2018 – EMOTIONS

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Touch is the first sense to develop in humans and the brain devotes a large part of its senses to touch. There are approximately 5 million touch receptors on our skin and 3 million on our fingertips, making touch one of the most powerful sensations in the body. Touch releases certain hormones, namely oxytocin and endorphins, which is why a mother’s hug can literally make everything feel better. Oxytocin is known as the ‘cuddle drug’ and actually binds opiate receptors for pain relief and it’s involved in the healing of pain. One of its other functions involves social bonding and oxytocin encourages you to share your feelings. It seems we have seven primal emotions, and they are either positive or negative, as you will see in the chart below. Our brains make use of vital neurochemicals. One of these is neuropeptides. Mood, energy, pleasure, pain, weight gain, cognitive reasoning, ability to form memories, and immune system regulation are all tied in with neuropeptides. What makes peptides so interesting are not only their chemical properties, but also their ability to carry an electrical charge which can change a cell’s chemical composition. It seems, “our experience of feelings is the ‘vibrational dance’ that occurs as peptides bind to their receptors; the brain interprets different vibrations as different feelings.” (Taken from a workshop on “Emotions & The Body” given in Johannesburg). Anger is an interesting emotion to examine, and if we have been angry for a long time, cellular receptors learn to accept only the ‘anger vibrations’ and reject those receptors that cause us to be happy. It seems that even on a cellular level our emotions can negatively affect our health in the long-term. IMPORTANT PARTS OF THE BRAIN Frontal Lobe: The frontal lobe is the area of our brains responsible for higher cognitive functions. These include: Problem solving; Spontaneity; Memory; Language; Motivation; Judgement; Impulse control; Social & sexual behavior   Prefrontal Cortex: Controls personality, concentration & higher cognitive function (behavior & emotions)   Left & Right: The different sides of our brains also perform different functions. The Left brain is involved language and related movement, helps convert thoughts into words; and is involved with positive thoughts. The Right brain is concerned with order and planning, non-verbal abilities and negative thoughts. What is interesting is the role fascia plays in response to stress. It becomes thicker in response to real or perceived threats, as well as any other activation of the sympathetic autonomic nervous system. Given the complexity of our emotions and how they affect us all at a cellular level it’s important to encourage your clients to train themselves to veer away from angry and negative thoughts. This includes high...

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2018 – Adult Diabetes

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Findings shed light on variations in response to treatment between diabetics –and could help identify those at high risk of complications Nicola Davis @NicolaKSDavis The Guardian; Thu 1 Mar 2018 23.30 GMT Tailored treatment of the disease could be possible in the future, say scientists. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA Diabetes that begins in adulthood falls into five distinct categories, new research has revealed, with scientists suggesting it is time to ditch the idea that diabetes is largely split into two types. Researchers say all of the newly classified subgroups are genetically distinct and have numerous differences, including the age at which they tend to occur and different levels of risk for complications such as kidney disease. Diabetes diagnoses have more than doubled in 20 years, UK analysis suggests. The team say the findings shed light on why some diabetics respond very differently to treatment than others, adding that it could help identify those who might be at high risk of complications, and lead to tailored treatment of the disease. At present, diabetes is classified into two main forms, both of which have links to genetics. Type 1 is an autoimmune condition where the hormone insulin is not produced, and which generally develops in childhood. The more common form, type 2, in which little insulin is produced or does not trigger glucose uptake by the body’s cells, generally develops later in life and is linked to obesity. However, the latest study suggests this classification is too simplistic. Writing in the journal The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology, researchers describe how they discovered the five sub-groups by analysing information from 8,980 diabetics diagnosed as adults in a Swedish registry. The results were confirmed using data from 5,795 other adult patients across another three further databases from Sweden and Finland. The team say the findings show that type 1 diabetes and a late-onset autoimmune form of diabetes can be grouped together as one form, dubbed severe autoimmune diabetes. However the researchers say what would generally have been called “type 2” diabetes in fact encompasses four categories, two of which are severe forms of the disease. One, dubbed severe insulin-deficient diabetes, shows similar features to the autoimmune group such as relatively low body mass index (BMI), lack of insulin and early onset, but did not have telltale antibodies indicating an autoimmune disease. Diabetic eye disease was most common in this group. While this group had the highest proportion of patients on the drug metformin, Groop said this was not the optimum treatment. “They clearly need insulin very soon, almost as much as ‘type 1’,” he said. The other severe category, called severe insulin-resistant diabetes, is linked to obesity and shows a strong tendency for the body’s cells not to respond to insulin,...

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2018 – Adhesive Capsulitis

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ADHESIVE CAPSULITIS It’s not uncommon to have clients who come for a massage session as a result of adhesive capsulitis (commonly known as a frozen shoulder). In nearly all cases this is painful and causes restricted movements. This is a condition characterised by stiffness and pain in the shoulder joint. Signs and symptoms usually start gradually, worsen over time, and over time resolve – usually between one and three years. Dr. Peter Jones presented a workshop at the recent Massage Therapy Association’s (MTA) AGM. He talked about the risk of developing frozen shoulder increasing if a person is recovering from a medical condition or procedure that prevents them from moving their arm — such as a stroke or a mastectomy. Symptoms Frozen shoulder typically develops slowly, and in three stages. Each stage can last a number of months. Freezing stage includes: Gradual onset of shoulder pain at rest Sharp pain at extremes of motion Pain at night with sleep interruption 2/9 months Aggressive treatment should be avoided Activities that cause pain should be avoided Frozen stage. Pain may begin to diminish during this stage. However, the shoulder usually becomes stiffer, and using it becomes more difficult. Pain starts to subside Shoulder becomes stiffer/ progressive loss of glenohumeral motion 9/15 months Thawing stage. Spontaneous, progressive improvement of range of motion 15 to 24 months It’s important to take a proper case history in order to establish an effective treatment protocol. This includes asking What Where When Why As well as any red flags Besides regular massage of the affected areas, the therapist might suggest the following: Heat (before/during), packs, shower Freezing – pain free = low intensity +short duration Frozen -> aggressive stretching to improve ROM = load bearing + prolonged stretches Thawing – increase stretch frequency & duration...

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