resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Talking to Patients About Healthy Aging
I've noticed that a particular category of patients seems to make up more and more of my practice – they work out, but still experience lots of degenerative joint disease (DJD) issues.
The X Factor in Clinical Research: The Patient
It was the great baseball legend, former New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra – he of countless aphorisms, each with a mind-bending twist – who once declared, "You can observe a lot by watching."
AOMA Strengthens Leadership Team
AOMA Graduate School of Integrative Medicine, a leading college of acupuncture & herbal medicine, announced the appointment of Donna LaPoint Hurta, MBA as the new VP of Finance & Operations this Fall.
The Tao of Gender
If you think gender is as simple as having a new client check off the "male" or "female" box on your intake form, we hope this article will expand your understanding and thus the reach of your health care.
The Heart Protector
On the physical level, the Pericardium is a double-layered sac of fibrous tissue that envelops the Heart. The space between the layers is filled with serous fluid that protects the Heart from external shock or trauma and lubricates to allow for normal Heart movement.
Calcium Helps Prevent Colorectal Cancer
Over the past 25 to 30 years, studies have suggested calcium may confer protection against colorectal cancer.
To The Finish Line With the Help of TCM
When acupuncturist Eddy De Smedt pursued a career in Traditional Chinese Medicine, he knew he wanted to make a difference.
Managing Today's Fertility Patient
I recently received an email from one of my fertility patients: "Got my lab results back. FSH is 11, AMH is 0.7. My doctor said these numbers aren't good. I guess I'm infertile. Just as a thought. Just set up an appointment to speak with an adoption agency."
Web Marketing: Content Is King
Google's sweeping updates to its search algorithms over the past few years have brought a paradigm shift in how you can optimize your chiropractic website to gain maximum marketing leverage.
Transparency and Accountability: Q&A With the CCE
Every profession needs an organization dedicated to upholding the quality and integrity of its degree programs and educational institutions.
Healing With TCM at San Quentin State Prison
For the prisoners at San Quentin State Prison, life-sentences are the reality of every day life. It is not often that prisoners get the opportunity to use alternative medicine to deal with common ailments they encounter behind bars such as, depression, anxiety and pain.
5 Ways to Occupy Occupational Health
Despite the progress that has been made to better protect workers, occupational health and safety remains a priority area for many national governmental organizations due to the widespread problem of occupationally related morbidity and mortality.
Help Patients Achieve Optimal Vitamin D Levels
Much research has been done on vitamin D levels and their impact on health; optimal levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of developing numerous conditions.
Blaming the Gluteus Medius, Overlooking the Deltoid
The gluteus medius (Gmed) is commonly written about, strengthened and blamed for many conditions, and rightfully so. After all, the Gmed plays a role in pelvic stability, hip motor control and lower-quarter dynamic movements.
Simple Ways To Find True Happiness
Patients in our clinics are always seeking happiness. As their health advocate, we need to ensure we inform them that in order to find happiness, they have to make sure to identify what makes them happy in the first place.
Lime Jello on Morphine
Taste is in the eyes... actually the mouth... of the beholder. My food preferences have changed, lightening from the food of my youth. My parents loved heavy eastern European cuisine and I loved it as a child. Now I enjoy leaner, healthier whole foods.
Pulse Diagnosis: What We Know
I am still finding pearls of wisdom from the books and papers that I inherited from my pulse diagnosis mentor Jim Ramholz.
Understanding and Identifying Pediatric Growth-Plate Fractures
In general, fractures in children heal well with little intervention as long as the alignment is good. Fractures involving the growth plate, however, are a different issue. In fact, growth-plate injuries are the primary reason for the subspecialty of pediatric orthopedics.
Managing Patient Expectations About Acupuncture
Last year, I attended the Pacific Symposium in San Diego for the first time in six or seven years. It was the 25th anniversary of this event, and on one evening there was a panel discussion with the title; "What is Qi?."
The Wonders of Light Therapy: An Interview with Wes Burwell
I first met Wes Burwell in 2011 when he was teaching a class on light. Since then, every time I hear him speak, his understanding of the benefits, function and capacity of light has evolved.
Saying No to Medicine
An interesting article recently appeared in Men's Journal titled "When to Say No to Your Doctor." The article begins with the summary statement above and effectively arms readers with information that will help them "take more responsibility for your own health care, because you can't be sure anyone else is.
September, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 09
The Rewards of Working with Dementia Patients, Part 2
By Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR
In my last article, I compared four types of dementias: Alzheimer's disease, vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia and frontotemporal dementia. Now, I'll explore how touch can improve the quality of life for the person living with the disease.
Touch deprivation in old age is real. Simington (1995) relates that older persons report that touch conveys fondness, security, closeness, warmth, concern and encouragement, and makes them feel an increased sense of trust and well-being. They report that touch helps them to develop close, trusting relationships with staff and other residents. As tactile sensitivity decreases, the need to receive expressive touch may increase. Nature can be cruel however, and the elderly person often may have no one to provide this increased touch. The children are gone and the partner has died. One elderly woman put it this way, "Sometimes I hunger to be held. But he is the one who would have held me. He is the one who would have stroked my head. Now there is no one. No comfort."
Touch is one of our most basic human needs throughout our life. Clearly our situation, age and condition changes, but the need for human contact does not. As Simington pointed out, as the body or mind declines, the need for human touch may increase as we search for reassurance and comfort.
Touch in the form of gentle and sensitive massage or attentive holding has the power to enhance physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. A hand massage, back massage or simply holding a person's hand has the power to elicit positive, life-affirming feelings and responses. Touch becomes a language of the human heart and a remembrance of one's place in the world.
An underlying principle is that we each have within us a compassionate presence. Sensitive massage and focused touch are mediums used to offer the gift of this natural presence.
Unique benefits of sensitive massage and focused touch:
Hands reflect the landscape of a person's life. When you touch someone's hands with compassion and sensitivity, you acknowledge their whole life experience. In our society, we touch hands as an accepted means of interaction to greet one another, offer support and to show affection. Since touching the hands is so familiar, hand massage may be gladly accepted by your care partner. Evidence suggests even a simple ten-minute hand massage can go a long way in helping people with dementia feel calmer and more connected with others and their immediate environment.
Suzuki (2010) explored the effects of hand massage on physical and mental function and behavioral and psychological symptoms among elderly patients with dementia. The group received a consistent hand massage protocol a total of 30 times each for 20 to 30 minutes between 4p.m. and 5p.m. Both aggressive behaviors and stress levels decreased significantly after six weeks.
The story of Mrs. A is paraphrased from the Suzuki Study. Mrs. A was an 84-year-old woman with AD. She had delusions that people were stealing things and was easily angered. She needed partial care for activities of daily living and used a wheelchair. Short-term memory impairment was evident, but she was relatively competent in communicating. She enjoyed hand massage and would come over in her wheelchair to ask, "are you doing massage today?" From about the fourth week of intervention, she said, "the circulation in my hands is better and it's nice having warm hands. I always used to wake up in the night, but these days I've been sleeping right through till the morning, and it's because of this massage."
After 6 weeks of hand massages, Mrs. A. showed slight improvement in motor function and she was much calmer and better at communicating. Paranoid delusional symptoms disappeared and she showed a decrease in wandering and aimless activity compared with before the intervention. She went from being quick to anger to smiling more frequently after the massage. She started being able to sleep through the night after receiving the massage and nurses noted a decrease in anxiety.
Dr. Allen Powers, author of Dementia Beyond Drugs and an advocate of touch in dementia care, adds to the conversation: "Modalities like massage ... can provide a balm for anyone who is in need of more human connection. I will confess that I have occasionally ordered moisturizing creams twice as often as needed for people with dementia who are disengaged merely to increase the frequency of hands-on contact."
Click here for more information about Ann Catlin, LMT, NCTMB, OTR.
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