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Archive for June, 2009

Reflexology is a form of alternative therapy that has as its purpose, the relieving of tension and stress throughout the body.

This is a branch of natural healing that was founded by the ancient Greeks and has been around for 4,000 years. The Greeks were known to call it “pressure treatment.” The ancient Indians soon adopted the practice as well. It took many, many years however before it became known in the western world.

In 1913 an American named William H. Fitzgerald broke the body down into 10 vertical zones and noted that there were pressure points on both the hands and feet that corresponded to all of the organs in the body. He discovered that by applying pressure to these points, relief could be felt in the areas where healing was required. This was a tremendous step in the right direction. In its infancy, reflexology was called zone therapy or zone theory.

In the 1930s a woman named Eunice D. Ingram expanded further on the ideas of Fitzgerald by focusing her attention mainly on the power that lies in the pressure points of the feet as opposed to the hands. It was due to the work and efforts of Ingram that modern reflexology was born. This alternative treatment began to become better received by alternative health practitioners everywhere.

The Work of Reflexology

It is essential to stop here and make it clear that reflexology is not meant as a cure for an infection, disease or any kind of health condition. Reflexology helps to “unblock” the body and relive much of the stress that prevents the body from healing itself. Proponents of the therapy believe that the body is able to relax and begin to heal itself at a much faster rate if there is very little tension or stress present. Reflexology is a safe alternative therapy that promotes well-being, vitality and good health.

Practitioners theorize that there are many health problems that are related to an overabundance of tension that has built up in the body and needs to be released for healing to get underway. Reflexology allows for the release of pent up frustration, anxiety, and nervous energy in order to facilitate self-healing. This natural discipline is also beneficial at allowing the digestive system to work better and it encourages proper blood flow throughout the body. Reflexology is also instrumental in dispelling harmful toxins that have built up in the body that can contribute to even worse health problems.

Reflexology- A Tool for Self-Healing

Reflexology is yet another way that you can get yourself back on track in terms of healing. The application of pressure to the hands and feet in strategic locations can help to loosen muscles and allow tension to go away. This therapy is very similar in nature to acupressure. It is important to emphasize however that it is not the same as a foot massage.

You may find your first few treatments can give way to some soreness and a little discomfort. This is a form of alternative treatment or therapy that is a direct method of stimulating pressure points that correspond to the major organs of the body.

After every reflexology session it is recommended that a person drink a glass of water to help clean out the toxins that have been released during the session. Reflexology is something that you can teach yourself and do in the comfort of your own home or you can seek out the services of a qualified reflexologist.

While reflexology deals mainly with the hands and the feet, there is also a newer branch known as auricular therapy that deals with the ears. In fact it is often referred to as acupuncture of the ears.  Reflexology is a tool for self-healing that can be effective for everyone.

To learn more about reflexology visit these websites:

http://altmedicine.about.com/od/therapiesfromrtoz/a/Reflexology.htm
http://www.crystalinks.com/reflexology.html
http://www.mamashealth.com/massage/reflex.asp
http://stason.org/TULARC/health/alternative-medicine/Reflexology-Health-Benefits.html

Samantha

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Hydrotherapy is a type of alternative therapy that uses the movement and temperature of water to help heal what ails a person.

If you have never heard of hydrotherapy then you are in good company. This is one of those natural treatments that has been around for awhile but does not always get the attention it deserves. While hydrotherapy does not have the long history of other disciplines such as acupuncture, meditation or yoga, it can offer much to those looking to reduce stress in their lives. It is also beneficial for reducing discomfort related to any number of health problems. Hydrotherapy is also commonly used to help individuals heal after they have undergone a surgical procedure.

Hydrotherapy is a kind of water therapy that developed out of the Popular Health Movement that was started by Frances Wright in the year 1830. It has been a very popular alternative treatment option in Europe for many years but is making progress in North America as more and more people recognize its value in terms of promoting better health.

What Conditions can Hydrotherapy Treat?

Hydrotherapy can be used to treat a variety of ailments and disorders. In particular it has shown success and relief for those who suffer from:

• Back problems
• Neck problems
• Knee injuries
• Asthma
• Arthritis
• Hypothermia
• Pulmonary disease
• Swollen ankles
• Varicose veins
• Various work-related injuries

In the United Kingdom hydrotherapy is routinely used for pregnant women who are ready to give birth. It is a highly recommended method of treatment for women who have a low obstetric risk of suffering from complications.

Uses of Hydrotherapy in the Modern World

As a therapeutic tool for healing, hydrotherapy is used in a variety of circumstances and settings in the modern world. It is often to be found in clinical settings but is also a common and welcome element to many health and wellness spas because it encourages relaxation and peace for the body and the mind. Water can work wonders in terms of ridding the body and mind of an accumulation of stress.

The methods in which hydrotherapy is used are many. Hydrotherapy can take the form of steam baths, whirlpool soakings, hot or cold compresses, icing sprains and colonic irrigation. It can also take the form of water douches that can be used to bring relief to the back, neck, chest, arms or knees. Hydrotherapy can take the form of a sitz bath that will allow the lower half of the body to be completely submerged in water for therapeutic purposes. Footbaths and vapor baths are also forms of water therapy that offer relief.

Hydrotherapy does not have to be a fancy or expensive form of alternative therapy. In fact it does not even have to take you away from the comfort of your own home! Relaxing in the bathtub at home or taking a shower can provide stress relief and healing to the body. Hydrotherapy is a therapy that taps into the mind body connection and can help you on many different levels. In that way it is a versatile type of natural therapy.

To learn more about hydrotherapy and its many benefits visit these websites:

http://www.holisticonline.com/hydrotherapy.htm
http://hydrotherapy.suite101.com/article.cfm/miracle_worker
http://www.goodspaguide.co.uk/treatment_details.cfm?e=51
http://www.sleepydust.net/benefit-hydrotherapy.html

Samantha

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Chiropractic services can be beneficial to you but first you must find the right chiropractor for your needs.

Contrary to what many people believe, chiropractors are primary healthcare professionals who are regulated and they are doctors in the truest sense of the word. Chiropractors are Doctors of Chiropractors (DC) who spend almost as much time studying in their specialized field as do medical doctors. These doctors are required to take four years of undergraduate study before they go onto four to five years of more advanced study.

What Do Chiropractors Do?

Chiropractors are well educated and well trained professionals who are able to assess, diagnose and treat a variety of disorders of the spine, muscles, joints, as well as those that affect the nervous system. In the same way, regular adjustments by a chiropractor can help to prevent problems from getting started.

Some of the disorders that chiropractors regularly see patients for include neck pain, shoulder pain, back pain (lower back pain accounts for 40 percent of chiropractor visits), headaches, as well as problems related to joints and nerves in the arms and legs.

The advent of computers, cell phones and other electronic handheld devices has sparked a renewed interest in the services that chiropractors provide because consistent use of any of these tools of technology can lead to a host of problems of the spine and related areas.

Comfort and Trust are Essential

The important thing when it comes to looking for a chiropractor is to find one who is well trained and also one you feel comfortable communicating with. It is your body after all and it deserves the very best. If you find a chiropractor who comes with glowing credentials and plenty of recommendations but you don’t feel comfortable in his or her presence then this professional relationship between patient and doctor is not going to work out. Keep looking and make no excuses for doing so. You must find the best fit possible when it comes to a chiropractor. Trust between the two of you is implicit and non-negotiable!

Accreditation Matters

Presently there are 15 Colleges of Chiropractic throughout the country that are accredited by the Council on Chiropractic Education. This council is a national organized that has been recognized by the Department of Education.

Bear in mind that accreditation is very important! The professional background of a chiropractor should play an integral role in your choice of one. Do not go to any chiropractor who did not attend an accredited school. Accreditation is a stamp of approval given to a school that meets certain standards. Standards matter!

Licensing of a Chiropractor

Chiropractors need to be licensed in order to offer their services to patients. In fact all 50 states require that chiropractors be licensed. This is because the work that chiropractors engage in is regulated by state licensing boards. These boards only grant licenses to chiropractors who meet the educational requirements that the board deems necessary for them to practice. They also have to pass certain examination requirements.

A chiropractor who wishes to be given a license to practice must complete a college course in chiropractic studies at an accredited school (as previously mentioned). Following that he or she must then graduate with a Doctor of Chiropractic degree. After that comes a special examination known as the clinical competency exam that is given to the chiropractor by the National Board of Chiropractor Examiners (NBCE).

But Still There is More …

Whee! As you can see there is a lot of time, effort and commitment that must go into becoming a chiropractor. It is not as simple as 1-2-3 by any means! But it does not end there. Chiropractors are required to pass state board examinations. In order to be licensed by their state they must agree to take continuing education courses, programs and/or workshops on a yearly basis in order to keep up with advancements in their field.

The decision of which chiropractor to choose if you decide to seek out chiropractic services is a big one that should never be taken lightly. Now that you know what to look for the rest should be easy. Keep trust and your comfort level front and center in your mind. Your back is yours for life so treat it right by selecting a chiropractor wisely.

Samantha

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If back pain is causing you a problem then take the alternative route and visit a chiropractor.

Chiropractors offer treatment for back pain that is safe, non-surgical, non-invasive and drug free. It is also a very mild form of treatment that can prove to be very effective, depending on the problem.

Spinal Manipulation

Spinal manipulation is the name of the chiropractic game. Spinal manipulation refers to a spinal adjustment that improves the balance of the body, the posture (which is more important than most people realize) and puts the body back into the proper alignment. The belief that underlies chiropractic treatment is that when the spine is healthy and moves as it is supposed to, this contributes to improving a person’s overall level of health. A healthy spine including all the nerves, joints and muscles can contribute to a happier human being!

A chiropractor will adjust your spine because it is possible that the source of your back problem is that one of the bones of the spine is misaligned. You might experience little or no pain because of it.

What is an Adjustment Anyway?

In case you are wondering exactly what an adjustment by a chiropractor is, it is a precise and highly skilled movement that is applied to a joint using the hands. Having an adjustment serves to loosen the joint and from there renders it more functional as complete movement is restored.

Sometimes when a joint is adjusted a popping noise will be heard. This is often the case when the chiropractor works on the joints in the neck. This popping sound is not a cause for concern and is actually a good thing. The lack of the popping sound would not be a good thing! The popping phenomenon is due to the escaping of a gas bubble. It is most readily noticed when the neck is worked on because it is so close to the ears.

Why Seek Out Chiropractic Treatment?

As many as eight out of 10 Americans will suffer from back pain at some point in their lives. For some people back pain can become a chronic problem. Remember that your spine supports your entire body. A problem in the back can cause pain in other areas of the body such as the arms or legs and can often be the cause of headaches.

Wellness care is a common reason that many individuals choose to undergo chiropractic services. It is also common for groups such as senior citizens to look to chiropractic treatment to help them to remain as mobile as possible and to have the range of motion that can guarantee them a good quality of life.

There are a variety of reasons to seek out this type of alternative treatment. For example the wear and tear of everyday life can cause strain on the back, as can work, accidents, sports injuries and household chores. It is important to note that chiropractic services are not just for those who suffer from painful joint and spinal problems but for everyone who is looking for the maintenance they need to enjoy proper joint function and a healthy spine. Back pain problems need be a problem no longer thanks to the work of a trained chiropractor!

More information on relief from back pain here.

Samantha

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Advocates of magnetic therapy believe it has the power to heal a variety of health conditions.

Magnets are believed to set in motion a chemical reaction that works with energy fields in the body to reduce pain and to help the body to begin the cycle of healing. Not a lot of research of late has been done on the subject of magnetic therapy but the good news is that no side effects have ever been discovered from the use of magnets on the skin.

Some of the uses of magnetic therapy include:

• Production of enzymes
• Tissue and cell regeneration
• Delivering a greater supply of oxygen to the cells
• Aids in the absorption of nutrients
• Kick-starts metabolism and helps toxins and waste to exit the body as quickly as possible
• Improves and speeds up the process of healing
• Reduces the percentage of free radicals circulating in the body

The Mystery Surrounding Magnetic Therapy

Magnetic therapy is a mysterious form of therapy and therefore is surrounded by a great deal of mystique. Many theories have been proposed for its effectiveness but none have been proven as fact. Magnetic therapy is used by doctors in a variety of disciplines including general practitioners, chiropractors and psychiatrists. It is also commonly used by veterinarians to treat animals. Despite all this, even the medical community has no explanation for why magnets help to heal. All they know is that they do.

We must stop for a minute and make an important point about magnetic therapy- no one has ever claimed that magnets do not cure any health condition nor should they ever be used in place of conventional medicine. Instead the use of magnets has been shown to reduce pain and swelling in people who are suffering from it due to any number of reasons. The same can be said for animals.

Looking at it from a global perspective, an estimated 140 million people the world over are advocates of magnetic therapy and have witnessed its benefits when it comes to relieving pain and improving blood circulation. Not only that but they also have benefited from its ability to reduce swelling and stiffness in joints and to give them more energy and vigor in their lives. For example, many professional athletes are believers in the positive energy that magnetic therapy is capable of giving off.

Uses of Magnetic Therapy

Magnetic therapy can be used for a variety of health problems. Here we take a look at some of the most common ones…

Pain Relief

This is the area where magnetic therapy has been shown to be of the most benefit. When combined with another alternative therapy- acupuncture- magnetic therapy can be even more effective. Those seeking pain relief from such conditions as arthritis, rheumatism, joint pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis, shoulder and back pain, fibromyalgia, muscle sprains and/or muscle strains and migraine headaches can find relief with magnetic therapy.

Improved Circulation

When a body tissue has sustained an injury it releases a positive charge. By using the negative pole of a magnet the energy field can be brought into balance and can lessen the swelling and inflammation and thereby promote healing. Dilated blood vessels can stimulate blood flow to the area and can chase away toxins that can make the discomfort and inflammation much worse.

Cautions Related to Magnetic Therapy

People who have pacemakers or automatic internal defibrillators should avoid magnetic therapy. The same can be said for women who are pregnant. If you use a magnetic mattress pad only sleep on it for eight hours or less, but not for longer than that.

To learn more about this lesser known form of alternative therapy please visit these websites-

http://www.magnetictherapyinfo.com/
http://www.magnetictherapyfacts.org/magnet_therapy_application.asp
http://altmedicine.about.com/od/magnetsmagnetictherapy/a/magnetic_therapy.htm

Samantha

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Magnetic therapy is an alternative therapy that makes use of magnets for therapeutic purposes.

Also sometimes referred to as bio energy therapy or magnetic field therapy, this kind of therapy uses magnets of a variety of strengths and sizes to relieve pain. The magnets are placed on different areas of the body to reduce discomfort and to treat a multitude of health conditions.

The magnets used are not the same as fridge magnets nor are they the kind that gives children hours of pleasure. Those types do not have enough strength to heal. Instead the ones used for magnetic therapy are medical magnets that are much stronger. The average fridge magnet is very weak and is approximately 10 gauss while the magnets used for this type of therapy are in the range of 450 gauss to 10,000 gauss. The higher the gauss of a magnet is the further it can penetrate into the skin and thus, the more pain relieving power it holds.

The Belief Behind the Therapy

Proponents of magnetic therapy believe that magnets are able to penetrate into the layers of the skin to transfer magnetic energy into the body to improve and restore its overall balance. The cells and tissues throughout the body are all made up of electromagnetic impulses that combine with the action of the magnets to bring about healing.

While there are practitioners who offer magnetic therapy treatments, this form of alternative therapy is most often self administered. Magnetic jewelery is readily available in many stores. For example, there are bracelets, necklaces and rings that can be purchased at select jewelery stores, as well as drug stores. The closer the piece of jewelery is worn to the source of the pain, the more likely it is that the pain will be eased. Besides jewelery, there are also magnetic blankets and pillows on the market that are pain relievers that help to encourage a good night’s sleep.

Magnets and Energy Fields

Magnets are believed to be capable of producing energy fields that when placed on the outside of the body can penetrate through the skin and into the cells and organs of the body. The positioning of magnets in strategic areas is believed to give the body the boast it needs to begin its own healing process.

It is important to stop here and make note that there is no scientific evidence to support the effectiveness of magnetic therapy. While there are many skeptics, there are just as many believers. The concept of using magnets to heal is by no means a new one. In fact it is theorized to be one of the oldest natural therapies known to humankind.

In particular, magnets help to affect blood flow in a positive way in terms of the metabolic system. By increasing the flow of blood to a given part of the body, this encourages oxygen, nutrients and endorphins to more readily travel to the affected area. By so doing, the pain cycle is disrupted and inflammation and swelling can be lessened.

A variety of health conditions are believed to be improved upon thanks to the work of magnetic therapy. Many people seek out this form of alternative treatment for stiffness in their muscles and joints. It is also believed to help migraine headaches, relieve pain following surgery, reduce stress levels and increase energy. It must be noted that magnetic therapy has been used on horses for many years with a tremendous amount of success.

Want to learn more? Keep reading …

Samantha

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Aloe Vera has its share of healthy benefits and indeed anyone can reap its many advantages.

One of Aloe Vera’s greatest benefits lies in the fact that it is made up of many natural ingredients that can help to balance the body. These include amino acids, vitamins and minerals. Taken together all of these elements make Aloe Vera beneficial in so many ways.

Aloe Vera consists of as many as 300 molecules and 75 natural enzymes. Due to the fact that Aloe Vera comes from a plant and is not synthetic or a type of chemical it can work very well as a form of natural and alternative medicine for a variety of health concerns. Aloe Vera has no known side effects and it works exceptionally well as a complement to traditional medicine.

What benefits come from the use and/or consumption of Aloe Vera?

Whether you choose to drink Aloe Vera juice, use the gel or take it in pill form there are many reasons why Aloe Vera is something to say yes to. Here are some of its greatest benefits for your health:

• Moisturizes and hydrates the skin
• Helps in the development of collagen (Collagen is instrumental in keeping skin supple and youthful looking.)
• Contains astringent pH properties that serve to balance and tighten the skin
• Anti-inflammatory in nature (which means it reduces incidences of pain, swelling and redness)
• Supports the skin in healing and repair following a burn, cut or any other type of minor injury
• Improves the tensile strength of the skin (increases the production of human fibroblast cells at a rate that is six to eight times faster than what the body can do on its own)
• Minimizes scarring (Some researchers theorize that it can even reverse the appearance of scars that have been around for five years or less.)
• Effective for soothing sunburned skin
• Provides the skin with more oxygen to make it healthier
• Improves many digestive tract and intestinal health conditions (including constipation, Crohn’s disease, acid reflux, diarrhea, candida, IBS and colitis)
• Antibacterial properties make it very good at warding off many different kinds of infections (as well as bacteria, fungus and the staph virus)
• Can improve the work of the liver and the reproductive system (especially in women)
• Encourages the body to heal in a general sense

Other Medicinal Benefits

Aloe Vera is still very much a form of alternative medicine but it shows tremendous promise in even more areas than described above. For example, Aloe Vera can help people recovering from surgery and it can prevent the development of premature wrinkles. If you get frostbitten in the wintertime, Aloe Vera can make sure that your blood circulation to the area in question is not cut off.

Further research and testing are required but Aloe Vera appears to show promise for cancer patients as it activates white blood cells and helps to grow new non-cancerous cells. Diabetics can be helped by this herb as it is capable of lowering blood sugar levels. Always check with your doctor first to be on the safe side.

Studies are ongoing but Aloe Vera is showing a positive effect for AIDS patients. Why is that? Studies have shown that it helps to stimulate the immune system which is not working as well as it should in those who have HIV.

Aloe Vera has so many different benefits that everyone’s health can show improvement from using it on a consistent basis. To learn more about the plant often referred to as a “miracle plant”, visit these sites:

http://nccam.nih.gov/health/aloevera/
http://www.naturalnews.com/021858.html
http://altmedicine.about.com/od/herbsupplementguide/a/Aloe.htm
http://www.aloe-vera.org/top_10_reasons_to_use_aloe_vera.htm

Samantha

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