Tuesday, December 23, 2008

"Elaine" My Massage Therapist and Post Polio Syndrome

Like many other children in the 1940's and 1950's I was struck with the devastating disease "Polio" .

Polio was virtually eliminated from the Western hemisphere in the second half of the 20th century. The most extensive outbreak occurred in the first half of the 1900"s before the polio vaccination, created by Jonas Salk, became widely available in 1955.

I was diagnosed with Polio when I was two years old. However, I was one of the lucky ones. I had a form of Polio called non paralytic polio. Even though the illness only lasted a few weeks, damage was done to the nerves. I did fully recover but developed post-polio syndrome(PPS) after more than thirty years. The damage done to the nerves during the disease caused acceleration of the normal, gradual weakness due to aging.

There is not much out there to treat post polio syndrome. My doctor told me to start an exercise program and find a good massage therapist. Well that is just what I did. I found Elaine Hauenstein of Natural Balance Therapeutic Massage in Roswell, Georgia. Elaine is not only my massage therapist but has become my friend. I have a standing appointment every two weeks. We have a great time solving the problems of the world during each one hour session. HA. I have been going to Elaine for several years now and my quality of life has improved 100%.


Elaine and Shannon

Shannon is another therapist in with Elaine

Below is a list of benefits from massage that are important to me:

Ease medication dependence.

Enhance immunity by stimulating lymph flow—the body’s natural defense system.

Exercise and stretch weak, tight, or atrophied muscles.

Increase joint flexibility.

Lessen depression and anxiety.

Pump oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, improving circulation.

Relax and soften injured, tired, and overused muscles.

Release endorphins—amino acids that work as the body’s natural painkiller.

Taking part in this form of regularly scheduled self-care has played a huge part in my health.

Even if you do not have the problems that I have with Post Polio Syndrome massage is a wonderful thing you can do for yourself.

Budgeting time and money for massage at consistent intervals is truly an investment in your health. And remember: just because massage feels like a pampering treat does not mean it is any less therapeutic. Consider massage appointments a necessary piece of your health and wellness plan, and work with your therapist to establish a treatment schedule that best meets your needs.

If you live in the Roswell, Georgia area look up Elaine at Natural Balance and if not find a good massage therapist in you area. Believe me you will never find anything better to do for yourself.

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