The Power of Touch

Touch is the very first sense humans acquire. It develops in simple form in the womb, well before birth. Newborns are born with sight, but initially focus at 8-12 inches from their face. Newborns can hear, even in the womb, and initially respond mostly to high-pitched exaggerated sounds and voices. Newborns can taste and smell at birth, with a preference toward sweetness and pleasant smells.

Newborns love skin-to-skin contact. Newborns who share bare-chested snuggles with their moms (sometimes called “kangaroo care”) may breathe better, cry less, and breastfeed longer.
Vanderbilt University School of Nursing, 2012

As it is with newborns, our sense of touch remains very important as we grow. We learn about our surroundings and learn to associate touch with sense memory–things like the warmth of a blanket, a cool breeze, comforting hugs, and loving caresses. With almost every touch you learn more about life.

Western cultures, sadly, are pretty touch-deprived and this is especially true of the US. Psychologist Sidney Jourard (1960s) studied conversations between friends in a cafe in different parts of the world. He watched conversations for an hour and noted touch interactions. In England, the two friends touched zero times.  In the US, twice–mostly associated with an emphatic or enthusiastic moment in the conversation. But in France, the number dramatically increased to 110 times per hour. In Puerto Rico, friends touched each other 180 times. Cultural norms dictate public touch behavior along with each individual’s sense of personal space. In general, though, people feel more connected (“closer”) when nonverbal communication, like touch, is involved in a conversation.

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Is Your Massage Therapist Really Qualified?

cacmtlogoAll massage therapists are NOT equal. Know what questions to ask to ensure you get the best client care.

You ask questions about the competency and training of your doctor, your car mechanic, your children’s teachers–shouldn’t you ask questions about the qualifications of your Massage Therapist (MT)? One of the easiest ways to determine if they’re qualified is to ask about their education and their certification.

Like any profession, you’ll have those who take the fast-track to practice and others who take the time to attend a quality education program and become truly prepared. For the truly qualified, professional MT, preparation includes: Continue reading “Is Your Massage Therapist Really Qualified?”

Why You Should Consider a Once-a-Month Facial

girlfacialMany people pay more attention to cleaning their car than cleaning their face.  They wait until the encounter itchy skin, dark spots or breakouts before they seek help.  Then they usually make it worse by not consulting a professional and heading the to drug store for the solution.

A good professional facial is both a treatment and a pre-emptive strike against future skin issues. Getting a facial treatment once a month, or perhaps more if you have an acne breakout, will make a significant, visible difference in what you see in the mirror – and what other people see when they look at you.  Like any other thing you focus on in life, you will get results and you can keep those results by focusing on skincare on a regular schedule.

Here’s a quick list of other benefits:

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Waiting for Wellness

Every single day, a runner tweaks a muscle, an active adult injures a shoulder,  someone shackled to a computer gets a pain in their wrist or finger and someone wakes up from a restless night of sleep with back, neck or shoulder pain. Some attempt to “walk it off”, some race to a doctor or grab an over-the-counter pain reliever.  Others just wait, hoping the pain will go away on it’s own.

You Don’t Have to Wait for Wellness

In each of the aforementioned cases, massage can usually make a significant, noticeable difference in your level of pain or discomfort, and often speeds healing of the traumatized area.  Add a well-trained massage therapist who listens to your needs, performs exemplary work, and coaches you on home-care activities and you’ve got a wellness program that works. Continue reading “Waiting for Wellness”