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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.
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."
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
News in Brief
Northwestern Student Honored for Addressing Concussions Head-On; Northwestern Announces New CFO; Life U. to Provide Unique Opportunity.
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.
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."
Specialized Pro-Resolving Mediators: 21st Century Inflammation Fighters
Specialized pro-resolving mediators, or SPMs, are a portion of the omega-3 fatty-acid spectrum that have been shown to have a powerful effect on reducing inflammation.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Oh, The Places You Will Go
Massage therapists are notorious for not taking their own advice. Most of the therapists I know tell me they are too busy or can't afford to get regular massage. When asked, "When was your last massage?" I am often answered with a rolling of the eyes and the statement, "Way too long ago." Why is that? Schools train students that consistent massage has lasting benefits, and on an intuitive level we know it to be true. We advocate for our clients to schedule weekly, bi-monthly or monthly at the least, for their own benefit (and for the benefit of our pockets) yet most therapists don't walk the walk. In fact, I know therapists who lie to their clients so they don't have to admit they don't care for themselves the way they recommend their clients do. It's nothing short of madness.
Since the two greatest objections to receiving consistent massage are time and money, you must overcome these obstacles on a personal level if you expect your clients to do the same. How can you ask your clients to do something you are not willing to do? And if you've read any of my other articles or blog posts, you will recall that these objections of time and money are a CHOICE. After all, don't most people have the time and money they need for the things they value most? If your clients are not willing to spend time and money on massage, you haven't convinced them of the value. Moreover, you are not convinced in the value of your services and your profession if you don't receive regular bodywork yourself.
Let's drop the money argument right away. There is no reason for you blame finances on your lapse in getting regular massage care. Barter it. You have a valuable service and most therapists would be thrilled to set up a trade. Remember, as per Internal Revenue Service regulations, bartering is considered taxable income but that's a topic for another article. Look up www.irs.gov and type "barter" in the search bar for more information. Personally, I prefer to pay for services instead of bartering. The boundaries are cleaner as I usually don't work on the therapists I see for care. I also don't have room in my schedule for additional clients so fitting in a barter appointment would prove more stressful than paying out of pocket. Each situation is different, but with the option at your disposal, the money barrier is swiftly removed.
Time is a factor that you control. Sure we could all use more time. There isn't a person I know who isn't "way too busy" and desperate to find more hours in the day. Make caring for yourself a priority or sooner or later, you'll be useless to everyone. Many therapists start carrying a grudge after years of caring for clients and not caring for themselves in similar ways. These grudges can show up in your hands. Don't have time for a full hour massage? Get a chair massage or schedule a half an hour. You know the drill; find a way to fit it in. Enough said.
When asked how often I get massages, I can honestly look in someone's eyes and say, "every two weeks." I have done that for the 20 years I have been practicing with very few exceptions. Once a month I go to my regular therapist. She is consistent, works my injuries and knows my body very well. I rarely pay attention to what she is doing and often drift off to my happy place. Once a month, I go to someone I have never been to before and will probably never go back to. Even if I like the person, this experience is more research for me. Learning about the industry, picking up new techniques, I pay very close attention to every detail of the experience from the initial phone call to the exit interview. In fact, I often don't confess my profession so I can be incognito. For some reason, when it is discovered that I am a massage therapist and educator, the conversation and the treatment changes.
Moreover, I like to get massages from other places in the country and the world. Whenever I travel, I take advantage of seeing a therapist that trained elsewhere. Technique and overall approach varies dramatically based on geography and I find the experience fascinating. Because I travel so much, I often find myself in airports with time to kill. This provides an excellent opportunity for a massage. Just last week, I was blown away in Atlanta by a woman who promised to make my feet "lighter than air" and get me to my flight on time. Her attention to my schedule meant I didn't have to look at my watch or be concerned about my departure. This was all part of the experience and as a result, she received a handsome tip. As promised, I floated to my gate after the treatment.
You may not travel as much as I do, but I guarantee you'll find yourself out of town at some point. Don't miss the chance to experience someone else's work. Don't miss the chance to take care of yourself. It is sure to be a positive experience for your body and your mind. And to quote one of my favorite doctors, "Oh the places you'll go."