangers of lavender oil used by young boys has now been disproven. The New England Journal of Medicine had run an article some years ago concluding that the development of breast tissue in two pre-pubescent boys (gynecomastia) residing in the same town (not in the same family) was a result of minute amounts of lavender and tea tree essential oils in personal care products from the health food store. This prestigious scientific magazine was unwilling to publish letters from well known aromatherapists refuting this notion. Robert Tisserand, one of our foremost colleagues, posted a link on Facebook this week with the note, "Nice to know that Lavender oil is conclusively not estrogenic." (This hormone like effect was said to be the cause of the gynecomastia.) Read the whole story here: http://roberttisserand.com/2013/02/lavender-oil-is-not-estrogenic.
Click here for more information about Shellie Enteen, RA, BA, LMBT.
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