resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Raditation & Your Smartphone: Is it Worth the Risk?
If radial arteries could talk (and in my experience they can to some extent), they would say, "Step away from the smartphone." At least that is the message I am receiving loud and clear as I feel the pulses of many patients.
New Relationships, Old Trauma: AOM & Other Healing Strategies
Being in love is one the most beautiful and enjoyable experiences. Most of us are willing to pay almost any price to have that experience, and still often find it elusive or fleeting. Navigating the ups and downs of loving relationships are often challenging — even for the most psychologically balanced among us.
Is It Time to Rethink Mental Illness? (Pt. 1)
Invariably, patients will ask their chiropractor about depression or various mental illnesses. Some practitioners will reflexively offer a cervical adjustment, suggest St. John's wort or contemplate a referral to a specialist.
A Daily Strategy for Heavy-Metal Detox
In modern society, we are constantly exposed to heavy metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. These heavy metals have no essential biochemical roles in our body, and conversely, can cause us a great deal of harm if they build up to toxic levels.
A Major Role in Back Pain: The Multifidus
Back pain affects roughly 80 percent of the population at one time or another and is one of the leading causes of doctor visits.
Bill With Confidence: Learn What to Collect
Q: I am trying to understand what I may collect from my patient when there is insurance. Do I have to accept the amount allowed by the plan or may I collect up to my billed amount? Please note, I am not a member of any insurance plan.
An Unexpected Diagnosis: The Result of Lacking Communication
A couple years ago I had a case that showed me the importance of open communication between health practitioners. We need to show up with less fear, and let go of our judgments so we can do better for the patient.
Why I Quit Doing House Calls
My father was a chiropractor who did house calls, so when I became a DC, I figured doing house calls was part of the job. My March article recalled my experience as a small boy, accompanying my dad while he went to patients' homes to treat them.
Balancing Spring Challenges
As the winter months come to a close and warmer spring weather appears, patients may begin to present with new challenging pattern presentations.
Women's Hormones: A Western & Eastern Perspective
Sometimes it may seem that you require a degree in medicine to understand hormones and how they function.
Give Yourself the Digital Advantage
When you see this article in the print version of this issue and swear you read it already, don't be alarmed: you probably did. That's because by that time, the May issue will have been available online in digital format for three weeks.
News in Brief
ACA Adopts New Governance Model; ACA 2017 Awards; CCA Helps Calif. DCs "Share the Love"; $1 Million to Help Advance the Profession; D'Youville Raises the Bar on Anatomy Education; ErRatum.
Taking the Chiropractic Message to the Press
"There is no better place on earth to have a news event," the National Press Club boasts, and it's easy to understand why: Every year, the 108-year-old Washington, D.C.-based organization hosts countless press conferences on the hottest topics impacting America and often the world.
Universal Design: Principles & Practice
In many respects, universal design serves as the core of ergonomics. It's also a good tool to use when designing a return-to-work program for injured and/or ill patients. Let's take a closer look at universal design and why it should matter to you and your patients.
Clearing Blocks: A Way to Improve Cosmetic Acupuncture
As a Five Element acupuncturist who teaches facial acupuncture classes nationally, I was surprised to learn that one of the basic principles I was taught in school is unfamiliar to most acupuncturists.
Creating Good Business Buzz
What do patients really think about working with you? Rarely do you hear the whole truth. Those who improve may be candid in their gratitude.
An Integrated Approach to Chronic Pain
Findings from a unique Medicaid pilot project in Rhode Island involving high-use Medicaid recipients from two health plans were recently presented to the state's Department of Health, demonstrating stellar outcomes with regard to medication use, ER visits, health care costs and patient satisfaction.
Is the New Medicare Reporting Exemption Right for You?
What you've heard is not a rumor – there will be exemptions for providers of Medicare patients, with no penalties assessed for offices that do not do Quality Payment Program (EHR, PQRS, MACRA and MIPS) reporting.
Eczema & Acupuncture: A Sound Solution (Part 1)
Eczema affects approximately 3.5 percent of the global population and is one of the most common skin complaints seen by dermatologists.
Employing the Whole Person Approach to Massage
I was reminded again of the need to address aspects of a condition that might not be immediately apparent when one of my aromatherapy students called me for advice about which essential oils to use for her teenage son. He had been in a serious, head-on car collision and had not been sent to the hospital by responding officers. They had apparently thought the behavior caused by his concussion might instead be drug or alcohol related (they weren't). When a mother's instinct led my student to take her son to the ER, doctors found there was serious trauma to the head, neck, shoulders and upper spine. They also said his concussion required 24 hour observation. Now, he was coming home and she worried that she might not be able to help him relieve his symptoms by only using lavender oil. Her immediate thought was about the pain and his difficulty sleeping.
As she spoke, I realized she was also angry and in shock, just like her son was likely to be. After all, going home to sleep instead of getting to the hospital could have led to serious repercussions to his health. I was not being called upon for massage services, but at some point this boy would certainly be in the capable hands of a massage therapist to help address the muscular-skeletal situation. And if the massage therapist wanted to get powerful results, they would want to consider this whole situation, just as I did now. Doing this meant that, along with choosing sedative and anti-inflammatory essential oils, I would include those essences that would address emotional shock, tension, and anger. In order to do this, knowledge of what is called the "subtle" properties of essential oils is necessary.
Shock, as an acute stress reaction, is a psychological condition. It happens in response to intensely traumatic events and affects the sympathetic division of the autonomic nervous system. At first, the person may appear to be in a daze or unresponsive to the reality of the situation. That state will move toward the observable physiological symptoms, including agitation, hyperactivity, anxiety, impaired judgement, confusion, detachment, and depression. Tachycardia, sweating and pallor may also be present. While some of the more obvious signs of shock can disappear within several days, we now know that post traumatic shock syndrome (PTSD) can last a lifetime, taking the form of "panic attacks" or more severe depression, and even violent behavior, to self or others.
Addressing shock as soon as possible seems advisable. I suggested that to a pain relieving, anti-inflammatory and sleep promoting blend of lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), sweet marjoram (Origanum majorana), and Roman chamomile (Anthemus nobilis), my student should add neroli (Citrus aurantium var. amara), and/or ylang ylang (Cananga odorata) to counteract shock, and patchouli (Pogostemon cablin) to create a feeling of grounded stability in the body. To augment the grounding properties and specifically address anger, myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) could be included. If myrrh or patchouli were not available, atlas cedarwood, (Cedrus atlantica) could substitute. It brings strength and confidence during stressful times, and the Roman chamomile would work on the anger aspect. If cost is an issue, ylang ylang is a less expensive flower essence than neroli. However, neroli also brings spiritual connection and only a drop is needed to bestow the subtle effect. This blend would be used in diffusion, so it would help both mother and son. Any of the ingredients could be added later to carrier oil for massage. As time goes on, this blend should be adjusted when different emotions or physical needs appear.
Adding the subtle properties of an essential oil to the consideration of a blend is a way to treat the whole person. Doing so augments the desired outcome for all clients, not just those suffering from traumatic events. Because it can take time to learn these aspects of essential oils, I recommend several books for reference to have in the library. (The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy, by Salvatore Battaglia includes subtle effects in the descriptions of oils. Another good resource for subtle properties is Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit by Gabriel Mojay.) Eventually, after using them for this purpose, the subtle properties will spring to mind automatically.
Author's Note: Farewell to Readers
With an article on my favorite aspect of aromatherapy – the way it is used to benefit the whole person, body, mind and spirit – I am taking my leave as a columnist Massage Today. For fourteen years, I've been privileged to write these articles. I am grateful that I have been able to provide the knowledge and experience of an independent, professional aromatherapist and convey the resources I have come to know and trust. In an age of increasing Internet publications that often fall, sometimes dangerously short of reality and safe practice, this is even more important. Over the years, I have offered the best of my own experience and information, and enjoyed a wonderful relationship with both readers and my excellent editors, past and present. But now, it is time to pass the baton on to a younger generation to receive their insights and wisdom.