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Affecting about 40,000 people in the United States every year, Bell’s Palsy is a neurological disorder that manifests as a paralysis of the face. This disorder often affects only one side of the face. Bell’s Palsy is thought to be a result of damage to the facial nerve that controls the muscles on one side of the face, which then causes those muscles to droop. The facial nerve damage that affects the facial muscles can also impact a person’s taste, saliva, or ability to cry. Bell’s Palsy is most common in young adults, the elderly, diabetics, and pregnant women, but it can affect anyone.
This condition is often a shock, as it comes on overnight. The majority of patients wake with the facial muscles in paralysis. Most patients either have no symptoms beforehand, or they miss the warning signs, which are subtle and can include neck pain, pain behind the ear, or pain in the back of the head. People with Bell’s Palsy can experience difficulty with multiple facial functions including closing their eyes, eating, smiling, and their speech can also become slurred. Often, people jump to the conclusion that a stroke has occurred, but thankfully, Bell’s Palsy is not the result of a stroke, and is also a temporary affliction. While the condition comes on suddenly, it usually passes or gets better on its own within three weeks.
Lower back pain and neck pain can have many potential causes. Pain in these areas can be anything from an occasional ache to a debilitating and constant discomfort that affects a person’s work and home life. These two areas are prone to tension accumulation due to how a person walks, sits, and even sleeps. Acute lower back pain, described as pain that has lasted less than six weeks in duration, may resolve itself with little or no intervention. However, lower back pain that is sub-acute or chronic, lasting longer than six weeks in duration, is likely to require attention and care. There are several forms of massage that are particularly effective for lower back pain. Anyone considering massage for lower back and neck pain should find out more about the different techniques available to them in order to make the most of their massage experience.
Classic (Swedish) massage and Thai massage have been proven to relieve chronic lower back pain. Classic massage for lower back pain is a technique that relaxes muscles in the area through the application of pressure. The area is rubbed in the direction in which blood flows back to the heart. Thai massage, on the other hand, is a technique that pulls and stretches the area of the back and neck. Massage oils may be used during a classic massage to reduce friction during massage, and some massages even employ scented oils so the patient also benefits from aromatherapy during the massage. Scents like lavender can aide in relaxation. Tui Na massage is another effective modality for neck pain in particular. Tui Na utilizes acupoints just as acupuncture does—specific points on the body that relate to the muscle tension as well as other health issues at hand. By kneading, rolling, or rubbing the chosen acupoints on the neck and soldiers, the massage therapist can successfully release muscle tension and provide relaxation for days after the massage.
For the past 23 years, Pacific Symposium has been an annual meeting of minds, uniting Eastern medical professionals from across the world. This world class conference brings acupuncture practitioners, massage therapists, students, and professors together to exchange industry information in a beautiful retreat setting at the Catamaran Resort and Spa in San Diego, California. Pacific Symposium has consistently delivered cutting edge speakers at the forefront of the integrative health community, and this year is no exception. Giovanni Maciocia, Arnaud Versluys, Matt Callison, Heiner Freuhauf, Felice Dunas, and Jeffrey Yuen are some of the widely respected experts who will present seminars and lead interactive workshops covering a myriad of timely Oriental medicine topics. From Chinese dietary therapy, posture, Qi Gong, aging, to fertility and the traditional Thai massage, there will be something for everyone. Pacific Symposium is proud to present Alex Tiberi as this year’s Keynote Speaker. Tiberi will explore Cosmology, Magic, and Science in Chinese Medicine. Alex Tiberi has been a student of traditional Asian philosophy, arts, and sciences since he was a teenager. He has now been in clinical practice for 30 years. Tiberi is a founder and vice-president of Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. We look forward to sharing another successful and enlightening week with you at Pacific Symposium 2011!
by Dr. Greg Sperber
The question of accepting insurance is a big question for an acupuncturist. There are lots of pros and cons:
by Z’ev Rosenberg, L. Ac.
“The constancy of the internal milieu is the essential condition for a free life.”
by Whitfield Reaves, OMD, LAc, and Chad Bong
Hamstring strain is a common injury to all athletes and active individuals, and it is the most commonly strained muscle of the hip.[i] The biceps femoris is on the lateral aspect of the hamstring group, and is the most
by East Lewis Haradin, L.Ac.
Like Chinese Medicine, aromatherapy has been around for thousands of years. Ancient cultures from all over the world have used various forms of aromatherapy ranging from the burning of incense to utilizing the extracted oils from various plants, herbs and flowers. These ancestors used aromatherapy because they understood the healing properties of essential oils and the aromas that come from them. This article aims to provide a general understanding of how aromatherapy works and ways in which you can incorporate aromatherapy into your practice.
by Kathy Padecky, AS, CMT, Aromatherapist, CBS
Massage is perhaps the oldest and simplest of therapeutic treatments. In traditional cultures, it is accepted that everyone can benefit from massage. Massage is widely used in Chinese medicine, and a range of massage techniques have been developed over the long course of the evolution of Chinese medicine. Tui Na is one example: it’s a very safe technique, and one of its major applications is relieving chronic pain. Massage can be used effectively for a myriad of ailments, as it adjusts and regulates the qi circulation to maintain health.
by Ted Kardash, Ph.D.