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Eric’s herb focused practice

Starting in 2021, Eric Grey has begun to eliminate the acupuncture portion of his practice in order to focus on treatment with Chinese herbs.

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PRACTICE TRANSITION, ESPECIALLY FOR EXISTING PATIENTS – CLICK HERE.

While acupuncture and herbs are often practiced together in the US, in China, it is still relatively rare for a single practitioner to do both. Focusing on one modality allows for more specialized study time, and learning from clinical experience that is focused on the impact of herbs alone.

Herbal appointments are generally shorter and focused more on discussion, goal setting, and teaching you what you need to know in order to benefit best from treatment. While the first appointment is the same length as if you were getting acupuncture, your ongoing treatment plan may involve 15 or 30 minute sessions as well as the option for video check-ins in certain situations.

Because acupuncture is a powerful part of Chinese medicine treatment, he hasn't abandoned it entirely.

You are encouraged to see one of our acupuncture focused practitioners, of course, but if you prefer to stick with Eric for your treatment, all is not lost. He has created materials and methods to help you stimulate acupuncture points and channels at home in a way that is supportive of treatment. And for certain patients in very specific situations, Eric will still be doing acupuncture during appointments.

Another priority in herbs focused treatment is lifestyle guidance.

Chinese herbs and acupuncture are powerful allies in healing, no doubt. But, if you're coming in for biweekly acupuncture and taking an herbal formula, but are eating, drinking and moving in ways that worsen your pathological circumstances, then the treatment will be less effective. You may still make progress, but it will be slow and unpredictable.

Because of this, Eric is focused on helping patients to find a lifestyle that is truly supportive without engaging in judgmental or other triggering behaviors.

It is possible to gently encourage yourself to drop unhelpful habits and adopt new, better ones without berating yourself, or thinking yourself to be a terrible human being. Eric provides the guidance to help you make this possible, and the results are convincing!

If you would like to learn more about herbs focused practice, Eric has created an email newsletter to help you learn more and make the decision about whether it is right for you.

If you'd like to be added to the list and start receiving emails, just click this link. It will take you to a special signup page. Don't worry, as always, you can unsubscribe any time if you find it just isn't for you.

What are Chinese herbs?

The word “herb” in English tends to be used to refer only to plants and plant parts. In Chinese medicine, however, the word “herb” may refer to a plant, mineral or even animal part that is used as a medicinal. That said, 90+% of all Chinese herbs commonly used are plant parts of one type or another. Only a small minority are of animal origin – and none used by reputable licensed practitioners in the US are endangered or threatened, ecologically.

All parts of the plant (or animal) may be used as the medicinal substance. Sometimes a plant that has a very medicinally important root may have no medicinal impact at all in the rest of the plant. Roots are the most common plant part used, but stems, leaves, flowers, seeds, whole fruit are all used. Sometimes specialized techniques are applied to change the natural plant substance in some way – this is called Paozhi. Ginger, for instance, can be used as a cooking additive to another herb in order to detoxify it. These techniques allow us to use a single plant substance in multiple ways.

Chinese herbalism developed in much the same way that most global herbal traditions developed – through the accumulated experience and thinking of generation upon generation of ancient people.

However, Chinese herbalism experienced the same quick early development that many aspects of Chinese culture did, and so became very highly professionalized and sophisticated far earlier than most herbal traditions. Combined with the remarkable preservation of Chinese culture in even modern China, what you have is a very advanced herbal tradition that has been continually utilized, challenged, revised and developed for 20+ centuries.

Most herbs used by Chinese medicine practitioners in the US are grown and processed in China and Taiwan – and are absolutely safe

Other Southeast Asian countries contribute particular herbs that are best grown in their climates and soils, and a few are even grown here in the US – such as American ginseng. The herbs are imported through highly regulated and skilled distributors such as our favorites, Spring Wind and Legendary Herbs.

During the customs process, plenty of testing and verification is done to ensure purity and fidelity. While you should be careful about buying random herbs from your local markets, at Watershed we make herbal safety one of our highest priorities.

Herbs are carefully tracked and kept in mold and pest free environments once they arrive at the clinic.

Herbs come in a variety of forms with different costs, convenience factors and rates of efficacy

Raw or bulk herbs are dried and, sometimes, processed with various substances to detoxify or otherwise modify – this work is done at the producer or distributor. These bulk herbs are then put in bags for you and you take them home to boil. The boiling process takes from 30-60 minutes and, depending on the situation, may need to be done 1-2x per week. The liquid from the boiling process can be kept in the refrigerator between doses. Bulk herbs are essential in very severe acute illnesses, in the common cold and flu and secondary infections related to them.

Bulk herbs are also often preferred by people who have difficulties with strange textures, for reasons that become clear when you read about granulated herbs. Finally, bulk herbs can often give a more interesting or holistic experience to treatment by forcing you to see the medicine you are taking directly, and smelling it as it boils.

The most commonly taken herbal form in most American acupuncture offices is granules. Granulated herbs are boiled for you in large industrial facilities and then are centrifuged on to a carrier starch. This starch is chosen specifically to dissolve as quickly as possible – the granule company we use – Legendary Herbs – uses hypoallergenic dextrin as its starch. You'll receive your formula as a group of single herb granules dry mixed together. These granules work somewhat like instant coffee. You add the granules to hot water, let soak and then stir to dissolve.

This approximates the final product of a bulk herb boiling. Because the herbs are not boiled together, it is possible that some synergistic effects that are produced in the more lengthy boiling process are not available in the single herb granule situation. That said, I have found granules to be effective in my practice and they are certainly more convenient since they are pre-cooked.

There are a few formulas I utilized in an encapsulated form – all from my teacher's company Classical Pearls. This is obviously a very convenient form of administration for most people – except those who cannot or will not swallow pills. That said, with pills you have the least amount of interaction (smell/taste) with the herbs themselves. I believe that there is psychological benefit to interacting with the herbal substances that enhances treatment, so I try to minimize this form of administration when I can.

 

 

What does Eric treat with Chinese Herbs?

written by Eric Grey

Classical Chinese herbalism was, for a very long time, a primary way that the Chinese treated disease and maintained wellness.

Because of this, the discipline has treatments for the entire range of health problems. It is a complete medical system. There are, of course, situations in which herbal medicine excels, and places where Western biomedicine or another discipline has faster or more effective answers.

What I write below is mostly true of my own herbal practice– other practitioners will have different levels of experience treating these things with Chinese herbs. If you want to know whether your provider feels comfortable with these disorders, just ask them.

My personal background, interests and skills influence what types of patients are going to benefit most from their treatment with me.

The school and teachers I worked with had their own specialties and tendencies, which I absorbed. The mix of patients I've seen over my career has given me reason to study their specific problems more deeply and paid me off with experience in treating those problems. And, of course, my personal history predisposes me to be interested in certain problems, mostly those that I have experienced in my body or through the experience of family and close friends.

Below find a list of disorders and symptoms I've worked with successfully in the past, but first…

AN IMPORTANT NOTE! I name some biomedical disorders below. Chinese herbs are not approved by any government authority as a “cure” for any of the diseases listed. Chinese herbalism, when practiced classically, does not treat biomedical diseases. It treats patterns of disharmony and symptomology that are often associated with the disorders below.

So, no, I cannot “cure” or “prevent” COVID-19, for example, and would never claim to do so.

It is also important to note that I cannot claim 100% efficacy in all cases of those disorders any more than any medical practitioner could. Further, the lists are not exhaustive. If you're ever curious about whether I believe I can help you with your specific problem using Chinese herbs, just reach out to me and we can discuss.

Chronic pain

Acute pain is ALWAYS better and more quickly treated by acupuncture. This includes pain from motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries and similar.

  • Migraines
  • Hormonal, digestive and stress related headaches. Note, headaches that come primarily from spinal or muscle tension may respond better to acupuncture or massage.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Psoriatic arthritis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Abdominal pain, gynecological pain
  • Nerve pain, particularly secondary to shingles and other viral causes

Digestion and elimination

If the symptoms are too severe for the patient to be able to ingest anything, herbal treatment will be very difficult if not impossible.

  • Chronic diarrhea and constipation, or both, from any cause
  • Appetite problems
  • Nausea, with or without vomiting
  • Heartburn and GERD
  • Ulcers
  • Hemmorhoids, fissures
  • Chronic bloating, gas or burping

Gynecology & obstetrics

Chinese herbs, when prescribed appropriately, are safe during pregnancy and breast feeding.

  • All menstrual problems including painful, heavy, scanty, irregular or otherwise problematic periods
  • PMS and any problematic mood disturbance that seems related to hormone cycling
  • Fibroids, cysts and endometriosis
  • Gynecological cancers, especially prevention and early stages
  • Fertility including complementing IVF and similar
  • Most problems of pregnancy including in patients who are threatening miscarriage or have history of miscarriage
  • Post-birth recovery, including help with milk production issues
  • All problems of menopause including hot flashes, overall dryness, insomnia and mood regulation challenges

Heart and circulation

If you are taking blood thinners, we will need to take special care with your herbal formula!

  • Early stages of heart failure and heart disease
  • Unexplained chest pain, where serious cardiac disease has been ruled out
  • Poor circulation including Reynaud's syndrome
  • Chronic dizziness from any cause

Lungs, ear, nose, throat and infectious diseases

  • Symptoms of all viral and bacterial infections
  • Chronic ear, sinus, throat and lung infections
  • Immune insufficiency NOT caused by a pharmaceutical you are currently taking
  • Asthma
  • Seasonal allergies, environmental allergies (dust, mold)
  • Tinnitus (this is very challenging to treat, I have had limited success)
  • Bruxism, sleep apnea

Skin conditions

  • All kinds of rashes, hives, seriously dry skin
  • Symptoms of psoriasis, eczema. Psoriasis is quite difficult to treat, and usually requires a combination of diet changes, supplements and herbs.
  • Hormonal and digestive related acne
  • Unusual hair loss or nail quality problems, especially related to hormones

Strange, undiagnosed, misdiagnosed and “psychosomatic” disorders

  • Chronic Lyme
  • COVID-19 long-haul symptoms
  • Mystery syndromes, especially those that have a hormonal or metabolic component
  • Bizarre reactions to conventional treatments for any disorder
  • Very bothersome symptoms that you have never had diagnosed or treated adequately
  • Many auto-immune disorders fit into this category

Situations that would be better to pursue with another practitioner at Watershed Wellness

I want to be explicit about some things that I've had very little or no success treating – people who are chiefly experiencing something like this would do well to work with one of our other practitioners. If you're not sure who would be best, just get in touch.

  • Acute musculoskeletal pain. This is best treated with acupuncture and/or massage.
  • Severe/acute anxiety, depression and other mental-emotional distress. While herbs can be of some help, acupuncture and gentle Naturopathic medicine can often be a much better fit.
  • Turning a breech pregnancy or facilitating labor. As already mentioned, Chinese herbalism works well for a variety of pregnancy and birth situations, but acupuncture is required if you are wanting to urgently promote birth or turn a breech baby.
  • Treatment of infants. I will not treat a child under 1 year with herbs due to the potential for honey contamination in most Chinese herbal products. Older kids, particularly those who enjoy strong flavors, can benefit from herbal treatment.
  • Treatment for people with extremely acute, especially potentially fatal, food allergies. I cannot perfectly guarantee safety due to supply chain and in-clinic issues. I have successfully treated folks who have milder allergies, even a less severe case of celiac disease. Those with food sensitivities are usually fine.
  • And, importantly, no practitioner at Watershed Wellness works with a primary focus on weight loss. While body weight and composition can change with treatment, this is never our central intent in any treatment plan.

Custom herbal formulas

Zhang zhongjing, the father of Chinese herbal medicine

Chinese herbalism is special because of its long continuous history of active research and use. But, it also stands apart from other herbal traditions in its extremely elaborate and precise rules forformulation. Formulation is when multiple single herbs are put together before being given to a patient. The origin of formulation as it is practiced today is in the seminal text the Shanghan lun written by scholar-physician Zhang zhongjing. Eric's particular herbal lineage centers its systematic approach to Chinese herbalism on this text, and another text written by Zhang zhongjing, the Jin gui yao lue.

These texts, now available widely in numerous languages, despite being written in the Han dynasty are still entirely relevant for the treatment of disease in modern human beings. This is because the formulas and science behind them are focused on treating the reaction of the body to negative stimulus. Despite the fact that modern humans face external circumstances that are VERY different than that available in the Han dynasty, it is also the case that our human bodies haven't evolved much in terms of their functioning and essential reactions. Therefore, even ancient ideas about how to moderate the body's response can remain quite relevant.

The herbalism advanced in this lineage is systematic, rational and simple while being elegant. Some of the most powerful formulas contain only 3 or 4 ingredients, but formulas can also reach 12-15 ingredients and occasionally more. The full formulas can be combined together or modified in specific ways in order to adapt them to the condition and situation of the patient, but otherwise are used exactly as they have been used for thousands of years. Why change something that's working?

The rules of combining herbs to create a formula are complex, but not difficult to understand. Herbs are put together for several reasons including to limit side effects of one of the herbs, to enhance certain effects of one or more herbs, to add a secondary or tertiary area of action for the formula, to guide the formula to a certain part of the body or sometimes even to improve the overall flavor of the herbs.

Classical herbalists like Eric Grey creation a specialized mix of herbs to suit the diagnostic information from pulse and tongue, the intake interview, consideration of any medications or supplements you're taking, and your goals for treatment. These mixes are based on formulas that have been utilized safely for thousands of years, modified when needed to suit the particular situation.

 

Chinese medical science

Most people who live in the United States grow up learning things through a “biomedical” lens. This is a common term many people use to refer to the conventional medicine ordinarily practiced in major medical clinics and hospitals. This medicine is based on particular ways of looking at anatomy, physiology and pathology. When we think of the immune system, or the thymus, or the actions of caffeine on the nervous system – we are utilizing the framework laid down by biomedicine. It is comfortable, familiar, and has an impressive track record of enabling heroic medical interventions – such as the effective cure of Polio, or knitting your body back together after a major car accident.

Classical Chinese medicine does not share the same roots. It grew up in a different place, and was founded in a different time – more than 2000 years ago. While it shares some anatomical and pathological ideas with the science underlying biomedicine – most of its grounding is quite different. It has its own way of conceptualizing the human body and how it interacts with nature. For instance, in Chinese medicine the body is seen as fundamentally holistic – the whole of the unit is far more than might be guessed by looking at the individual parts. This makes Chinese medicine more likely to look at relationships, functional flows and interactions between the body and nature than biomedicine, which is somewhat more concerned with defining the parts with great specificity.

Some Chinese medicine practitioners, regardless of whether they were born in the US or elsewhere, have chosen to unite biomedicine and acupuncture in various ways. For instance, some practitioners don't do Chinese medicine diagnostics, but instead utilize blood tests and other conventional ways of establishing the cause of a patient's symptoms. They then prescribe acupuncture points and herbal formulas based on that information. I am not one of those practitioners, though I respect them very much.

I was taught to do things differently.

One of my main mentors, Heiner Fruehauf, believes that Chinese medicine as a modality grows best out of its own “soil” – or foundational conditions. The science beneath the modalities in Chinese medicine have their own logic, their own ways of rendering a treatable diagnosis, and work best when relying on one another. It's a SYSTEM of medicine that works best when it is allowed to thrive on its own right.

This doesn't mean, of course, that I completely ignore biomedical concepts – particularly when it comes to blood borne pathogens and other potential healthcare hazards. American Chinese medicine education includes plenty of information about biomedical anatomy, physiology, immunology & other standard fields of information. I also enjoy working alongside biomedical practitioners and enjoy good relationships with many doctors of various modalities. My goal is to help you find the right mix of modalities for your unique healthcare situation.

Despite our respect for biomedicine & reliance on it in particular areas, know that when you come to see a Watershed acupuncturist – you're going to get the genuine article. Classical Chinese medicine growing out of classical Chinese science. My focus on fully comprehending, researching and practicing the medicine I was trained to practice, I think, makes me a safer and more effective practitioner than I would be otherwise.

The proof of this is in the results you'll experience as my patient.

At Watershed, we believe that better educated people are happier and healthier. This is particularly true when it comes to being educated about health and medicine. You should know something about the medicines you put in your body, and the types of things that you allow medical practitioners do to you – whether they are biomedically oriented, Chinese medicine oriented, or something else. The more you know, the more you're able to participate actively in your treatment.

We hope this website can become a source of information for you as you investigate your healthcare options.

You've likely heard of a lot of the basics that make up the Chinese medicine view of the world. You'll find a list below.

This list is just a list at this point, but by the end of 2017, each of the words below will be a link to a blog article about the concept. So, eventually, you will find here a library of information that will help you understand Chinese medicine in a basic way. Whether you choose to see a Watershed practitioner or not, you will be able to make choices about your medical care in a more informed way. That's a win no matter what!

  • Cosmology and symbolism
  • As above, so below, or the holographic nature of reality
  • Holism
  • Root 本 and branch 標
  • Qi 氣
  • Blood 血 (not merely the biomedical red stuff – a larger concept)
  • Yin 陰 / Yang 陽
  • The twelve organ systems
    • Gallbladder 膽
    • Liver 肝
    • Lung 肺
    • Large Intestine 大腸
    • Stomach 胃
    • Spleen 脾
    • Heart 心
    • Small Intestine 小腸
    • Bladder 膀胱
    • Kidney 腎
    • Pericardium 心胞
    • Triple Burner 三焦
  • The acupuncture channel system 經絡
  • The six conformations
    • Taiyang 太陽
    • Yangming 陽明
    • Shaoyang 少陽
    • Taiyin 太陰
    • Shaoyin 少陰
    • Jueyin 厥陰
  • The five elements
    • Water 水
    • Wood 木
    • Fire 火
    • Earth 土
    • Metal 金
  • Pathogenic influences
    • Cold
    • Wind
    • Fire
    • Dampness
    • Wind
    • Dryness
  • Other pathological terms
    • Phlegm
    • Blood stasis
    • Various types of blockage
    • Deficiency
    • Excess
  • Interesting named diseases in Chinese medicine
    • Running piglet
    • Sudden turmoil
    • Fox & creeper disease

 

 

Flower Essences

I was introduced to flower essence prescribing about four years ago by a teacher, Shayne Case, and since then they have become an essential part of my treatment toolbox. Flower essences are very gentle energetic medicines made from water treated with the flowers of a particular plant. They have minimal side effects and don’t interact negatively with other medications or herbs. The original flower essences were prepared by Dr. Edward Bach, an English bacteriologist and homeopath in the 1930s.

Each flower essence tends to help a particular type of emotional or mental pattern.

I find them very useful when a patient tells me about something that they wish they could change in their emotional patterns, something that they’ve tried to work on, but they just go back to the same old pattern. Flower essences work more on the unconscious and energetic levels to unwind these patterns and allow us to change course and get out of a rut. They are not a substitute for therapy and other treatments, but are a great support for them.

For example, the flower essence White Chestnut has been very helpful for my patients suffering from what I call “the spinning hamster wheel of worry” where they keep worrying about the same things, over and over, with no relief. I’ll often use it if someone is having the type of insomnia where they wake in the middle of the night, they start thinking about all their worries, and they can’t get back to sleep. White Chestnut doesn’t make them drowsy, but after taking it the worry often calms down and they naturally fall back asleep.

Several essences can also be blended together to treat different aspects of an issue, and I’ll make individualized flower essence blends for my patients.

A commonly available flower essence blend is Rescue Remedy. The five flower essences in that blend work very effectively for people who have been experiencing stress of varying intensity, from mild anxiousness to panic. I have been recommending Rescue Remedy to lots of folks in 2020, as so many of us are under much more stress and strain that ever before with the pandemic and other difficulties that are facing us this year.

If this seems like it might be a helpful therapy for you, call the office and make an appointment, we’ll see if we can find some flower friends to give you relief from what holds you back.

Homeopathy

How Homeopathy Helps

I’ve been practicing Naturopathic and East Asian medicine for over a decade, and one tool that has been helpful again and again, is homeopathy. It’s one of my go-to treatments when the symptoms that a person is experiencing seem unusual or don’t fit the “normal” patterns, of a disease, or when patients are too sensitive to take medications or even herbs, or when a patient is on a lot of medications and I want to help them with something that will not interfere with their meds. Sometimes none of this applies but it becomes clear in the visit that a particular remedy or set of remedies matches the patient and may be very helpful. So what is homeopathy?

Classical Homeopathy

Classical homeopathy is a system that uses natural substances in small doses to treat the whole person.  The individual remedy is chosen based on how closely its effects mirror all the symptoms the patient is experiencing as a whole. Homeopathy means “like treats like”, so the symptoms that the particular remedy would cause if given at high doses to a healthy person are the same ones that the remedy is able to treat when given at minuscule doses to a person with an illness.

There are thousands of different remedies and a classical homeopath wants to find the one that best matches the particular symptom picture that you, the patient have. That best match will be able to shift the pattern of disharmony that your body may be stuck in, and move you to a state of greater balance and wellbeing. Selecting that perfect or close-to-perfect match often requires that the practitioner get a very detailed health history, including the small details of how conditions present in your body physically, emotionally and mentally. A really well selected remedy can make big shifts in both chronic conditions and acute conditions. I’ve seen significant improvements in diverse issues such as migraines, anxiety, GI complaints, allergies, neurological conditions, UTIs, colds and ear infections to name a few.

Combination homeopathic remedies

These work in a slightly different way that classical single remedies. Combination remedies are dilutions of multiple minerals or herbs that work together on a specific organ system or condition. These too can be very helpful for a wide variety of conditions. I’ve often used them for supporting GI health, asthma and allergies, high blood pressure, hormonal imbalances, and kidney and liver health.

Whether it be classical homeopathy or more modern combination remedies, homeopathy can be a very helpful treatment when you need to try something new to get at difficult health issues.

Naturopathic Medicine

What is Naturopathic Medicine?

Naturopathic medicine, like East Asian medicine, is a system of healing that looks beyond the Western diagnosis to the imbalances and patterns in our bodies, emotions and thoughts that underlie disease.   As a Naturopathic physician I am trained in performing physical exams and in ordering and interpreting lab values and medical imaging, and have a strong background in Western diagnosis of disease, so I can speak the same language as your other health care providers and can work with them to coordinate your treatment.

However when treating you I will often use homeopathy and herbal medicine, and will give you advice on how to incorporate healthy eating, exercise, and home remedies such as hydrotherapy in your life in order to create greater balance, and give you more control over your health and well being.

Here’s a few things that I might recommend to you if you come in for a visit…

Diet

What we eat often has a profound effect on how we feel. Over the years I’ve seen diet modifications create some of the most profound shifts in health of anything that I recommend in my practice. I work with people to tailor dietary modifications to what will work in their lives. Sometimes it’s as (deceptively) simple as making goals to eat more vegetables and less sugar. Sometimes it’s a more complex elimination diet followed by controlled reintroduction of foods to pinpoint foods that may be contributing to a person’s ill health.

Lifestyle

Exercise and techniques to relieve stress are important factors in preventing and treating disease.  And they make life more fun!

Homeopathy

Is a system that uses natural substances in small doses to treat the whole person.  The individual remedy is chosen based on how closely its effects mirror all the symptoms the patient is experiencing as a whole.

Flower essences

Like homeopathic remedies, flower essences are small dose treatments that can help you move out of stuck emotional or mental patterns.

Herbs

Herbal formulas are chosen to fit each individual, and herbs balance and support each other to lessen side effects and produce deep improvements in health.

Hydrotherapy

A system of applying alternating hot and cold to the body in order to change blood flow and activate the immune system.  Hydrotherapy can be done at home and helps a wide variety of common ailments, from colds to headaches.

The Watershed Wellness Massage

We integrate our knowledge of various modalities with many years of experience to create the massage perfect for you. Your needs aren't constant, and we happily adapt to whatever you need for each session. Just let us know what your concerns and requests are, and we'll craft a massage tailored just for you.

We listen to what your massage needs are and make sure we deliver. Our years of experience and skill-honing have helped us learn how to help you.

Some things that we can help:

  • muscular pain and discomfort
  • stress & anxiety
  • surgery recovery
  • headaches
  • care during cancer treatment
  • recovery from motor vehicle accidents

Some modalities that our massage therapists are trained in include:

  • Swedish massage
  • Deep Tissue massage
  • Trigger Point Therapy
  • Oncology massage
  • Myofascial Release
  • Prenatal massage

Your massage therapist will work with you to determine the best approach for your massage that day.

Massage Modalities

The massage therapists at Watershed Wellness have all been trained in a variety of techniques. Depending on your needs, your massage may include any of the following modalities.

Swedish Massage

Swedish massage is considered the classic massage that promotes relaxation. It has five distinct strokes that are intended to promote venous return, or returning the blood back to the heart. Swedish massage provides total body relaxation and restoration of healthy muscle tissues.

Swedish massage is often combined with different techniques when more focused, deep, or myofascial work is desired or indicated. The pressure can be very light or deep, based on prevailing medical conditions and your comfort.

This massage is best performed with skin to skin contact. Usually the client undresses to their underwear but you can disrobe to your level of comfort. We are committed to draping properly to ensure that only the part of your body that is being worked on is exposed.

Deep Tissue Massage

Deep tissue massage focuses on the deeper muscles in the body, as its name implies. While it may take more pressure to engage these muscles, it is possible to receive a deep tissue massage without pain. The goal of deep tissue massage is to reduce the restrictions of the less superficial muscles of the body to increase range of motion and promote easy, free movement.

A deep tissue massage releases restrictions in the deeper muscles of the body, and it is not uncommon for the receiver of deep tissue massage to experience soreness for a day or two after the massage. It is important to let your massage therapist know if pressure needs to be moderated to your comfort level. Your therapist will be happy to adjust her pressure accordingly.

Deep tissue is helpful in relieving chronic muscular pain, promoting healing in the muscles, and freeing up scar tissue.

Trigger Point Massage/Myofascial Release

Trigger point massage is a general term that describes the release of “trigger points” using a variety of techniques. A trigger point is a very tender spot in a muscle that often causes referred pain and tension to another part of the body that is not obviously connected to the tender spot (for instance a trigger point in the neck may refer far down the back).

Depending on training, a massage therapist may address the trigger point in a variety of ways. As the trigger points are released, pain in the local area should reduce, as should pain in the area to which the trigger point refers. The pressure used in trigger point therapies may be deceptively light, and still have great therapeutic effects. Sometimes trigger point release can come with some increased sensation during the session, and your massage therapist will always want to hear if the sensation is too uncomfortable!

Many chronic pain mysteries have been unraveled by the finding and treatment of trigger points – it is well worth seeking out a trained massage therapist to find out if this method can help you.

Oncology Massage

Oncology Massage refers to specific training a massage therapist has undergone to understand cancer, its various treatments, and how it all affects the body. The therapist can create a massage session that is safe and effective for you – regardless of where you are in your journey.

Your therapist will ask questions about the treatments you've had, including surgeries and medications, as well what side effects you may have experienced from these things. This will help them understand how to tailor your massage to best fit your needs.

Studies have shown that regular massage during cancer treatments can lead to less intense side effects, improved rest, and easier recovery from surgical procedures.

Prenatal Massage

What better time to get massage than when your body is going through change because of pregnancy! We can help with the aches and pains that can arise in your hips, back and legs due to changes in your body. We've helped pregnant folks from when they first find out about their pregnancy through the first year post-natal and all of the times in between. We find that the care that receive after giving birth is just as important as the care you receive while pregnant. We're able to adapt the massage to fit your needs through each trimester.