Lost A Sale, But Initial Phone Consultations — A Big Part Of Brilliant Customer Service
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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.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 2
A talented young woman presented herself with emotional mood swings, which included being nervous, anxious and jittery.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
The Year to Make Things Happen
It is hard to believe that the Year of the Ram – 2015 is half over. Time seems to be moving especially fast. This is the year for things to happen for the acupuncture profession.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?!"
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.
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.
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)?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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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