resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
News in Brief
Northwestern Student Honored for Addressing Concussions Head-On; Northwestern Announces New CFO; Life U. to Provide Unique Opportunity.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
Understanding the Seven Senses in Pediatric Massage
When we are born, we go through a series of changes which lead into our adult life. From growth and physical development, to a myriad of sensory experiences, which help to form who we are and how we take in the world. Some children's senses integrate at a different rate, and they may experience what is known as inefficient sensory integration. When too much information enters the brain and nervous system, the child may be unable to cognitively process what is happening. In simple terms, they may not be able to filter input in the same way as another child. Carol Kranowitz, has helped to define three causes of poor sensory integration:
Just as we would adjust our session for each adult client, we would do the same for children. However, for those with sensory integration differences we need to take into consider all seven senses when making such adjustments.
The proprioceptive system is the unconscious awareness that tells us our body position relative to other body parts and to the environment. This system provides information that helps a child understand movement and touch. This unconscious sense contributes to the development of motor planning which aids us in movement and action. In many cases, when we receive appropriate propriopceptive stimulation, hyperactivity tends to decrease. It is rare that proprioceptive input would cause an overload the nervous system and cause anxiety.
The proprioceptive system is connected with both the tactile and vestibular systems. Tactile-proprioceptive (somatosensory) is the simultaneous stimulation of touch and body position, while the vestibular-proprioceptive perception is the simultaneous awareness of head and body positions while moving in the environment.
For children, receiving even pressure during your therapeutic session can not only be received as calming input, but can provide much needed proprioceptive input. Using still hands placed on the body in a consistent and routine pattern, can often be much more calming for children, as opposed to lots of continuous and non-patterned gliding motions.
The vestibular system is the sensory system that responds to the position of the head in relation to gravity. The neck, eyes and body adjust constantly with movement of the body. In general, stimulation of the vestibular system does not cause any conscious sensation, although some low frequency stimulation may cause nausea, dizziness or rhythmic eye movements.
There are two main components of the vestibular system, which include:
For children with vestibular differences, positioning during your session becomes important. If we ask a child to lay or sit in a position that causes them to be off balance, we may create an uncomfortable environment. Movement should be slow and strategic, which includes any movement from therapy mat to chair to massage table.
The sense of touch is critical in helping us to function on a daily basis. For all children, receiving repetitive and consistent tactile stimulation is necessary. Tactile stimulation helps to keep us organized and functioning. Through our sensory receptors, we feel sensations of pressure, vibration, movement, temperature and pain. Just as the vestibular system has two components, the tactile system does as well.
The protective system is a more primitive component that alerts us when something potentially dangerous is touching our bodies. The body reacts against the environment to protect itself from being harmed by evoking a fight or flight response while at other times will simply alert the nervous system.
The discriminative system is more advanced and provides us with details about touch such as, the pressure, texture, and area where the touch is provided on the body. A successful tactile system depends on a balance between both the protective and discriminative systems. When this system is not balanced tactile defensiveness or under-responsive tactile discrimination results.
With touch therapy, we have a variety of options to help create the best session. We can use lubricant, or not and we can use a variety of tactile tools, puppets and textures. Spend the time to really find out what is best for each individual as far as pressure, movements and use of lubricant.
This system is responsible for our sense of smell and ability to detect odors in our environment. For some children, they may have a heightened sense of smell that can lead to a fixation in wanting to smell a particular scent, or the opposite, an aversion to a distinct odor. With this is mind, it becomes even more important to create an unscented environment for pediatric clients and patients. Particular caution needs to be extended to the use or introduction of any essential/aromatherapy oils. Using such oils is not advised with children unless you have significant training in the area and know that you are using a quality oil.
Eyesight is only one component of vision, however there are four other components that are also influenced by the vestibular system that do aid in visual processing. The four components attributed to vision include:
Providing an environment free of overwhelming visual stimulation is key. If there are too many busy patterns, if the room is too bright (i.e. pediatric dentist office), you may have a child who becomes overwhelmed visually and cannot calm to receive touch therapy well. You are often better served with a simple, plain environment or a single visual focus.
Audition involves both the process of "hearing," as well as the process of what is being heard. The act of hearing is not to just physically to detect sounds, but also to integrate and assimilate the sound information received by the environment. Audition is also associated with the vestibular system.
In our work then, the standard massage environment set up with classical music or those containing animal sounds, may not be as soothing to a client with auditory processing differences. Music choices, or the lack of, should be considered when creating the best environment for a pediatric massage to take place.
One of the very first ways we explore our environment as an infant is through the action of bringing items to our mouths. The compact presentation of tactile receptors in the lips, mouth, tongue, cheeks and gums are all stimulated and give us information about the object. As we grow, we continue to depend less on oral stimulation to understand our environment, however, this sense still plays a strong role in our daily functioning.
As therapists, we need to observe children for biting, grinding and other oral behaviors which may be an indication of possible anxiety, or self stimulation of the oral cavity. Providing targeted massage can often address a need for oral stimulation whether extra-orally, or intra-orally by trained providers.