Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Massage Bill of Rights

Massage Bill of Rights
 by: Wayne McDonald
Massage is both an art and a science.
Let me begin with some general terms and facts to give you more of an idea about massage therapists that are certified and licensed. With this information you will probably surprise your therapist with how much you know and you'll be able to ask the right questions when making your next appointment.
Licensing maybe by the city where the therapist works or a State License. California has NO state licensing, but has licensing by each city. Licensing is through the police department and has nothing to do with massage therapy. In other states massage therapists can get a license through the state. Massage therapist may be required to publish their license when advertising, similar to contractors and home remodelers.
Certification or licensing may require 300 hours of training (basic) to 500 hours to 1000 hours of training. Certification of hours is usually with an accredited school. Some licensing may require a Certification plus hours of working with clients.
There is a lot of inconsistency with licensing (or non-licensing) state by state or city by city. For that reason, clients can find great massage therapists through several Massage Therapy Associations. These associations have their own standards and ethics that their members adhere to.
A massage therapist can complete 300 hours of training in about three months. In general, a therapist will learn the SCIENCE of massage or the basic massage strokes, an introduction to the muscle and skeletal system and probably an introduction to deep tissue massage. A massage therapist with 300 hours of training can do a good massage.
The next milestone is 500 hours of training. This is the ART of MASSAGE. The massage therapist will learn more about muscles and how to blend relaxing massage strokes with effective deep tissue work to get the knots out of your back.
A massage therapist with 1000 hours of training is very dedicated to their profession and is a specialist. This is the ART and SCIENCE of massage therapy. The therapist will have completed over two years of training and knows the finer points of massage therapy.
Massage therapy is like fine dining. You have the choice of dining at a local cafй if you're on a budget or you can try fine dining. A massage appointment can be one hour or an hour & half.If you want a massage to feel great and be relaxed, then a therapist with 300 to 500 of training would best fit your needs.
If you have a lot of body tension or your body feels all twisted and out place, then you'll probably want to work with someone that has over 300 of training. If you are an athlete or workout, you probably want someone with 500 hours or more.
Before booking your appointment, tell the therapist what kind of massage you are looking for. If the massage therapist is too busy to talk to you on the phone or seems a little cold, then call someone else. By the time you finish talking with the massage therapist you should already have rapport or some kind of comfortabilty with the therapist.
As a new client visiting a massage therapist you do have rights. You have the right to say "No". I know this sounds obvious, but I can not tell you how many clients I have talked to that have endured a massage because they felt they were obligated to go through with the appointment.
Within fifteen minutes of your appointment you should know if the massage therapist is there for you or just going through the motions. There is a bond, or a sense of energy, that you can feel and know that your therapist is connected with you.
If it doesn't feel right, then say thank-you and leave. Or, ask the therapist to make whatever adjustments are necessary to make it feel more comfortable. A massage is NOT about pain. Yes you may experience a little of discomfort. As my teacher once said to me, "If the client sits up like a fish, then lighten your pressure."
I remember I had a very well trained massage therapist working on me once and "he knew what was best for the client." Yes he was trained and he knew what he was doing, but that was not what I wanted for a massage on that day. I thanked him and left. A few months later I booked another appointment with him when I needed a more "detailed" massage.
If you decide to leave you may be obligated to pay for the session. Personally, I would rather end a session and pay rather than stay and endure something that is not what I need or feels like a suit that doesn't fit.
If you are not asked to pay for the session, you may tip$10 as a courtesy for the therapist who took the time to book the session. Hopefully this won't happen.
A massage therapist has the right to be treated like a person and professional. As a client you should always arrive on time and leave when the time ends.
A therapeutic massage by a licensed therapist is not erotic bodywork. If you did not ask for this before booking a session, then do not assume this is included with the massage. Some people think this is always included with a massage – don't assume anything, ask!
The massage therapist can ask a client to leave for not respecting their boundaries or for any various reasons discussed.
Draping or covering a client during a massage is for both the client and the therapist. It defines the boundaries between therapist and the client. Personally, I prefer a massage without being covered. I always ask about draping before I book an appointment.
As a massage therapist, it is a great joy to give a massage and to nurture another human being. It has many health benefits and is more than a luxury for the rich and famous. Our bodies need to be touched and nurtured. It is what makes us feel alive and makes us more loving and kind to others around us.
You can make two people happy today. Call a massage therapist today and relax into health.
Copyright 2005 Wayne McDonald

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The Care of Rheumatoid Arthritis

The Care of Rheumatoid Arthritis
 by: Leroy Gastering
There are different forms of arthritis – each painful and possibly debilitating. Often attributed to those of advanced age, arthritis can afflict anyone and can develop for a number of reasons, depending upon the type. Since this particular disease affects the joints, the agility and mobility of the patient can be significantly impacted as it progresses – sometimes to the extent of physical deformity.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a disease of the immune system which often targets the hands of the patient. In addition to great pain and inflammation of the joints, those who suffer from this form of arthritis will often experience a deformity of the hands and fingers. The disease typically affects both hands simultaneously and can cause exquisite pain, swelling and loss of normal function, in addition to severe deformity.
In broad terms, arthritis refers to inflammation of the joints. Where rheumatoid arthritis is concerned, the actual linings of the joints is what becomes inflamed. This causes the cartilage in the joints to grow and swell, which over long term erodes the joints. This is what causes the very characteristic crippling deformities that occur in the fingers and hands of rheumatoid arthritis sufferers.
People diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis comprise only 1% of the population. (Vast numbers of people who suffer from other types of arthritis.) This disease affects women much more frequently than men. So far, there is no known cure for rheumatoid arthritis. Therefore, the only recognized treatment at this point, is to manage the pain. Doctors prescribe various remedies which depend upon the patient's medical history, overall profile and other related factors.
Of the many types of pain control, oral medications are often used to control the swelling and pain that's associated with rheumatoid arthritis. Other options include braces and splints – which gird weakened joints and remove excessive pressure from them – and surgery, in more critical cases. The latter option not only aids in reducing pain, but also provides greater mobility and improves the appearance of the hands. These surgeries may consist of a synovectomy, osteomoty or joint replacement.
When diagnosed early enough, there are many steps that can be used to reduce pain and the other consequences of this type of arthritis. So, even though there's no known cure, if one experiences pain, swelling, or diminished use of the hands, one should contact a doctor immediately. A plan can be outlined to reduce pain, and prepare for future surgery.
No-one should have to live with pain of arthritis, now that so much progress has been made in the field of pain management. The first steps in managing the pain may be as simple as common aspirin or other medications. If they do not work, a doctor will then prescribe medication that specifically targets arthritis pain. But before that can happen,there has to be open communication between the doctor and the patient regarding the pain early in the treatment. So, it is not advisable to suffer quietly in this case.


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Four Main Factors Causing High Cholesterol

Four Main Factors Causing High Cholesterol
 by: Jim Ellison
Besides diet, other causes of high cholesterol are lifestyle, gender and the heritage of the individual.
For some, even maintaining cholesterol at the right levels and being fit and thin will still not prevent the development of high levels of bad cholesterol. Due to heart risk factors besides diet, some people require a very aggressive approach which includes cholesterol lowing medication. We will address this issue as we progress in "30 days to lowering cholesterol."
Lifestyle issues and high cholesterol:
•When we opt for convenience in eating over nutrition, we are setting ourselves up for problems. Eating fast foods and convenience foods results in eating too many fats and salts, which can raise our bad cholesterol levels. In addition, a more sedentary lifestyle also contributes to unhealthy levels of cholesterol. If you want to see a graphic representation of this, consider renting the documentary movie "Supersize Me." This documentary details the attempts of one man to live on fast foods and little exercise alone. The results on his cholesterol and body health in just 30 days are truly frightening.
•A visit to a nutritionist or dietician can help us all better understand eating for the right reasons and for optimal health. It is never too late to start on this path.
•Regular exercise will effectively lower cholesterol and will maintain your body strength to function best. Just 20 minutes of aerobic exercise, including walking, each day will lower cholesterol. Exercise does not have to be a large time or money commitment. Simple activities that get you moving and that you enjoy enough to repeat are almost always adequate.
•An important consideration in eating is choosing lower fat.
•Buy cooking oils that are unsaturated. Use low fat cooking sprays to replace heavy oils whenever possible. Reduce your overall use of oils even further by using cooking techniques that require little or no oil.
Age and Gender:
•Cholesterol levels increase with age. Women generally have a lower level than men from age 50 to 55. Once a woman starts menopause, the cholesterol level starts to increase.
• While there is not much that you can do about your age, you can make sure that age does not threaten your heart health by sticking to a healthy lifestyle and diet and by getting your cholesterol levels monitored.
•Genetics play a key role in a person's health and this includes the amount of cholesterol you might have.
•Find out if your family battles with high levels of cholesterol and then bring this to your doctor's attention right away. If you have a family history of heart disease and high cholesterol levels, work harder and start earlier in adopting a healthy lifestyle and eating plan.

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