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Massage Message, Issue 13a: Articles on Stress, Sense of touch, Self massage, Deep Oscillation
November 22, 2010

So much has happened in the last few weeks.

I have been on a practice day for the Dorn method - that renewed my enthusiasm for it. I had some very good results from it in my case studies.

I have made the biggest investment in Touching Well ever - obviously apart from the love, time and commitment I put in every day as a matter of course. I bought a machine called the Hivamat 200. It shifts oedema, fibrosis and encourages healing of tissue, a longer article about it is below.

I bought it for a client who is very ill with Lyme disease, oedema and ulcers. I felt I needed a another treatment option. My trainer and other therapists recommended Deep Oscillation, and so I decided to invest. Obviously this machine will not work miracles, but the results so far have been encouraging.

Tell your massage story - and win a prize

I would still love to hear about your massage experience via the Touching Well Website . My motivation behind the massage story section is to tell the whole wide world (www) about the power of touch! And to draw together the people who love it, or at least appreciate it, to create a community. A bit grand, I guess, but I have to start somewhere...

Please leave some feedback. There are links on the Touching Well website. You can win a copy of the one and only massage novel on the market, Gerry Pyves' "Mavis and I", plus a £10 Touching Well voucher. Talking of gift vouchers:

A gift for life

A timely reminder about Touching Well gift vouchers - for the person who would love to receive an experience to be treasured forever.

Psychodramatic bodywork

This Sunday (28/11), and on Saturday and Sunday (11+12 December) is an Introduction to Psychodramatic Bodywork at the Iona School in Sneinton (Nottingham).

Talking of the Iona School, they have their annual Advent Market this Saturday (27/11) from 10.30 till 4. Highly recommended, particularly if you take children!

Chronic stress does cause heart disease - the proof!

Scientists have finally been able to prove what we’ve always known – long-term stress, from worries such as financial, marrital and job problems, causes heart problems.

Scientists at the University of Western Ontario in Canada have come up with a hair analysis system that can detect stress over a long period. Until now, serum, urine and saliva analysis could tell if the person was stressed only at the time the sample was taken, whereas heart problems are associated with chronic stress. As hair grows at around one centimetre a month, a hair sample that is three centimetres long gives a picture of stress levels over a three month period by measuring the levels of cortisol, the stress hormone.

To test the theory, the researchers took hair samples from 56 heart attack patients and 56 hospital patients without heart problems. After adjusting other risk factors of heart disease, such as smoking and diabetes, they discovered that heart patients had indeed higher cortisol levels deposited in their hair. This suggests that chronic stress over the three month period is indeed a contributory factor to heart disease. (Stress. 2010 Sept 2)

Sense of touch can relieve pain

Scientists have discovered a distinct set of "pleasure nerves" in the skin that can alleviate pain when gently stroked. They believe the discovery could lead to new treatments for conditions ranging from chronic itching to depression.

The nerves respond to being brushed slowly and they appear to be sensitive to the type of stroking and cuddling provided by a mother to an upset child, scientists said.

There is growing evidence that touching the skin and gentle stroking of the body stimulates an evolutionary ancient part of the nervous system that makes people feel good when cuddled by a loved one or groomed by themselves. (Independent on 8 September 2008)


is something that most of us do instinctively when we get a sudden jabbing pain. It is a very effective way of reducing pain levels, especially after an injury. That is what researchers from University College London have discovered.

Touching the area in pain seems to help the brain form a representation of the body.  This, in turn, lets the brain integrate the signals, and this means you feel less pain. Something similar is going on when people still feel pain in a phantom limb that has been amputated.  Only when the brain ‘gets it’ that the limb is no longer there does the pain finally stop. The researchers conclude that any therapy that allows the brain to form a better representation of the body could be a useful method for pain reduction. (Curr Biol, 2010 Sept, 20(20), 1819-22)

Deep Oscillation

I never thought I'll buy a machine to do massage! Actually, I didn't – the Hivamat 200 will enhance the massage and MLD I do with my hands. Let me explain:

Deep Oscillation® creates low frequencies of gentle electrostatic impulses that ‘knead' the skin's tissue by attracting and releasing it between 5-200 times a second. This feels very relaxing with a slight vibration. It reaches between 8 and 12 centimetre into the body, gently pulling and releasing all layers between the skin to the muscles and even the internal organs. Deep Oscillation® is very safe; it does not produce heat or electrical stimulation (a circuit is not completed – this is part of the patented circuitry). It can be used very gently and in situations where massage is not yet beneficial, for example hours after an injury, the day after surgery or on wounds – and it enhances and multiplies the benefits of massage and manual lymph drainage in chronic conditions.

Deep Oscillation® is helpful for anything that involves inflammation and cell re-generation. When I researched inflammation on Wikipedia, even obesity was described as an inflammatory process. Perhaps it would go a bit far to claim that Deep Oscillation® is good for weight loss per se, but it can be used to support a weight loss programme. And reportedly it is fantastic for “orange peel skin”, which affects more than 80% of women (I certainly have some!).

An hour session of Deep Oscillation cost £45. Existing clients can try it for price they usually pay for their session.

Excellent for oedema

Deep Oscillation® supports and accelerates the effects of Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) in reducing and preventing oedema (swelling). During treatment it first mixes up the stagnant fluid and fibrotic tissue in the space between the cells (the interstitium) and then encourages its flow into the lymphatic vessels.

During treatment with Deep Oscillation for oedema you will usually first be treated with a faster vibration. To complete the treatment, the frequency used is much slower.

Issue 13a of the Massage Message, 23 November 2010.
Regina Dengler
Touching Well
0115 8457113
regina @

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