I go to a variety of therapists, and, unfortunately, I find that many of them have forgotten most of their anatomy and do not understand what they are feeling and what effects what in the human body. It is frustrating to me to meet so many people who have been in pain for so long, and so many therapists who are ill-equipped to help them. Most of my clients have been to several doctors, several physical therapists, several massage therapists, a few chiropractors, etc., and are still in pain.
As I work with a client, I explain what I feel and what I think is causing the problem. Sometimes the pain is being recreated by a sleeping pattern or a pattern during work or driving. These are patterns the client is unaware of and, for some odd reason, the questions I am asking have never been asked of them before. I once saw a women who had daily headaches, and like most of my clients had been to everyone imaginable. I assumed (always a bad thing to do) that someone in all of those professionals she had seen had asked her about her fluid intake. The massage seemed to help, but it never held. Finally, after two months of working on her, I asked, “how much water do you drink?” “I don’t drink water,” she says. “Okay,” I say, “what do you drink? Pop, coffee, milk, tea?” “No,” she says, “I really don’t drink anything.” I was flabbergasted. “Nothing,” I say, “no fruit juice or coffee? No alcohol?” “No, I don’t really feel the need to drink anything at all,” she says.
I adamantly told her, you have to start drinking water, this is what is causing you headaches, chronic dehydration. She did as I asked, and the headaches completely cleared up. She began to come less and less, and on one of her last visits, she told me how surprised she was that no one else had ever asked her the question about how much she drank. I was surprised that no one else had asked this question, and I was furious with myself for assuming they had. I think I had also assumed that any adult person would know that water is a must and that the first sign of dehydration is a headache.
We need never to assume. Never to assume that we know, that our therapist knows, or that our doctor knows. We need to always be seeking knowledge about our own bodies, and as therapists, about the human body in general. There will always be imbalance, and therefore, there will always be pain. But the more we know, the more likely we are to choose the right treatment, do our self-care, and understand what is happening to us. This understanding leads to less anger and fear, and a greater ability to heal