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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Post Traumatic Stress by Andrew Wolfe,LMP

It seems more of life’s circumstances generate more stress responses in individuals these days. One can speculate the cause of theses stresses, but the end result is the effects that it takes on individuals or in larger concentrations; communities, countries and nations or the wide spread global influences.
But what is post- traumatic stress syndrome and how does it affect an individual?
Post traumatic stress come from the inability to cope from a witnessing or experiencing a terrifying event. The term seemed to be most prevalent in post war veterans but in the current world we face we don’t have to be in times of war to feel the effects of PSTD. As violence and general unrest becomes more of a standard verses an exception, more individuals are being exposed to all kinds of stress such as motor vehicle accidents, public  threats, sexual and physical crimes, global and environmental treats, victimization of civil liberties, social unrest and injustices,etc.
Some of the side effects of  PTSD is  the inability to cope, nightmares, night terrors, flashbacks, memories of the event, depression and a loss of interest in life, isolation and avoidance, depression, outburst of anger, feeling startled easily, difficult with memory and concentration, change in eating and sleeping habits.
What happens to the body when an individual has experienced something traumatic?
The body is designed to be an efficient machine. It has set within in a vast network of self-preservation mechanics. This network is the nervous system. Within this system is two main parts, the central nervous system  (CNS) and the peripheral nervous system (PNS). The central nervous system contains the brain and the spinal cord, whereas the peripheral nervous  system connects the CNS to the extremities (arms and legs) and the organs. The PNS serves as a communication relay between the brain and the extremities.  The PNS is divided into the somatic nervous system (which creates voluntary movement) and the autonomic nervous system (which controls involuntary functions  within the organ such as heart rate, digestion and respiration).Within the autonomic nervous system there is sympathetic nervous system  :commonly referred to the “Fight of flight response”. It allows the body to prepare itself to take on the impending stressor or engage the muscles to flee impending danger. Either way the body is aroused to prepare to engage in either response in order to cope with the impending situation. The other division of the PNS is the sympathetic nervous system ( CN), which is the recovery phase of the two divisions. It is referred to as ‘rest and digest” or “feed and breed”.

When a stress response occurs in the body it engages this system in order to generate action or rest dependent on what phase occurs within the nervous system. The body finds within these systems a state of homeostasis or balance. It can be thrown out of balance if it doesn’t maintain this state of equilibrium, such as in the case of a repetitive insult to the nervous system which doesn’t allow for the recovery phase to enter back into. Such terns as “burn out” or chronic fatigue” can occur. With post- traumatic stress syndrome a loop of memories can occur based on a trigger of a current observation, sight, sound, sensation etc. that transports the memory to the original traumatic incident. Even though the body’s mechanics is engineered to perform at optimum homeostasis (a kind of check and balance in the body), it doesn’t always mean that it does. Our primitive brains have long evolved to deal with on- going threats, be it that now, instead of having wild animals chase after us in the “fight or flight” response” ,it is grid-lock among other things. This shift of modern innovation has created a higher and more demanding pace of life for most of us. When we can’t cope our bodies suffer the on-going loop of stress which plays into heavy consequences of our body, and thus our quality of lives. The over flowing repercussions  of this can be endless; mental and physical health issues, social phobias ,social disruptions of  home and family life, disruptions of work and occupational  productivity etc., allowing for loss of income for individuals and their employers. According to The World Health Organization (WHO) Global Burden of Disease Survey estimates that mental disease, including stress-related disorders, will be the second leading cause of disabilities by the year 2020. We need to rethink about the impact of what PTSD has on our lives and the degree in which it overflows into other aspects of our everyday.
What happens to the body when in the “fight or flight” mode?

Our bodies, as implied, ready itself to take action whether by responding to defend our position of attack/assault or by taking the action to flee or escape the threat. In order to do either tactic the body needs to prepare itself in order to initiate this order. Chemicals are released such as adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol into the bloodstream. This creates a change in the body to respond by increasing our breath, distributing the blood flow from the less important digestion into muscles and the limbs. The eyes take in the threat by this reaction as dilation which allows focus and attention to the impending threat. Our body is now in a state of readiness. This takes place as a state of survival, without this impulse we would not have been able to survive as we know it. This is a primal state, a state of self –preservation that is built into our wiring. As in the state of preparedness, we also have the ability to calm ourselves and return to state of balance after the perceived or actual threat is gone. This allows for a natural state of coping taking place in the nervous system. With this affect in the body the muscles contract (tighten) ready to initiate movement.
What happens if the body stays in the “fight or flight” mode for a sustained time?
As a part of the preparedness of “fight or flight” response hormones are released. If not used within the time needed and the body doesn’t coming into a state of balance afterwards hormones can accumulate in the body. This build up can create disorders in the body such headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, inability to absorb food  and poor sugar regulation, high blood pressure, depression ,chronic  fatigue and other auto immune disorders. We all know about the dangers of stress now we know the immunology and physiology around this statement.
The emotional component of PTSD is mentioned indirectly with the prior mentioned side effects, but how does the emotions influence the body?  We answered that when we looked at the mechanism of the nervous system by explaining what happens when being engaged with the “fight or flight” response. But let’s go a bit further with the idea of emotions and how they can have an impression on the physical body. The physical body creates a blue print from past and current emotions. Because of the creation of the nervous system we have the mechanism to function. It is in the chronic (long standing) and traumatic events that catapult us into a crisis mode in the body which cannot handle this. The body responds as the outward expression of these experiences. In basic anatomy and physiology muscle all have a function. This function is expressed of dynamic movement. Impairment can take place not just on a physical level, but an emotional level as well. All muscles have within this blue print the memory of movement. This memory can sometime get lost in transit by injury, trauma or disease. But the memory is there. Muscles all have cell and nerve bundles that comprise part of the network of communication and mobility. These cells and nerves contain the memory. This memory can be emotional. If you kick an animal it remembers the trauma not just in the flinching of anticipation of the trauma once provoked but it also within the muscle.  The stress factor is not just purely in the physical or just in the emotional; hence the coined term simply stated: “body mind connection”. For, if memories are stored in the body, then it gives “body work” a whole new meaning of discovery. Once we tap into the physical body we are not just touching the physical abnormalities or disorders but something underlying deeper waiting to be extradited.
So now that one identifies what is PTSD and what its symptoms are and how it effects the body how does an individual recovery?
Receiving support whether professionally or from family, friends or a group, spiritual guidance etc., is a step in the right direction. All though it is difficult to overcome some biases one may have about asking for help or needing intervention, it is highly recommended. Support allows an individual to know they don’t need to suffer in silence or shame. There are a number of organizations and professional specifically able to handling persons suffering with PTSD.
Getting back to a routine is helpful as well as staying physically active as well as the suggestion of getting back into nature.
Know this is something that happen to you but it doesn’t have to identify who you are.
is a web site that is non- profit to help with PTSD.
Cop y write Andrew Wolfe LMP 10/30/2014
For information on the author visit www.harmonymassagetherapy.com

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Radio interview of Andrew Wolfe massage therapist




Andrew Wolfe is without question the best massage therapist that has worked with me. After a serious motor vehicle accident, Andrew helped to bring my upper body into perfect mobility. The emphasis was on breaking down scar tissue and focusing on the area of injury. I would highly recommend Andrew to anyone who is looking for rehabilitation --- since the results I experienced were phenomenal'. Holly Lyman
The best around, if you need help, you need to come see him. Very, Very Good!                            Kim W Marysville WA
I have been a monthly regular with Andrew Wolfe since 1993. At 63 years of age the benefits I receive keep me healthy and limber. Allowing me to keep an active lifestyle skiing and flying. Since having regular massage I rarely ever contract a cold. I'll keep my monthly schedule forever.
Excellent results! – After rotator cuff surgery my doctor referred me to physical therapy. I saw some improvement. But when I went back to my doctor I told him what was most beneficial was the massage, which was only provided some of the time and not for very long. He highly recommend Andrew Wolfe at Harmony Licensed Massage Therapy. I went to him and was very impressed as well as my doctor, about how I progressed. After the first treatment I could tell this was the therapy I should have been doing all along. I would highly recommend Andrew. I have been to other massage therapist's in the past for relaxing massages and never knew the medical side of a massage and the benefits that it could achieve. Andrew is very knowledgeable and I owe him the progress of my complete healing.
A.N. of Everett Washington

"The Best in Snohomish County" – The Best in Snohomish County" 
Friday, July 24, 2009 

I am honored to have known Andrew for over 20 yrs. His services are truly amazing and his knowledge of injuries and how the body heals is remarkable, he has helped me manage severe pain from many injuries throughout my life and I continue to be a patient of his, so if your looking for an outstanding Licensed Massage Therapist who knows much more than just massage therapy then by all means go see Andrew and you will surely be back year after year.. Harmony Licensed Massage Therapy is recommended for all, so go ahead what are you waiting for call him today and see for yourself he is the "Best". Thanks Andrew .. Smiles always Kimberly Holden-Seton.

I give high recommendations for Andrew. The pain I had when I first started going to Andrew no longer exist due to the medical massage I received from him. That was two years ago and I continue to see him on a regular basis to help with stress. Andrew does a great job and his professionalism is top notch! ¿ 1/4/11 Valerie Gerry 
Apr 14, 2011
by Guest83027
Congratulations! Your service listing "Professional massage therapist over 24 years- 1987" is ranked #1 among massage therapists in Everett.. Polled on the web by thumbtack
Sep 13, 2010
by Guest10097
No more back pain! Andrew is a miracle worker!! I can't thank you enough for the help that you have given me. I was experiencing sever back pain that was traveling down my leg. There were days I could not bear to stand on my own feet. I had someone drive me to my first several appointments to see you because the pain was so great. I saw you over 3 weeks 2 to 3 times a week. I even made an appointment to get an injection in my back. But I was able to cancel it because I was in NO MORE PAIN, thanks to you. What I needed was deep massage. I have had rolfing and other deep work, but I never had a deep tissue massage like what you gave. Andrew you are a miracle worker! I am so glad I found you! J.P.
Aug 18, 2010
by Guest36625
Andrew is an exceptional massage therapist! I been to others and can tell the difference in his therapy. His therapy is genuine and unique. He is a very knowledgeable, not just in regards to the body and massage therapy, but in so many other realms. Other therapist just touch the body, Andrew works the body with deeper, more profound, lasting results, not a back rub, Andrew massages with insight unlike any other therapist I have ever known! 

Feb 19, 2009
by Guest81744
Andrew is by far the best massage therapist I have ever been to.He is very knowlegeable about the body and health in general. Very supportive, caring man.
Feb 19, 2009
by Guest36607
"I have never seen a more dedicated entrepreneur who does wonderful quality service..and puts his customers first.Thanks for everything!!!" (student intern,Marysville WA)
Feb 7, 2006
Good quality for the price
Caring,reliable on time with appointments.I was able to seen quickly. I was able to get relief immediately. I would highly recommend!!
posted: Thursday, Feb 16 12:00am
The perfect massage therapist for rehabilitation from knee surgery! by Cheryl Barron - 11/03/2011 After knee surgery I had 6 weeks of physical therapy which served only to cause further inflammation. Then I found Andrew! His deep tissue massage is exactly the right therapy, and I am now having rapid healing and great progress. Thank you so much Andrew! C B from Camano Island
Jan 15, 2013

“I first saw Andrew Wolfe several years ago because of back problems. I was able to get great relief after seeing him. I have been to other therapist since then who offered specials and been very disappointed. I have been back to Andrew now and have no plans to seek out any other therapist. With a few extra dollars it makes sense for me to invest in seeing Andrew and getting results than seeing another therapist. Seeking out any one else is simply a waste of my time and money. Andrew is a stellar therapist. He knows WAY more than anyone else in his field.”
Jun 19, 2013

Andrew was the first massage therapist I ever saw. I since have seen others because I moved out of the area and was sadly disappointed every time with the care of others I sought out. None compared to him. Now that I have moved back into the area I am seeing him again. I am never leaving again
Exceptional massage therapist! by anonymous - 
Andrew is an exceptional massage therapist! I been to others and can tell the difference in his therapy. His therapy is genuine and unique. He is a very knowledgeable, not just in regards to the body and massage therapy, but in so many other realms. Other therapist just touch the body, Andrew works the body with deeper, more profound, lasting results, not a back rub, Andrew massages with insight unlike any other therapist I have ever known!June 01, 2010 by Anonymous

“Dear Andrew. So much improvement in the jaw, amazing!!!!!! Your treatments have assisted this old body to mend and improve, where it would not have found this path otherwise. I truly appreciate all your knowledge and efforts into new territory of posture, physical health, and mental outlook. The pain over the winter was most humbling, and the appreciating for renewed health is inspiring. Maureen”

I can't begin to thank you enough.  I was still in a bit of pain and stiff with spotty spasms but my muscles were much more relaxed and at about 9:30 tonight, while stretching, there was a pop and a quick burst of pain in the center of my back.  Almost immediately, everything felt close to normal...just a little sore.  I feel so much better.  I just wanted you to know how thankful I am.  Have a great weekend. See you in a week and a half.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014