Hot and Cold Therapy
It’s a method of applying a combination of cold and hot packs to the injured or affected area in increments of 3-20 minutes.How does it work?
By stimulating your body’s natural healing process that is temporarily shut down or backed up because of tension or inflammation, hot cold therapy works to pump fresh oxygenated and nutrient-filled blood to the area, and eliminate old stagnant blood and lymph.
- Heat acts to dilate the blood vessels and allow blood flow. When there there is inflammation (too much heat) the area will feel hot, red and swollen, and because the blood and lymph is pooling and not moving in the area, there will be pain and stiffness. If there is inflammation it is best to use ice and gentle lymphatic massage. Never apply heat to inflammation!
- Ice constricts the blood vessels, causing them to be more narrow and decrease blood flow. Sometimes a muscle is so tense that it can also act to constrict blood flow. This can cause numbness, stiffness, and aching by pinching or pressing on nerves and causing a lack of fresh oxygenated blood flow to the area. In this case Therapeutic Massage and heat can help increase blood flow to the area.
- Try rotating back and forth between ice and heat 3 times in a row, maybe 3 times a day for 10-20 minutes each. Apply ice then heat according to your needs and by trial and error to see what works and feels best. Place a towel or clothing barrier between your skin and the ice or heat to prevent damaging the skin.
- For the cold therapy, use an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables, a dip in the Pacific Ocean, a bucket filled with cold or iced water, or a cooled bottle of water from the fridge. It might be uncomfortable at first but once you start rotating hot and cold the area will start to tingle and come back to life.
- -For the heat therapy use a heating pack that you can throw in the microwave. (You can purchase these at most health-food stores, and we have a few left at The Blue Buddha.) You could also try sitting in the hot tub or taking a warm bath, a bucket filled with warm to hot (not scalding) water, or a hot water bottle. Please be careful when using heat and make sure it is not so hot that it damages the tissue. It should make you melt, but not make you cringe or hold your breath!
*Remember that I’m not able to diagnose or prescribe, and that if your symptoms are severe you should ask the advice of your doctor.
Health is Wealth!
Commit yourself to at least one massage a month for three months and see how you feel. The benefits of regular massage therapy are many. Here’s a reminder of how massage can help you.
- Reduce stress
- Alleviate anxiety, fear and depression
- Decrease pain and stiffness
- Increase awareness
- Perform better
- Prevent sport and work related Injuries
- Improve posture, flexibility and range of motion
- Strengthen immunity
- Heal faster
- Increase circulation
- Relieve headaches and migraines
- Breathe deeper and easier
- Sleep sound
- Balance hormones
- Get fit
- Be blissed
The GOOD HABIT How To.
Even if we have good intentions and resolutions to eat healthier, exersize more frequently, get more rest, and nuture our calm, (especially this time of year) we don’t always keep the good habits we hoped to maintain. Here are some tricks to make good habits stick.
- Commit to Thirty Days. Then 60. Then 90.
- Make it Ritual. Set a date and a time for your new habit. Every Monday at 6pm… Every morning before work etc.
- Write it Down. It’s easy to dismiss a thought, but harder to ignore an intention written in front of you.
- Start Simple. Create realistic goals that you can build upon.
- Remind Yourself. Set an alarm or put it in your calender. For some habits, allow a time frame for yourself. (2 hours of relaxation, 1 hour of reading, etc.
- Get a Buddy. Surround yourself with people that inspire and challenge you to reach your goals. Make your goal public by announcing it to your friends and family.
- Replace Lost Needs. If you are giving something up, replace it with something positive.
- Be Imperfect. Be patient with yourself and stay positive. No guilt trips.
- Remove Temptation. Sit down with your good intentions and visualize the environment you need to reach your goals. Get rid of the things that tempt you.
- Know the Benefits. Imagine yourself in the future with your good habit.
- Do it For Yourself. Don’t follow habits because you think you should but because you’ve tried it and it works in your life.
Oops. I’m Snoring!
Many of my clients are frustrated when they fall alseep during massage, but falling asleep on the table is a good sign that your nervous system is quiet, and that healing restoration is taking place. Allowing Yin energy, quiet, restful, patient, and gentle energy to take over your mind and body will maximize the benefits of massage. When you come in for your massage, allow yourself to breathe deeply. Let go of your fears and apprehensions. Melt onto the table. Feel that you are floating in a deep sea of warm clouds. Feel ease, light, gentle movement. Invite self-acceptance and self-patience. Smile and relax your eyes. And allow yourself to totally let go, especially if it means you drift in and out. Pretend you are the ocean tide; gentle but strong, effortless, being.
I’m always telling you to drink lots of water.
We are made of mostly water. Rivers and streams flowing through us. Moving while we remain still.
Much of our discomfort, sickness, and dis-ease stems from a lack of water or dehydration. If we only knew that symptoms like muscle aches and spasms, headaches, poor digestion, fatigue, weight gain, poor appetite, irritability, and aggression could be alleviated by drinking more water, then we would. Try it out! Carry a stainless steel water bottle with you at all times. Invest in a water filter for your home. Add fruits and vegetables to your water to make it more enticing.
Here are some fun and flavorful “water” recipes! I suggest using organic or non-sprayed produce for these infusions.
1 whole Lemon sliced
1 cup Watermelon cubes
2 tablespoons raw honey (optional sweetener)
1 gallon filtered water
Citrus Cucumer Water
1/2 cucumber sliced
1 orange sliced
1 lemon sliced
1 lime sliced
1 gallon filtered water
try the above recipes with a sprig of basil, mint, rosemary or lavender buds!
You can also explore using mango, melon, pear, apple…
Raise a glass to your health!
A few months ago I bought a giant farm table from Craigslist thinking it would restore my passion for cooking and healthy eating habits, and miraculously bring my family and friends to the table. These things, by the way, are included in my list of ways I find balance. Food, Family, Friends.
I subscribed to a CSA (community supported agriculture, delicious organic produce delivered to my door! If any of you are looking for food inspiration. I highly recommend visiting your local Farmer’s Market or investing in a CSA. There are many to choose from in this area. Click here to see options. ) I discovered Foodgawker.com , (an amazing resource and inspiration for beautiful recipes), I began seeing a Nutrition Consultant (the wonderful Mary Vance! check out her blog) and in September I will begin growing my own food again and perhaps raising my own chickens! Yay!
Renew Treatment and Detox
The Renew Treatment is now available! And people are LOVING it!
Are you feeling sluggish? Y/N
Low on energy? Y/N
Are you having a hard time concentrating or staying motivated? Y/N
Do you sit for more than 4 hours a day? Y/N
Do you have trouble sleeping or feeling rested upon waking? Y/N
Poor digestion, lack of appetite, or insatiable hunger? Y/N
Weight gain or bloating? Y/N
Easily irritable, mood swings, or depression? Y/N
Do you get sick more than once a year or suffer from seasonal allergies? Y/N
If you answered yes to any or all of these questions your Lymphatic System is likely overburdened.
The Renew Treatment is designed to give your body, mind and spirit a fresh start. We begin with Full Body Dry Brushing to promote healthy skin, cleanse the liver, and boost the immune system. An Organic Coconut Butter, Mineral Sea Salt and Herbal Back and Foot Scrub target those hard to reach areas that often get neglected. (Out of sight out of mind?) Hot Herbal Packs encourage fresh blood flow to the surface, providing a clean supply of nutrients to the skin. A Full Body Massage increases circulatory and lympatic health. This invigorating treatment has the power to zap dead habits and send you soaring. It will leave your skin vibrant and new, and you might find yourself in the following days overwhelmingly creative, well-rested, focused and determined, balanced, healthy and whole.
Try the RENEW TREATMENT this MAY for only $150! (Regularly priced $170) Mention RENEW150 in the notes field when booking.
Because The Blue Buddha is home to only two treatment rooms you and your friend, partner or family member will have the entire space to yourselves when you book an appointment at the same time! Doesn’t that sound FUN! I have the same schedule as the lovely owner and manifester of The Blue Buddha: Erik Everts! He has such an awesome vibe, immaculate attention to detail, and the kindest, most thoughtful spirit. He also has excellent YELP reviews! Together, we will take care of you!
If you’re spending a lot of time in sitting in front of the computer you probably notice the tension building around your neck, shoulders, and head. Perhaps you are even suffering low back pain and or numbness in the legs and feet. A quick self-massage can imrove your mood, focus and energy level, as well as alleviate some of the pain and discomfort caused by tension and stress.
Do It Yourself! Face, Neck, Head and Shoulder Massage.
- Start by massaging the forehead, temples and brow area, using outward circular movements.
- Pinch and tug the eyebrows.
- Pull down on the bridge of your nose, then outward under the cheek bones.
- Pinch your nose, then pinch your upper lip in the same way, pulling it out, then do the same to the bottom lip.
- Pinch the cheeks and pull them out and make a circular motion.
- Massage the jaw muscles while relaxing the jaw.
- Pinch the chin and give it a shake.
- Press your thumbs gently upward under your chin following the jaw back to it’s hinge near the ear lobe.
- Pinch the ear lobe and carefully pull it down. Try circular movements tugging the ear back, outward and down from the face, moving toward the top of the ear. Now massage the ear using downward strokes. Start with the top of the ear and follow it’s shape. Count to 10, then move toward the middle of the ear another count to 10, until you reach the lobe. Count to 10 while you massage the ear lobes.
- Massage the head using the tips of your fingers or nails and grab your hair and pull it outward in circular motions.
- Massage the back of your neck and give your shoulders a squeeze, Place your hand on your chest right under the collarbone and push outward toward your shoulder, massaging the pecs. Lean the head back and give the front of the neck a gentle squeeze.
- Lean the head forward and genlty stretch out the the back of the neck, then lean the head to one side, then the other. Roll your head. Roll your shoulders.
- Take 5 Deep breaths and shake it off. 1……..2……….3………… feeling better?……..4………..5………..
- Do what naturally comes to you now, more stretching, more breathing, more massage. Try to listen and pay attention to your body’s natural instinct to move and be moved. Remember, breathing is moving!
Feels great everytime and only takes about 5 minutes out of your day, while improving the other 955!
The Lymphatic System is your Body’s Spring Cleaning Machine!
Is it just me? Or does it feel like it’s been winter all year? With the warmer weather and longer days I feel a true urge to be playful, active, creative, and healthy. I think the natural order of this time of year is to blossom, create, shed old skin, let go of that which no longer allows you to be your true self.
Since January I’ve been thinking and talking a lot about cleansing, detox, the immune system, lymphatic health and massage, and the largest organ in our body, the skin. That healthy glow you notice when you have been on vacation, stress-free, with family, laughing, eating well, exercising etc is a sign your liver is able to do what it does best: filter the body of wastes and toxins.
What happens when the liver is burdened? We might feel fatigue, low energy, depressed, emotional and hormonal imbalances, anxiety and fear, congestion, allergies, swollen lymph nodes, aches, arthritis, skin disorders, accumulation of cellulite, weight gain, bloating, the list goes on. If we don’t pay attention to what our bodies are telling us the constant toxic burden of the liver can eventually lead to disease. Here are a few things you can do for your health.
Tips to help the Lymphatic system:
- Breathe! Are you breathing? I mean, really breathing? Notice how you breathe as you read this. Are you taking shallow, short breaths, hunched over, and hardly moving? Allow yourself to sit up straight and inhale deep through your diaphragm or belly. Do this when you are stressed at work and notice if you feel different. Breathing is our primary mover. It’s more necessary than food, or water. SO don’t forget to do it!
- Move. Unlike the Circulatory System, the Lymphatic System doesn’t have a heart to keep it moving. It depends on gravity and exercise to get it going. It depends on YOU! Stuck at the computer all day? Get up and do some gentle stretches, or walk around every half hour. Give yourself a quick massage. Or hit the trails during your lunch break! You’ll feel so much better, and probably be a lot more productive at work.
- Dry Brush 1-2 times a day. Dry brushing sloughs off dead skin cells and allows your skin to breathe as it should. Always brush toward the heart
- Manual Lymphatic Massage gently encourages the flow of lymph improving metabolic waste removal
- Eat alkaline foods: Leafy greans, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes. (Avoid or cut back on the sugar, dairy, meat, wheat, soy, alcohol and caffeine.) I’ve noticed a HUGE difference incorporating 3/4 alkaline foods.
- Get a water filter for your tap and shower. Shower with non-chlorinated water and don’t use products on your skin that you wouldn’t be able to eat. Again, this will help with internal pH balance, lessening the toxic burden for your skin and liver.
The skin is our first layer of protection against these toxins, so healthy skin also equals healthy liver. Less toxins entering the skin, mean less toxins that the liver has to break down.
(Now you understand why I feel so strongly about using organic edible oils for your treatment.)