How we ever lived in a society that denied the prowess of a chiropractor is beyond my understanding. Accidents happen in every single medical field but somehow it fell to the chiropractors to be shouldered with a burden of doubt and mistrust due to unsubstantiated rumors of serious injuries and even death at their supposed bone-warping hands. These concerns were the furthest thing from my mind when I made the decision to visit my San Jose chiropractor after a prevailing twinge in my back began to increase in pain throughout the day. I’ve never experienced any kind of back pain but if this is the sort of pain that millions of Americans are having to live with I can only feel profound sympathy for them. Continue reading →
Occupational therapy is an allied health profession. This term is used to refer to the wide range of professional groups that work in mainstream health care. Other examples of allied health professionals include physiotherapists, radiographers, speech and language therapists, and podiatrists. Occupational therapists are required to train at degree level and register with the Health Profession Council, which was set up by the government to ensure the safety of the public and continuing professional development of its members.
Occupational therapists are concerned with human occupation in its widest sense. They believe that people have an intrinsic drive to be active and express themselves via occupations and activities. Occupational therapists understand that occupations contribute to a person’s sense of identity and place in society. Take a moment to have a think about all the roles and occupations that make up your life, you may be a parent, or partner, you may be studying at college or working your way up the career ladder, you may be into exercising and keeping fit or you may be leading a hippy lifestyle!
Whatever, your life choices, it is likely that these roles and occupations give your life direction. For example, think about the range of activities that you do in any week, you will find that most of what you do, is related to your life roles and choice of occupations. This is because we do what is meaningful to us and what is necessary (ironing is likely to fall into the latter category!).
It is activity that keeps the mind and body functioning. Through what you do, you learn new skills and how to adapt, get to interact with other people and your environment, meet human needs and develop who you are. Activities are the things we do to work towards our goals. They are the framework of everyday life.
It is understood that if your routines are disrupted or you are deprived of occupation because of illness, stress or other problems your health and well-being will suffer. Occupational therapists help people whose usual and important routines are disrupted because of illness, stress or social problems. Their aim is to enable people to achieve as much as they can for themselves, so they get the most out of life. Occupational therapists work on any occupational difficulties and in this way are experienced life coaches. When people cannot do things which are important to them – such as getting dressed, giving a presentation at work, having a shower, working, socializing, feeling confident to go out into the community or undertaking a favorite hobby – an occupational therapist can help them in many ways, based on each individual person’s needs and lifestyle.
Occupational therapy can help you to maintain a personally satisfying routine of activities. Occupational therapy, life coaching is available privately in Aldbury in Hertfordshire. I am an NHS experienced occupational therapist and have worked with people with mental-health difficulties of all types, using a range of mental health therapy techniques. Occupational therapists are skilled at empowering individuals with depression, anxiety and stress to become re-engaged with life and to feel confident again. Life-coaching in Hertfordshire will involve a combination of occupational therapy, NLP, hypnotherapy, and CBT techniques.
What is it?
Craniosacral therapy developed from the work of an American osteopath, Dr William Sutherland in the early 1900s. It was further developed by Dr John E. Upledger following extensive scientific studies. Craniosacral therapy is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of the craniosacral system. This system comprises of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord.
How does it work?
Craniosacral practitioners use a soft touch to release restrictions in the craniosacral system with the aim of improving the functioning of the central nervous system. In a typical craniosacral session, the therapist will place his or her hands lightly on your body and identify any restrictions or blockages in your craniosacral system. The practitioner then uses a light touch to release the blockages that inhibit the body’s normal, self-correcting tendencies. The patient will notice a sense of deep relaxation throughout the session. With subsequent treatments, this release of tension extends into everyday life. Craniosacral therapy addresses physical aches and pains, acute and chronic diseases, emotional or psychological disturbances, and helps in developing well-being, health and vitality.
Thus, craniosacral therapy works by helping the body’s natural healing mechanisms dissipate the negative effects of stress on the central nervous system.
What are its benefits?
Because of its influence on the functioning of the central nervous system, craniosacral therapy can benefit the body in a number of ways. It can bolster overall health and resistance to disease and alleviate a wide range of specific medical conditions. Craniosacral therapy is a very gentle therapy. As such, it is suitable for the newborn, children, and the elderly, as well as adults and people in fragile or acutely painful conditions. It raises vitality and improves the body’s capacity for self-repair. Since craniosacral therapy complements the body’s natural healing processes, it is increasingly being used as a preventive health measure. It has been shown to alleviate a wide range of ailments such as traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries, migraine headaches, chronic fatigue, motor-coordination impairments, chronic neck and back pain, scoliosis, central nervous system disorders, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, stress and tension-related problems, and orthopedic problems.
Craniosacral therapy works to reverse the debilitating effects of stress by providing the conditions in which the nervous system can rest and rejuvenate. Other conditions for which it has shown to be effective are various sensory disorders such as autism, dyslexia, loss of taste or smell, tinnitus, and vertigo.
Although craniosacral therapy is by and large safe for people of all age groups and fitness levels, there are certain situations where its application is not recommended. These include conditions such as acute aneurysm and cerebral hemorrhage.
What is Sports Massage Therapy
An athlete, before a performance, is under immense stress emotionally and physically and the body is also prone to injuries. Practices before the event lead to constant build-up of tension in the muscles and cause stress on joints, ligaments, tendons, as well as the muscles themselves. Apart from muscle tension, the athlete is also bogged down with fatigue and injuries which may hamper the main performance. Sports massage is the answer to emotional and physical well being for an athlete before, after and during a performance.
Sports Massage is a specific type of massage which is generally rendered before, during, and after athletic events to help prepare the athlete for desired performance, to relax the nerves and prevent injuries. This type of massage can be rendered only by a professional who has a thorough understanding of anatomy and physiology and particularly the muscular and skeletal systems.
Sports Massage works deep to eliminate toxins embedded in muscle fibers, remove adhesions, and minimize scar tissue buildup. Muscle lengthening in sports massage helps restore a range of motion and overall flexibility. Sports massage also leads to improved circulation which aids better cell nutrition, greater elasticity of muscle fiber, and reduced recovery time.
Sports massage is a blend of Swedish massage and Shiatsu specifically designed to cater to the needs of professional athletes. Depending on the needs of the athlete, a variety of techniques are used including classic Swedish strokes, cross-fiber friction, pressure-point work, and joint mobilization.
Types of Sports Massage
Sports massage therapy includes pre-event, post-event, maintenance and rehabilitation techniques that promote greater athletic endurance and performance, reduced chances of injury and faster healing.
Pre-Event sports massage helps warm up the muscles by stretching them and making them flexible for optimal athletic performance. A pre-event massage also stimulates the flow of blood and nutrients to the muscle, reduces muscle tension, loosen the muscles and produce a feeling of psychological readiness. A pre -event massage is best done up to two days prior to the main event.
Post- event massage focuses on relieving muscle soreness, minimizing the effects of fatigue and reducing the stress levels in the body. It also helps reduce swelling, maintain flexibility, promote blood flow to the muscle to remove lactic acid and waste build-up and reduce cramping. This also helps faster healing.
This is more of a maintenance massage which can be done at least once a week as a regular part of athletic training programs. Preventive massage increases the flow of blood and nutrients to the muscle and helps repair small tears due to strenuous physical activity. It also keeps tissue loose so that different layers of muscle slide over each other.
Sports massage is also used as a last resort in the event of injury. Sports massage helps rehabilitate by minimizing the adverse effects of scar tissue and adhesions caused to the athlete and helps regain lost flexibility and strength.
Techniques in Sports Massage
There are three main techniques of massage frequently used in sport, namely effleurage, petrissage and frictions. Most of the massage techniques ensure the main pressure is directed towards the heart to increase the venous and lymphatic flow. The strokes also ensure that excess pressure does not cause any damage to blood vessels. While effleurage is a preparatory background stroke, petrissage allows detail work on the body in releasing tension followed by friction.
Benefits of Sports Massage
The benefits of sports massage impact the physical, physiological and psychological levels. A state of well being is achieved only when all the three aspects are in balance. Here is a compilation of the key benefits attained at each level through a sports massage:
Physical effects of massage are:
Deep massage causes the pores in tissue membranes to open, enabling fluids and nutrients to pass through enabling removal of waste products such as lactic acid.
Deep massage encourages the muscles to take up oxygen and nutrients which promote faster healing
Sports massage stretches muscles to release tension or stress caused due to excess physical activity
Sports massage helps break down scar tissues which usually affect the muscle, tendons and ligaments which impair performance.
Sports massage helps improve elasticity of tissues.
Physiological effects of sports massage are:
Sports massage helps reduce pain.
Muscles are relaxed after a sports massage
Psychological effects of sports massage include:
Reduced levels of anxiety and stress caused due to relaxed muscles and nerves.
Sports massage stimulates a sense of well being and health.
Sports Massage Therapist
A sports massage therapist must be trained & certified in Sports massage therapy from a school accredited by the American Massage Therapy Association/Commission on Massage Training Accreditation/Approval (AMTA/COMTAA) or their State Board of Education. A professional therapist may also have completed an additional training program approved by the AMTA National Sports Massage Certification Program. Many sports massage therapists also complete the National Certification Examination for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork.
People who suffer from the following conditions or disorders should consult a physician before under going a sports massage:
acute infectious disease
high blood pressure
inflammation due to tissue damage
varicose veins and certain skin conditions.
Muscle ruptures or Tendon ruptures
Burns, Chilblains and Broken bones
Rheuatoid Arthritis and Gout
Artificial blood vessels
Bleeding disorders such as heamophillia
What is it?
One of the body’s most amazing attributes is its ability to heal itself. Most health problems occur due to blockages and other dysfunctions that slow down or reduce the body’s healing properties. Integrative Manual Therapy is a unique set of techniques and methodologies that address pain, dysfunction, disease and disability by locating the causes of these dysfunctions or blockages and reopening the body’s natural lines of communication. Once this inherent flow is re-established, the body’s healing abilities also take over and right the imbalances present. Integrative Manual Therapy was developed by Dr. Sharon Weiselfish-Giammatteo in the 1970’s.
How does it work?
Integrative Manual Therapy, or IMT as it is called, is a health care process that encompasses a wide range of health care practices. It achieves health and healing by taking into account the diverse systems of the human body and addressing dysfunction at the cellular level. The therapy consists of a combination of functional and structural forms of rehabilitation that stem directly from the treatment of the musculoskeletal system.
The basic concept behind integrative manual therapy is that no part of the body functions independently, without being affected by its other parts. Therefore, integrative manual therapy treats the entire body as a whole and not just the area of pain and discomfort. Using this interconnectedness of multiple body systems, IMT therapists assist the body’s own innate intelligence to take corrective action.
During a typical IMT session, the therapist will first will locate any problems in your musculoskeletal structure, organs or organ-systems by using a series of gentle tapping motions with his or her hands along your body. Once the problem areas have been identified, the therapist uses gentle, non-invasive strokes to the body in order to encourage the healing process.
IMT addresses rehabilitation in two categories – Structural rehabilitation and Functional rehabilitation. Structural rehabilitation improves structural integrity of the body. It addresses joint mobility, muscle tone, soft tissue flexibility, range of motion, and muscle control. Functional rehabilitation addresses balance, coordination, strength, endurance, hearing, vision, speech, smell, learning, and behavior.
What are its benefits?
During the course of integrative therapy, the therapist is able to address the imbalances in the body in a non invasive way. This results in long lasting stabilizations within the body. It also allows the body to tap into its own self-healing capacity. Some of the common ailments that can greatly benefit from integrated manual therapy are back pain, neck pain, stiffness in joints, menstrual cramps, incontinence, acid reflux and other digestive problems, tendonitis, headaches and sleep apnea.
What is it?
The development of deep connective tissue massage therapy is credited to the German, Elizabeth Dicke. She had a medical condition in her legs that caused them to stay cold and discolored, and develop gangrene. One day while doing stretches in her lower back, she noticed warmth and a tingling sensation in her legs. When she continued the stretches, her legs gradually improved over time. She began to develop a massage technique based on her observations with two medical doctors, Kohlrausch and Teirich-Leube. This technique eventually came to be called deep connective tissue massage.
Deep connective tissue massage treats the body as a whole instead of just focusing on individual areas at a time. In this manner, it can treat the problem areas in the body by massaging connective tissues. Connective tissues fill the spaces in the body between muscles and fibers, and form a layer around blood vessels to protect them. They are very delicate and do not take stress well, therefore they can become injured and painful quite easily. Deep connective tissue massage aims to release myofascial restrictions in the body by healing injured connective tissues and breaking up any restrictive scar tissue.
How does it work?
During a typical therapy session, the massage therapist will focus on releasing tension from the deeper tissue structures of the muscle and fascia with deep, intense strokes. Oil or lotion is not usually used in this form of massage therapy. Deep connective tissue massage therapy works by physically breaking down adhesions in muscles, tendons and ligaments. These adhesions occur due to chronic muscle tension or injury and can result in blocked circulation, pain, limited mobility and inflammation. Deep connective tissue massage therapy also restores the length and flexibility of connective tissue by normalizing it and by improving the strength and overall health of the entire connective tissue system.
What are its benefits?
Deep connective tissue massage helps in relieving chronic tension, increasing the body’s range of motion, improves posture and enhances the natural harmony of the entire body and mind. It is a very powerful remedial tool for recovery from sports-related injuries, repetitive strain injury, osteoarthritis pain, fibromyalgia and muscle spasms.
Because deep connective tissue massage is a very intense form of massage therapy, do consult a medical practitioner before signing up for a therapy session. It is not recommended for people with infectious skin diseases, rashes or open wounds, people who are prone to blood clots, people who have just had surgery and pregnant women.
It’s amazing how few of us in mainstream society make effective use of natural health therapies when we have an ongoing health problem or when we are stuck down by a minor sudden illness or affliction.
Of course I’m not suggesting that you avoid seeking medical attention when the need arises, but rather that you seek out and become educated in natural health cures and remedies for many of the more common ailments.
I think you will agree that powerful and often harsh drugs are often over prescribed to patients and there seems to be a strong bias of general practitioners for the use and even overuse of potent prescription medicine.
While being mindful of the many risks and side effects of taking strong medicines, many people have been asking if there is a better way to treat and even prevent ill health and in particular the less severe afflictions, diseases and medical complaints without resorting to strong medications which often present serious adverse side effects and even contributing to ongoing ill health.
Of course many medical professionals who practice what most see as mainstream medicine would argue that natural health therapies simply don’t replace mainstream medical practices. But that’s hardly the argument and I’m not suggesting that we need to replace our GP’s and doctors with natural therapists.
Of course on the other side of the coin you will easily find that most natural health practitioners love to point out that your average general practitioner and family doctor has a vested interest in supporting medications produced by huge drug companies and it’s a little disturbing that this is more than likely true!
Of course there is truth in both arguments but the question needs to be asked, does mainstream medicine have anything to fear and does natural health care actually work and provides an effective treatment for illness?
Well the truth of the matter is that natural health therapies are extremely effective preventative measures for illness and also are highly effective for almost all diseases especially when caught in the early stages of the illness, in some cases natural therapies are so effective that many family doctors are now converting to the prescription of natural therapies over the counter and prescription drugs.
Natural therapies, natural health nutrition and the use of herbs and other remedies have been around far longer than modern medicine and few would argue that natural remedies for ill health often pose very few in any noticeable side effects as opposed to prescription or over the counter drugs.
Alternative Health Therapies are practiced all over the world by various types of health care givers, using naturopathic and preventive methods for curing various diseases, that may be either psychological or physiological. Alternative therapies primarily originated from the Indian Sub-Continent and China around 4000 years ago. From the mid-eighteenth century, during the Popular Health Movement, alternative medicine began to be widely practiced in America. Some of the common methods that were, and still are, used in alternative health therapies are naturopathy, chiropractic, herbalism, traditional Chinese medicine, aurveda, meditation, yoga, biofeedback, hypnosis, homeopathy, acupuncture, and nutritional-based therapies.
Practice of alternative medicine varies in its foundation and in its methodologies. It may be based on traditional techniques, spiritual beliefs, and even folk knowledge. Diseases like Scabies, Diabetes, High Cholesterol, High/Low Blood Pressure etc. may be cured by these alternative therapies. Psychological Disorders and also chronic diseases like cancer can be treated by the long term use of alternative medicine therapies. The major advantage of these alternative therapies is that they don’t possess as many side-effects as those evidence-based methods that use drugs and surgery. Various holistic approaches make alternative health therapies very effective. There are hundreds of universities and research centers that study alternative medicine and therapies. The practitioners of these fields are called Naturopathic Doctors. Also, there are vast numbers of healthcare centers that provide these services for those people seeking alternative health care. As every aspect in every sector of the world leads towards digitization and focusing on information technology, alternative therapies have also reached the homes of people, who may not usually have access to these treatments, through internet based health monitoring system. Numerous tools and gadgets have been invented and used for such specific purposes. Such tools have various sensors and transducers that effectively pick up slight changes in patients’ reflexes and cellular changes during monitoring. Practitioners can then examine the reports and treat accordingly. Not all alternative health practitioners will have access to all these tools and resources Neither will they all have the experience and knowledge to practice using such advanced methods, so if you are interested in remote health care and monitoring it is important to choose your alternative health care practitioner wisely and to vet their experience.
There is always something good about consuming natural or organic products. Herbalists and manufacturers of herbal medicine encourage the intake of herbal products as dietary supplements and medications. Herbalists study the positive effects of herbs on the body. Medication manufacturers work hand-in-hand with herbalists in developing products and medication out of herbal plants.
At some point in history, doctors refuted the use of herbal medicines in preventing and curing diseases. Nowadays, however, they acknowledge the positive impacts of herbs on human health. Herbalists integrate different parts herbal plants into tablets, tea bags, coffee beans, and capsules. Some herbal medications are made from a single herbal plant, while others are made from mixtures of different herbs.
Walk along drug stores and supermarkets, and you’re likely to see various herbal medicines for alternative health therapy. As herbology gains popularity, more people are venturing into the field of herbal marketing. This results in the diversity of herbal commercial products on the market. How do you differentiate authentic herbal medications from ineffective ones? Here are some tips and hints on choosing good herbal products on the market.
Do research about alternative health therapy
There are many resources and consumer reports on the various herbal medications on the market. Read about the advantages, disadvantages, and side effects of these products. Through this, you can assess the impacts of a variety of commercial herbal medications on the body.
Inform your doctor about alternative health therapy
You cannot simply consume green tea and ginseng extracts without notifying your doctor. Inform your doctor about your chosen herbal medicine before consuming it. Some herbal medications have adverse effects when consumed with chemically produced medications. Alternative health therapies aim to prevent and alleviate sickness and disease, not aggravate them. Likewise, health professionals can suggest authentic herbal medicine available on the market.
You were strolling and window shopping when you came across a boutique with a signboard that says, “Available: Alternative Health Medicines and Therapies”. Out of curiosity, you entered the shop. You saw boxes and bottles with capsules and tablets of organic medicine. There were cartons of tea and coffee bags on one rack, and pots of gingko capsules on the other.
As you approached the counter, you noticed a list of health therapies. Yoga, tai chi, qigong – name it, they have it. You inquired about the effects of herbal medicine and therapies on the body and mind. The sales assistant shared about these methods’ benefits to human health. She even recommended some herbal medication for the ailments you’ve been suffering.
Chances are, you talked to a herbologist who believes in alternative health therapy. Herbologists specialize in studying herbal medicine. The use of herbal medicine has become increasingly common these days. Although these medications are not cure-alls, doctors begin to recognize the positive effects of organic or herbal medicine on the body and mind.
In the United States, the government has enlisted various forms of herbal medicine in the catalog of dietary supplements for consumption. Herbal dietary supplements contain a single dose of herbs or a mixture of organic medications. They provide necessary vitamins and minerals. Likewise, they help remove toxins and harmful chemicals from the body. Fruit formulas and green tea extracts regenerate body cells. They strengthen the immune system, prevent diseases, and slow down the effects of aging.
Herbal dietary supplements come in various forms. They are solidified in tablets, enclosed in capsules, mixed in tea bags, and blended with coffee beans. Studies show that 17.7% of Americans have used alternative health therapies as dietary supplements and medications.
The most common organic medications include flaxseed oil and ginseng extract. Flaxseed oil is a good source of omega-6 and omega-9 minerals. Ginseng-rich alternative health therapies aid in weight loss and the improvement of the body’s metabolism. Chinese ginseng boosts energy, strength, and endurance. Approximately 15% of Americans have used flaxseed oil and ginseng to supplement proper diet and healthy lifestyles.
As medical experts have revealed, HGH is one of the important hormones in maintaining a person’s vitality. Because of its importance, medical experts have introduced HGH therapy as one of the alternative solutions in addressing some of the most common health problems in adults.
HGH, or the human growth hormone, is what stimulates the growth, production and reproduction of human cell and tissue. It is also what constitutes the healing factor in human beings. The more of this hormone one has, the faster it is for the body to heal itself. As a person ages, the HGH level of a person begins to decline. From when a person turns thirty, levels of growth hormones in adults begin to decline drastically per decade. Consequently, so does their health.
The decline of human growth hormones is said to be one of the causes for the failing health of aging people. As the symptoms of aging begin to appear, the body will require more resources to keep optimal health such as more calcium for bones to prevent osteoporosis. With hormone replacement therapy, though, people can replenish their reserves of growth hormone and find a number of health benefits.
HGH and Mental Health
The human growth hormone is thought to contribute to maintaining a healthy mind. This hormone also influences neurological systems in a way that help people reduce stress, maintain an optimistic outlook, and have better confidence. People who’ve undergone a program expressed better moods, focus and memory.
HGH and Weight Control
HGH therapy has also been sought for weight loss, as the hormone helps speed up metabolism and prevents muscle deterioration. Apart from promoting fat loss, HGH can help a person maintain healthy muscles, which is important to keep metabolism and energy levels up.
Among middle-aged people, maintaining a healthy weight is important to lessen their risk in acquiring diabetes or heart disease. An HGH program should be taken in combination with a healthy diet and regular exercise.
HGH and Aging
Human growth hormone therapy has also been frequently sought to curb the symptoms of aging. Some may undergo the program to prevent wrinkles from forming, or hair from thinning. HGH therapy has also been utilized to improve energy and resistance to stress, fatigue and sickness. It also helps to prevent the atrophy of internal organs. Brittle bones are a main concern for most, resulting in the production of various products meant to supplement an adult’s supply of calcium. HGH can help with this problem by increasing bone density. Because of its multiple benefits, HGH therapy programs have also become known as one of the solutions to slowing the aging process.