What is Lymphatic Massage

Lymphatic Massage

Lymphatic Massage is a specialized form of Massage Therapy that focuses on restoring normal flow within the lymphatic system.  The lymphatic system drains the extracellular fluid of toxins which are to large to reenter the venous system.  Toxins build up in the extracellular fluid constantly even when we are sleeping.  Things such as prolonger muscle contractions, fighting an infection, repairing tissue in a damaged area and even thinking create toxins.  Many of the toxins are related to energy production within our cells.  When cells are efficiently working they produce very little toxic byproducts but if they are being worked hard such as during exercise, prolonged poor postures, excessive mental stress, or healing an injury or infection the output of toxins increase.  If our lymphatic system is working properly it can remove these toxins and get them to the liver and kidneys to be eliminated.  If our burden is to high or we have blockage of flow in our lymphatic system we start to build up toxic backup in our extracellular fluid.  This back up makes delivery of fresh nutrients to our cells harder not to mention a chronic inflammatory situation begins.

What is our Lymphatic System

Lymphatic Massage

Our Lymphatic system is composed of primary lymph organs and secondary organs.  The primary lymph organs are the thymus and bone marrow.  The primary lymph organs produce and mature blood cells, most importantly relating to the lymphatic system they produce white blood cells.  The secondary lymph organs are the spleen and lymph nodes.  The spleen acts as a sort of filter dealing with dead red blood cells, maturing and storing white blood cells.  The lymph nodes which number 800 in total also house white blood cells where they clean up the extracellular fluid on its way back to the venous system.  The lymph nodes are also junction spots where lymphatic channels drain into.  Please note that all of the lymph channels eventually drain into the subclavian veins in the chest at the base of the neck just under our collar bones.  From their they are back into the regular circulation to be processed by our liver our our kidneys for elimination.  Not all of our lymphatic fluids are toxins, this system also transports fats from our intestines and somatic fat reserves.  Only certain sized fats are absorbed by our intestines directly into our blood flow, we call these types of fats small and medium chain triglycerides.  Remember that the lymphatic system transports molecule’s which are to big to be absorbed in the capillary junctions.  I believe this is because our body is protective about what goes directly into the blood without a thorough vetting by our immune system.  The brain has an even more sensitive protective barrier called the blood brain barrier which excludes larger molecules from getting into its sensitive environment.  Although the brain and spinal chord have no lymph nodes or vessels within the subdural (inside the dural covering of the brain and spinal chord.) space it has its own system of transport of extracellular toxins via specialized cells within the neurons that direct extracellular fluid into channels within the dura matter (covering of the brain and spinal chord) draining into deep cervical neck lymph nodes and into the the part of the nasal cavity following olfactory nerves in the upper nose.  The spinal chord drains into dural lymph channels which empty into lymph nodes at the front of the vertebra.

lymphatic system

The head and neck contain 300 of the 800 lymph nodes to deal with drainage from the brain and the exposure to the outside world in our nose and mouth.  Just imagine the effect congestion of these nodes can have on the functioning of our brains.

What are the symptoms of Lymphatic Dysfunctions

Many symptom’s can arise and many of them overlap with chronic inflammation.  They can very local such as a stiff neck or low back pain as a muscle is being overworked and drainage from the area is insufficient.  They can be in just one extremity such as lymph edema after lymph nodes are removed during cancer treatment.  They can also be systemic effecting many areas.  We see this in chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and chronic lymes disease.  Lymphatic massage will benefit all of these symptoms.

  • Bloating
  • Swelling in your fingers/rings fitting more tightly
  • Brain fog
  • Digestive issues
  • Depression
  • Sinus infections
  • Skin problems/dry and or itchy skin
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Feeling sore or stiff when you wake up in the morning
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Excess weight
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Constipation
  • Worsened allergies
  • Food sensitivities
  • Increased colds and flu

What is done during a  Lymphatic Massage?

During a lymphatic massage the pressure is applied first in the areas of the lymph nodes in a slow sweeping motion.  Then the massage is shifted upstream of the lymph nodes and pressure is applied in the direction of the lymph channels towards the lymph note that was just drained.  This sequence is repeated multiple times in the same area and the progresses to the next part of the body.  The lymph node clusters are located behind the knee, the front of the thigh near the groin, behind the elbow, the armpit, and in multiple areas around the neck.  The techniques are painless while being performed and many times the patient will be instructed on how to perform self massage at home.  In our office we also incorporate drainage of the central nervous system cerebrospinal fluid by doing cranial sacral therapy.  Cranial Sacral Therapy is a method which restores the normal rhythmic movements that occur during breathing which facilitate cerebrospinal spinal fluid flow and lymphatic drainage of the central nervous system.  During a cranial sacral treatment gentle tugging and pressing procedures are done on the head and sacrum to optimizes normal motion during breathing.


Creative Writing for Pain Control

Creative Writing

Creative writing for pain control is a powerful tool to disconnect stressful thoughts from affecting your body.  Holding on to thought patterns which you are usually not even aware of can have detrimental effects on your wellbeing.  Our minds tend to cycle thoughts without us being aware of them.  Thoughts are very powerful on the nervous system and can have both positive and negative effects.  Problems arise when you are cycling negative thoughts resulting in heightening of the stress response in your nervous system.  The stress response releases many chemical mediators and activates our fight or flight nervous system.  When the stress response keeps running for long periods of time we start to exhibit anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive compulsive thoughts, and pain.  In my practice of Chiropractic I see the relationship of stress and pain on a daily basis.  The majority of my patients are not coming in for a traumatic injury.  They usually state that the pain just came on slowly over time and now they can no longer deal with it.  Chiropractic is a very effective method of treating pain in most cases but I find some patients that I treat respond slow to care or come back for flare ups of pain.  I introduce the Creative Writing techniques to people who are in obvious need of stress reduction as a part of their care.  The response when followed daily is amazing not just in their pain but in the feeling of peace attained by purging the cycling thoughts from the mind.

After discussing the basis as I just did above I hand my patients a pad of legal paper an give them the following instructions.

Start a routine of creative writing. Creative writing can provide a temporary distraction, while also improving your mood and decreasing anxiety. Why? Because it takes your mind off of the immediate problems and harmful thoughts that would otherwise engulf you. Journaling, and other forms of creative writing, can provide a safe place for you to let go of any bottled emotions and obsessive thought patterns. You can experience genuine self-expression through writing, without fear of judgment or over-analysis. Whether you realize it or not, you’re sharing a piece of yourself when you participate in the creative process. So when you sit down to write, it will bring out the background thoughts driving your stress.

Use this pad of paper to start writing down your thoughts.  Every day spend 15-30 minutes writing any thought that comes to mind. It is important to do this on paper and not an electronic device.  The pen and paper method will keep your writing connected to you only.  It can be as simple as “I feel hungry”, “I am concerned about my meeting at work today”, “is my pain a sign of something more wrong with me”.  As you practice this daily routine you will find it easy to perform and the writing will flow very easily. You will find this practice will decrease your stress and pain in a very short time.  I recommend doing this everyday even when you are feeling calm.  Life is always adding new stress and this exercise can be your outlet to let go of obsessive thoughts and patterned behaviors.

When you are done writing do not reread what you wrote or analyze what you wrote.  Fold it up then rip it into pieces and throw it out. I find that after I am done writing I feel a sense of peace.

I also encourage them to spend a little time after writing to do deep breathing exercises after they have cleared their mind of current thoughts they are cycling.  Focusing on slow inhalations and controlled exhalations.  Taking the time to focus their awareness on their body and surroundings.

  • Notice different sounds or smells in the room.
  • Notice the feeling of your clothes on your body.
  • Notice how thoughts randomly float into and out of awareness.
  • Notice tension of muscles in the face and let them relax.


1 Simple Change Will Help Your Posture

It may sound to good to be true that 1 simple change will help posture but it exists. It is quite simple make a routine of having your palms up.  This means when you are walking have your palms forward and when you are sitting rest your palms up. Practice this during the day take a break from working on the computer and rest your palms up on your desk, while sitting at home rest palms up, when you go for a walk spend some of the time walking with your palms forward, when you are driving alternate resting one hand on your thigh palm up.

During meditation many techniques recommend keeping your palms up.  The purpose of this simple posture change was used to open the chest for breathing and allow the heart to function optimally. Restriction of the muscles in the front of the chest and neck will not allow our rib cage to move freely and holds the upper ribs in a depressed state.  When we breath our rib cage is elevated allowing air to enter our lungs via negative pressure.  When these muscles are tense we don not inhale fully with each breath.  When we inhale with our upper ribs it opens the thoracic cavity freeing the heart up to beat optimally.  When we turn our palms up it causes us to rotate our shoulders back opening up the chest wall.  A very similar technique is used by runners after a race by putting their hands on top of their head allowing the chest to open.

Anatomy of the Rib Cage

Rib Cage anatomy

The rib cage is made up of 7 true ribs, 3 false ribs, and 2 floating ribs.  The 7 true ribs which individually attach directly to the sternum thru cartilage, 3 false ribs which have a common single joined cartilage attachment to the sternum and 2 floating ribs which do not attach to the sternum.

When we breathing correctly three components are coordinated:

  1. The true ribs elevate increasing the front to back diameter of the upper thoracic cavity.
  2. The false ribs elevate and widen increasing the side to side diameter of the lower thoracic cavity.
  3. The diagram lowers opening the up and down size of the entire thoracic cavity

The combination of these 3 motions create a negative pressure in the thoracic cavity allowing air to flow into the lungs.  You can feel these motions on your self by putting one hand on the front of the upper part of your chest (over your heart) while the other hand is on the side of the lower part of your chest and take in a deep breath.  You can feel the distinct first 2 components of breathing.  To feel the third put your hand over your belly button and inhale deeply to feel the third.

Postural Effect on Breathing

Poor posture of the neck and shoulders is the result of tightness of the deep chest and neck muscles which attach to the true ribs.  Poor posture is forward head posture and rolled forward shoulders which is a stress related adaption we develop.  It is reinforced by by working on computers, driving, and cell phone use.  The tight muscles causing this posture are the Scalene Muscles in the neck and the Pectoralis Minor and Serratus Anterior originating from the shoulder blades. Tightness of these muscles will decrease the free movement of the 7 true ribs limiting our chest expansion.  These muscles are also commonly involved in pain syndromes of the neck, shoulder, and upper extremity in Western Medicine. In Traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic Medicine they are also correlated to diseases of respiration/circulation.  The physiologic fact is they are related to both.  When these muscles are tight they lead to pain syndromes and shallow breathing.

Practicing the palm up technique will help you relax the tight muscles in the chest and neck and activate the weak muscles in the back of the neck and upper back. This method trains your body to hold a better posture.  While practicing this technique pay attention to how you breath and how your posture changes.  Incorporate this posture during your meditative technique and set your focus on the three components of breathing. Be mindful of the three components during your meditative focus and use it as a tool during the day with the palm up technique to rapidly ease stress and pain.



You Tube Video: Energetic Theory of Allergies

Energetic Theory

Dr. Aiello explains the energetic theory of allergies in this video.  This theory is the basis of Allergy Desensitization Treatments offered in his clinic.  Techniques such have NAET have been used for the last 30 years to help people overcome allergies in a quick and noninvasive protocol.  In our clinic we have refined some testing  aspects of the older homeopathic techniques and found we can help a wider spectrum of allergies.  Homeopathic techniques relied on kits for samples. These kits did not contain the actual allergens but instead had homeopathic preparations that mimicked the allergen. In our clinic we have produced a large kit of the actual allergens in a whole state.  We test dog hair using dog hair and when we test foods we have actual food samples. All samples are in glass vials and we never contact the patient directly with the sample. After we test and determine the allergy we use energy reflex points with lasers to reverse many allergies in a single visit.  We have had success eliminating symptoms of allergies to food, pets, pollen, molds, and even electrical sensitivities.

Vertigo and Tinnitus Caused By Middle Ear Pressure

In the last 3 years we have seen a large increase in vertigo and tinnitus caused by middle ear pressure cases. Some have been related to allergies while others have been related to a chronic upper respiratory virus. The inflammation of mucus membranes leads to the closing off of the eustachian tube, which is what drains the middle ear. When the Eustachian tube is blocked it causes pressure to build in the middle ear leading vertigo and sometimes even tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in ear). If the cause is related to a virus, the symptoms could last for months as the body
works to overcome the virus. If the cause is related to an allergy it responds well to alternative care. The past 5 years we have been perfecting an allergy technique which can reverse the effects of the allergy, allowing the eustachian tube to open again. In most cases this technique actually alleviates the allergy completely in 1 visit. The technique uses specific allergen samples to test for reaction to suspected allergens. The test is performed by grouping specific types of allergens such as tree pollens in one treatment and food allergens in another. Multiple allergens in one group can all be treated together. Such as if we find a reaction to oak and maple tree pollens, we can correct both allergies in one treatment. For cases that are viral we can see relief by performing spinal manipulations and massage that can temporarily dilate the Eustachian tube, hopefully allowing the pressure to release. Home care consists of moist compresses over the ear to help dilate the eustachian tube, zinc, Vitamin C, and Vitamin D supplementation to help fight the virus.

Middle ear pressure that has become chronic can have a secondary bacterial infection associated with it.  These cases can be serious and usually present with fever and severe pain around the ear.  It is important to seek healthcare attention for any ear pain associated with fever.

Benign Positional Vertigo

Benign Positional Vertigo is a very common cause of vertigo in the absence of middle ear pressure.  This condition is believed to be caused by crystal formation in the fluid of the inner ear.  Within the inner ear we have circular canals filled with fluid oriented in the X, Y, and Z axis.  When we move the fluid shifts within the canals and receptor hairs sense the movement and relay the information to the brain.  When crystals form in the inner ear they can lay on these hair sensors telling us we are moving when we are not, resulting in Vertigo.  In many instances relief can be obtained by seeking out a healthcare practitioner that specializes in the maneuvers that will dislodge the crystal.  Many Physical Therapists and Chiropractors are trained in these techniques.

Chiropractor Jeff Livingwell D.C. Leaves Profession to Become a Truck Driver

6-1-2021 Blissville Press Author: Joe Satire


Chiropractor Jeff Livingwell D.C. from Blissful, U.S.A. decided to quit his profession to become a truck driver at the local factory Envirocup.  He has found that 15 years of teaching healthcare is a rewarding career path but not a sustainable business model. He found himself going to work to only to see 5-10 patients every week that traveled from the next town over. This amount of patient visits was enough to only cover his cost to keep his doors open.  Sure he had new patients every week but he was finding that after he educated them on how to care for themselves through lifestyle changes they did not need his services often.   His advice was very simple he told his patients to exercise daily, eat only unprocessed food, and drink water.  Unlike his first job working with his mentor Frank Conundrum D.C. in the next town over he rarely had to discuss stress modification.  “The residents of Blissful had an unusually content lifestyle, in complete contrast to patients I worked with under Dr. Frank” Jeff told us.  Jeff also told us “Many of the patients he met in his Blissful practice seemed to have more free time and talked about their hobbies such as reading, crafting, gardening, and fishing.”

Blissful is a small town untouched by many of the common luxuries across the rest of the country.  The town is nestled in a valley which was blocked from satellite signals so no one had cable T.V. or internet access. It was such a small town that no cellular phone service was established in the area yet.  The only wires coming into town were power lines that traversed thru the town towards the next city 60 miles to the east Stressville.  Many of the 15,000 residents of Blissful were employed by 2 medium sized family businesses in town.  Blissfull Farms a local Whinery and Envirocup a factory which produces paper coffee cups for high end coffee shops in Stessville.

Dr. Livingwell is sad to leave his practice but is very excited about his opportunity working for Envirocup. “They are a great company to work for everyone gets 3 weeks paid vacation and they offered me the position as a wellness provider in the employee free clinic” he joyfully told us.  He ended our interview with “I am very proud of the work I have done in this community but it seems like they have no need for me anymore”.

Contrast Therapy

Contrast therapy is a method of alternating cold therapy and moist heat therapy to optimize the healing process in tendonitis.  The benefits of cold therapy include inflammation reduction and pain control.  The benefit of moist heat therapy is increasing circulation which speeds the healing and sweeps away inflammation.  The timing within the healing process to use contrast therapy is important and should be followed correctly.

Initially first 36 hours after an injury research shows that moderate cold therapy is beneficial in preventing excess inflammation and pain control.  If used after this point it is actually inhibiting the healing process.   After 36 hours the goal is now to increase circulation to speed healing and sweep out the leftover swelling.  Heat therapy alone is effective at this and has been the standard of care for many years.  New research is showing that Contrast Therapy is even more effective than traditional heat therapy at stimulating healing and decreasing chronic inflammation.  When used in combination with dietary modifications optimal recovery of chronic swelling can be achieved.

How to Perform

You will need an ice pack or back of ice, a microwavable moist heat pad, and a wet towel.  Wrap the ice pack in a towel soaked in cold water then heat up your moist heating pad.

Here is a basic pattern of how to apply contrast therapy:

  • Begin with 1 minute of cold
  • Apply 5 minutes of heat
  • Apply 1 minute of cold
  • Apply 5 minutes of heat
  • Apply 1 minute of cold
  • Apply 5 minutes of heat
  • Finish with 1 minute of cold

Hot and cold therapy should be carried out one to two times per day until the injury has healed. I have also found benefit in soaking the wet towel in a mix of Epsom salts and water before use.  It is a good idea to keep the wet towel in the freezer with the ice pack for ease of reapplication.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome?

Complex regional pain syndrome formally know as reflex sympathetic dystrophy is a poorly understood often under diagnosed condition.  Some patients are told they have neuralgia after an injury.  I have seen cases after surgery a limb getting rigid and immobile.  My first case I encountered the patient has leg pain, atrophy, and loss of toenail and hair growth.  This disorder is characterized by decreased blood flow and nerve innervation to a part of the body following a trauma.

When our body sustains an injury it reacts with a division of the nervous system called the sympathetic nervous system. This system commonly referred to as the fight or flight nervous system acts to ready our body to fight or run.  The sympathetic system causes our heart to beat faster, our lungs to take in more oxygen and blood is shunted away from the skin, intestines, and nervous system to our muscular system.  This response is normally a temporary event, but in complex regional pain syndrome our sympathetic system doesn’t turn off.  This causes long term depletion of blood supply to the area of the body affected.  We start to have symptoms related to decreased blood flow to the nerves, skin, bones, and joints.  The muscles exhibit either weakness or tightness due to nerve and joint damage. The major symptom is extreme burning pain in the skin with hypersensitivity to touch.  Over time patients start to exhibit skin changes such as swelling and redness of the skin.  Many times Chiropractic can reverse this process by resetting the sympathetic nervous system.  Results are seen very quickly as blood returns to the depleted areas of the body.

I have found Chiropractic to be a great option to reverse Complex Regional Pain Syndrome .  Chiropractic manipulations will send a large amount of sensory input to the spinal chord.  This large burst of incoming information can reset the autonomic nervous system.  With repetition of treatments I have found many cases can be corrected.

3 Yoga stretches for neck pain

Yoga For Neck Pain

There are a lot of people who have to sit all day due to the nature of their job. This can lead to poor posture and neck pain. Many seek yoga exercises for neck pain. When people have to sit down the whole day in an office working on a computer they tend to develop poor posture while leaning over a keyboard or reaching for the mouse.  The positions tends to create a forward head posture call anterior head carriage and rounded shoulders.  Yoga exercises for neck pain is a great way to correct these problems. Yoga will allow you to release tension in the overworked muscles and calm the mind.  During yoga breathing is incorporated into poses to get you to relax into the stretch but is also a way to elongate muscles as your lungs expand with air. There are several exercises that can be done to handle this problem, this article we will give you 3 ideas that can be done right at your desk. I highly encourage taking a yoga class which teaches many more involved poses such as Cat Pose, Cow Pose, Plow Pose, and Upward Dog.

3 Easy Yoga Poses at Work

  1. Neck Rolls:  While sitting at desk slowly inhale as you look as far as you can to the right.  When you turn as far as you can fill your lungs completely with air and hold for 3 count.  Exhale and slowly return your head back to straight. Repeat the other direction.  Do this cycle at least 5 times each side.
  2. Look Up and Down.: While sitting at desk slowly inhale as you drop your chin to your chest as far as you can go completely fill your lungs with air and hold for a 3 count.  Exhale and return head to straight.  Next slowly look as far up as you can while inhaling hold for 3 seconds when lungs are full then exhale as you return to straight. Do this cycle at least 5 times each direction.
  3. Side Bends: While sitting at desk slowly inhale as you drop your to your right shoulder fill your lungs completely when fully stretched and hold for a 3 count. Exhale and slowly return your head back to straight. Repeat the other direction.  Do this cycle at least 5 times each side.

When you are all done take a moment and notice how you feel.  This is how your neck should feel at work normally.


The Importance of Water

Studies have recently concluded that the average person in most western countries does not drink enough water. This can have both short and long term effects on the body.

Most people should drink at least 8 average sized glasses of water each day (64 ounces). Many people do not drink enough water and the consequences of this can be severe. People often think that drinking cups of tea, coffee or even alcohol makes up for not drinking water. This is incorrect. Instead of quenching your thirst these drinks can actually make you feel thirstier. Not only that both groups of beverages caffeinated and alcohols cause your body to lose water reserves instead of adding to it. Most of my patients believe that they can get away with juices or carbonated beverages as their water sources. This belief is also incorrect because these drinks may add some water to their bodies but only a very small amount of useable water while at the same time adding more harmful chemicals.

One of the causes of a hangover is not enough water. It’s amazing how often a hangover can be avoided by simply drinking a good-sized glass of water before going to bed. This is due to the fact that alcohol inhibits hormones in the kidney from retaining water therefore allowing your body to lose its reserves.

Constipation is a sure sign of not enough water and is a good indicator that you should drink more. Lets face it; the main substance in the body is water. Not drinking enough water means the body has to take water from somewhere to try to digest foods and carry out the various chemical reactions that take place within the body. This then upsets the balance and can harm other parts and make you feel uncomfortable.

Spring/bottled water
Many people drink bottled water. In my opinion this is the safest and most economical way to get clean pure water. Check in your area for who offers a good quality water that is delivered. Stay away from no name companies, regulation on what can be bottled and called drinking water is not to strict.

Distilled water
While this is safe to drink it should not be drank continuously over a long period of time. Distilled water is empty water and it will help to draw out the toxins from the body. However prolonged usage will leach vital minerals and vitamins from the body. Anyone drinking distilled water for a prolonged period of more than a few days should very definitely take mineral and vitamin supplements but we do not recommend drinking this permanently.

Fizzy water
Many people enjoy fizzy water but studies show that prolonged drinking of fizzy water and soft drinks can create problems for the body. Basically, fizzy drinks contain carbon dioxide in the bubbles. The body needs and requires oxygen and most carbon dioxide in the body is considered a waste product to be eliminated. Why add to the body’s troubles by drinking carbon dioxide which the body regards as a poison?

Filtered Water
Check whether tap water in your area is safe to drink. If it is safe I suggest you also filter the water before drinking. This will help to eliminate some of the toxins found in most water supplies. Be careful many companies sell filters and it can end up being pretty costly.

•    75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.
•    In 37% of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.
•    Even MILD dehydration will slow down one’s metabolism as much as 3%.
•    One glass of water deters hunger pangs for 98% of the dieters observed in a University of Washington study.
•    The biggest trigger of daytime fatigue is lack of water.
•    Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease low back pain and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.
•    A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the computer screen or on a printed page.
•    Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, breast cancer by 79%, and developing bladder cancer by 50%.