A lot of people have been asking me why I have started to shift my practice toward digital thermography, and how I can incorporate it into my health practice.
The answer is quite long and drawn out, and I won't take you through the entire process, but there are a few points that are relevant to this content, which I have chosen to highlight in this post.
A few years ago, a colleague of mine wrote a book on modern cupping. Some of you may have seen the book if you happen to be a practitioner that is interested in cupping. Its a pretty good book, but for certain the thermographic images in the book are what draws the most attention. It certainly caught my attention. This point is very relevant, and I'll expand further on it a little later in the post.
Before this time, I had heard about thermography mostly as an adjunct to mammography and ultrasound and quite honestly not paid a lot of attention to it. That changed when I saw how thermography could detect heat and inflammation in the body, and detect small changes in temperature. I became very interested in getting my hands on a camera to try to experiment with some of the treatments and modalities that I use and teach in my acupuncture/bodywork practice. That was when I found out how expensive it is to buy/rent the equipment, and how in demand the services can be.
In all of the courses that I teach, I emphasize to students that to be a successful practitioner we must wear many hats. One part detective, one part empath, one part business person, one part human communications manager, one part bookeeper!! Of course a lot of that depends on what modalities/college/depth we work at and as well it depends on whether one is self employed and running a practice or working with others. At any rate the detective part is what is relevant here.
Since 2001 I have performed well over 20,000 client treatments, and with every new patient visit there is an in-depth health questionnaire. A LOT of information is gathered, sometimes I spend as much as an hour with my clients to try to get to the real root cause of their complaints. You cannot understand the amount of learning and information that we can gather, and how years of practice build on the knowledge that we receive in our original training. At some point in our practice we start to realize how little we really know.... thats usually a sign that we are getting somewhere. Further along we start to realize that although we may not know much, our clinical skills and knowledge and the methods that we use to perform assessments provide us with a LOT of information. There are very few modalities and practices that gather information as accurately and in detail as Classical Chinese Medicine. It takes years of practice and thousands of treatments to become proficient at putting this information together, and create truly transformative and effective treatment plans.
The image that I have chosen to share above is an example of how having a practitioner with many years of experience as well as an understanding of both East and Western medicine can be of a great benefit to get to the root cause of a problem, and start addressing potential health concerns.
In the thermography report, the doctor indicated that the patient was a 'level 2' which means that there are some concerns with a thermal pattern and changes in the breast, but nothing of major consequence. This is great news for the client, most practitioners would take this information, and say 'see you next year.'
When I first looked at these images, I did not feel concerned either. Then, as I went through all of the images in her full body scan I noticed something. The client has consistent heat patterns throughout her body in the areas where there is the most dense lymph nodes. Having taken an in depth health history with this client and looking at these scans got me thinking... and in our follow up session I was able to ask some follow up questions that were even more in depth in order to give her a really thorough analysis and advice moving forward. Based on the health history, the information provided from these scans and the report from the thermographer I have been able to help this patient understand how important it is to take a 'whole health' approach and move forward in her health journey.
When I meet with clients, I perform a Classical Chinese Medicine health evaluation based on 10 questions and using the tongue, pulse, verbal and written assessment. I begin to identify the patterns that may be present as well as what tools the client is willing or able to utilize in their treatment. It is important to understand how serious and committed the client might be, before providing advise so that you can stay within their area of comfort and give them actionable suggestions.
One of the reasons that I used this example to demonstrate why I have chosen thermography is because I am finding more and more in my own practice and experience, I am identifying a shift in the patterns of imbalance that are appearing in clients. More cases that indicate inflammatory responses which can occur in the cardiovascular system, and lymphatic system are causing symptoms such as extreme fatigue, aches and pains and an overall feeling of unwellness. We are seeing a huge rise in systemic cancers and all sorts of heart problems. This is relevant because this kind of inflammation can escalate rapidly if not identified and treated properly. These are not slow, meandering illness that we are witnessing now.
Thermography gives us the opportunity to see exactly where these patterns are showing up in the body which may help us provide a way forward that is appropriate for an individulaized treatment protocol.
I'm curious if you see what I see in these images? When we area able to collect important and relevant information, we are able to detect potential future health concerns and potentially avoid major interventions and possibly serious illness.
In the case above, I detected a systemic pattern of heat and congestion in the lymphatic system and was able to guide this client on her journey of health.
It has been my experience that humans tend to be extremely visual, especially in these days when we rely so heavily on social media and screens to collect information. When people can see their thermographic images, and have them explained to them, they tend to take it more seriously and are likely to take actionable steps.
I have always loved using these ancient traditional methods of assessment in my practice, they are skills that I have learned that will always be a part of me. Taking the time to listen to our clients, and to be able to interpret the information is an uncommon skill that in undervalued in its capacity to provide effective results. Using modern technology to identify the patterns that we unveil is in my opinion, a great blend of using modern and ancient technology.
If you are interested in learning more about thermography, or hosting a mobile thermography clinic please feel free to reach out and we can start a conversation.
Here's to your health
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