Category Archives: Therapetic treatment

Auriculotherapy

Other Names: Ear acupuncture, Auriculoacupuncture

Description:
Auriculotherapy is a form of alternative medicine based on the idea that the ear is a micro system, which reflects the entire body, represented on the auricle, the outer portion of the ear. It is a health care procedure in which stimulation of the auricle of the external ear is utilized to alleviate health conditions in other parts of the body. While originally based upon the ancient Chinese practices of acupuncture, the somatotopic correspondence of specific parts of the body to specific parts of the ear was first developed in France. It is this integrated system of Chinese and Western practices of auricular acupuncture which is presented.

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Conditions affecting the physical, mental or emotional health of the patient are assumed to be treatable by stimulation of the surface of the ear exclusively. Similar mappings are used in many areas of the body, including the practices of reflexology and iridology. These mappings are not based on or supported by any medical or scientific evidence.

Proceedures:
Auriculotherapy is needle-less stimulation of the external ear for alleviating pain and dysfunction in other parts of the body. Auriculotherapy uses electricity to diagnose and treat auricular acupoints (acupuncture points on the ear). The external part of The ear is considered a “Microsystem” of the body. Microsystems are like small images of the whole body, located in different locations on the body and in this case, the ear. The ear is a complete Microsystem of the human body. All parts of the body are represented in an inverted pattern on the ear. There are other Microsystems in the body but the ear has been shown through research to be the most effective Microsystem. This is due to the type of tissue that makes up the ear and due to its direct connection to the nervous system, which controls every single cell and bodily function.

Auriculotherapy works by stimulating the central nervous system through the cranial nerves and spinal nerves on the auricle (external ear). This stimulation results in neurotransmitters being stimulated within the brain and spinal cord of the central nervous system. This stimulation of neurotransmitters modulates the pain and modulates nerve function beginning the healing process within the body to that organ or body part that is affected.

Auriculotherapy is performed by the doctor using electricity (micro-current) as a means to diagnose and treat auricular acupoints. There are over 200 auricular acupoints on each ear that represent all parts of the body and many functional areas of the body.

The doctor uses a small hand held wand that has two functions, it diagnoses by measuring the differences in skin conductivity in relation to the acupoint, and is also used to treat the acupoint. The wand measures the positive and negative polarity (differential) of acupoint and surrounding tissue. When there is a large difference in polarity, either positive or negative, it is indicative of the presence of an injury, pathology or disease in that part of the body that corresponds to the acupoint. If the point is extremely negative or extremely positive, the machine will automatically stimulate the ear point with electrical stimulation positively or negatively as needed. This is all done with the touch of a button on the wand. The machine, which is called a Stim-Flex 400A is the most advanced equipment in the field and allows the doctor to diagnose pain, dysfunction, and disease whether it be somatic, visceral or psychological in origin.

Benefits:
1.Fight overweight:
One of the biggest demands of people who go to auriculotherapy is to lose weight, because of the help that can provide this therapy to this purpose. This is one of the benefits that can be achieved, as it not only helps prevent fluid retention and eliminates toxins, but also fights the anxiety that is experienced when dieting.

This therapy helps in the thinning process, but by itself does not cause weight loss and requires a healthy and balanced diet, combined with regular practice of some physical activity.

2.Gynecological disorders:
Another field in which it has a great demand is in the gynecological for its proven results trying different problems like dysmenorrhea (menstrual pain). It is also advisable when one suffers an abrupt cessation of menstruation due to large uterine spasms, which can also cause problems for a woman to become pregnant since the contractions are so strong that the sperm passage is blocked.

3.Pain management:
Specialists in this alternative therapy assure that it has great results in the treatment of different types of pain such as sciatica, headaches, or neuralgias, as well as functional and organic disorders such as constipation, asthma, vertigo or insomnia.

4.Psychological approaching:
The emotional disorders such as anxiety, stress or depression. The release of endorphins manages to positively alter the body and makes the patient find a better predisposition to deal with everyday situations.

5.Gain weight:
In several cases it helps to gain weight through the appropriate points in as it increases appetite.As well as it helps in losing weight, it allows the gain of the same for those who require it.

An additional advantage of auriculotherapy compared to acupuncture, with which it is closely linked, is that working with spheres in surface contact with the skin avoids any risk of infection caused by needle pricks.

Kown Hazards:
The primary side effect of ear acupuncture or Auriculotherapy is tenderness or inflammation to the ear itself. This is usually very rare. Auriculotherapy and acupuncture generally have almost no side effects, especially if the doctor is using Auriculotherapy with electrical stimulation,which is how it is performed.

Infection is possible when the skin is pierced with the acupuncture needle, but is never heard of in Auriculotherapy. If the patient is afraid of needles, Auriculotherapy is a painless alternative to ear acupuncture. If the doctor is using the Electro-Therapy Association’s guidelines for treatment, there are virtually no negative side effects.

Auriculotherapy is contraindicated in patients that are in their first trimester of pregnancy and for those patients who have certain types of pacemakers or defibrillator’s.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only.

Resources:
http://auriculotherapy.com/
http://www.backneckpaincenter.com/auriculotherapy
http://www.healingboutiques.com/5-benefits-of-auriculotherapy/

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Reflexology

Other Name: Zone therapy

Description:

Reflexology is gentle manipulation or pressing on certain parts of the foot to produce an effect elsewhere in the body.
It is an alternative medicine involving application of pressure to the feet and hands with specific thumb, finger, and hand techniques without the use of oil or lotion. It is based on a pseudoscientific system of zones and reflex areas that purportedly reflect an image of the body on the feet and hands, with the premise that such work effects a physical change to the body.

There is no convincing evidence that reflexology is effective for any medical condition.

Mechanism:
There is no consensus among reflexologists on how reflexology is supposed to work; a unifying theme is the idea that areas on the foot correspond to areas of the body, and that by manipulating these one can improve health through one’s qi.(a “material energy”, “life force”, or “energy flow”. As per the central underlying principle in Chinese traditional medicine and in Chinese martial arts.)

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Reflexologists divide the body into ten equal vertical zones, five on the right and five on the left. Concerns have been raised by medical professionals that treating potentially serious illnesses with reflexology, which has no proven efficacy, could delay the seeking of appropriate medical treatment.

Reflexologists posit that the blockage of an energy field, invisible life force, or Qi, can prevent healing. Another tenet of reflexology is the belief that practitioners can relieve stress and pain in other parts of the body through the manipulation of the feet. One claimed explanation is that the pressure received in the feet may send signals that ‘balance’ the nervous system or release chemicals such as endorphins that reduce stress and pain. These hypotheses are rejected by the medical community, who cite a lack of scientific evidence and the well-tested germ theory of disease.

Reflexology’s claim to manipulate energy (Qi) is unsupported by science; there is no scientific evidence for the existence of life energy (Qi), ‘energy balance’, ‘crystalline structures,’ or ‘pathways’ in the body.

In Trick or Treatment? Alternative Medicine on Trial, Simon Singh states that if indeed the hands and feet “reflect” the internal organs, reflexology might be expected to explain how such “reflection” was derived from the process of Darwinian natural selection; but Singh says that no argument or evidence has been adduced.

Medical uses:
Reviews from 2009 and 2011 have not found evidence sufficient to support the use of reflexology for any medical condition. A 2009 systematic review of randomized controlled trials concludes: “The best evidence available to date does not demonstrate convincingly that reflexology is an effective treatment for any medical condition.”

In 2015 the Australian Government’s Department of Health published the results of a review of alternative therapies that sought to determine if any were suitable for being covered by health insurance; reflexology was one of 17 therapies evaluated for which no clear evidence of effectiveness was found.

Benefits:
The benefits of reflexology include its ability to stimulate nerve function, increase energy, boost circulation, induce a deep state of relaxation, eliminate toxins, stimulate the central nervous system, prevent migraines, and treat urinary tract conditions. This type of massage speeds up recovery after an injury or surgery, reduces sleep disorders, and relieves depression and pain. Furthermore, it can help to ease the treatment of various types of cancer and even help to soothe the pain of pregnancy, even the one occurring after delivery.

Whether you work in an office, a factory, a field, a hospital, or anything in between, there is a good chance that you put a lot of weight and stress on your feet every day. It is not always the back, stress can manifest itself in the other parts of our body too. People often opt for massages, so it makes sense that there should be foot massages too, right? Reflexology is much more than a foot massage, but at its foundation, that’s the easiest way to describe the process. This specific area of massage therapy also includes hands and ears, making it a holistic massage.

Several studies funded by the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health indicate that reflexology may reduce pain and psychological symptoms, such as anxiety and depression, and enhance relaxation and sleep. Studies also show that reflexology may have benefits in palliative care of people with cancer.

Reflexologists claim that reflexology also can treat a wide variety of medical conditions, such as asthma, diabetes and cancer. However, scientific evidence is lacking to support these claims.

Reflexology is generally considered safe, although very vigorous pressure may cause discomfort for some people.

Known Hazards:
Cold or Flu:
Reflexology is generally considered to be a safe therapeutic method, but in some cases, people have developed cold or flu-like symptoms afterwards. Practitioners refer to this as a healing crisis that occurs as the body eliminates harmful toxins. You may experience a runny nose from sinus congestion or cough up mucus from the lungs as the bronchial passages clear.

Fatigue:
You might notice yourself yawning; in fact, falling asleep during treatment and feeling tired afterward is pretty normal. If you experience both fatigue and a headache, it may be anxiety, which many people experience at the onset of illness or when beginning a new treatment therapy. Some people also develop headaches when they feel tired; since these two side effects seem to go hand in hand, a headache usually disappears once your energy returns.

Emotional Reactions:
You might experience various emotional reactions during or after reflexology treatments. Some people feel relaxed or like laughing, and others feel like crying. An intense state of relaxation may even make you feel lightheaded. If feeling emotional is uncomfortable, try to be gentle with yourself and trust that any overwhelming feelings should pass.

Sensitive Feet:
Tenderness, increased sensitivity, tingling, or a pins-and-needles sensation in the feet are temporary side effects during or following the first reflexology session.

Uncommon Side Effects:
Nausea, excessive sweating, insatiable thirst and skin rashes are other possible side effects. Reflexologists say that nausea may be due to the effect of eliminating toxins from your body. Drink plenty of water to help to ease the discomfort. Staying well hydrated also helps remove toxins from the kidneys, bladder and liver. Another way to fight nausea is to take small bites and chew slowly when you eat. Do not eat foods that are high in fat or sugar, as these take longer to digest. Some people may experience more frequent urination or bowel movements for a day or two afterward, as the body detoxes.

Duration of Side Effects:
Side effects normally don’t last for more than 24 hours, but in some cases, individuals may continue to experience mild discomfort for a few days afterward. The symptoms being treated may actually get worse before they begin to get better; this usually means that your body is responding. If symptoms continue to worsen, or if you notice any new symptoms after a day or two, report them to your doctor and reflexologist immediately.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only.

Resources:
*https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reflexology#cite_note-TRH1-7
*https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/consumer-health/expert-answers/what-is-reflexology/faq-20058139
*https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/other/benefits-of-reflexology.html
*https://www.leaf.tv/articles/side-effects-of-reflexology/

Egoscue

Description:
Egoscue is a postural therapy designed to eliminate chronic pain without drugs or surgery. Founded by Pete Egoscue in 1978, the Egoscue Method focuses on a series of gentle stretches and exercises to correct misalignments in the musculoskeletal system of the body.

The core belief behind Egoscue is that pain, whether acute or chronic, is the result of misalignment in the body as it loses its correct posture. When the body works with gravity to find realignment through Egoscue, comfort will increase and pain will decrease naturally. Personally, I’ve used the therapy for back pain relief and consider it another effective natural remedy for joint or bone pain.

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It is believe that both chronic and acute pain is due to misalignment in the body as it loses its designed posture. The human body is designed to move! However, with most of society becoming more and more sedentary, the body develops musculoskeletal dysfunctions and compensations. When those are present, pain and injury set in or are lurking right around the corner. The Egoscue Method restores the body back to its designed posture, alleviating pain and returning you back to an active, pain-free lifestyle.

The method :
The Egoscue Method uses a series of gentle exercises and stretches to return musculoskeletal balance and symmetry to our body. It’s no secret that muscles move bones. If our body has looses its designed posture, it’s because muscles have moved our bones into a new, dysfunctional position. Pain is the body’s way of alerting us to the fact that our body isn’t aligned—and therefore isn’t moving—properly. Through The Egoscue Method, our muscles will be reeducated and reminded how they need to function in order to maintain proper alignment.

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The body has an amazing ability to heal itself; we just have to give it a chance. Most likely we will not get into our current position overnight, and won’t get out of it overnight. The Egoscue Method is a process, but one with a remarkable 94 percent success rate since its inception.

Benefits of Egoscue:

Egoscue can benefit anyone experiencing pain in the neck, shoulder, back, hip, knee, ankle and foot. Plus it can help naturally treat arthritis, scoliosis, spondylosis, spondylolisthesis, sciatica, tennis elbow, frozen shoulder, disc degeneration, and a variety of other chronic pain symptoms as well as those trying to improve their posture for their general health and/or performance in sports.

Some of the most common benefits of Egoscue include:

1. Improved Posture:

Ideally everyone should have good posture without trying. In other words, our natural posture should be correct posture. Egoscue helps to appropriately align the musculoskeletal system and gives exercises to improve your posture, which becomes optimal over time.

2. Less Pain:

By identifying the cause of the problem rather than just focusing on symptoms, Egoscue can quickly decrease acute or chronic pain and often end it all together. When it comes to joint pain, joints do what muscles tell them to do — so when muscles become imbalanced through specific action or inaction, the joints become compromised and lose that full range of motion, often resulting in a loss of mobility and pain.

Egoscue can help to regain that full range of motion and naturally reduce joint pain. In general, Egoscue improves posture, which can decrease pain throughout the body, especially the back.

3. Avoidance of Surgery:

People who have success with Egoscue often avoid very costly surgery and a lengthy recovery process. Specifically, back and knee surgery can be avoided by improving posture and alignment. For example, pressure on your back can be increased by 50 percent just from leaning over the sink incorrectly to brush your teeth. (5)

By improving posture, pressure is taken off of the nerves in the back, which reduces back pain. Once pain is reduced or eliminated, surgery is no longer needed. Another good reason to try Egoscue before surgery is that studies have shown that the outcomes of knee surgery are no better than those after a placebo procedure.

4. Long-term Improvements:

Once correct alignment is achieved and an effort is made to continue exercises, improvements are very long lasting. A body appropriately aligned is a body that is more likely to have all of its systems working optimally.

Of course, the right diet and lifestyle are also key to success. With the appropriate nutrition, weight management, stress reduction, and elimination of unhealthy habits (smoking, excessive alcohol intake, etc.), Egoscue can enhance well-being into old age — maybe even into the longevity enjoyed by folks living in the blue zones.

5. Anyone Can Benefit:

Regardless of age or athletic ability, anyone can benefit from the postural improvements that come from a successful Egoscue protocol. Egoscue exercises are relatively easy to remember and easy to practice at home or on the go. There are also many exercises that can be practiced by disabled individuals. By restoring postural alignment and function, quality of life can improve for anyone practicing Egoscue.

6. Better Balance & Athletic Performance:

Better posture equates to better balance, so there is a direct improvement in balance once posture is improved through Egoscue.  In addition, as a result of improved muscle balance the body will be able to perform more effectively while putting in less effort.

Known Hazards:
If you are looking to try out Egoscue with a certified practitioner, there are many practitioners in the U.S. as well as internationally (including Canada, Japan Mexico, Sweden and the United Kingdom). When practicing Egoscue without a certified practitioner, one must be mindful to follow instructions carefully so that exercises are done in a way that promotes healing rather than creating further issues.

Most Egoscue exercises are easy to follow from written instructions or video format, but the specific positioning of the body for each exercise is absolutely key to receiving optimal results. As with any physical exercise, it is important to pay attention to how the body reacts so that pain is not encouraged or increased.

Egoscue is not designed to be painful, but it is natural to feel some stiffness after some of the exercises and maybe even as you walk around the first few days, but that stiffness is most likely the result of reengaging long dormant muscles. If any pain worsens or persists after Egoscue exercises, consult a medical professional.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only.

Resources:
https://draxe.com/egoscue/
https://www.egoscue.com/getting-started/faq/

Red Light Therapy

Description:
Red light therapy is a skin care treatment being offered as an alternative to physician-administered laser therapy. Most studies involving red light therapy revolve around the treatment of acne, rosacea, and of its ability to get rid of wrinkles. While research is not yet conclusive on the benefits of red light therapy, studies suggest that concentrated red light is absorbed by the mitochondria in the cells and stimulates the generation of more collagen: the building block of skin structure.

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Light therapy was first discovered by NASA astronauts as a way to grow plants in space. It has since been used for the treatment of certain psychiatric condititions and sleep disorders. Red light therapy in dermatology was investigated as doctors noticed an increasing amount of patients who were immune to the normal antibiotic treatments used to get rid of acne. The studies recently expanded to observe whether red light therapy can also be used to get rid of wrinkles.

But before learning about how this treatment can help improve skin health, it is important to understand that there are two kinds of red light therapy. The first type of light therapy is called light box therapy. It is a more generalized treatment that does not target specific areas of the body. The second one is Targeted phototherapy and it is designed to send rays to specific areas of the skin through the use of an excimer laser.

How Red Light Therapy is Administered:
Red light therapy treatments can be administered as both: professional skin care procedures in doctors’ offices and as at-home treatments. Some salons and spas have tanning beds that have been equipped with red lights for light therapy. Most at-home and salon treatments offer generalized, light box therapy. The treatment of specific areas is usually reserved for doctors’ and skin care specialists’ offices.

Red light therapy is a derivative of color light therapy, which involves shining red, blue, or violet light directly on a patient. Some treatments also involve the use of lights flashing at high frequency.

Red light therapy can sometimes be used in photodynamic therapy to get rid of acne. In this procedure, two different chemicals are applied topically to the face, and the red light is administered to improve the effect of the chemicals. For best results, photodynamic light therapy does require three to four treatments, so improvements will not be noticeable overnight. The procedure is considered cosmetic, and is not normally covered under health insurance.

Benefits of Red Light Therapy:

1. Increased Immunity and Reduced Side Effects of Cancer Treatments:

Research done by NASA in conjunction with the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital has shown that red light technology can successfully reduce symptoms experienced by cancer patients, including painful side effects caused from radiation or chemotherapy. Using far red/near-infrared light-emitting diode devices (called High Emissivity Aluminiferous Luminescent Substrate, or HEALS in this case) has been shown to release long wavelength energy in the form of photons that stimulate cells to aid in healing.

NASA tested whether HEALS could treat oral mucositis in cancer patients, a very common and painful side effect of chemotherapy and radiation, and concluded that 96 percent of patients experienced improvement in pain as a result of the HEALS treatment. Patients received the light therapy by a nurse holding the WARP 75 device, which is roughly the size of an adult human hand. The WARP device was held close to the patient’s face and neck for only 88 seconds daily for 14 days. Researchers stated, “The HEALS device was well tolerated with no adverse affects to bone marrow and stem cell transplant patients….The HEALS device can provide a cost-effective therapy since the device itself is less expensive than one day at the hospital.” (6)

Similar HEALS technology is also now being utilized for the treatment of pediatric brain tumors, slow-healing wounds or infections, diabetic skin ulcers, and serious burns.

2. Wound Healing and Tissue Repair:

Light in the spectral range of 600 to 1,300?nanometers has been found to be useful for promoting wound healing, tissue repair and skin rejuvenation, although it does this through a different mechanism of action compared to many other laser resurfacing treatments. Most laser therapies used in dermatology offices use intense pulsed light to promote skin rejuvenation by inducing secondary tissue repair. In other words, they cause intentional damage to either the epidermis or the dermis of the skin in order to trigger inflammation, followed by healing.

Red light therapy actually bypasses this initial destructive step and instead directly stimulates regenerative processes in the skin through increased cellular proliferation, migration and adhesion. Red light therapy has been shown to positively affect skin cells through regeneration of fibroblasts, keratinocytes and modulation of immune cells (including mast cells, neutrophils and macrophages) all found within skin tissue.

3. Anti-Aging Effects for Skin and Hair Loss:

One use of red light laser therapy that’s growing in popularity is reversing signs of aging on the skin (i.e, wrinkles and fine lines). Results from a 2014 study published in Photomedicine and Laser Surgery demonstrated both efficacy and safety for red light therapy in promoting anti-aging skin rejuvenation and intradermal collagen increase when compared against controls. Researchers concluded that red infrared therapy “provides a safe, non-ablative, non-thermal, atraumatic photobiomodulation treatment of skin tissue with high patient satisfaction rates.”

Subjects treated with red light therapy experienced significantly improved skin complexion, improved skin tone, improved texture/feeling, reduced skin roughness, reduced signs of wrinkles and fine lines, and increased collagen density as measured through ultrasonographic tests. Patients with rosacea and redness have also found relief using LLLT, even those who are unable to tolerate higher-heat laser therapies.

Yet another anti-aging effect of red light therapy is reversing hair loss and stimulating follicle growth, which works in many of the same ways as red light therapy for wound healing. Results have been mixed according to studies, but at least a moderate portion of both male and female patients have had positive results for reversing baldness/hair loss when using LLLT.

4. Improved Joint and Musculoskeletal Health:

Red light therapy is now being used to treat arthritis symptoms thanks to its capability of stimulating collagen production and rebuilding cartilage. A 2009 Cochrane review of red light therapy for rheumatoid arthritis concluded that “LLLT could be considered for short-term treatment for relief of pain and morning stiffness for RA patients, particularly since it has few side-effects.”

Even in those who don’t suffer from arthritis but have other signs of tissue damage or degeneration due to aging, LLLT can still be beneficial. A 2009 study published in The Lancet showed, “LLLT reduces pain immediately after treatment in acute neck pain and up to 22 weeks after completion of treatment in patients with chronic neck pain.” (10) Other studies have found that even when patients with musculoskeletal disorders don’t experience less pain from red light therapy treatments, they have a high chance of experiencing “significantly improved functional outcomes,” such as better range of motion.

Cellular rejuvenation and increased blood flow due to red light therapy are two key aspects of improving joint and tissue health. Decreasing oxidative damage, which degenerates joints, and modulating inflammation are other ways that LLLT benefits soft/connective tissue.

5. Reduced Depression and Fatigue:

Another way to explain the benefits of red light is through the lens of Eastern medicine. Ask a Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner how light helps improve health, immunity and recovery, and he or she will likely compare it to acupuncture’s mechanism of action:

*Light is a form of energy, and our bodies are just big energy systems. Light has the power to stimulate specific meridian points and chakra zones in the human body.

*Red is said to stimulate the first chakra because it correlates most strongly with our survival instinct (hence why it gives us energy and makes us act quickly, in order to motivate us to pursue things like money, food, sex, power, etc.).

*While acupuncture uses tiny needles to achieve bodily harmony through stimulating certain points in the body’s energy system, light therapy uses focused, visible, red wavelengths in much the same way.

*Red light has been shown to be naturally energizing and correlated with improved moods by increasing self-confidence, positivity, passion, joyfulness, laughter, social awareness, conversation skills and sensory stimulation. While results vary from patient to patient, there’s reason to believe that LLLT has mental and emotional perks in addition to physical benefits.

Difference Red Light Therapy And Blue Light Therapy :

*Blue and red light therapies, two forms of phototherapy, have some similar benefits and uses, although they work in different ways. The mechanism of action of both is still not entirely well-understood, but it’s believed that LLLT devices produce light with wavelengths similar to those of blue light lasers only with broader output peaks (they’re less monochromatic and don’t produce heat or friction).

*Blue light is more commonly used at home from light-emitting devices, especially for the treatment of acne. It’s been found that blue light reaches the sebaceous (oil) glands in the skin and can help kill porphyrins, which are compounds inside acne bacteria.

*Red light is believed to penetrate the skin deeper and may also help acne and other skin disorders by reducing inflammation and improving healing.

*Blue light and red light can be emitted from tabletop light therapy devices (which are used at home and usually weaker, requiring about a total of 30 minutes to one hour of treatment time twice per day) or from stronger devices used in doctors’ offices that work quicker (sometimes within just several minutes or less).

*The Wellman Center for Photomedicine at Massachusetts General Hospital explains that there’s still widespread uncertainty and confusion surrounding the mechanisms of action of these light therapies, especially LLLT, at the molecular, cellular and tissue levels. There are also a large number of parameters for doctors to consider before treating individual patients (wavelength, fluence, irradiance, treatment timing and repetition, pulsing, and polarization) that can add to the confusion and patient variability in terms of results.

Known Hazards:
The FDA has indicated that there are not many side effects associated with the use of red light therapy, although blue light therapy may be linked to a higher disposition for macular degeneration. Physicians recommend that people who have photosensitivity use caution when undergoing red light therapy.

Before beginning red light treatment, make sure to talk with your doctor and disclose all prescription and over-the-counter medication you are taking. Many anti-aging creams and medications are known to cause photosensitivity, which can significantly damage your skin. Even if you are using something as simple as herbs, definitely mention them to your doctor, as a precaution. For example, supplements containing St. John’s Wort, can cause the body to be sensitive to light, which would be a problem during red light therapy.

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only.

Resources:

Red Light Therapy

Red Light Therapy Benefits, Research & Mechanism of Action

Oil Pulling


Description:
Oil pulling is an age-old remedy rooted in Ayurvedic medicine that uses natural substances to clean and detoxify teeth and gums. It has the added effect of whitening teeth naturally and evidence even shows that it may be beneficial for gum health and that certain oils may help fight harmful bacteria in the mouth!

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Practitioners of oil pulling claim it is capable of improving oral and systemic health, including a benefit in conditions such as headaches, migraines, diabetes mellitus, asthma, and acne, as well as whitening teeth. Some of its promoters claim it works by “pulling out” toxins, which are known as ama in Ayurvedic medicine, and thereby reducing inflammation. There is no credible evidence to support this.

The basic idea is that oil is swished in the mouth for a short time each day and that this action helps improve oral health. Just as with Oil Cleansing for the skin, the principle of “like dissolves like” applies, as oil is able to cut through plaque and remove toxins without disturbing the teeth or gums.

The practice of oil pulling (also called gundusha) started in India thousands of years ago, and was first introduced to the United States in the early 1990s by a medical doctor named Dr. F. Karach, who used it with success in his medical practice.

How to do Oil Pulling:
The concept is incredibly simple. Basically, a person swishes a couple teaspoons of a vegetable based oil (ediable coconut, sesame or olive) in the mouth for 20 minutes and then spits it out and rinses well. Oil pulling is best done in the morning, before eating or drinking anything, though Dr. Bruce Fife suggests that it can be done before each meal if needed for more severe infections or dental problems.

1.Put 1-2 teaspoons of oil into the mouth.

The oil traditionally used in oil pulling is organic sesame oil, and this is also the oil that has been the most studied for use in oil pulling. It is also possible to do oil pulling with organic coconut oil or pre-made coconut oil chews. Whichever oil you choose, place 1-2 teaspoons in the mouth.

2. Swish for 20 minutes.

Apparently the timing is key, according to Dr. Bruce Fife, author of Oil Pulling Therapy, as this is long enough to break through plaque and bacteria but not long enough that the body starts re-absorbing the toxins and bacteria. The oil will get thicker and milky as it mixed with saliva during this time and it should be creamy-white when spit out. It will also double in volume during this time due to saliva. At first, it is difficult to make it the full 20 minutes, and so, only swish for 5-10 minutes in the begining and then gradually increase the timing to 20 minutes.

3.Spit oil into a plastic bag  & throw it in the trash can.

Do not swallow the oil as it is hopefully full of bacteria, toxins and pus that are now not in the mouth!
Rinse well with warm water. Warm water seems to clean the mouth better (my opinion). Some sources recommend swishing with warm salt water.

4.Brush well.
This can also be done with coconut oil, which is naturally antibacterial and has a milder taste that other oils. Anyone with a sensitivity to coconut oil or coconut products should avoid using coconut oil in this way. Sesame oil was traditionally used in the Ayurvedic tradition and is another great option, just make sure to use an organic sesame oil.

Benefits:
Oil pulling seems to be a practice with a plethora of anecdotal support but a lack of extensive scientific studies (though there are some… see below). Most sources do agree that oil pulling is safe, but debate how effective it is. Though more research is needed to determine any scientific backing to oil pulling, I’ve noticed the benefits personally and dozens of readers swear by its effectiveness as well.

It is observed that hundreds of testimonials online from people who experienced benefits from oil pulling, including help with skin conditions, arthritis, asthma, headaches, hormone imbalances, infections, liver problems and more.

Safety factors:
Thankfully, this is one point that all sources seem to agree on! Some sources claim that oil pulling doesn’t have the benefits often attributed to it or that it doesn’t actually detoxify the mouth, but all of them agree that it shouldn’t hurt anything.

All of the oils that are often used are completely edible and considered to be healthy when eaten, so they aren’t problematic when swished in the mouth. The only potential danger I’ve seen is if the oil is swallowed after it has absorbed any bacteria or toxins from the mouth.

Research:
Research is lacking, it could be considered an effective and safe alternative to mouthwash and that there shouldn’t be any harm.

Studies about oil pulling:
S Asokan, J Rathan, MS Muthu, PV Rathna, P Emmadi, Raghuraman, Chamundeswari. Effect of oil pulling on Streptococcus mutans count in plaque and saliva using Dentocult SM Strip mutans test: a randomized, controlled, triple-blind study. Journal of the Indian Society of Pedodontics & Preventive Dentistry. 26(1):12-7, 2008 Mar

TD Anand, C Pothiraj, RM Gopinath, et al. Effect of oil-pulling on dental caries causing bacteria (PDF). African Journal of Microbiology Research, Vol 2:3 pp 63-66, MAR 2008. (PDF Link)

HV Amith, Anil V Ankola, L Nagesh. Effect of Oil Pulling on Plaque and Gingivitis. Journal of Oral Health & Community Dentistry: 2007; 1(1):Pages 12-18

S Thaweboon, J Nakaparksin, B Thaweboon. Effect of Oil-Pulling on Oral Microorganisms in Biofilm Models. Asia Journal of Public Health: 2011 May-Aug. (PDF)

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only.

Resources:
https://wellnessmama.com/7866/oil-pulling/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oil_pulling