Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Importance of an Evaluation and How to Get The Most Out of Your Treatment Sessions

The best way to get the most out of your treatment session is to do your homework on therapists to make sure you are matched up with the therapist that best matches your goals.  Some therapists who specialize in pain and injury conditions may want to do an evaluation on you and others may do a general deep tissue treatment.  An evaluation tells the therapist where the cause of the problem may really be coming from, instead of just treating symptoms.  Those of us who do evaluations may work much differently than what you would expect out of a general massage.  This is often where the general public can get confused.  I will just use myself as an example about the types of treatments that I seek and why.  Both the massage therapist and the chiropractor that I see use muscle testing.  The muscle testing tells them whether or not the muscle is functioning.  If it's not, they look for what is compensating for it to get it functioning again.  Even though general massage has its place, I personally haven't spent my good hard earned money on a general massage in years.  The reason why, is because when someone does not do an evaluation first works on me, it brings pain and dysfunction back that I had forgotten that I used to have.  My hips once became misaligned while receiving a student massage.  The student did not do anything wrong.  She did an excellent job and gave a wonderful massage.  The reason that happened, is because the people I was seeing for the hip alignment issues were treating the symptoms, rather than the cause, all excellent therapists. I also had a general upper body deep tissue treatment from an excellent therapist who has been a therapist for a very long time when I could not get in to see my regular therapist.  Old dysfunction patterns came back from that, that I had forgotten that I used to have. I personally don't let anyone touch me who doesn't evaluate first.  When seeing a therapist, make sure what you are receiving matches your goals.  If a therapist recommends something different, based on what you are telling them, than what you were originally wanting or expecting, I highly recommend that you listen to them.  When you see your chiropractor or physical therapist, you would normally just tell then where you hurt and let them come up with the treatment plan.  That really is for the best in order to get the most out of your treatments.  Those who ask for something else other than the recommended treatment keep seeing me for the same problems session after session. 

I never like to end a blog post without recommending some self care tips.  There are many good things out there to explore and it's a matter of finding what works for you.  Out of everything I have tried for my own posture and alignment issues, yoga has done far more for me than anything else that I have ever tried.  My clients who do yoga are getting better in between treatments. 

My daily yoga practice honestly gives my muscles and mind the same relaxing qualities that a general relaxation massage does.  I keep it short and gentle on most days and I don't over do it.  I go to a yoga class once a week and the rest of my week on my own at home.  I have yoga DVD's.  When I am on the road, I have a travel yoga mat that folds up like a towel and a free yoga app on my iphone called, "Simply Yoga".

I also do the muscle testing that I mentioned up above.  That's how I found my wonderful massage therapist and chiropractor :)

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

How Emotions Can Affect Pain

The mind, body and spirit are all connected.  If one is out of balance, it will certainly affect the other components as well.  I know on my own pain relief journey, receiving reiki was a major part healing of my physical pain.  If you have physical pain, think back to what happened when you first started to notice the pain.  Were there any major life events, accidents, change in relationships, etc.?  Think back to how you felt when this happened.  Emotions are energy.  They can just as easily stay with us as, but the good news is that they can just as easily be removed.  Receiving energy work such as reiki, craniosacral therapy and other mind body modalities can certainly help.  Reiki is energy work that works within the unseen energy body.  Craniosacral therapy takes you back to the point of trauma to release stuck energy from the trauma.

In addition to receiving energy work from another practitioner, there are things that we can do for ourselves in between sessions to enhance our healing.  I will list off some of my favorites that have helped me with great success.  I love emotional freedom technique (EFT for short).  I also love the emotion code.

"The Tapping Solution" by Nick Ortner
This book teaches about emotional freedom technique.  I love how detailed the book is about how to take yourself back to past events.  You tap on acupuncture points while repeating certain phrases.  I have noticed a big shift in my energy and emotions when I do this.  I also took a couple of continuing education classes from a physical therapist who uses this in his clinical practice when nothing else that he does works.

"The Emotion Code" by Bradley Nelson
This book teaches you how to use muscle testing to find where an emotional blockage is and teaches you how to erase it with a magnet.  I also like this and notice a big difference in my energy and emotions when I do this.  Be careful with the use of magnets as there are contraindications such as pacemakers.

If you search You Tube for "emotional freedom technique", there are many free videos that will take you through how to do it.  Many of them go over specific emotions and specific life events.  Some are more basic.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

What do the feet have to do with the hips and low back?

Did you know that you can have foot problems without feeling the pain in your feet?  Anyone who wears shoes has tight plantar fascia.  This is a fact of life in any shoe wearing culture.  Having tight plantar fascia and tight calves can cause pain and tightness in the hips and low back.  I have been working on these area on myself and have noticed walking more balanced.  I roll a golf ball under each foot.  In order for it to release fascia, I roll it very slowly for a minimum of 3 minutes.  I also do calf stretches with a yoga block.  In order to release fascia, I do it for a minimum of 3 minutes.  I do this 2-3 times a day. 

This book shows various stretches for the feet and also explains mechanical reasons for various foot problems such as callouses, bunions, plantar fasciitis, etc.

"Every Woman's Guide to Foot Pain Relief: The New Science of Healthy Feet" by Katy Bowman