resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Jingei Diagnosis: An Effective and Powerful Diagnostic
I graduated from the Kotatama Institute under the direction of Drs. Masahilo and Katsuharu Nakazono in 1984. As a student, I was exposed to the practice of most of the various theories and modalites of Oriental Medicine.
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.
Connecting and Expressing a Language of the Human Heart
There is growing awareness of the value of massage for people living with Alzheimer's disease and related dementia. Anyone caring for someone with dementia is faced with the challenge of guiding the person who is confused or agitated, while at the same time assisting with personal care, mobility and other functional tasks.
Touch has the power to enhance physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. A hand massage elicits positive, life-affirming feelings and responses. Hands reflect the landscape of a person's life and when you touch someone's hands with compassion and sensitivity, you acknowledge their whole life experience. For caregivers, touch becomes a language of the human heart.
Evidence suggests that 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.
The only essential supply is massage lotion. A standard -size pillow and hand towel is also used in this protocol. While a pillow adds comfort, it isn't absolutely necessary in order to provide a soothing hand massage.
Center yourself and take a cleansing breath to focus your attention and intention. Take a moment to establish trust with the elder and gain permission to provide the massage. Sit facing the person, to the side. Be sure that you can reach the shoulder area without strain. A simple way to add comfort is to place one end of the pillow under the person's arm which provides support for the massage and creates a connection between the two of you. Cover the pillow with a hand towel to keep the pillowcase clean.
Begin with focused touch; simply hold the person's hand. Place your attention on their hand and think about all the ways their hands have served their life. Notice the lines, the elegance, the strength or the fragility, whatever is there. Linger here a moment, simply enjoying the connection.
Apply massage lotion to the hand. If the person has on long sleeves, push the sleeve up a little to expose the forearm.
Open the palm. Access the palm by reaching around the hand from above to gently squeeze and spread the palm. This softens and warms the hand, preparing it for the finer strokes that follow. Turn the hand onto its side with palm facing center. Using the palm of your own hand, apply broad circles into the palm, using your other hand as support.
Turn the hand palm up. Provide thumb circles on the palm, covering the entire surface inch by inch, with a slow, rhythmic motion. You may be able to apply a little more pressure to the fleshy areas of the palm base of thumb and outer edges.
Grasp each finger near its base between your thumb and index finger and spiral them around, moving from the base to the tip. The flowing stroke provides a soothing touch to the entire arm as a way to close the hand massage. Place both your hands on the shoulder and gently glide your hands down the arm and off the tips of the fingers. Repeat by starting again at the shoulder. The stroke is only moving down the arm. This touch is with full-contact, fingers relaxed as you flow your hands along the arm.
Repeat sequence on the other hand and arm.
A Case Study
Mary was an 81-year-old woman with Alzheimer's disease. She experienced anxiety, restlessness and insomnia. She required a wheelchair because she no longer was able to safely ambulate and had fallen several times. She had difficulty communicating which frustrated her. She sometimes yelled out and banged on her wheelchair. She attended group activities, but the yelling and banging was upsetting to the others and she often was removed from the group. She spent much of her time alone in her room.
I saw Mary for sessions twice a week. Sessions took place in her room while she was sitting in her wheelchair. Each session lasted 20 to 30 minutes and typically took place in the morning before lunch. Mary was receptive to having her hands massaged and she seemed to enjoy the attention of a visitor. I used a hand and arm massage protocol similar to the one described above.
After three weeks, the Activity Director told me that Mary was able to remain in more group activities without disruptive yelling or banging behavior. This resulted in more opportunities for social interaction for Mary. After six weeks, I demonstrated a simple hand massage technique that the staff could use in addition to our continued sessions. The nurse reported that Mary was less restless and that she slept better at night. The overall impact of our sessions was an increase in the quality of life for Mary and decreased stress for the staff.
Compassionate, skilled touch has specific therapeutic applications in dementia care. Human touch eases distress while fostering positive relationships. In his book, Dementia Beyond Drugs, Dr. Allen Power agrees: "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.