Healthy Breast Massage: Chinese Medicine Technique to Prevent Cancer

Massage for Healthy Breasts

As far as physical activity goes, Fitbits might be a double-edged sword. Aside from encouraging individuals to increase their physical activity, the trackers have other benefits. The gadget, on the other hand, reminds participants of their slackness on days when they don’t work hard enough, which frequently results in severe emotions of guilt. For cardiac patients, Andersen says, “the Fitbit watch is not meant for them, and so they should not necessarily follow the same guidelines for activity as individuals who are in excellent condition.” So, what is the best course of action?

It is time for us to think about “collaborative care,” in which both patients and physicians benefit from new health data and are consequently able to collaborate on the management and treatment of chronic illnesses,” the authors write.

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11 Tips on How to Maintain Breast Health with TCM – Acufinder.com

More than 70% of cancer patients, including women with breast cancer, choose to supplement their conventional medical treatment with some form of complementary care, according to a survey conducted by the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Nearly all of those who use alternative medicine report significant improvements in their overall well-being as a result of their treatment. According to Traditional Chinese medicine, the following are 11 guidelines for maintaining breast health via nutrition, lifestyle, exercise, and massage therapy (TCM).

  • The development of all sorts of breast illness, both benign and malignant, according to Chinese medicine, can be exacerbated by stress, frustration, and unresolved anger, all of which are considered risk factors.
  • Yoga, meditation, biofeedback, basic relaxation treatment, and any other way you choose to relieve the stress and strains of contemporary life are examples of such techniques.
  • According to Chinese medicine, any sort of massage can assist to reduce stress while also keeping the body part getting the massage more healthy owing to the enhanced flow of blood, bodily fluids, and nerve impulses in the area receiving the massage.
  • These approaches are straightforward, painless, and time-consuming, requiring very little effort.
  • 3.
  • According to research, women who consume a high amount of vegetable-based fiber had a decreased risk of developing breast cancer.
  • For this reason, make sure you consume three or more servings of veggies each day.
  • Include extra-virgin olive oil in your daily diet.

The source of the oil’s flavor is unknown; it may be due to the monounsaturated fat or another characteristic of the oil; nonetheless, it is delicious and may be used for salad dressing, sautéing vegetables and soups, casseroles, frying, and basting, as well as on toast as a nice butter alternative.

  • Maintain a healthy level of dietary fats.
  • It is recommended that dietary fat be limited to less than 25% of total calories.
  • Keep pesticides and “xeno-estrogens” to a minimum.
  • We are aware that estrogen is involved in the development of several malignancies.
  • 7.
  • Many studies have demonstrated that drinking alcohol does, in fact, raise the risk of breast cancer by a specific amount.
  • In addition, little doses of alcohol are quite soothing and help to reduce stress levels.

8.

A large number of research have been conducted on the anti-carcinogenic properties of green tea.

This sort of tea may be found at a variety of grocery shops as well as virtually all health food stores.

Green tea has a little level of caffeine and can be beneficial to those who are trying to quit or reduce their consumption of coffee, caffeinated beverages, or black tea.

Exercise on a daily basis and for the rest of your life!

Both aerobic exercise and weight training have been proven to be useful in lowering symptoms in women of all ages, including sleep difficulties, depression, fibrocystic breast disease, and breast cancer, according to a number of research studies.

10.

The majority of women never perform a breast self-examination!

Women who discover a malignant lump when it is still a small size, on the other hand, have a greater chance of making a full recovery than those who wait until the lump has grown in size.

If you do not want to visit a clinic or see a health-care professional, the Mammacare Personal Training System can provide you with the most up-to-date information on breast self-examination.

11.

Benign breast illnesses, according to certain Western research as well as Chinese medicine, can be an early warning indication of a propensity to breast cancer.

Lumpiness or discomfort signal a treatable internal imbalance, so don’t be afraid to seek medical attention if you are experiencing these symptoms.

Maintaining good breast health in particular, and overall health in general, is a lifetime endeavor.

Individual health care decisions should be reviewed with your main health care practitioner before being implemented.

a little about the author: Honora Lee Wolfe is an acupuncture practitioner and instructor in the local area.

Chinese medicine for better breast health is available at Boulder Bookstore, Alfalfa’s Market, and BarnesNoble Bookstore, among other places.

5 Ways to Reduce your Risk of Breast Cancer

The majority of women who get breast cancer have no hereditary predisposition to the disease (that we know of). There are some women who have less significant hereditary abnormalities that marginally raise their chance of developing breast cancer, a risk that can be controlled and mitigated by adopting a healthier lifestyle. And only a small number of people (one in 400-800) have the BRAC1 gene mutation, which makes them substantially more susceptible to breast and ovarian malignancies. The good news is that there is a lot we can do to lower our chance of developing breast cancer.

As with everything we do at Yinova, it is founded on traditional Chinese medical expertise while also incorporating contemporary research.

In Chinese medicine, there are four elements that are believed to have a role in the development of breast cancer (notwithstanding hereditary predisposition):

  • Slowing of the flow of qi and blood, which results in the formation of thicker and denser tissue over time. Thermal toxicity is the presence of external poisons, such as cigarette smoke, environmental pollutants, or chemical estrogens. Deficiency is defined as a failure of your body’s immune system to remove abnormal cells from your body. Damp accumulation is a term used to describe the buildup of extra fat cells.

As a result, cancer prevention in Eastern medicine is focused on flowing qi and blood, protecting the body from toxicity, removing damp buildup, and strengthening the body’s natural defenses. It is true that Western and Eastern medicine are derived from distinct frames of reference, but their conclusions are remarkably comparable, and the counsel we provide is thus not contradictory whether you look at the world from an Eastern or Western perspective (as you know at the Yinova Center we do a bit of both).

1. Support your liver to help it process estrogens

The fact that certain breast cancers grow in reaction to an excess of estrogen in the system implies that it is beneficial to assist your liver, which has the responsibility of metabolizing estrogen on your behalf. When a liver is instead busy with the digestion of alcohol, for example, it may not be able to process estrogen in the same manner as it would normally. According to Chinese medicine, breast cancer is frequently associated with liver qi stagnation, which is an Eastern term for an overworked liver that results in a lack of qi and blood flow, which is one of the causes of cancer from a Chinese medical perspective (as we discussed earlier in this article).

  • Limit your alcohol intake: There is a substantial correlation between alcohol use and the risk of developing breast cancer. In fact, experts have shown that drinking as little as one unit of alcoholic beverage every day increases your chance of developing breast cancer by 5 percent. At the Yinova Center, we recommend that our patients restrict their use of alcoholic beverages to 3–4 drinks per week. Use lemon juice to stimulate the liver, and include bitter greens such as dandelion greens, endive, and radicchio in your salad to help it function properly. Dandelion root, milk thistle, burdock, artichoke, and turmeric are among the liver-supporting herbs that may be consumed
  • B vitamins, which are particularly beneficial to the liver, are also advised. Added whole foods (such as lentils, rice bran, and blackstrap molasses) or supplements can help to boost your intake of B vitamins and other essential nutrients. Vitamin B6, in particular, aids in the breakdown and elimination of estrogen from the body, while flaxseed oil has been shown to boost the function of the liver. Flaxseed is particularly high in lignan, a phytoestrogen that appears to reduce estrogen production and may impede the formation of some breast cancers. Lignan is found in high concentrations in flaxseed and is found in high concentrations in flaxseed. It is necessary to ground the flax seeds in order to reap the full benefits of them.

2. Limit your exposure to external sources of estrogen and environmental toxins

In our estrogen-rich world, it is difficult to maintain control over the amount of estrogen you consume. Unfortunately, artificial estrogens have found their way into our food and water supplies. Agricultural chemicals and pesticides mimic the estrogenic activity of the body, increasing the sensitivity of estrogen receptor sites. Urine polluted with significant amounts of residual estrogen from birth control tablets has the potential to infiltrate back into water supplies if sewage treatment methods are not properly implemented.

In Western medicine, they are referred to as xenoestrogens, however in Eastern medicine, they are referred to as environmental poisons, which, as we previously discussed, can lead to the development of cancer.

  • To avoid estrogen replacement therapy as a means of alleviating menopausal symptoms unless your doctor believes it is absolutely necessary, it is best to wait. Pesticides should be avoided at all costs. Some pesticides have been found to have a molecular structure that is very similar to that of estrogen, according to research. The implications of this are that they may bind to estrogen receptor sites in your body. According to one study, women* with breast cancer had higher levels of pesticide residue in their breast tissue than women without breast cancer. Avoid eating hormone-treated meat and dairy products. Consume as much organic produce as you possibly can
  • Stay away from refined and hydrogenated oils, also known as trans-fats. According to one study, women* who had the highest levels of trans fats in their blood had a twofold increased risk of developing breast cancer compared to women* who had the lowest levels. Consume cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, and Brussels sprouts to help prevent heart disease. These contain a phytonutrient known as diindolylmethane (DIM), which helps to increase the activity of enzymes that aid in the regulation of estrogen levels. According to scientific research, diindolylmethane aids in the processing of estrogen by the body, resulting in less estrogen floating around in your bloodstream. A broccoli-based pill, for example, is currently being developed by scientists in Chicago to prevent breast cancer.

3. Support your general health

Cancer, according to traditional Chinese medicine, develops when the body’s ability to cleanse itself is compromised. According to contemporary western medical studies, malignant cells are generally cleansed away by the body’s immune system, which lends credence to this claim. Because of this, they proliferate when the body is overburdened and unable to mount an effective fight against their presence. As a result, contemporary cancer research is concentrating on boosting the body’s immune system as a means of battling the disease itself.

  • Regular physical activity — According to research, women* who engage in regular physical activity can lower their risk of breast cancer by 20 percent. Exercise is believed to be the most effective method of circulating qi and blood in Eastern medicine, and as previously stated, it is qi and blood stagnation that can lead to the development of cancer. Incorporating a low-fat, high-fiber, primarily plant-based diet into your daily routine is an effective strategy to reduce the quantity of free-floating estrogen in your system. Maintaining a healthy weight is important since the relationship between obesity and breast cancer is well established. According to the findings of researchers, being 22 pounds overweight increases your chance of developing breast cancer by 18 percent. This is especially true if you acquire weight after going through menopause. The reason for this is because having too much fatty tissue produces an increase in the quantity of estrogen in the bloodstream, and your chance of developing breast cancer grows in direct proportion to the amount of estrogen you are exposed to during your life. When it comes to Eastern medicine, this weight increase is associated with damp accumulation, which is a term used to describe extra fat cells. Make an effort to give up harmful behaviors such as smoking. If you require assistance with this, please contact us at the Yinova Center to see how we may assist you. In addition to making lifestyle and nutritional changes, you should be on the lookout for signs of breast cancer that may be early. After the age of 40, begin having mammograms every year and examining your breasts once a month, especially the week after your period. If you observe any changes in your breasts, such as a lump or changes in the skin, you should consult your doctor. Vitamin D supplements are recommended because they appear to provide a preventive effect, and research has shown that the incidence of breast cancer is greater in women* who have low vitamin D levels.
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4. Move qi and blood in the breast

From an Eastern perspective, having lumpy breasts, also known as fibrocystic breasts, indicates that there is stagnation in your breast tissue. Western clinical data appears to indicate that having fibrocystic breasts does not enhance your chance of developing breast cancer unless some of the cells are already abnormal in their development. This is consistent with the Chinese medical theory that for cancer to occur, stagnation must be paired with other variables such as toxicity and a weak immune system.

  • Exercise on a regular basis is the most effective technique to move qi and blood throughout the body. Our recommendation at The Yinova Center is to engage in 30 minutes of aerobic activity three times a week. Acupuncture can help to flow qi and blood on a regular basis. Please inquire with us about herbal formulations that might aid if you have fibrocystic breasts or even breasts that are sensitive prior to menstruation. If you have painful breasts or benign breast lumps, apply a castor oil compress to the breast once a week to relieve the discomfort. The pack invigorates the circulation and aids in the removal of waste from the lymphatic system. Using a paper towel or a clean cotton cloth, cover the area with plastic wrap, then lay a heating pack or a hot water bottle on top of the plastic wrap. This should be warm, not scorching, in temperature. If the heat from the hot pack is too much, lay a cloth between it and the plastic wrap. You can read more about castor oil in this post from Yinova, which includes more thorough instructions on how to use it.

5.Explore the emotions associated with breast lumps

Breast tumors, whether benign or malignant, are related with liver qi stagnation, which is in turn associated with suppressed anger in Chinese medicine, according to the tradition. In my practice, I’ve discovered that many of my breast cancer patients have had a negative experience that they are still upset about years after the fact. Frequently, they have been impeded in some way or have been treated unfairly, and they have been unable to express their dissatisfaction. If you are interested in pursuing these topics further, either in your journal or with a professional, the language used in the research cited below is appropriate.

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM)

Massage, acupuncture, tai chi, and drinking green tea are examples of complementary and alternative medicine practices.Credit: iStockComplementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is a term that refers to medical products and practices that are not included in standard medical care, such as acupuncture and tai chi. Cancer patients may benefit from complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) in the following ways:

  • To assist with the management of cancer treatment-related side effects, such as nausea, discomfort, and exhaustion
  • They may comfort themselves and lessen the fears they have about cancer therapy and the stress that comes with it. They get the impression that they are contributing to their own care in some way. Make an effort to treat or cure their cancer.

Integrative medicine is a medical strategy that integrates traditional treatment with complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) techniques that have been proved in scientific studies to be safe and effective. While this method frequently places a strong emphasis on the patient’s preferences, it is also concerned with addressing the mental, physical, and spiritual components of health. Medicine as we know it now is a system in which health practitioners who have earned a medical degree or a doctor of osteopathy degree treat symptoms and diseases by administering medications, administering radiation, or performing surgery.

  1. Allopathic medicine, biomedicine, Western medicine, mainstream medicine, and orthodox medicine are all terms used to describe this type of medicine.
  2. Standard medical care is a sort of therapy that is commonly regarded by medical experts as an appropriate treatment for a certain type of condition and that is extensively employed by healthcare professionals in their daily practice.
  3. Complementary medicine is used in conjunction with normal medical therapy, but it is not recognized to be standard treatment in and of itself.
  4. Alternative medicine is utilized in place of traditional medical therapy in some cases.

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) provides evidence-based Physician Data Query (PDQ) information for various complementary and alternative medicine therapy in versions for both patients and health professionals.

Types of Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Scientists discover something new about complementary and alternative medicine therapies every day, but there is much more to learn. Some of the therapies described below require more investigation to determine whether or not they are beneficial. If you have cancer, you should address your concerns about utilizing complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) with your health care physician before beginning any of the therapies described here. People may refer to complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) as “natural,” “holistic,” “home remedy,” or “Eastern Medicine.” Experts, on the other hand, frequently categorize it into five groups.

Mind–Body Therapies

These incorporate mental concentration, breathing, and physical motions to aid in the relaxation of the body and mind. Here are a few illustrations:

  • Meditation is the practice of quieting the mind via focused breathing or the repeating of words or phrases. Patient receives biofeedback, which teaches them how to control certain physiological functions that are ordinarily out of their conscious awareness (for example, heart rate). When someone is in hypnosis, they are in a state of calm and concentrated concentration, in which they concentrate on a certain sensation, concept, or suggestion in order to help in healing. A system of stretches and postures in which special attention is paid to breathing is known as yoga. Tai Chi: Tai Chi is a kind of exercise that involves slow, gentle motions with an emphasis on the breath and attention. Imagery: Creating images, pictures, or experiences in one’s mind to aid in the healing of the body. Interests in the arts, music, or dancing are examples of creative outlets.

Biologically Based Practices

This sort of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) makes use of natural resources. Here are a few illustrations:

  • Dietary supplements and vitamins, as well as botanicals (plants or portions of plants), are also available. Cannabis is one form of marijuana.
  • Herbs and spices such as turmeric and cinnamon are examples. (See Herbs at a Glance for further information.)

Manipulative and Body-Based Practices

These are based on the concept of dealing with one or more specific body parts. Here are a few illustrations:

  • Massage consists of kneading, rubbing, tapping, and stroking the soft tissues of the body. Spinal manipulation, joint manipulation, and skeletal system manipulation are all terms used to describe chiropractic therapy. Reflexology is the practice of applying pressure to pressure points on the hands or feet in order to impact other regions of the body.

Biofield Therapy

In biofield treatment, which is also known as energy medicine, the notion that the body has energy fields that may be utilised for healing and wellbeing is held to be true. By placing their hands in or through these fields, therapists can apply pressure or move the body in various ways. Here are a few illustrations:

  • Reiki is a technique for balancing energy that can be performed from a distance or by laying hands on or near the patient. Moving the hands over the energy fields of the body is considered therapeutic touch.

Whole Medical Systems

The healing methods and beliefs described here are those that have developed over time in many cultures and sections of the world. Here are a few illustrations:

  • Ayurvedic medicine is an Indian medical system whose purpose is to cleanse the body and restore equilibrium to the body, mind, and spirit
  • It is also known as Ayurveda. Traditional Chinese medicine is based on the notion that health is achieved through the balance of two opposing forces known as yin and yang in the body.
  • When it comes to Chinese medicine, acupuncture is a prevalent technique that entails stimulating certain sites on the body in order to promote health or alleviate illness symptoms and treatment side effects.
  • Homeopathy is a type of medicine that uses extremely tiny dosages of chemicals to stimulate the body’s own healing abilities. Naturopathic medicine: This type of medicine employs a variety of approaches to assist the body in healing itself naturally. Herbal remedies, for instance, are one example.

The Safety of CAM

Some complementary and alternative medicine methods have been subjected to extensive testing and have been proven to be generally safe and effective. Acupuncture, yoga, and meditation are just a few examples of alternative therapies. Others, on the other hand, do not work, may be hazardous, or may have unfavorable interactions with your medications.

Natural Does Not Mean Safe

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) therapies include a diverse range of botanicals and nutritional items, such as herbal and dietary supplements, as well as vitamins. It is not necessary for these items to be authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) prior to being sold to the general public. Additionally, they are not required to be purchased with a prescription. As a result, it is up to you to determine what is best for you. Here are a few pointers to bear in mind:

  • It is possible that herbal supplements be dangerous when used alone, in combination with other drugs, or in huge dosages. For example, several studies have revealed that kava kava, a plant that has traditionally been used to relieve stress and anxiety, may actually induce liver damage in certain people. St. John’s wort, which some people take for depression, may impair the effectiveness of certain cancer medicines by interfering with their metabolism. Inform your doctor if you’re taking any dietary supplements, including vitamins, regardless of how safe you believe they are to take. This is critically crucial. Even if there are advertisements or claims that something has been in use for years, this does not always imply that it is safe or effective. This is particularly more true when taken in conjunction with your medications. Consult with your doctor about the foods that you should consume. It is normal for cancer patients to have inquiries regarding the foods they should consume while undergoing treatment. However, it’s vital to understand that there isn’t a single cuisine or particular diet that has been shown to effectively manage cancer.

It is always crucial for you to have a nutritious diet, but it is more critical right now. Consume a diverse range of nutritious meals in order to get the most well-rounded approach possible to your health. Eating Hints, published by the National Cancer Institute, provides information on what to eat during and after cancer treatment.

Talk with Your Doctor Before You Use CAM

Patients with cancer who wish to utilize complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) should consult with their doctor or nurse. This is critical since items that appear to be harmless might really be harmful or even interfere with your cancer therapy.

It’s also a good idea to find out whether or not the therapy you’re considering has been shown to be effective at what it promises to be. Questions to consider include: What sorts of complementary and alternative medicine therapies would be beneficial to me:

  • My tension and worry have decreased, and I’m feeling less weary. Pain and nausea are common cancer symptoms and side effects
  • Dealing with them is essential.

Don’t be scared to ask any queries you may have. Doctors want to know about any concerns you have so that they can provide you with the best treatment possible. Inform them that you want to apply CAM approaches and that you would appreciate their comments.

Clinical Trials to Test CAM Therapies

National Cancer Institute (NCI) and National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) are now financing or cosponsoring clinical studies in which complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) treatments and therapies are tested on humans. In some cases, researchers examine the impact of complementary techniques that are used in conjunction with traditional treatments, while in others, they compare alternative therapies with conventional treatments. You can find a comprehensive list of cancer complementary and alternative medicine clinical studies here.

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Dr.

White, Director of the Oregon Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, discusses the role of complementary and alternative medicine in cancer treatment.

  • The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, the National Cancer Institute’s Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and the National Institutes of Health’s Office of Dietary Supplements are all examples of complementary and integrative health organizations.

October is Breast Health Awareness Month: Are You Aware of What You Can Do for Your Health?

When you live a life in which giving and receiving are evenly balanced, and when you eat healthily and move your body joyously, enthusiastically, and consistently, you will have good breast health (and heart health).” Christiane Northrup is a well-known author. Breast Health Awareness Month is celebrated in October. According to the results of a new BMC Cancer research done in Toronto, 47 percent of women with breast cancer seek complementary therapy in addition to conventional medical treatment for the disease.

  1. In addition to the numerous advantages that alternative medicine may give for a woman suffering from breast cancer, Chinese medicine health practitioners can prescribe a variety of natural prophylactic measures for young women.
  2. If it makes it to the lymphatic system, it has the potential to spread throughout the body.
  3. The greater the amount of movement in the lymphatic system, the more toxins are pushed out.
  4. Lara Koljonen, LAc, is a graduate of PCOM San Diego and an acupuncturist who practices in San Diego, California.
  5. Koljonen’s website has a wealth of information on breast health, including a variety of useful tips.
  6. Stress and negative thoughts cause energy stagnation, which in turn causes lymph, energy, and blood flow to be blocked.
  7. Acupressure exercise called the Tulip Tap, according to Koljonen, helps to transfer energy and lymphatic movement in the acupuncture channels surrounding the breast.

Additionally, particular food choices can enhance women’s health and perhaps prevent breast cancer, in addition to moving your lymphatic system and obtaining exercise.

Avoid all phytoestrogens, plant-derived estrogens, soy, and flax seeds, among other things.

Nutrition may have a significant influence on a person’s health, whether for the better or for the worse.

Cancer requires a high amount of sugar in order to thrive.” Sellens, who is also a graduate of PCOM, is a Chinese medicine practitioner in Solana Beach, San Diego, who specializes in breast thermography with Pink Image.

Thousands of women’s lives have been saved because to early cancer detection.

“Breast thermograms evaluate blood flow or vascular pattern in the breasts,” explains Sellens.

During his research, Dr.

When a woman is thermographically at risk owing to increased vascularity, breast thermography can notify her so that she can adopt lifestyle adjustments to reduce her risk before the danger becomes too great for her to handle.

It is possible to evaluate each patient’s weaknesses with the help of a Chinese medicine practitioner, who may then aid the patient in strengthening their bodies so that they can operate effectively.

If she is undergoing chemotherapy, researching treatment options for benign breast illness, or simply interested in learning about breast self-care and nutrition, a practitioner will build a treatment plan that is personalized to her specific needs and goals.

BMC Cancer Study is the source of this information.

Types of complementary therapies

1. Complementary and alternative medicines in the treatment of breast cancer Reiki and other healing and energy therapies are also available. 2. Acupuncture 3. Acupressure and shiatsu 4. Aromatherapy 5. 6. Hypnotherapy and 7. Massage are all options. 8. Reflexology is a type of massage. 9. Mindfulness and meditation are important. Herbal remedies are number ten. Homeopathy is number eleven. Yoga, Tai Chi, and Chi Gung are some of the most popular forms of exercise. 13. Special “cancer” diets and nutritional supplements are available.

Complementary therapies and breast cancer

Learn more about complementary treatments, including what they are, how they can assist you after a breast cancer diagnosis, and if they are safe to use. Return to the top of the page

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is a traditional method of Chinese medicine that has been around for thousands of years. Some women with breast cancer think that acupuncture, when used in conjunction with traditional anti-sickness medications, can alleviate some of the adverse effects of chemotherapy, such as nausea and vomiting. Others feel that acupuncture may also be beneficial in the reduction of menopausal symptoms. It may also be beneficial in improving your mood and reducing anxiety. Health issues, according to traditional acupuncturists, are believed to be caused by an imbalance or obstruction in the flow of energy – known as ‘chi’ – throughout the body.

  • An acupuncturist will inject extremely small needles into the skin at various sites on the body, depending on the condition being treated.
  • Your specific scenario will determine where the needles are implanted, and the locations at which they will be entered will be different.
  • Acupuncture needles activate nerve endings under the skin and in muscle tissue, prompting the body to release natural compounds such as endorphins, which are beneficial to the patient.
  • Return to the top of the page

Acupressure and shiatsu

There are some people who believe that acupressure or shiatsu can assist with side effects such as nausea and illness as well as pain, exhaustion, tension and worry. Acupressure is a technique in which a therapist applies gentle pressure to particular places on the body with their fingertips. Traditional acupressure, like acupuncture, is based on the notion that applying pressure to certain points on the body can help to clear obstructions in the passage of chi. The Japanese word’shiatsu’ literally translates as finger pressure.

They will also use their elbows, knees, and feet to massage and stretch the muscles and joints of the body from time to time as well.

If you’ve had surgery on the lymph nodes beneath your arm, you’ll normally be told not to have deep tissue massage on that arm, hand, or chest/breast area until the swelling has subsided (see our information onmassage after breast cancer). Return to the top of the page

Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is a method of stimulating the sense of smell by using essential oils extracted from aromatic plants, flowers, seeds, and bark. Some feel that aromatherapy may enhance one’s overall well-being, strengthen one’s immune system, and alleviate sleep and anxiety issues. However, because there has been very little study into the use of aromatherapy for breast cancer patients, it is difficult to say for certain. Aromatherapists think that various oils have varied therapeutic advantages for different people.

Essential oils can be utilized in a variety of applications.

Some people believe that some oils might be dangerous if you have breast cancer, and they are correct.

Return to the top of the page

Reiki and other healing and energy therapies

Healing is an old technique that literally translates as ‘to make whole.’ There are several healing and energy therapies available, including Reiki, therapeutic touch, and spiritual healing, to name a few examples. It is the goal of therapists to enhance your health and well-being, albeit their opinions about how to do this differ depending on the type of treatment they are using. Reiki is one of the most well-known forms of alternative medicine. Reiki is also founded on the ancient notion that the flow of energy (chi) in the body has a direct relationship with our health.

Fully dressed, you can either sit or lie down as the therapist rests their hands above or on specific sections of your body where they think energy is concentrated.

Some cancer support centers provide group Reiki sessions, in which a large number of individuals are treated at the same time.

Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy is a technique that guides you into a profound state of relaxation, often known as hypnosis, via the use of numerous procedures. A variety of mental and physical disorders, such as anxiety, hot flushes, nausea, and pain, can be addressed by hypnotherapy. While under hypnosis, you will be aware of your surroundings and mindful of what is going on around you. It is believed by some that being in a state of hypnosis makes your mind more receptive to new ways of thinking, behaving, and feeling.

Massage

Massage is the process of working on the muscles and joints of the body by stretching and applying pressure with the hands. This movement can assist to relieve stiffness and muscular tension, and it may also allow you to feel more relaxed and relieved of stress. Some massage therapists use essential oils during the massage to assist you in relaxing. Massage can help some individuals feel more energetic, which may be beneficial if you are experiencing exhaustion. There are those who say that getting a massage after cancer treatment is not a good idea since it increases the danger of cancer cells migrating from one place of the body to another.

There isn’t any proof to back up this assertion. To learn more about the safety of massage after breast cancer, see our blogMassage after breast cancer: is it safe?, which includes information on how to select a therapist and prepare for your visit. Return to the top of the page

Reflexology

To stimulate the nerves in the feet and hands, reflexology employs finger pressure to provide pressure to the feet and hands. The ancient practice of reflexology is founded on the concept that different regions of the feet correspond to different parts of the body. Reflexologists think that by applying finger pressure to certain areas of the foot, they may help to restore health to the portions of the body that are connected to those areas of the feet. Return to the top of the page

Meditation and mindfulness

The relaxation techniques of meditation and mindfulness are widely used today and are intended to help you achieve a peaceful and focused state of mind. They can assist patients with breast cancer in coping better with stress, worry, and depression, as well as improving your general well-being. Some people also report that they are beneficial in alleviating physical side effects such as weariness.

Meditation

Meditation is an ancient technique of focusing attention and establishing a tranquil state of mind that has been around for thousands of years. The majority of meditation techniques entail maintaining a focused attention, breathing slowly, and being more aware of your thoughts and sensations as you go. Meditation may be practiced in a variety of ways, depending on your preferences. It can be done on its own, with the help of mindfulness methods, or as part of a larger practice such as yoga, Tai Chi, or Chi Gung.

Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention to the present moment in order to minimize stress and enhance overall quality of life. Making greater conscious awareness of the sights, scents, sounds and tastes that are present in our environment at any one time, as well as the thoughts and feelings that occur from one moment to the next, is the goal of mindfulness practice. It is possible to include mindfulness practices into your regular routine. There are a plethora of books and websites dedicated to mindfulness, as well as applications, that you may use to gain ideas on how to go about it.

Your primary care physician may be able to refer you to a mindfulness training in your neighborhood.

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy

Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), which is the most thoroughly investigated type of mindfulness, is a combination of mindfulness and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). There are a few cancer centers in the United Kingdom that provide mindfulness programs. MBCT may be used in these classes.

Activities that improve mindfulness

There are a plethora of hobbies and pastimes that require intense concentration and need the participant to be fully present in the moment. When combined with meditation or mindfulness, this can have the same soothing impact as practicing these techniques and can help you manage better with stress. For some people, this might be a more convenient approach to unwind than meditation or mindfulness practices. Others may find it useful as a means of getting a better understanding of what meditation and mindfulness are all about, or it may be used in conjunction with them.

It may be something you currently do, or you might want to experiment with a few other hobbies to discover which ones work best for you. Return to the top of the page

Herbal therapies

Herbal therapies are treatments that make use of plants to try to alleviate a variety of health problems. However, there is conflicting evidence regarding the safety and effectiveness of some herbal products, and some of them may interfere with the effectiveness of certain cancer therapies. Before taking any herbal medications, consult with your specialist team or your primary care physician. Herbs are believed to have a reviving, balancing, and strengthening effect on the body, which some believe aids the body’s ability to fight illness more effectively.

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In herbal medicine, the entire plant, including the leaves, roots, and berries, is frequently employed.

Mistletoe (Iscador)

Some claim mistletoe extract (Iscador) increases the immune system’s ability to function more effectively, improves the overall quality of life, and lowers the negative effects of chemotherapy and radiation. This notion, on the other hand, is not supported by any trustworthy evidence.

Echinacea

Echinacea is a botanical substance that some feel might aid in the stimulation of the immune system. However, there is no trustworthy evidence to back up this claim at this time. Persons who are undergoing chemotherapy or hormone therapy should consult with their hospital team since it can have a negative impact on the effectiveness of these therapies and result in serious sickness.

St John’s wort

This medication is used to treat a range of health problems. There is some evidence to suggest that St John’s wort may have an effect on the way certain breast cancer medications function. It can also have an adverse effect on people using prescription antidepressants. Before you take it, consult with your specialized team first. Return to the top of the page

Homeopathy

Homeopathy is a system of medicine that employs extremely tiny amounts of natural chemicals in order to activate the body’s own healing mechanisms. However, there is no trustworthy evidence to back up this claim at this time. Return to the top of the page

Yoga, Tai Chi and Chi Gung

To increase physical and emotional strength and welfare, yoga practitioners employ a combination of stretching, breathing exercises, meditation, and other techniques. There is some evidence that practicing yoga after receiving a breast cancer diagnosis can be beneficial for cancer-related tiredness, discomfort, anxiety, and despair, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. For more on how to practice yoga safely after breast cancer, see our blogFive positions to get you started with yoga after breast cancer.

Tai Chi and Chi Gung

Tai Chi and Chi Gung (also known as Qi Gong) are ancient Chinese forms of exercise that date back thousands of years. Their soft motions are combined with breathing exercises, which some think aid in the circulation of energy (chi) throughout the body. They make use of slow, controlled motions, which may aid in stretching and strengthening the muscles and joints of the body. People who practice Tai Chi or Chi Gung think that the attention required to do so can help them to relax, decrease stress, and enhance their overall well-being.

Before attending a class, you should speak with the instructor about your breast cancer and prevent overstretching the affected region.

If it causes discomfort, particularly in the arm or shoulder on the side of your operation where you are having it done, cease doing it immediately. Always consult with your primary care physician or a member of your specialty team before beginning any new activity.

Apps and online tutorials

When it comes to practicing yoga, Thai Chi, or Chi Gung at home, apps and YouTube instructions may be quite helpful. You might find it particularly beneficial if you are experiencing cancer-related tiredness, anxiety, or depression and are unable to attend a complete class. You will be able to work at your own speed and progressively increase your workload as a result of this. If you’re going to practice yoga, Thai Chi, or Chi Gung at home, make sure to start with a beginner’s course in each discipline.

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Special ‘cancer’ diets and dietary supplements

Some women who have had breast cancer contemplate adopting a particular diet or supplementing their diet with vitamins and minerals. The reason for this might be because they feel they can lower their chances of getting breast cancer again (recurrence). Oncology diets, in particular, frequently emphasize consuming or avoiding specific types of food. These can be quite restrictive, costly, and can occasionally result in a deficiency in essential nutrients. However, there is no solid data to support the claim that they lessen the chance of breast cancer returning.

Among the topics you may find valuable is our material on “cancer diets,” “dietary supplements,” and if one’s diet and lifestyle might influence the risk of recurrence of breast cancer.

Massage therapy

Massage is a centuries-old therapy that involves caressing, kneading, tapping, or pushing the soft tissues of the body to relieve pain and discomfort. Summary:

  • Massage treatment has been practiced for thousands of years. There are many different forms of massage, ranging from delicate and gentle to powerful and brisk
  • There is something for everyone. Massage does not appear to be effective in the treatment of cancer, according to scientific findings.

What is massage therapy?

Various techniques such as stroking, kneading, tapping, and pressing are used to provide pressure to different regions of the body. Its goal is to help you relax both psychologically and physically. Massage may be used to the muscles, the soft tissues, or the acupuncture sites, among other things. Massage techniques can range from being soft and delicate to being strong and fast in their application and execution. They may even be a little uncomfortably tight at times. Therapists may choose to treat your entire body or focus on a single portion of your body, such as your head, neck, and shoulders.

  • Swedish massage is the most popular form of full-body massage. Aromatherapy massage is a massage that uses essential oils
  • Deep tissue massage is used for long-term, deep muscle disorders
  • Sports massage is used before or after sports or to aid in the healing of sports injuries
  • And reflexology is used to relieve pain. shiatsu massage, which utilizes acupressure and stretching techniques
  • Neuromuscular massage, which helps to balance the neurological system and the muscles
  • And acupressure.

Why people with cancer use it

One of the most common reasons cancer patients seek massage therapy is that it makes them feel better about themselves. It is a means through which they believe they may assist themselves. Massage treatment, in general, can assist to improve your mood, sleep, and overall well-being by reducing stress and tension. There is some evidence to support the claims made in this article. Massage for cancer patients is suggested as a natural technique to help you relax and cope with the following issues:

How you have it

During your initial visit, the therapist will ask you a few broad questions about your health, lifestyle, and medical history, which you will answer honestly. If they are worried that massage will have an adverse effect on your health or any medications you are taking, they may request to talk with your doctor. In general, it is unusual that your doctor will refuse to treat you for something. When you receive shiatsu massage, you often lie down on soft mats on the floor, completely dressed. For the majority of other massage techniques, you will be lying down on a massage table during your session.

  1. A robe or a huge towel is then placed over your shoulders, revealing only the regions of your body that are being worked on.
  2. The average massage session lasts an hour, although this might vary depending on your therapist’s expertise.
  3. The amount of pressure that your massage therapist uses when massaging you might differ significantly depending on the sort of massage you receive.
  4. However, you should communicate with your therapist if you are uncomfortable and wish for them to stop at any point.

Keep in mind that your therapist should never massage your genital area or otherwise touch you in a way that you perceive to be sexual in nature. If you feel uncomfortable at any point during your massage, you have the option to terminate the session and leave.

Side effects

The majority of people do not experience any negative side effects after receiving a massage. However, you may have some lightheadedness, sleepiness, fatigue, or thirst as a result of the experience. For a short period of time, some people may get emotional or tearful.

Research into massage and cancer

Massage does not appear to be effective in the treatment of cancer, according to scientific findings. However, it is often used to improve people’s moods as well as to alleviate some cancer symptoms and adverse effects associated with cancer therapy. Many minor studies have been conducted to determine whether massage can benefit cancer patients, but the majority of them have proved inconclusive. Several modest studies have been carried out to determine if massage can help to alleviate symptoms such as pain, nausea, anxiety, melancholy, anger, tension, and weariness, among others (fatigue).

  1. One research looked into the possibility of massage having a positive effect on pain and anxiety following abdominal colorectal surgery.
  2. It is necessary to do more research.
  3. Massage seems to be beneficial as a supportive therapy, according to the reviewers, who looked at six studies.
  4. However, bigger research are required.
  5. A total of 86 ladies participated.
  6. Reduced pain, fatigue, and discomfort were reported by the ladies who had massage, as well as less mood changes.
  7. In 2011, Italian researchers investigated the potential of massage therapy in the treatment of advanced cancer patients.
  8. In 2012, a research conducted in the United States looked into training caregivers to provide basic massage to cancer patients.
  9. It was recommended that they practice at least three times each week.
  10. According to the findings of the study, all of the patients had dramatically decreased cancer symptoms.

People who received massage, on the other hand, had greater decrease. At the conclusion of the trial, the caregivers who had been trained to deliver massage shown increased confidence, comfort, and proficiency in the use of touch and massage.

Who shouldn’t use massage therapy

Massage that is too deep should be avoided by cancer patients. Gentler personalities may be more secure. Some people are concerned that receiving a massage while suffering from cancer would cause the cancer cells to spread to other places of the body. However, no study has been conducted to support this claim. If you have any of the following symptoms, massage techniques may need to be modified:

  • Very deep massage is not recommended for cancer patients. Gentler personalities may prove to be more trustworthy. People who have cancer are concerned that receiving a massage would cause the cancer cells to spread throughout their bodies. Nevertheless, no scientific evidence supports this claim. Massage methods may need to be modified if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms or conditions:

Always consult with your cancer doctor or a cancer specialist nurse before attempting any type of commercial massage therapy treatment. A therapist at a cancer care center or hospice may be able to provide you with an adapted treatment that is more suited for your needs. Massage should be avoided in any part of your body where you are receiving radiation. Also, avoid massaging any regions of your body where your skin is cracked, bleeding, or bruised. If your arms or legs are swollen as a result of lymphoedema, you should refrain from receiving general massage therapy.

This might occur as a result of surgery to remove lymph nodes, or as a result of radiation therapy that has caused damage to the lymph nodes or lymphatic veins.

Individuals in need of MLD are referred to a lymphoedema expert by their doctor or a lymphoedema specialist nurse, as this is an extremely specialized therapy.

How much it costs

Treatments that last between 30 and 90 minutes are typically priced between £20 and £60 for a private massage appointment. Many cancer treatment centers and hospitals in the United Kingdom now provide various forms of massage therapy at no cost. Treatment specialists at these facilities are likely to have undergone additional training and to be under close monitoring throughout their careers. Inquire as to whether massage therapy is provided on the ward or in the center where you are receiving treatment.

  • How many years of training have you had
  • How many years of experience have you had How long have you been putting in the hours of practice? Have you received any special training in the treatment and support of cancer patients? Do you have indemnity insurance to protect yourself? (in the event of carelessness)

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