"Every child, no matter the age, should be massaged at bedtime on a regular basis.” So says Tiffany Field, PhD, of the Touch Research Institute (TRI) in Miami, Florida. Field and her associates at TRI have worked diligently over the past decade to prove the benefits of massage for children. But this is not a new concept. Infant massage has long been a common practice in many cultures. Many indigenous tribes use some form of bodywork to soothe, relax, and heal their little ones, sometimes including scented oils and herbal remedies as part of the experience.
Atopy translates to “out of the way, unusual.” In medical circles, this term is applied to the observation that a group of common hypersensitivity reactions occurs within the same family, or—unluckily—sometimes all in the same person. The trio is comprised of eczema (also called atopic dermatitis), hay fever (also called allergic sinusitis), and asthma.
When Bill Williams was working on a 10-session bodywork protocol with his mentor Ida Rolf in the 1970s, he knew he wanted to take it further than the physiology that was being explored. His training in psychology and his interest in energy afforded him insight into the integration that could happen when body, mind, and spirit met. While Rolf, with whom he was teaching and researching at the time, didn’t want to take the work in that direction, she gave Williams her blessing to seek out his own truths. And so was born Soma Neuromuscular Integration.
Setting the mood with candles could mean setting yourself up for respiratory problems. According to Andrew Weil’s Self Healing newsletter, the burning of the fragrant oils in scented candles can create significant air pollution, potentially comparable to that produced by diesel fuel exhaust. The produced soot particles can lodge deep in the lungs, especially a concern for young children, the elderly and those with asthma or other already established respiratory problems. Weil recommends unscented beeswax candles with cotton wicks when adding ambiance.
Besides decreasing headaches, heartburn, constipation, fatigue and kidney stones, getting your fair share of water each day may help prevent serious illnesses including heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer and asthma. One study at the University of Loma Linda, California, showed that people who drink five or more glasses of water every day cut their risk of suffering a fatal heart attack in half. Researchers believe because water, unlike other beverages, is absorbed immediately into the blood stream, it thins the blood and reduces clot risk.
We all have natural energetic healing abilities. My earliest recollection of this came from my mother Margaret. Whenever my brother or I had a “booboo,” she would rub it with her hands, and if it was really serious, kiss it. Somehow it always made us feel better. Of course neither she nor I understood about energetic techniques, but I learned from these experiences that touch could make people feel better.