Acupressure Versus Acupuncture: What is the Difference?

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Photo Credit: Muscle & Fitness

Photo Credit: Muscle & Fitness

Acupressure and acupuncture are both classified as types of Asian body work and both possess the ancient healing powers of Chinese medicine. However, it can be tough to differentiate what benefits each method can help you achieve. Here is a helpful guide to show you just how unique acupuncture and acupressure truly are.

Acupuncture and acupressure do have many similarities. Both methods are described as holistic medicine since they both work with our body’s meridians that carry energy throughout our body and focus on overall balance. These traditional Chinese practices help alleviate ailments that cause blockage along our 14 meridians, therefore, you can depend on acupuncture and acupressure to encourage a free flow of energy within our channels.

Since both acupuncture and acupressure work with chi, they are used to treat issues such as allergies, nausea, migraines and headaches, depression, arthritis, and anxiety.

Acupuncture is very interesting compared to Western practices. Acupuncture uses thin needles that go into the skin to treat health problems. Acupressure, on the other hand, does not break the skin.

Although tiny needles are being inserted into your body along the energy channels, acupuncture needles do not hurt—these needles are extremely thin and flexible, which allows the acupuncturist to insert them painlessly into tissue and muscle near pressure points.

Another difference between acupressure and acupuncture is the application of the procedures. Since an acupuncturist must have access to bare skin, it is recommended that one undress before an acupuncture session begins. Acupressure can be performed even if the patient is wearing loose clothing.

Acupressure has been around much longer than acupuncture. Acupressure was introduced into traditional Chinese medicine around 2500 BC. Acupressure is distributed to one or two different pressure points at a time with the help of the acupressurist’s elbows, fingers, thumbs, and palms. Acupressure is great for common discomforts in addition to migraines, headaches, and the other problems stated above.

Acupressure is a favorable treatment among cancer patients receiving chemotherapy. Many chemotherapy patients experience nausea and migraines—amazingly enough, these side effects are alleviated with the help of acupressure.

In summary, acupuncture and acupressure are both healing techniques. Acupuncture requires much accuracy, however, great relief comes quickly with the application of the thin needles. Since acupressure uses wider tools like elbows and fingers, the results might take longer to experience.

If you are deciding between both of these special treatments, acupressure is the safest choice. It may be harder to achieve the most accurate results but acupressure is more difficult to do wrong, which could further worsen your current aches and pains.

Whether you choose acupuncture or acupressure, you will definitely feel the healing affects of Chinese medicine on the body and its energy channels.

Indulge in Spa Week Deals at San Diego’s Rainwater Spa

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Photo Credit: Spa Week

Photo Credit: Spa Week

Spa Week has finally arrived in San Diego! Indulge in the best spa week specials that Rainwater Spa has to offer! Our massage and spa treatments will be on sale for just $50 from April 15 to April 21. Book an appointment to pamper yourself with Spa Week’s extraordinary offers:

75-Minute Personalized Aromatherapy Massage & Mini Hot Stone Add-On

Get personal with Rainwater Spa by choosing this special aromatherapy massage with a mini hot stone add-on. Take your pick from a selection of different oils to boost your mood and stimulate your physical and mental well-being. After 75 minutes of relaxing massage therapy, your body will enjoy the feel of hot stones pressed against your skin to penetrate deep into muscles and replenish a youthful glow.

90-Minute Spa Package Including Facial Therapy & Body Massage with Mini Hot Stone Add-On

This spa package is an absolute steal with 90 minutes of facial therapy and body massage. You’ll feel totally refreshed from head to toe with a relaxing body massage that will melt away tension and stress—the addition of mini hot stones allows your muscles to be fully massaged and de-stressed for an overwhelmingly therapeutic experience. Our facial therapy is performed by our team of skin care experts. Your face will look radiant and nourished with an energizing mask, applied acupressure, and a few more surprises!

45-Minute Body Scrub & Moisturized Facial Mask

You’ll be dripping in moisture once you choose our special body scrub and facial mask package for Spa Week! This 45-minute body scrub will help to stimulate your circulation and buff away unwanted dry skin and impurities. Choose from a selection of different scrubs for your body treatment and polish off your trip to Rainwater Spa with a moisturizing facial mask that will give you the refreshing glow you’ve been searching for.

Contact us at Rainwater Spa and ask about these specials available from April 15 – April 21 for Spa Week! Call us today at 858-333-SPA1 to book your appointment for just a fraction of the original price. Happy Spa Week San Diego!

You’re Never Too Young to Relax—New Trend in Infant Massages

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Photo Credit: Newborn Baby Zone

Photo Credit: Newborn Baby Zone

Infant massages are gaining in popularity and new evidence proves that massage therapy is a positive method of healing for babies.

According to new research, massage therapy can benefit premature infants in multiple ways. A latest study was conducted to correlate the effect that massage therapy has on the immune system of premature babies.

The study compared massage therapy with sham therapy to see if the number of natural killer (NK) cells would have a positive effect with massage. Taking place in the NICU, the study was able to provide massage therapy under regimented and consistent treatments.

Both the sham therapy and massage therapy were given 5 times a week for a maximum of 4 weeks until hospital discharge. Only stable premature infants were allowed to participate in the study.

There were many different factors that were analyzed in the study such as weight, number of infections, and immune system evaluations and cell counts. When the study was complete, the study showed significantly higher levels of natural killer cytotoxicity in the infants that received massage therapy versus those receiving sham therapy. Another huge improvement was daily weight gain within premature infants. Those infants receiving massage therapy had a higher daily weight gain than the babies that did not get massages.

Although it may seem soon to massage a baby or a newborn, the massage therapy benefits prove to hold some important natural healing power. As the trend points to infant massage therapy, the facts could not agree more with this fashionably new massage modality.

Get Ready for Beach Weather with Summer Skin Remedies at Rainwater Spa

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Photo Credit: Self

Photo Credit: Self

Beach weather is the perfect weather; when summer comes to San Diego, everyone flocks to the beach in their newest swimsuits. Before you head out for some summertime fun in the sun, a trip to the spa is a definite must to achieve that perfect glow just in time for the beach.

Shed your layers of dead and dry winter skin. It’s always refreshing to get one of Rainwater Spa’s herbal foot soaks to keep your feet in perfect condition for bear-all sandal season ahead. The special herbal soak is great for softening and refining your lower legs and feet.

Another great treatment that’s ideal to try before summer season is a body emulsion mask and wrap; dripping with moisture and hydration, your skin will feel radiant after a special mask and wrap session with Rainwater Spa. Our emulsion treatment will renew your skin with revitalizing ingredients to super-oxygenize your skin. The body emulsion mask and wrap also slims your body making you look long and lean for summer at the beach!

And even though you may be focusing on whipping your body back into shape, our faces can also need a pick-me-up after months of dry, cool weather. The best way to treat less-than-stellar skin is with facial therapy. An invigorating facial mask combined with facial acupressure will be relaxing, soothing, and the perfect remedy for dry skin.

For a happy and healthy summer at the beach, these specials at Rainwater Spa will ensure you’re ready for anything! Prepare yourself for the best summer yet with smooth and supple skin that no one can deny. Contact us today at 858-333-7721 for more information about our services and other ways you can moisturize your skin for a beach-ready glow.

Try Rainwater Spa’s Unconventional Tui Na Massage

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Photo Credit: Imperial TCM

Photo Credit: Imperial TCM

If you’ve never tried a Tui Na massage, now is the time! At Rainwater Spa, the old technique of Tui Na massage is a special massage modality that isn’t offered at all spas.

A Tui Na massage feels like a combination of acupressure and Shiatsu massage. The compression along energy channels within the body allows our energy flow to be calm and balanced. Like Shiatsu massage, Tui Na uses many similar techniques to focus on joint lubrication and mobility.

Tui Na originated as an Asian form of bodywork close to 1700 BC and it is still viewed as a popular healing technique with the Chinese population.

In Western culture, Tui Na massage looks more like a traditional Swedish massage. Both massage modalities use gliding hand strokes, kneading and percussion techniques, as well as friction and vibration.

Although Tui Na may have some similar techniques as Swedish massage, Tui Na is considered a more therapeutic massage experience than a traditional relaxation massage.

Tui Na massage has the advantage of pinpointing specific problem areas especially chronic pain and joint issues. Many health problems like arthritis, muscle spasms, and neck pain were significantly improved with Tui Na massage sessions.

Tui Na massage does wonders on the muscles and joints within our body but Tui Na also  works well to improve energy levels and internal health. When your body is in balance and energy levels are in sync with one another, your body will do much better with correcting and preventing future health issues from arising.

If you’ve been searching for an overall health boost, a Tui Na massage will balance your mental, emotional, and physical well being. To restore and rejuvenate your overworked body, get a Tui Na massage with Rainwater Spa today!

Push for Perfect Posture & Get a Healthier Back Instantly

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Photo Credit: Fashion Central

Photo Credit: Fashion Central

The way you walk, stand, and sit have a lot to do with the healthiness of your back and the flow of energy throughout your body. Great posture can fix many different issues that our bodies may experience while enhancing our physical as well as mental and emotional well-being.

Pay attention to your posture for a healthier back and body you’ll enjoy for many years to come. Better posture has these benefits:

Wards Off Depression

Studies have shown that depression and poor posture are closely related. In order to fix your mood, you have to correct your posture. The best way to correct your stance is by keeping your chest straight at all times. Lifting your head and shoulders always help improve posture too.

Reduces Chances of Death & Disease

With good posture comes higher life expectancy and lower risk of developing diseases. According to recent Australian studies, the life expectancy for consistent slouchers was generally low compared to more active participants. Another research study also reported that poor posture contributed significantly to diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

To reduce your chances of falling victim to a short life or diseases, allow yourself to lead a more active lifestyle… that means no more couch potato days in the future!

Promotes Circulation

Good posture and consistent stretching improves the body’s ability to pass oxygen, blood, and other fluids throughout the body. Sitting for long periods of time and hyperextending the legs will cut off circulation in critical areas. With stretching and great posture, your circulation will be normal and healthy.

Improves your Appearance

When you have great posture, your appearance instantly changes. Especially in the work force, first impressions and appearance can play major roles in important career decisions like promotions and raises. Ensure that your posture doesn’t give a false impression. To avoid slouching at your desk all day, work on tightening your core muscles around the spine.

Relieves Stress

It’s easy to get stressed nowadays with our busy lifestyles. To combat stress, powerful posture with broad shoulders and a straight spine will allow your stress levels to decrease drastically. Slouched postures are highly associated with low self-confidence and higher stress levels. Take long, deep breaths whenever you begin to feel stressed. It will remind you to relax, clear your mind, and deal with the task at hand calmly.

Improve Brain Function during Brain Awareness Week with Massage Therapy

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Photo Credit: Roosevelt University Department of Psychology

Photo Credit: Roosevelt University Department of Psychology

It’s Brain Awareness Week from March 11 to March 17 and what better way to celebrate than with a massage. That’s right; massage therapy is proven to promote healthy brain function and activity. When pressure is applied to the body’s muscles, stimulation is shown in many different parts of the brain.

When the brain is healthy, we tend to get greater results from massage therapy as well as other healing practices such as aromatherapy. Our brains and bodies have a special relationship with one another. When we exercise or engage the body’s muscles whether through exercise, massage or other healing modalities, our brains are stimulated, which results in increased brain activity and healthier brain patterns.

If we neglect brain stimulation, the body has a hard time functioning normally. You might be wondering how healthy your brain is right now. If you have difficulty remembering certain things or you watch too much television, your brain might be a bit unhealthy. What we do and what we focus on in our everyday lives can impact our brain activity and create a positive or negative reaction in our brains. For example, if you watch a lot of television or play violent video games, your brain is receiving a negative response, which will decrease brain function.

Massage therapy is great for increasing brain function because it encourages the production of intracellular messengers that are very useful for the body’s three main systems: the endocrine, nervous, and immune systems. These three systems interact with one another and impact the brain’s activity and function. When you receive a massage, the three main systems are stimulated, allowing communication to be strong throughout the body and brain.

The type of massage and the amount of pressure applied during a massage do not affect the stimulation positively or negatively. You will still see the benefits of massage on your brain’s functionality with a lighter Swedish massage or a deep tissue massage. When you treat your body with respect and care, your brain will reap the benefits of a happy and healthy mindset. This positive reaction from massage stimulates our brains and promotes healthier brain activity.

To celebrate Brain Awareness Week, massage therapy will help keep your brain and body in a more active state. Stimulate your mind in a positive way with a massage that’s worth every penny. Your brain will thank you for showing it the love and respect it deserves. Happy Brain Awareness Week!

Spring Forward with Great March Specials at Rainwater Spa

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Photo Credit: All Women’s Talk

Photo Credit: All Women’s Talk

Rainwater Spa has phenomenal deals this March to ensure you are looking your best for the spring season ahead. Indulge in one of our fantastic spa treatments or a luxurious spa package that will relax you from head to toe.

Call us today at 858-333-SPA1 to book an appointment for one of these great deals!

1 Hour of Aromatherapy Massage with Mini Hot Stone Add-On
Special Price: $49 (Original Price: $69)

There’s nothing like an aromatherapy massage to stimulate your senses! Revive your body and mind with the unique scents offered at Rainwater Spa. Our one-hour aromatherapy massage will work wonders on sore and aching muscles and relieve stress and tension. The mini hot stone add-on is icing on the cake with soothing, warm stones to break up sore and aching pains located under layers and layers of muscle and tissue. You’ll walk away from this spa special feeling so relaxed and completely revitalized.

3-Course Spa Package with 30-Minute Foot Massage, 1-Hour Body Massage, & 1-Hour Facial for only $99 (Original Price: $138)

This spa package is oh so special! Pamper yourself like royalty with this head to toe treatment that won’t cost you a fortune. Rainwater Spa is offering this outstanding package complete with a 30-minute foot massage, 1-hour body massage, and 1-hour of facial therapy. The foot massage will feel amazing especially if you have feet problems or have to be on your feet a lot for work.

The body massage will wash away your tight muscles and aching joints so you’ll feel brand new for the warmer months ahead. The one-hour facial therapy will exfoliate your skin, rejuvenate skin cells with a wonderful mask, and enhance anti-aging qualities within the skin for a youthful, glowing appearance that will instantly make you look younger.

Get yourself ready for summer and spring forward on our fantastic spa deals and packages. Contact Rainwater Spa today to book an appointment or to learn more about these great deals. You’ll look radiant with these all-inclusive spa treatments for March… It’s about time you started pampering yourself!

Recharge your Body with Spa Treatments for Springtime

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body wrapSpring is finally here and don’t we all love to get the house in order with a necessary spring clean? When we talk about spring cleaning, we typically refer to the garage, disorganized closets, and dusty out-of-reach areas.

Focusing on the cleanliness of the things in our lives is important; but, so are our bodies! Give your body the spring clean it deserves to recharge the batteries for another summer season ahead. Your body is worthy of some extra attention to keep a youthful and radiant glow. Check out these essential spa treatments at Rainwater Spa will give you a total body renewal!

Rejuvenating Scrub

For a fresh and youthful glow, there is nothing better for your skin than a rejuvenating body scrub! Buff away winter residue and skin impurities that contribute to aging. A scrub will smooth your skin, stimulate circulation, and leave you touchably soft for those fast-paced spring months ahead.

Body Emulsion Mask & Wrap

A body emulsion mask and wrap is the best spring cleaning treatment for your body. Our special emulsion treatment at Rainwater Spa ensures 95 % skin detoxification that have slimming, hydrating, and renewing advantages for the skin. The mask and wrap help super-oxygenize the skin cells, which allows your skin to be cleansed, softened, and hydrated.

Looking for a naturally younger look? You’ll get positive results with a body emulsion mask and wrap!

Facial Therapy

Facial therapy helps to clear your skin and fight against daily wear and tear. A deep cleanse, invigorating mask, and facial acupressure will act as a nourishing supplement for your face and an anti-aging element to diminish wrinkles and fine lines. Our skin care experts will prepare your skin so that it’s radiant and ready for anything for a fresh start to spring.

Your body deserves a springtime overhaul to get it in peak condition for the busy months ahead. Allow yourself to be pampered and refreshed with these essential springtime treatments at Rainwater Spa! Contact us today to book an appointment or find out more about the services we provide.

Photo Credit: Sanctuary Spa Services

Find a Treatment for TMJ that Works for You!

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Photo Credit: Brian Povolny

Photo Credit: Brian Povolny

TMJ is a common jaw ailment that affects the lives of many. In fact, more than 10,000,000 people in the United States suffer from TMJ-related symptoms as reported by the National Institutes of Health.

TMJ refers to the jaw or temporomandibular joint that is the focal point of many different jaw problems and disorders. This temporomandibular joint is what connects the mandible to the skull; it helps us bite, chew, swallow, talk, and create different facial expressions. When this joint is overused or is strained from stress or emotional uncertainty, the joint is unable to function properly.

One of the most common symptoms of TMJ is pain. TMJ sufferers will usually show signs of discomfort such as an aching sensation in the jaw joint and surrounding areas like ears and neck. There are other symptoms that are typical in TMJ disorders. These are some of the symptoms you may experience with jaw pain or TMJ:

• Headaches or migraines

• Locking of the jaw when opening or closing the mouth

• Discomfort when biting or chewing

• Unable to comfortably open the mouth

• Clicking or popping sounds coming from the jaw joint

• Pain in the shoulders, neck, and back

• Swelling of the side of the face

• Dizzy spells

• Earaches

If you are one of those who suffer from TMJ or jaw pain, there are different options when it comes to treatment. Jaw surgery to reconstruct the temporomandibular joint is highly unlikely in mild cases of TMJ and is used as a last resort. The ideal treatment for TMJ is massage therapy. With the help of healing touch, you’ll feel relief rather quickly.

When dealing with jaw pain, the following massage modalities prove to be the most advantageous in alleviating TMJ:

Neuromuscular Therapy

If you suffer from jaw spasms due to stress or emotional burdens, the neuromuscular therapy will alleviate your problem by applying pressure to the jaw muscle’s trigger points.

Acupressure

Acupressure helps to align the meridians found in our bodies. This allows our circulation to regulate and relieve TMJ symptoms. Primary jaw meridians are the stomach, gallbladder, and large intestine.

Cranial-Sacral Massage

Cranial-Sacral massage focuses on the head, neck, and shoulders. Alleviating built-up tension that we carry in our necks and facial features will allow TMJ problems to significantly reduce.

Swedish Massage

We often think of a Swedish massage as a relaxation massage but it comes with a slew of its own benefits as well. Creating a relaxation response to TMJ symptoms will reduce jaw tension and stress.

By using these massage treatments to help with TMJ disorders, your jaw will be receiving the most affective therapy for its pain symptoms while improving its range of motion. Enjoy one of these massage modalities at Rainwater Spa and we will surely help alleviate your jaw’s discomfort.