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In the Unlikely Event of an FDA Recall ... No News Has Been Good News
East Asian herb product manufacturers have practiced impeccable diligence by complying with current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) and providing the practitioner community certificates of analyses that detail laboratory testing results for things like heavy metals and toxic elements.
Safety First, Protecting the Patient: A Herbal Certification Program by the NCCAOM
The acceptance of acupuncture and Oriental (East Asian) medicine in the U.S. has made tremendous strides over the last 30-plus years. AOM/TCM is no longer "alternative or complementary" medicine. Yet, as acupuncture has become more mainstream, acceptance of herbal medicine has lagged behind.
The Opioid Crisis: "Let's Roll!"
Sept. 11, 2018 will mark the 17th anniversary of the horrific terroristic attack on the U.S. Whenever I think about that day, I am reminded of the heroes on Flight 93 who took action to keep the airliner away from Washington, D.C., by making it crash into the ground near Shanksville, Pa.
A Functional Approach to Type 2 Diabetes
Diabetes is recognized as one of the top chronic illnesses plaguing our society today. Here are some quick statistics on the prevalence of both diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes:
News in Brief
Chiropractic Takes Leap Forward in France; New ACA President Named; Sherman College Responds To "Choosing Wisely" Recommendations; R.I. DCs Speak at Medical CE Event.
The Veteran's Choice Program & Your Claims
Q: I have recently begun treating veterans under the Veteran's Choice program. I am getting paid just fine for acupuncture codes and evaluation and management services but have been denied all physical medicine codes including infra-red heat 97026, massage 97124 and manual therapy 97140.
Preparing for the Opioid Patient: The Future of the Acupuncture Profession
In the future there will be many more clients with opioid addictions in acupuncture practices. Acupuncture is being promoted as an excellent resource to help with recovery from opioid addiction.
Fixing a Major Practice Hurdle in Wisconsin
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has signed Assembly Bill 834, legislation repealing the requirement that DCs wishing to practice in Wisconsin score higher on Part III and Part IV of the NBCE examination than is required in most other states.
Lancet LBP Series: Relevance to the Chiropractic Profession
The Lancet Low Back Pain Working Group consists of a team of leading international experts on back pain from different professional backgrounds and from countries around the globe. The group published a series of three papers in The Lancet on March 21, 2018, and have subsequently received significant media attention. Here is a summary of the relevant data from these three important papers.
The Pain of Chemotherapy: A Case Study
The primary reason for presenting this case study and patient is to review the pain relief response she experienced from micro-current electro-acupuncture for taxane induced neuropathy.
Standard Process Unveils Nutrition Innovation Center
The North Carolina Research Campus, a 350-acre research center in Kannapolis, North Carolina, just north of Charlotte, is a research collaborative that includes university, corporate and community partners.
Renew Your Passion: The National
It's another August day in Florida with temperatures reaching almost 90 degrees. The sun is shining through the tall windows of the Hyatt Regency Orlando on all the attendees at The National by the Florida Chiropractic Association.
Corporate Chiropractic (Pt. 2): The Dark Side
In a previous DC article (May issue), I tried to make the case that the trend of corporations and franchises delivering chiropractic care might actually be positive.
Practicing Tai Chi Between the Seasons: Balancing the External and Internal Environments
Each morning for the past week, I have found myself to be a bit more tired than usual. There were nights when I went to bed a little late and nights I went to bed early, but it didn't make a difference.
The Spirit of the Points: The Pericardium Meridian (Part 2)
As indicated in part one of this series, the vast majority of our patients, regardless of the presence of physical symptoms, are also imbalanced at the levels of mind and spirit. The ancient Chinese knew that to treat the whole person, all levels must be taken into account so that complete balance and harmony can be achieved.
Leave Acupuncture to Acupuncturists
Colorado acupuncturists are desperately fighting to reverse a recent decision — the passing of HB18-1155 — that adds dry needling to physical therapists' scope of practice. You can support Colorado acupuncturists by signing their Change.org petition here.
Mineral Nutrition for Athletic Performance and Recovery
Research on sports, exercise, and mineral nutrition has been ongoing for decades. It is widely held that strenuous exercise can increase the need for minerals.
VA and Medicare Billing: Case of the Missing Modifier
Indeed, the Veterans Administration is paying directly to chiropractors for care under the VA Choice or PC3 Program. There are currently two administrators for this program: Health Net for the northeast and TriWest for the southwest (approximate geographic regions).
Text Neck: Assess and Adjust
A common presentation in a chiropractic clinical practice is the patient with neck pain and stiffness. Patients usually report limited range of motion on rotation of the head and neck.
Legos Lead to New Patients
It's time to examine a different way of envisioning the marketing and promotional flows in your office. This 10,000-foot perspective I like to call your practice's "marketing Legos." Much like the Legos we all played with as kids – now you get to sort them out in practice!
A Report From the 3rd Annual ASA Council Congress
This past March the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) was proud to hold its third annual ASA Council Congress in Denver, Colorado.
The Gut/Brain Relationship: Exploring Brain Diseases
Several thousand years ago ancient Chinese doctors stressed the importance of a healthy diet, and leading a healthy lifestyle as the primary ingredient to maintaining health.
Art of the Associateship: Success Is in the Finances
Finances are an important part of any business relationship. Money serves as the fuel for all business operations and ultimately the long-term success of owners, employees and customers. This is especially true in the world of health care.
Give Obesity the Attention It Deserves: Practice Pointers
During my earlier years in practice, I first became aware of the obesity problem in New Mexico because of an offer to star in a movie.
Low Back Rehab: Hip Mobility
The strength of chiropractic physical rehabilitation is first and foremost CMT, closely followed by our appreciation of a whole-body approach to balancing the entire kinetic chain.
K2: The Supplement for Your Anti-Aging Treatments
While aging as a whole is inevitable, some aspects of aging may actually be caused by a simple vitamin deficiency. That's right – wrinkles, stiff muscles and decreased athletic performance can all be symptoms of just one micronutrient deficiency: vitamin K2.
NIH Agenda: How Will More Drugs Help?
National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Francis Collins announced in April that his agency will be partnering with drug manufacturers to address the opioid and pain crisis. The project is known as the Helping to End Addiction Long-Term (HEAL) Initiative.
A Five-Step Plan for Marketing the Sale of Your Practice
We spend so much time and energy educating ourselves to be successful practitioners that many of us never stop to consider what comes next. What happens if you have a great practice but you need to move, are getting burned out, or are simply ready to retire and try something else?
A Model for Integrative Health in the U.S.
This past March I met Dr. Benjamin Kligler, national director for the Integrative Health Coordinating Center of the Veterans Administration (VA), at an Integrative Health and Wellness Congressional Caucus briefing, where he presented on the VA health care system.
February, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 02
Helping Babies Heal from Difficult Births with CranioSacral Therapy
By Janine Blanchard
Newborns and infants express themselves by gurgling, crying and wailing. But what if you feel like you can't satisfy their needs or simply don't know what's going on? In CranioSacral Therapy, we "listen" to what a baby has to say with our "thinking, feeling, seeing, knowing fingers," a term that the founder of Craniosacral Therapy, W.G. Sutherland, coined. We use touch to learn how trauma or difficult experiences have left their mark on the baby. This gives us important information about what's happening with a baby who seems upset or unhappy.
As a CranioSacral Therapist, I work with different tides in the body associated with a child's nervous system. I am able to palpate subtle rhythms in the body, similar to, but more subtle than the breath and heart beat. This helps me discover what might be inhibiting a child's balance or state of well-being. For example, with my knowing hands and fingers, I can find restrictions in parts of the skull. These can occur where a complicated or long birth process causes cranial bones to move and position themselves on top of each other. I can then help the body correct these problems.
Take newborn Amelia, for instance. Her family brought her into my office because she was in respiratory distress after birth. She spent weeks in the newborn intensive care unit so that her breathing could be monitored. After examining Amelia, I concluded that her breathing was shallow. Her little lungs felt like they were not using the room they had to unfold and breathe deeply. Her ribcage was not expanding all the way. We call these "underinflated" lungs. I see this in cases when the baby will attempt her first breath while the torso is still in the birth canal and only the head is delivered.
I worked to settle Amelia's lungs. First, I placed my fingers on her sternum and confirmed the "under-inflated" feel of the tissues under my fingers. I sensed the shock and trauma involved in this part of her body. I could feel pent-up energy, which I worked to release. After this, Amelia took a deep breath and fell into a deep relaxation. To help heal Amelia's trachea, which was irritated by medical procedures, I brought the tissues involved into a "point of balanced membranous tension," a physiological process that allows the tissues to relax. The next time I saw Amelia, the newborn didn't show symptoms of respiratory difficulties and all family members were less worried about their baby.
When newborns like Amelia experience difficult births, they can move away from what CranioSacral Therapists view as the ideal state: to be in the here-and-now, grounded in the present. Babies can move away from this state before and during the birthing process if they're exposed to fear. Fear can cause infants to disconnect from the present moment and function in the "fear" mode — worried and unsettled. They operate under the influence of the sympathetic nervous system, the system that kicks in the fight-or-flight response when in danger.
This process can begin in the womb. Imagine your baby in your womb. The close physiological connection between mother and her embryo influences the unborn and may set the stage for how the baby perceives and responds to challenging situations throughout life. This connection is known as prenatal programming. It is possible that a mother with constantly raised levels of cortisol, released under stress during her pregnancy, may well produce a child with hyperactivity or behavioral problems.
For this reason, it's important for pregnant mothers to reduce stress during pregnancy. What's more, creating the right birth environment is critical. Leaving the womb is an intense process and, ideally, babies should enter an environment that's as similar as possible to the physical environment of the womb. Babies should be welcomed by soft light, familiar voices and the warmth of the mother's arms. Such conditions stimulate the production of oxytoxin – also called the "love hormone" – to reaffirm the bond between mother and child.
A baby's first moments have an enormous influence on the weeks and possibly years or decades after labor. Ideally, we want mother and baby to feel as much skin-to-skin contact as possible. This also will release oxytoxin, a neuro-hormone that is naturally released in an intimate relationship. It is the hormone produced during orgasm, and it is an important hormone for breastfeeding mothers. This magical love hormone is stimulated in the mother by her infant's scent or by pheromones (chemicals sensed by smell).
When we don't provide a nurturing birth environment, the baby can experience trauma, physical problems and emotional imbalances. When baby cannot be close to mom after birth and is exposed to strangers, sharp light and loud noises, baby falls into a state of fight-or-flight. But the child is too small to react the way adults would. The baby's sympathetic system stays in high alert and the newborn in high stress and anxiety. This can result in symptoms like restlessness, digestive problems or sleeping difficulties.
Since a baby's nervous system is growing so rapidly at this point, the negative experiences can biologically follow the child through life, making it hard for the child to adapt comfortably to change and new beginnings. It is always amazing for me to see and feel how infants can slowly let go of their history of trauma and move back toward health. In a CranioSacral session, babies can unwind, which is a term for moving one's own tissues into a more adaptable state. Babies can literally re-experience parts of their birth process, "telling" us their birth story. Sometimes they will move their bodies the way they did coming through the birth canal, but this time giving their tissues the opportunity to avoid getting stuck or traumatized.
Tony, for example, had to be delivered by vacuum extraction because of birth-related complications. He was a rather fidgety, restless newborn and had digestive problems. Medical findings were inconclusive. In our first session, I noticed tension in his cranial bones. There was also an irritation on the vagus nerve, which is the major nerve for controlling our digestive system and parasympathetic nervous system. I treated him by releasing tension in the cranial bones, freeing the vagal nerve and regulating the autonomic nervous system to function freely. During the session, Tony's system settled and his little body relaxed.
The tension in Tony's system was most likely caused by direct pressure on his head from the vacuum extraction. A natural birth usually involves less direct and more equal distribution of force. After a few more sessions working with other birth-related issues in his system, Tony became more content in everyday life and his digestive system started to settle. It's possible this therapy helped him avoid problems later in life. For example, we often find food sensitivities and attention disorders in children who experience births like Tony's.
In a therapy session, we have the opportunity to provide the most nurturing environment, correcting the initial traumas the body innocently embraced. In this way, babies' sense of presence is strong and healthy again. They no longer operate in the fear state. By re-establishing proper states in the body, old, unhealthy patterns fade and the infant is set to welcome new experiences and opportunities for growth and love.
Janine Blanchard is a European Osteopath and CranioSacral Therapist in Portland specializing in pre- and postpartum care, infants and children. For more information about her work, visit www.janineblanchard.com.
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