resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Identify & Adjust the Apex Posterior Sacrum
Low back pain involving an apex posterior sacrum (+θX-axis misalignment) typically presents with signs of lumbosacral joint impingement or facet syndrome.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
Excited to Share the Science of Chiropractic: An Interview With Dr. Heidi Haavik
Dr. Heidi Haavik has become known in the circle of chiropractic researchers as not only a rising star, but also one willing to do research that can have a major impact in the scientific world and how chiropractic is perceived.
Let's Streamline Your Front Desk
Your front office can be your greatest source of efficiency or a constant bottleneck. Increasing the productivity of this area without sacrificing the quality of patient interaction can be a little tricky.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
An Alarming Lack of Accountability
Accountability seems to be a lost quality today. The simple act of taking responsibility and doing the right thing just doesn't happen as often as it should. Maybe it is the litigious nature of our society.
Designing a Fitness Plan (Part 4): Blending Pain Relief With Healthy Aging
Pain relief is still the No. 1 reason patients come to my office. However, most of my patients have other goals as well, such as: "I want to lose 10 to 20 pounds"; "I feel old and want to slow down the aging process"; "My doctor says I am becoming a diabetic and need to exercise"; or "I'm tired and want more energy."
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
News in Brief
Northwestern Student Honored for Addressing Concussions Head-On; Northwestern Announces New CFO; Life U. to Provide Unique Opportunity.
F4CP Launches New Social Media Campaign
The Foundation for Chiropractic Progress has launched a new service to help member doctors: a social media campaign called "Accelerator."
How Many of Your Patients Have Sarcopenia?
Figure 1 demonstrates the typical appearance of sarcopenia in the paravertebral muscles. Have you considered evaluating your patients for this problem? Sarcopenia is the progressive loss of skeletal muscle mass and function that affects the older population.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Misconceptions & Opportunities With Medicare
As I speak around the country on how to properly document Medicare patient encounters, I get questions regarding opting out of Medicare. There are many misconceptions about opting out of Medicare, including just what it means to opt out.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Day in the Life of an Advanced-Practice DC
Can you tell us a little about your background in the profession? Why did you want to become a DC? I studied at Boston University from 1968-1972 as a pre-med student majoring in biology.
April, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 04
The Danger of Hidden Toxins
By Ann Brown, LMT
As a massage therapist, your job is hands-on wellness. Every client that comes to your massage table wants to feel better, and as a massage therapist, you are trained to use your time with that client to their benefit. If you do your job well, that client will want to come back, but there is always competition ready to turn your client's head. You have to be different – better in a memorable way – than your competition.
As you consider how you develop your brand and what you are known for in your client's mind, think about how the wellness service you offer can go beyond the massage table. Think about how your focus on holistic, natural health can help your client to lead a life of wellness. Sharing knowledge of how to lead a cleaner, non-polluted life at home will give added benefit to your client and may be the differentiator you need to build even tighter guest loyalty and more repeat business.
When the client comes to the massage table, you connect with the guest through the skin, the body's largest organ. The strokes and techniques you apply may provide immediate relief and lingering benefits, but what happens after the massage session is over? Do you ask your client about what is coming into contact with his or her skin? Many hidden toxins linger in everyday products. By educating yourself on research and risks, you can share valuable information on how to avoid toxicity with your clients who seek a higher level of wellness.
The quality of drinking water is a common concern, and you may already be using a filter to eliminate pathogens or contaminants. Your bathing water, however, may also have a negative impact on your health. A chemical commonly used to disinfect public water supply, chlorine reduces the level of pathogenic bacteria in the water we drink, but it may also damage beneficial bacteria in our bodies. Several studies connect chlorinated drinking water with toxicity issues. According to Chris Kresser, an internationally known integrative medicine practitioner, chlorine in your water supply can combine with organic matter to form compounds called trihalomethanes (THMs), also known as disinfectant byproducts. A common THM, chloroform is a known carcinogen. THMs are toxic when consumed, inhaled, or applied to the skin.
Several studies of communities with chlorinated drinking water show concerning results, such as increased risk of bladder, kidney and rectal problems, poor birth outcomes, spontaneous abortion, birth defects and low birth weight, among others. More studies are needed to provide substantial research, but Kresser argues that it is reasonable to assume a harmful relationship between chlorinated water and beneficial intestinal flora. For example, a strong connection exists between asthma, acne, autoimmune disorders and the health of our intestinal flora.
While you may try to protect yourself with filtered water, your daily shower or bath may be allowing the chlorinated water to adversely affect your body's systems via skin absorption. Kresser cites studies from Rutgers University and Kyungpook National University in South Korea to provide supporting evidence that the health risks of chlorine may be related to dermal and inhalation exposure. A single, 10-minute shower equates on average to ingesting two liters of water. Chlorine-filtering shower heads and bath filters will remover chlorine from your water, but be aware that another toxin, chloramine, may not completely be removed by such a filter. Very potentially damaging to the lungs, chloramine may also release ammonia. Whole house water filters address chlorine, chloramine and other toxins, or look for a Vitamin C shower filter – an effective and inexpensive way to remove up to 99 percent of the chlorine and chloramine in your water.
Educating Your Clients
Suggest that your clients check with their local water supply company and ask about the disinfecting agents used in the community water supply. Advise them to pay attention to the toxins that may be entering their bodies via skin absorption and to limit their chlorine and chloramine exposure.
Laundry detergent is also another very common and hidden source of toxicity for many households. A 2008 University of Washington study found that 99 percent of laundry detergents released cancer-causing chemicals – substances deemed as hazardous and toxic by the Environmental Protection Agency. Among the most damaging of these chemicals, nonylphenol ethoxylate is also used as an ingredient in pesticides and, through your skin, can enter your blood stream and cause serious damage to heart and muscle function.
Formaldehyde is also a cancer-causing ingredient found in many detergents and those pleasant fragrances many consumers enjoy are phthalates, which can build up in your skin and body. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, phthalates are linked to liver cancer. In addition, the chemicals in laundry detergents may damage your reproductive systems and interfere with your hormones.
You can find simple recipes for homemade laundry detergents on the web (check out www.motherearthliving.com, for example). Making your own detergent saves money, the environment and your health. Make up a batch and give small packets of the powder to your clients as a gift, reinforcing your dedication to their health and your expertise as a wellness provider.
More studies are needed on the subject of toxins in our water and common household products, but based on what we do know, it is wise to protect ourselves from toxicity risks as much as possible. Share your own passion for natural, toxic-free living with your clients and solidify your position as a true wellness provider in their minds.
Ann Brown, a licensed massage therapist, is a member of the International Spa Association's board of directors and serves as spa director at Spa Shiki at The Lodge of Four Seasons in Lake Ozark, Mo. She also provides management consulting services through Spa Insight Consulting.
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