This blog is a way of sharing the information and resources that have helped me to recover my son Roo from an Autism Spectrum Disorder. What I have learned is to view our symptoms as the results of underlying biological cause, which can be identified and healed. I say "our symptoms" because I also have a neuro-immune disorder called Myalgic Encephalomyelitis.

And, of course, I am not a doctor (although I have been known to impersonate one while doing imaginative play with my son)- this is just our story and information that has been helpful or interesting to us. I hope it is helpful and interesting to you!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Physical and Manual Therapies

We've found, as many biomed families have, that physical and touch-based therapies are an essential part of healing and can make a profound difference in the day-to-day quality of life of a person.  The better known therapies and techniques include physical therapy, occupational therapy, chiropractic, and yoga.  Each is somewhat different and better suited to some people more than others.  There are so many different methods and with some research and trial-and-error it seems that many people find at least one method that helps significantly.  I am including links below to the various therapies that I'm familiar with, but first a little inspiration and reminder about possibilities:

This beautiful and flexible dance is performed by a woman who fell 40 feet while mountain climbing and was told that she would never walk again, let alone dance.  I don't know what she did as far as treatment (but I will try to find out!) because her healing and abilities now are absolutely amazing.

Real Bodywork
This is a site that has a lot of resources for many different treatment modalities including how-to videos, posters, articles, apps, etc.

Myofascial Release
"Myofascial Release is a safe and very effective hands-on technique that involves applying gentle sustained pressure into the Myofascial connective tissue restrictions to eliminate pain and restore motion. This essential “time element” has to do with the viscous flow and the piezoelectric phenomenon: a low load (gentle pressure) applied slowly will allow a viscoelastic medium (fascia) to elongate.  Trauma, inflammatory responses, and/or surgical procedures create Myofascial restrictions that can produce tensile pressures of approximately 2,000 pounds per square inch on pain sensitive structures that do not show up in many of the standard tests (x-rays, myelograms, CAT scans, lectromyography, etc.)"

CranioSacral Therapy
"CST is a gentle, hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of a physiological body system called the craniosacral system - comprised of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. Using a soft touch generally no greater than 5 grams, or about the weight of a nickel, practitioners release restrictions in the craniosacral system to improve the functioning of the central nervous system."

Lymphatic Drainage
"Lymphatic drainage massage is a profound technique to help increase lymph flow. With an increase of lymph flow immune function is increased. Harmful substances are removed from the tissues and neutralized in the nodes. It has also been shown that an increase in lymph flow stimulates an increased production of lymphocytes- enhancing immune function."
     Lymph Drainage for Detoxification
     How to do Self-Lymphatic Drainage to help manage lymphedema

Strain/Counterstrain (also called Positional Release)

Bendable Body


     “She will dance at her wedding”: Healing the girl born without part of her brain

Kinesthetic Storytelling (and the healing power of light touch)
     This is a TED talk called "The Curative Touch of a Magic Rainbow Hug"

Qi Gong and Qi Gong Massage

Mayan Abdominal Massage
"The Arvigo® techniques were developed by Dr. Rosita Arvigo, DN. based on her apprenticeship with the Maya healer Don Elijio Panti and her own education, training, and research as a naprapathic physician. Rosita's lifework, THE ARVIGO TECHNIQUES OF MAYA ABDOMINAL THERAPY®, help to restore the body to its natural balance by correcting the position of organs that have shifted and restrict the flow of blood, lymph, nerve and chi energy. Today the Arvigo® techniques are employed by Arvigo® Practitioners across the globe bringing the benefits of natural healing to their clients."

Dystonia. Rewiring the brain through movement and dance | Federico Bitti | TEDxNapoli
I don't know if this type of therapy has a name, but it is a movement-based approach to treat the spastic movements, pain, cramping, tremors, and frozen muscles that are the hallmark of various movement disorders such as Dystonia. In the case of the speaker at least, it gave him control of his body back and freedom from pain.  This is the presentation given by the man who developed this approach: How your movements can heal your brain | Joaquin Farias | TEDxNapoli

Brain Therapy This is supposedly a further use and development of lymphatic drainage similar to CranioSacral Therapy; however it claims to actually work on the membranes inside the head (such as the Dura mater and Pia Mater) as well as the brain itself.  Honestly, I have no idea how this would work, but it is a very intriguing.