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Head Massage Can Release Sinus Pressure, Pain

sinus massageWhen most of us think of massage, we think of relaxing, reducing stress, or relieving neck and back pain.

Few of us think of massage when we have sinus congestion caused by allergies or headache pain. But a good head massage can relieve stuffiness, so long as it's not caused by infection, and reduce tensions in the head that can be causing headaches.

Allergic sinus congestion is caused when something in the environment triggers the release of histamines in our system. Histamines are the body's defense against allergens, which include such irritants as smoke, dust, pollen, perfumes, and pet dander, to name a few.

Sinus congestion caused by viruses, like colds or the flu, are contraindicated for massage as manipulating the tissues could spread the infection.

Headaches can be caused by sinus congestion, as well as trigger points in the muscles, bones that are misaligned (as in TMJ dysfunction), or stress.

A thorough head massage would include gentle pressure, stroking and kneading of the muscles of the head, face and neck. It would also include some craniosacral work to realign the bones of the head.

For example, the therapist might start with circular massaging of the muscles of the head, perhaps even gently tugging the hair to release the underlying fascia. Then she might use her fingertips to stroke and press on the face, paying special attention to trigger points and acupressure points along areas of tension and congestion.

From there, she might move to the neck, releasing trigger points that typically cause headaches. Then she might release the cranial bones and further open the sinuses with craniosacral therapy.

If congestion is severe, she would probably use an essential oil or oil blend like Sunbreeze to further open the sinus passages.

Finally, your therapist might use Reiki or Polarity therapy to balance the energies in the head and further relax you.

Head massages usually last about 30 minutes, which can easily fit into most schedules. They are popular in more urban areas, and a catching on nationwide as more people experience their effectiveness.

Alternately, you might choose a Sinus Massage with Lymphatic Drainage. This massage lasts about an hour and focuses on moving the lymph to release sinus blockages. It is a very focused massage, and like the any massage, it should not be performed if you have an active infection that might spread.

A 30 minute session is $35. If you think head massage might help your congestion and headaches, please call Julie at 345-0099, or Suzanne at 315-9900 to schedule an appointment.


Keeping the Bugs Away

mosquito sucking bloodIf you love the outdoors in the early summer, you know that one thing that can ruin an otherwise perfect day is an insect attack.

The recent rains in my area have given the mosquitoes breeding grounds in any spot that can hold a thimble of water. They're everywhere, and their bites cause redness, swelling itching that can be beyond annoying. They are also known to spread West Nile virus. They can also bite your pets.

Before that, the earwigs were driving me crazy (they were hiding in my newspapers and mail and then getting inside.) I've already picked a tick off the dog and treated her so the wild rabbits' fleas don't jump off the grass onto her.

The gnats are bad, and flies are always a problem.

I've done some research and found tips that can help you conquer the bugs this summer. Here they are:

Bugs don't have to destroy your summer fun. Use these tips to help make your outings more enjoyable.


Essential Oil of the Month: Tangerine


© Bogdan-gabriel Postelnicu | Dreamstime.com

The tangerine is native to China, but it arrived in Europe in the early 1800s and came to America just afterwards. The Americas are now the largest producers of tangerines.

The tangerine fruit is similar to the mandarin. Some say it is the same fruit and that the tangerine is just an American variety of mandarin. The main difference is that tangerines have no pips, and they are harvested November rather than in February. The scent is also slightly different -- tangerine is more candy-like and temperamental.

The essential oil is obtained from cold expression of the peels.

Tangerine EO has a cheerful, refreshing scent and has naturally calming effects on the spirit. It is often used to relieve insomnia, irritability, sadness, and tension. It is said to increase a person's sense of humor and general feeling of well-being.

Tangerine EO is good for a variety of physical problems, and it is especially good for ailments of the digestive, circulatory, and lymphatic systems. It assists against water retention and swelling and can help relax cramped muscles. It can heal and reduce scars and is often used for stretch marks and cellulite. Some people use it for flatulence and bowel symptoms.

The only word of caution is to use tangerine EO sparingly. It can be phototoxic, and you should not expose skin to direct sunlight after applying it. Use a carrier oil with it if your skin is sensitive.

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June 2009

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In This Issue

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Recipes for Tangerine Essential Oil

essential oil dropper

Gentle cleanser:
2 drops tangerine essential oil, 1 drop lavandin essential oil, 1 tsp unscented liquid soap.

Travel Mist:
1 teaspoon grain alcohol or high-proof vodka; 10 drops tea tree EO; 7 drops peppermint EO; 10 drops tangerine EO; 4 ounces distilled water.
Directions: Place alcohol in a spray bottle. Add the EOs and shake. Add water, cap and mist the atmosphere around your outdoor activities. Always shake well before use. Avoid spraying eyes and sensitive areas.

Support of the Digestive System, Stretch Marks and Cellulite:
Dilute 2 drops of tangerine EO into 1 tablespoon of carrier oil such as jojoba, Rub the oil into the stomach region.

Refreshing Citrus Bath Salts:
Mix ½ cup Sea Salt, 8 drops sweet orange EO, 4 drops lemon EO, 6 drops tangerine EO, 4 drops grapefruit EO. Great after working in the yard.

Improving Blood Circulation and Decreasing Water Retention:
2 ½ tablespoons almond oil, ½ tablespoon jojoba oil, 1 evening primrose oil capsule, 2 drops tangerine EO, 1 drop lemon EO, 4 drops cypress EO, 4 drops lavender EO, 3 drops geranium EO. Massage into affected area.

Drop a cotton ball sprinkled with 15 drops of tangerine EO into your vacuum bag. The scented cotton will add a relaxing, fresh scent to the air as you clean, and will deodorize your vacuum cleaner.

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Copyright 2009
Suzanne H. Eller


tulip drawing

Tulip drawing © Madartists at Dreamstime.com. Used with permission.

After at week of rain at the end of May, many of us are looking forward to June weather and good old summertime fun. Trips to the beach or mountains are on our agendas, and there's nothing to beat hot dogs and hamburgers fresh off the grill.

Suzanne is getting her Karuna Reiki Masters the first weekend of the month. Karuna Reiki, which means compassionate life force, is a wonderful compliment to her Usui Reiki practice. Suzanne is combining her Craniosacral mouthwork with her intraoral massage to achieve excellent results for those who suffer from TMJ.

Massage is a great way to relax after summer activities and to recover from summer mishaps. And don't forget that gift certificates make wonderful gifts for the graduate and for Father's Day.

We want to wish you a great summer, full of laughter and fun. We have enjoyed serving you and hope to see you soon. Call for an appointment. Our hours are 9 am to 7 pm, by appointment.

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Suzanne's Summer Reading Picks:

A friend loaned me her copy of this book, and I liked it so much, I ordered my own copy. Wuellner writes that if we pay attention to our bodies, we can hear signals that tell us of our deepest hurts and how to heal them through the deep relationship between our bodily self and our spiritual self. She offers guided meditations and prayers to help us access this inner knowledge.

I watched Dyer do this program on PBS and loved it. The book is one of his best. he describes how we use self-limiting language to keep ourselves stuck in repeating patterns. He also tells us how to overcome those loops of language and feeling to literally think ourselves healthy and happy.

The hardcover of this book came out last year. It's been on the bestseller list since the paperback version was released in May. Set in Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands between Britain and France, during WWII, it's about the Nazi occupation of the island and about the group who resists them under the guise of a literary society. A little over 300 pages and a quick read, it will nevertheless make you laugh and cry. A great beach read!

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