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Acupressure more effective than physical therapy

We all know Acupressure has been around for some 5,000 years now and those of us involved in Holistic and wellness remain convinced that the procedures encompassed within this sphere are more efficacious than physical therapy. Every living being has a life force, or energy, called qi or chi (pronounced "chee"). When this energy, which runs along meridians, is in balance and flowing freely, the body is in a state of health. Acupoints tap into the the major energy pathways of the body

When this energy is blocked or deficient, illness can result. These energy disruptions are often the result of stress or injury. It is believed that acupressure causes the brain to release endorphins. Endorphins play an important role in immune function, pain relief, stress reduction, and slowing the aging process.

Lower back pain has long been the bain of the modern world not only in lost man hours but also because of the numerous side effects, complications and nuances of lower back pain complaints. Further studies now confirm the benefits of acupressure over physical therapy. Albeit that the studies failed to take into account functional status and disability as recommended by

most low back pain researchers the results are still very meaningful and relevant. In February 2006 a randomized controlled trial took place at The National Taiwan University in Taipei.

129 patients with chronic low back pain received acupressure or physical therapy for 1 month. Primary endpoints were self-administered Chinese versions of standard outcome measures for low back pain (Roland and Morris disability questionnaire) at baseline, after treatment, and at 6-month follow-up. After treatment, the mean total Roland and Morris disability questionnaire score was significantly lower in the acupressure group than in the physical therapy group regardless of the difference in absolute score or mean change from baseline.

Compared with physical therapy, acupressure was associated with an 89% reduction in significant disability and that improvement was maintained at 6-month follow-up. Study limitations include a confounding psychological effect of therapy; loss of 15.5% of patients to follow-up at 6 months and effectiveness of any manipulation therapy dependent on the therapist's technique and experience.

Participants were aged 18 to 81 years. Exclusion criteria were pregnancy and contraindication to acupressure. 64 patients were randomized to acupressure and 65 to physical therapy. Conclusive or inconclusive the results still point towards the undeniable and positive aspects of acupressure and holistic healing.

On a more lighter note Acupressure has also been cited as a new aid for sleepy students. 39 student volunteers found that those who were taught to self-administer acupressure to stimulation points on their legs, feet, hands and heads were less likely to drowse during class. The acupressure consisted of light tapping of fingers or using thumbs or forefingers to lightly massage the stimulation points. It was conceded that more study is needed in relation to acupressure and the effect on human alertness.

Looking further into the positives might this self administered acupressure also be a consideration for children with ADHD contra Ritalin!

Astigmatism Cause For Blurred Vision

Astigmatism - Cause For Blurred Vision

It is one of the main reasons for having blurred vision which many people are not aware of. It is stated to be one of the common reasons for having eyesight problems. This condition brings nearsightedness or farsightedness along with it.

It is caused mainly due to irregular shape of the cornea or of the lens which is located behind the cornea and is called as lenticular astigmatism. The problem can be corrected by use of eyeglasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery.

To put it in lay man’s term astigmatism means that the cornea is oval in shape instead of being spherical. The cornea in the astigmatism condition has two curves - a steeper and a flatter curve. This kind of curve spreads the light to two focus points instead of one, leading to blurred vision.

Astigmatism is said to be hereditary as many are born with oblong cornea. Being born with this defect can create problems for future. Astigmatism is also caused due to scarring of the cornea by performing certain type of eye surgery. It is also caused due to keratoconus - a disease which causes thinning of the cornea.

Astigmatism leads to nearsightedness (myopia) when the cornea is curved too much. The light which should be focused on the retina is focused in front of the retina leading to a blurry vision for distant objects. It also causes farsightedness (hyperopia), as the cornea is not properly curved. Here, the light is focused behind the back of your eye making nearby objects blurry.

You can detect the signs and symptoms of astigmatism when there is deformation in parts of the visual field. The horizontal, vertical or diagonal lines look blurred. It may seem to do less harm to you but if this condition worsens it is better to consult your doctor. If you are suffering from blurred vision or headaches, a doctor’s consultation is very important. Rubbing or squinting is also a good sign to confer with your doctor. By practicing yoga the problem of astigmatism may lessen.

One of the most common types of surgeries used to correct astigmatism is the astigmatic keratotomy and LASIK. This kind of surgery reshapes the cornea which makes it right enough to focus on one point. The one thing that can be done to correct astigmatism is to get a surgery done as early as possible. Children are at risk to permanently loose their eyesight due to astigmatism. So the best solution for this is an early surgery.