Welcome to my blog of 'news and notes' on issues related to reflexology and alternative health therapies.
To honor my father who was a medical doctor, I try to stay focused on a scientific perspective, although my musings do include observations of my own work in this interesting and important area of health care and life-affirming service.
|Posted on September 2, 2012 at 5:20 PM|
It's been too long since I wrote a note here, so I'll add this one. And it makes sense to do so now, since the Norwegian media has been busy busy lately, talking about whether "alternative therapies" are really 'working.' In my opinion, some are working and some are not - and reflexology is one that works.
In a 2007 article from the New York Times, a few points of status on reflexology were shared. According to the article, "In 2005, a report commissioned by the Prince of Wales urged British doctors to make wider use of a cornucopia of alternative treatments, including reflexology, acupuncture and some herbal medicines under the National Health Service. The report found that alternative therapies could be particularly beneficial for people suffering from chronic musculoskeletal conditions, like arthritis, or from psychological conditions, like anxiety." It seems to me that the British have probably embraced reflexology more consistently than any other national culture, at this time. The British were noted specifically as using reflexology to alleviate golf-related players' injuries.
The article also referred to American exposure to this alternative therapy: "In the United States, many cancer centers are now offering alternative treatments including reflexology to help patients deal with the side effects of the disease. . . . . The Association of Reflexologists, which is recognized by the government and can award qualifications, has a membership of more than 8,500 that is growing."
Reflexology, besides being a way to access specific health effects, is also noted to be used as a "de-stresser." It is naturally relaxing, after all.
I find that it is interesting that it gives the benefits it does. For example, the woman whose whirlwind schedule is what she wants in life finds it so very relaxing, causing her to lose some of that anxious edge she goes into every day wearing - on purpose. She loves reflexology, although she is a bit confused as to 'how it works.' On the other hand, the woman who is tired and feeling like she can't take another step in the day is suddenly calling me for bi-weekly treatments - why? Because she suddenly has the energy she has been missing and longing for, and the only thing she changed was to have reflexology treatments. So goes life - the body tells each of us what we need to do. When we get reflexology, I think, is when the body is forced to listen to itself. With reflexology, the body is, I think, always working to improve its own complex coordination mechanisms, which is, at a rather subtle level, a comfort and a joy.
|Posted on October 3, 2011 at 6:15 AM|
Here we are, in the throws of one of Norway's wettest Summers and Falls. What to do? Work calls us to walk and walk and walk, rain or shine. In addition, many elderly do not get enough exercise. For many, our feet ache, and our backs feel challenged just to get through the darkening days. Of course, having a healthy exercise routine is part of the solution, but having an alternative treatment regime is, I suggest, another part of the solution.
I am preparing a presentation and demonstration that I would like to share with clubs and groups in the area. Just call to arrange a time and place!
Back to our ills: Try massage or reflexology, or both, the next time the cold winds blow. You may not be skipping to the office, but you'll be feeling better, overall.
Yet, what if the problem is that your spirits are low. New research suggests that many Norwegians feel that their routines depress them, and that they would benefit from psychological counseling. Unfortunately, here in Norway, it is rather difficult to get a counseling arrangement, due to the lack of psychologists with available time. Combining social activities with physical fitness training, as well as alternative therapies, can help. Even simply being touched by another person can help many people feel more well. This should not be a surprise to us. It is common sense: we are social creatures, and need the biological benefits of social activity, which, in the homo sapien, includes touching.
Self-treatment is also possible with reflexology. I am happy to provide guidance in this area to those who are interested. I cover aspects of this in my new presentation and demonstration. It is also possible to lift up one's level of overall health while sitting at the desk during an office break, using simple techniques.
Contact me if you would like to meet at your company, office, social or senior center. I am happy to visit , showing my Powerpoint presentation about this interesting technique, and taking volunteers for a hands-on demo. I can present in English and can answer inquiries and chat in Norwegian. Velkommen!
|Posted on August 25, 2011 at 4:45 AM|
YouTube, the place where you can see almost any type of video you can imagine. Well, now it is a place that includes videos uploaded by Kevin and Barbara Kunz. They are the successful authors of many books on reflexology in the United States.
Here is the link to a short video that illustrates one of the primary treatment approaches used by reflexologists, called "thumb-walking:" http://youtu.be/Tvi49L7FJiE
And here is a link to a new video which illustrates using a golf ball to assist in a hand reflexology treatment: http://youtu.be/44ZFRTH_SqI.
Looks like I'm going to have to get some golf balls!
Hope you enjoy these, as an introduction to a couple of the many approaches to the alternative treatment practice called reflexology.
|Posted on June 30, 2011 at 5:23 AM|
This summer gave me time for reflection, and that reflection resulted in my looking around this website, and saying: Time to clean house! Things were out of order and dust bunnies were hiding in the corners.
For past articles, please see my News and Notes page, which should probably have been classified as a blog in the first place. In particular, there, you will find articles discussing some of the books available on reflexology.
I will continue my occasional comments, 'news and notes' from this Blog platform.
For those that end up here, I do hope you enjoy it, and would like to hear your comments by e-mail, if you are inclined to write me.
|Posted on June 30, 2011 at 5:22 AM|
Keywords: Pain, Chronic Pain, Lasting Pain, Pain Management, Pain Removal, Getting Rid of Pain
News date: June 29, 2011. Headline: “Report: More than 100 Million Suffer Lasting Pain,” by Lauran Neergaard AP Medical Writer. As reported in the Patriot Ledger of Quincy, Maine, as well as other papers carrying the Associated Press wire.
Here is an interesting article that should have been written a century ago and resulted in the sort of pain research and pain management, education and treatment that is only now coming more to the forefront as an issue, in particular in the United States.
To quote Dr. Philip Pizzo, Dean of Medicine at Stanford University, “For too long, doctors and society alike have viewed pain with some prejudice, a lot of judgment and unfortunately not a lot of informed fact.”
The report resulting from several months of research was the work of several academic institutions’ cooperation. To summarize the situation:
· Too many individuals suffer with chronic pain, pain that could be better managed.
· Pain can be subjective, but this does not mean it does not have a significant cost to the U.S. economy.
· Chronic pain has increased possibly due in part to persons surviving from serious illnesses and diseases, after which lasting side effects compromise their quality of life, including pain.
· There is too little pain education for doctors and other health professionals, and too little research into the area of pain management.
· There has been too little systematic treatment of pain among sufferers.
My favorite of the findings, as noted in the news article:
"Serious pain that isn't properly treated sometimes can hijack the nervous system and essentially rewire it for pain - leaving misery after the condition that caused the initial pain is resolved."
Thank you, renowned physicians. This is something most reflexologists have known for, well, centuries, to be honest.
Now, I’ll attach my little ‘spiel,’ in Norwegian, ‘spill,’ or game: With so much pain around, is it surprising that more and more people are seeking out reflexology as a treatment, and finding real relief from pain? Reflexology works in a precise way that allows the bodily systems to: (1) recognize pain-generating complexes, (2) awaken by reflex those systems and organs, and (3) send new messages to them to encourage normalizing functionality. In a body of systems as complex as that of the human body, these ‘messages’ are, when ignored or mismanaged, masked and undelivered, covered by nerve pathways whose Job Number 1 is to remember where the pain ‘is.’ When this happens, the pain won’t budge: the nervous system won’t let it. One solution is to take what I consider a really quite heavy drug such as Lyrica. With only two doses, a repeat sufferer of shingles can say good-bye to the pain memories with which their nervous system continually reminded them day and night, and rest comfortably - asleep and awake.
The normal bodily SOP (standard operating procedure) is that the nerve endings – miles of them in each of our bodies, simply refuse to let go of memories of pain. They (nerve endings) could literally be considered to have thoroughly studied those precise locations, sworn never to forget them, and never to let you forget them, either.
Of course, one solution is reflexology. I’m from Chicago, and my own version of this is something like the garbage service one expects from the ‘City That Works.’ Frankly, reflexology helps take out the pain garbage. Okay, Ole, you live in Chicago. Your garbage is not taken away? It starts to pile up. Who’s to blame? The city, of course. But did you give a contribution to your Alderman? I thought not.
Comparatively, you don’t clean out the body systems - of toxins and pain memories? (As reflexology does.) They start to malfunction, bile piles up and is not removed, the nervous system does its job of remembering precisely where it hurts, and the memories of pain get etched into the body’s new chronic and recognizable pain picture in ways that truly discourage both addressing and ridding the body of pain. Who’s to blame? The medical establishment? If you paid to try to get your pain removed, you’ve paid the Alderman.
Pain still there? If you’re not trying to rid yourself of pain, the list includes you, the pain sufferer. So go see a reflexologist, please. Or a physical therapist, or a Feldenkraus specialist. Or a yoga class. Or Pilates. Add in a nutritionist. And go to several of these. And you will see a difference in your pain. It will start to, um, disappear, which is what pain does . . . sometimes.
This new report suggests that the entire health care establishment in the U.S. is implicated also, from medical schools to treatment options, a lack of sufficient medical research, and a breakdown of public and private reimbursement packages in helping to pay for real pain solutions.
Still, I can’t help but think that the best solutions include precisely those I just noted, with reflexology among them.
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