Massage and Acupuncture: Application of the Science of Touch
Hands can make tools, and hands can be tools themselves.
When one really takes time to think about it, hands are incredible. The science of touch is a rarely discussed topic, primarily due to the sensitivity the topic entails when taking some cultural and social norms into consideration. But the fact is, without touch, we would not be here. It is proven that babies do not develop properly if they do not have skin contact. Apparently, touch is required as a triggering mechanism for promulgation of brain activity, emotional response, as well as the immune system.The touch of a newborn baby’s hand forms tears in the eyes, and the touch of an elder’s hand cannot help but make one think of the wisdom one can learn of the world. The touch of hands have incredible potential. Just as they have let us discover fire, craft tools, and even use smartphones, they have been used in treatment for as long as history can recall.
Two such forms of the application of hands for treatment include massage and acupuncture. While massage involves direct skin contact through the hands, guided by fluid movements, acupuncture involves the intuition of the hands to gently guide needle tools serving as extensions of the hands — affecting meridians of the body that are stimulated through touch. Without the needle tools, this is known as acupressure.
According to the American News Report, studies have shown that, for massage, treatment is effective for treating pain regarding inflammation after exercise (reducing inflammation of acutely damaged skeletal muscle), osteoarthritis knee pain (pain reduction), chronic low back pain (significant pain reduction), and fibromyalgia (pain reduction and improved quality of life). Exhaustive amounts of studies exist for acupuncture, and publications from the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences revealed, for example, the potential of acupuncture treatment for depression as well as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Regarding CFS, acupuncture has shown to significantly improve quality of life.
These are just two methods of the science of touch, but this is an almost endless avenue to explore. Ready for an adventure? The skies are the limits… but not for the hands. Hands built space programs.
Hands are incredible.
Greenville Hospital System. The Magic Hour. Retrieved May 24th, 2012 from: http://www.ghswomens.org/the-magic-hour.php
American News Report. Studies Show Massage Relieves Chronic Pain. Retrieved May 24th, 2012 from:
PubMed. Development of studies on on neurochemical mechanism of acupuncture underlying improvement of depression. Retrieved May 24th, 2012 from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22073894
PubMed. A meta analysis on randomized controlled trials of acupuncture treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome. Retrieved May 24th, 2012 from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20209981
PubMed. Randomized controlled study on influence of acupuncture for life quality of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome. Retrieved May 24th, 2012 from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19873911