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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!
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.
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.
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.
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...
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.
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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
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.
May, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 05
Specific Considerations when Massaging Seniors
By Sharon Puszko, PhD, LMT
On January 1, 2011, the first baby boomers turned 65. Every day since then, and for the next 18 years, 10,000 people will turn 65 according to the U.S. Census. Over the next decade, we will feel the impact of this change on the health care system, the housing market, the retail industry and in our own massage therapy businesses.Whether or not one's business specializes in geriatric massage, we will all see an increase in the number of older clients we treat. This means it is important to be aware of the difference between massaging your younger clients and massaging senior clients. Even though many in this demographic are active and in robust health, others are more sedentary and frail. It is important to have a basic understanding of the considerations to keep in mind when working with this population.
Try to find out for how much of their life a client has been active. The issues common to a client who has been active most of their life tend to be more "predictable" from week to week, as they usually are not making any drastic changes to their activity level. These types of clients also tend to be in a general better overall state of health and can usually handle a one hour session. On the other hand, some active seniors might have recently taken up exercising as a result of a doctor's suggestion, or a personal desire to become healthier, but have not been active for most of their lives. These clients typically have more acute pain issues resulting from their body adjusting to an exercise program and they are typically less flexible. One hour sessions may be too long for some, so please be aware of how the client is responding, and if they seem to be uncomfortable after a half hour, that may be the right amount of time for a session.
Regardless of activity level, seniors still are geriatric clients and should be treated as such. The amount of pressure one uses should be modified since their skin is thinner than younger clients. Some other contraindications to consider when working with geriatric clients include, but are not limited to, thinning bones, the site of a repeated injection, burn wounds, skin ulcers or any type of joint replacement. A comprehensive intake is necessary to determine if a client has any condition that might require a doctor's permission before performing bodywork.
The above information is meant as an introduction to working with seniors, instead of a complete guide. There are many issues related to aging that go beyond simply applying less pressure, such as medications, thinning skin and stamina. Because of the growing aging population and the body of evidence that proves massage is beneficial for our health, geriatric massage is on the rise. We are learning more and more about this field every year, which is exciting. Therefore, it is highly recommended to take continuing education classes in geriatric massage that discuss techniques and contraindications in depth. This way, one is properly prepared for the rewarding experience of working with this population.
Sharon Puszko is the owner/director/educator for Day-Break Geriatric Massage Institute. She may be contacted at
or through her Web site: www.daybreak-massage.com.
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