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Meditation: Can It Help Reduce Your Pain? by Dr. Gary Kaplan

Meditation: Can It Help Reduce Your Pain? by Dr. Gary Kaplan

Meditation, which can be practiced in many different forms, has been used for thousands of years to benefit the mind, body and soul. Now there is a growing body of medical research proving that meditation not only modifies brain function, it can actually change the way we experience physical pain.

A recent study reported in the Journal of Neuroscience showed that patients who had received only a little more than 60 minutes of meditation training were able to dramatically reduce their experience of pain. Patients experienced a reduction in "pain intensity" of about 40 percent and a reduction in "pain unpleasantness" of 57 percent. According to the lead author of the study, Fadel Zeidan, "Meditation produced a greater reduction in pain than even morphine or other pain-relieving drugs, which typically reduce pain ratings by about 25 percent."

Everyday Life: Doctors 'Inoperable'

I had stayed pretty much out of the Western medical system until I came down with several nasty, and seemingly unresolvable, infections back in June. Until then, aside from "maintenance" to manage my fibromyalgia, mostly alternative medicine, I had been the epitome of health. Eventually, my search for solutions brought me to the Alexandria Professional Center. As I write this, I still have no answers, but the events of just one day have provoked not only more questions with respect to my individual situation, but also concerning our health care in general, beginning with its increasing resort to the use of computers.

Stop One - was to pick up a photocopy of test results which I had been assured the day before would be waiting for me in an envelope at the front desk. They were not, and as the office computer system was down, there was no way to access them. Thank God it wasn't an emergency.

Quieting the Chatter

If you’re familiar with Self Talk, you probably read or heard me or others refer to it as our thoughts, inner dialogue, or Board of Directors.  

Our Self Talk can get quite loud at times, especially during times of transition and stress. Our Self Talk is then moving at turbo speed.  So how can we calm down our thoughts when we lead such active, full lives? How can we decrease the overload and stress? How do we quiet down the chatter?

Since having thoughts or inner conversations is part of being human, and because our lives are so busy, here are some ways to help you quiet the mind:

Free Dental Clinic Day

From Centreville High School:


The Virginia Department of Health is sponsoring a free children's dental clinic on:

Saturday, Sept. 17th

Where:  Alexandria Health Department, 4480 King St., Alexandria

Phone:  1-703-746-4789 to make an appointment

Who:  children under 4 and any children with special health care needs.

Cost:  FREE


Washington Sports Clubs Opening Doors to Hurricane Irene Victims

Although Hurricane Irene is long gone, her fury is still being felt by millions of east coast residents as they wade through her aftermath in an attempt to return to normalcy.  From severe flooding to lost power and water supply, the stories of all of our friends in all our communities affected are as expansive as those who have felt her aftermath.

3 Ways to Prevent Migraines

3 Ways to Prevent Migraines

McLean, VA – August 31, 2011 - Are you one of the 36 million Americans who suffer from migraine each year? If you are, or if you know someone who suffers from migraines, then you understand how debilitating they can be. A migraine is much more than just a bad headache. The severity of migraine symptoms can make it impossible to function, and the symptoms can last anywhere from a few hours to a few days. What can you do to prevent a migraine headache?  Dr. Gary Kaplan, a physician from McLean, VA, who specializes in the treatment of chronic pain conditions, emphasizes, “You don’t have to just suffer through a migraine headache. There are concrete steps that can help you avoid getting a migraine, or at least to lessen frequency and severity of your migraines.”

Seniors Monitor Their Diets with Innovative, Web-based Nutritional Program

Seniors Monitor Their Diets with Innovative, Web-based Nutritional Program

              SPRINGFIELD, VIRGINIA – At the end of August, Greenspring retirement community in Springfield, Va. will launch an updated version of the community’s existing My Nutrition program.  The program, which was originally launched at Greenspring in July 2010, allows residents to go online and view the nutritional value of each meal item served at the community’s four restaurants.  Additionally, the program makes it simple for those with certain food allergies to filter out menu items containing wheat, soy, shellfish, milk, eggs, tree nuts, and peanuts, as well as providing residents quick nutritional information that can be a guide for those closely monitoring their diets due to existing health conditions.