Handmade: The Therapeutic Effects of Crafting

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by Lauren Johnson

There’s something inherently satisfying about creating with one’s own hands. Whether growing vegetables in a garden or baking a tray of muffins from scratch, being able to create helps us connect with our creative abilities as well as with ourselves. Studies have shown that adults that participate in crafts such as knitting, sculpting, painting or sewing experience therapeutic benefits that can greatly benefit their physical, mental and social well-being.

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A Moving Alternative: Dance Therapy as a Career

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by Annie Xu

Many students are passionate about their artistic and creative hobbies. However, as young adults begin to contemplate which career path to follow, very few will choose a profession in the world of art or dance. This phenomenon suggests that there are some glaring obstacles preventing young people from continuing to pursue their passion.

Dance is a physically demanding job with harsh competition; as dancers age, they are more susceptible to injuries and often cannot “out dance” younger counterparts. To compete in the world of dance, one must study from a young age and dedicate a significant amount of time to the art form. Professional dancers typically spend seven hours of their day in dance classes and rehearsals and often must work for even longer when performing in shows. As a result, dancers on average retire in their mid-30s, either due to competition, age or injuries and, therefore, run the risk of losing a significant portion of their income.

For those that wish to have a financially stable job that allows for dance and artistic expression, dance therapy is a great career choice. Dance therapy, the use of dance and movement as a psychotherapeutic tool, is rooted in the idea that the body and the mind are connected, and it is based on the idea that movement reflects one’s emotional and mental state. Dance/movement therapy benefits a wide variety of people, from those that struggle with their body image to patients that are autistic or suffer from dementia.

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Lyme Prevention Tips

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Studies by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection show the state continues to be number one in reported cases of Lyme disease in the U.S., with cases increasing each year. This year will be no exception, with the CDC reporting that the combination of last year’s large white-footed mouse population and the mild winter will result in an even larger increase of infected ticks.

Bucks County Lyme holds support group meetings at 4 p.m. on the third Sunday of each month at the Middletown Municipal Building in Langhorne. Those that can’t make a meeting this summer can follow these simple and important prevention tips.

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Treating Lyme Disease with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

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by Julie Vitto

The late Dr. William Fife of Texas A&M University pioneered groundbreaking research into the use of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) to treat a wide spectrum of conditions, including Lyme disease. His extensive research revealed that, in many cases, patients with Lyme disease were able to stop using antibiotics and other medications after HBOT resulted in dramatic improvements to their overall health.

HBOT works to promote healing by increasing the oxygen concentration in the body at the cellular level and is often used in conjunction with antibiotics. Each patient receives an individualized evaluation before starting what is typically a protocol of 40 treatments. As a result, body functions are restored and the immune system receives a massive boost.

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Lovelight Yoga + Arts Festival

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by Dan Martinsen

There will be three days of peace and music taking place August 18 through 20, almost 48 years to the exact weekend of the original Woodstock Music & Art Fair in 1969. There will be yoga and meditation—maybe even a sighting of “Mud People”, depending on the weather. Just don’t expect any announcements warning about “brown acid” at the second annual Lovelight Yoga + Arts Festival, in Darlington, Maryland, the brainchild of original Woodstock producer Michael Lang. His goal, along with partners’ musician Wynne Paris and event producer Kim Maddox, is to channel the spirit and activism from the original Woodstock, minus the alcohol and drugs.

“We wanted to create an event based on the values of that generation but to make it appropriate for families,” Lang, now 72, said in a recent telephone interview. “This event isn’t just for millennials, it’s multigenerational—and we want everyone to feel comfortable and safe when they come, and for their peace of mind we decided to keep it alcohol-free.”

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Not Taking Lyme Lying Down: The PA Lyme Resource Network Empowers, Educates, Advocates

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by Jack Firneno

Summer is a time for people to enjoy the outdoors. But for many in Pennsylvania, there’s a dangerous underbelly to the season.

There were 7,351 reported cases of Lyme Disease in Pennsylvania in 2015, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That’s up from 6,470 in 2014, making the state by far the highest in the nation for documented incidences.

Southeastern Pennsylvania has been hit especially hard: Bucks County alone had 287 cases in 2014 and 454 in 2015, with Montgomery County showing 384 and 409, respectively. Even more alarming is the CDC’s acknowledgement that Lyme infections are underreported.

The disease, along with a host of possible bacterial co-infections, is transmitted through bites from blacklegged ticks, also known as deer ticks.

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PBS Special On Depression Treatment Features New Vitae

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by Carrie Jackson

New Vitae Wellness and Recovery, in Quakertown, has been dedicated to serving clients and communities by promoting hope, health and wellness for over 30 years. Now they are partnering with the Lehigh Valley’s PBS39/WLVT to share personal stories of recovery from debilitating depression. Close to Home: Depression chronicles the experience of two New Vitae community clients that found hope and recovery through deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (dTMS), used in conjunction with other therapeutic services that New Vitae offers.

Depression affects about one out of 20 Americans, or 5 percent of the population. Symptoms can range from apathy and agitation to hallucinations and suicidal urges. Many New Vitae clients find success with dTMS after previously exhausting dozens of other treatments. “dTMS is a state-of-the-art technology that stimulates the prefrontal cortex of the brain, where depression is thought to originate, with magnetic coils. We complement this with behavior therapy, talk therapy or whatever else the client needs to feel supported,” says Andrew Amick, a registered nurse and Director of Wellness at New Vitae.

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Customized Coaching and Care for Lyme: Pura Vida’s Natural Healing Know-How

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by Karen G. Meshkov

Pura Vida Wellness Shop and Studio, in Huntingdon Valley, is a holistic health and healing resource center with a selection of premium vitamins, supplements, herbs and oils, as well as onsite classes and workshops in a variety of healing arts. The center opened its doors in January and is a destination for Eastern Montgomery County residents seeking holistic, supportive care for a host of chronic and acute conditions, including Lyme disease.

The center is proudly “womanned” by Sharon Doyle, who has worked in health and wellness for over 25 years and is certified from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, and Lynn Roberts, a longtime yoga and meditation teacher, Western herbalist and Kripalu-trained ayurvedic practitioner.

While Doyle and Roberts are at the ready to provide personalized counsel to help whomever comes into their shop, both are adamant that people see their primary doctor immediately if they suspect they have Lyme disease. “We want people diagnosed with Lyme to utilize our individualized supplements and protocol simultaneously with their conventional treatment,” stresses Doyle. “We work alongside physicians; we are not meant to replace them.”

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Social Media Tips for Small Businesses

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by Michelle Arbore

In order for small businesses to succeed with social media, they need to have a consistent presence and accept that it is here to stay. Social media is not going away anytime soon, and it will only get better.

The first thing anyone must understand about social media is that it is about building the “know”, “like” and “trust” of followers. The idea is to let people know there is a human being behind the brand.

The other thing to understand is that people are talking about businesses, products and services on social media. Rather than ignoring these conversations, business owners should jump in and have a say in where that conversation goes. If someone complains about products and services, owners can find out why and learn from it in order to better serve current and potential customers.

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Hope in a Time of Crisis: Communities Organize to Fight Opioid Addiction

by Jack Firneno

Girl comforting her friendIt’s impossible to talk about pain management in 2017, and in Southeastern Pennsylvania, without also exploring the opioid crisis.

The Drug Enforcement Agency’s analysis of drug-related deaths in 2015 shows a continued rise in overdoses statewide, especially from opioids. Published last July, it documents 3,383 drug-related deaths across Pennsylvania that year. Heroin and fentanyl, a synthetic opioid often mixed with heroin, were present in 54.6 and 27 percent, respectively, of all overdose deaths.

That means, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health, that opioid overdoses are the leading cause of accidental death—not just drug-related fatalities—in the state. Bucks and Montgomery counties, with their mix of densely populated and rural areas, ranked in about the middle of the list, with 117 deaths in Bucks and 136 in Montgomery.

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Preventing Digestion Problems at the Source: Jeff Griffin, DC, Prescribes Nutritional Enzymes for Stress, Pain

by Gisele M. Siebold

crg_centerfornaturalhealing_griffin_0915.jpgJeffrey Griffin, founder of the Center for Natural Healing, in Doylestown, was a practicing doctor of chiropractic with over 15 years of clinical experience when, in 2003, he was introduced to the work of influential chiropractor and nutritional scientist, Howard F. Loomis. Loomis’ approach focuses on the importance of digestion and, specifically, the assimilation, absorption and elimination systems of the body and their relationship to overall health and wellbeing. The encounter opened Griffin’s mind and made a profound impact on how he approaches healing. Since then, he has successfully used the Loomis System in combination with chiropractic techniques to ease pain and achieve optimal health for patients at his busy Doylestown office.

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Reveal and Heal the Source of Pain with Zero Pain Now

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by Rebecca Antsis and Karen G. Meshkov

According to a 2015 study published by the National Institutes of Health, nearly 50 million Americans—one in every five people—suffer from severe or chronic pain.

The wide variety of pain management techniques varies from physical therapy and surgical procedures to the most controversial and widespread approach: the use of prescription opioids.

But the persistence of chronic pain has forced even more conservative-leaning
patients to seek relief options that fall outside the confines of the traditional medical model. One such alternative method is the Zero Pain Now program.

Zero Pain Now is founded upon the discoveries of Dr. John E. Sarno, a physician and professor of rehabilitation medicine at New York University School of Medicine. During the 1970s, Sarno discovered a mind-body connection between certain forms of pain and repressed emotion.

Dan Buglio, a certified Zero Pain Now coach whose work is based on Sarno’s initial discovery, points out that we encounter proof of this relationship daily: “We cry, we blush, we get nervous stomachs; these are all very real, universally accepted physical changes to our bodies that happen as a result of emotion stimulus. So why not pain?”

Sarno called the pain it produced tension myositis syndrome (TMS). He published his findings and, in more than 45 years of practice, cured countless chronic pain sufferers, and did so at little cost to the patient.

But as is common to those ahead of their time, Sarno’s work remained in obscurity until it was resurrected three decades later by Rapid Life Change coach Adam Heller, who healed himself from a long bout with severe back pain by studying the work of Sarno and other mind-body advocates.

Through extensive research and lived experience, Heller improved upon the processes with his program Zero Pain Now, a step-by-step coaching protocol to help those afflicted with chronic pain end it completely.

Over 1,000 private coaching clients have gone through the private Zero Pain Now coaching program and 97 percent were able to eliminate their pain completely, a metric unrivaled by other pain management techniques. Further, a pilot study conducted at the Mayo Clinic at the end of 2015 was designed to measure how effective Zero Pain Now would be for longtime sufferers of chronic pain, including those with lower back pain, degenerative disc disease, fibromyalgia, shoulder pain, groin pain, spinal stenosis and migraines. The pilot participants started the program with reported pain levels of mid- to high-intensity. The results showed that every single patient was pain free by the end of the 28-day program.

Bucks County resident Dan Buglio is thrilled to be among that 97 percent. For over a decade, Buglio suffered with debilitating back pain and sciatica. Frustrated by ineffective treatments offered by his doctors, he sought out alternatives. Zero Pain Now was the protocol that finally ended his pain, and he has remained pain free for the past six years.

Buglio has made it his life’s mission to help others end their pain through the Zero Pain Now program, which includes education on the nature of pain, a customized pain assessment, and a proven process to reverse the body’s physical response to suffering caused by the emotional world. “It is that process that ends the pain,“ says Buglio, who works one-on-one with clients in person, via video chat and email.

The first step, he asserts, is becoming proactive about your health. “Many people delegate their health to their doctors, where it does not require any thinking or ownership on the patient’s part.”

Another hurdle Buglio helps his clients over is the shift in mindset. “It’s hard to accept the reality that pain is actually caused by the body’s real physical reaction to intense emotions and stress. The pain is real, but so is the cure.”

For people interested in learning more, there is a free, online diagnostic pain test available at YourPainTest.com that quickly ascertains whether the sufferer is a candidate for the program. “The test takes only about five minutes and is free. You can access it from your smartphone. If you are in pain and you’ve been told there’s no hope, I encourage you to take it. You have nothing to lose and, potentially, so much to gain.”

For more information, call 800-580-6530 or visit DanBuglio.com

Rebecca Antsis is a Pennsylvania-based writer, performer and editorial associate for Natural Awakenings BuxMont. Connect at RebeccaAntsis@gmail.com.

Karen G. Meshkov is publisher and director of advertising partnerships for Natural Awakenings BuxMont.

June 2017