What is Pain-Free Therapy?

Perhaps you have come across the name of this service on our Facebook page. Or maybe one of our practitioners mentioned it in clinic, during the course of an initial assessment or treatment. The truth is, you might have just stumbled upon this post after mistyping a word in Google. Regardless, here you are and now we are going to explain what Pain-Free Therapy actually is and how it could possibly help you.

Put simply, Pain-Free Therapy is our unique blend of various techniques, used to remedy most of the muscle and joint-related problems that we frequently encounter at our clinic. It allows our practitioners to make use of more than just one – if not all – of the manual therapy skills that are available to them. This particular service has been developed over the last two years, during which our practitioners have learnt and applied newly acquired techniques to our patients. Due to the overall positive response that we received after treating over a thousand people, we decided to combine them – as necessary – and deliver a service that optimises both the time and money of those who sincerely desire to recover their good health. Our individually tailored Pain-Free Therapy plans can include all – but may only consist of one or two – of the following techniques:

  • Wet Cupping (Hijama)
  • Dry Cupping
  • Graston (Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilisation)
  • Active Release Therapy (cupping)
  • PNF (Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation) Stretching
  • Thermotherapy

 

It may surprise you to know that wet cupping is not prioritised in our Pain-Free Therapy package, though there are a few exceptions. Unless our patients need it as a part of their treatment, our practitioners are unlikely to offer it. Hijama is mainly used to treat organs and joint capsules, such as those found in the shoulders and knees. However, it can be used to drain any residual scar tissue found within the muscles at the end of the Pain-Free Therapy cycle too.

cupping1
Wet or dry – Both help significantly (1)

Dry cupping allows practitioners to decompress large sections of a muscle – for example, the latissimus dorsi muscle located along the lower and lateral sides of the thorax – or a group of muscles – such as the quadriceps found on the front of the thigh – in one session, without them having to consider blood loss and its related clinical implications. Due to this and its other non-invasive techniques, Pain-Free Therapy is a service that can benefit those who are unable to have Hijama because of health conditions such as diabetes, anaemia, chronic low blood pressure and heart disorders. Since this blog is mainly dedicated to the practice of both wet and dry cupping, the following links can be accessed to understand each kind in more detail.

For information about wet cupping, check out our previous post: Why do we need Hijama (cupping)? And for dry cupping, have a look at this one: Categories of Hijama

The Graston technique, usually carried out with a distinct IASTM tool, is a form of therapy that manually breaks down scar tissue formation and realigns connective tissue fibres within the body in a rapid and non-surgical manner. Since scar tissue is often responsible for muscle adhesion and restriction, it is particularly good for restoring limb mobility and flexibility in a short space of time.

We  have a post dedicated solely to this technique: What is the Graston Technique?

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Our small yet diverse favourite (2)

Active Release Technique or ART, offered in the form of specialised cupping at Pure Therapy Clinic, normally involves stretches, massages and either positive or negative pressure to manage the function of numerous anatomical structures, such as muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. By holding onto carefully selected parts of the body, our therapists guide patients through a series of movements designed to gently challenge and ‘unstick’ the associated fibres, leading to a greater range of movement and reduced pain.

ActiveReleaseTechnique-photobyBrianFitzsimmons-2e5127e6
Active Release Technique. It does make sense. Honest (3)

Similar to ART in both method and result, Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation Stretching is another manually applied skill that utilises the hands-on guidance of a practitioner. Often described as an advanced form of flexibility training, PNF Stretching lengthens, contracts and strengthens specific muscle groups, making it highly effective for rehabilitation after damage caused by all types of muscular overload, such as sports and repetitive strain injuries.

video-limber-up-with-pnf-stretching-promo-image
Who doesn’t like a bit of bonding stretching, eh? (4)

Last but not least, Thermotherapy or heat therapy has been defined as anything that uses heat to relieve an individual’s pain or improve their health. Heat causes the blood vessels to dilate, which boosts blood circulation, and relaxes sore or tight muscles. By doing so, it speeds up the natural metabolic rate of cells within its range which, in turn, leads to faster healing. Thermotherapy is very effective against chronic muscle and joint pains, such as those caused by arthritis and fibromyalgia.

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Hard to believe but this kind of exposure to heat actually does do something to our blood vessels (5)

As part of our combined approach, we use each of these therapies to stimulate the flow of blood, lymph and interstitial fluid in different parts of the body as well as even out and separate layers of muscle and other fibrous tissue, such as ligaments, tendons and fascia. Pain-Free Therapy has proven to be a superior, highly effective form of treatment, especially when compared to a simple dry or wet cupping session.

Regularity has a direct impact on the efficiency of most treatments. However, this is particularly true of Pain-Free Therapy. Patients that have chosen it can be seen by our practitioners up to four times a week and can often feel immediate improvements to their individual condition. On the other hand, patients who have undergone Hijama would have to wait another month before being able to safely receive treatment again, leaving them vulnerable to repeated or further damage.

We hope that this information has benefited you, our dear readers, and we would love to hear from you. Comments, questions and weekly topic suggestions are always welcomed and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for reading!

The Pure Therapy Team

Images referenced from:
(1) https://static.independent.co.uk/s3fs-public/thumbnails/image/2016/08/12/17/cupping1.jpg
(2) www.iamtools.co.uk/s/cc_images/cache_2459152876.jpg
(3) http://www.austinfitmagazine. com/images/cache/cache_6/cache_e/cache_7/ActiveReleaseTechnique-photobyBrianFitzsimmons-2e5127e6.jpeg?ver=1469817607&aspectratio=2.0833333333333
(4) https://www.oxygenmag.com/.image/t_share/MTQ1MzQ3MzE1OTY2NTUxODI1/video-limber-up-with-pnf-stretching-promo-image.jpg
(5) https://www.guertelrose-infektion.de/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/1-infrarot-waerme-behandlung-400×300.jpg
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Why do we treat the systemic points with Hijama (cupping)?

All around the world, Hijama (cupping) therapists tend to treat people for several similar reasons. These commonly shared goals often include being able to make a living through their skills, healing people via non-medicinal remedies and reviving highly beneficial religious practises. However, their methods usually differ drastically from one practitioner to the next, ranging from professional jobs to unethical operations. The way that they use Hijama depends on their understanding of its purpose, its application and its relation to human physiology. Due to this difference of opinion, physical cupping sites can be just as varied, regardless of whether the aim is treat a certain ailment or not. At Pure Therapy, we treat the systemic points to prevent and counter numerous health conditions. The aim of this post is simply to explain what the systemic points are and the possible reasons for their locations on the body.

The systemic points – also known as the sunnah points – are three places that form a triangular shape on the back. The top systemic point, found between the shoulder blades, is called al-kahil. In Arabic, al-kahil means the upper part of a person’s back. As its name suggests, this point is located at the junction of C7, which is the last cervical (neck) vertebra, and T1, which is the first vertebra of the thoracic (chest region) spine. The other two points – often referred to as al-akhdain – are located on either side of the thoracic spine, usually around the scapulae (shoulder blades). Despite layers of bone that may be in between, this position allows toxins to be drawn directly from the lungs and heart.

sunnah points
Just as there are sunnah points, there are sunnah days (1)

As well as being greatly recommended for Muslims that want to gain religiously, the systemic points are anatomically accurate sites for influencing numerous systems of the body at once. For example, treating the al-kahil point that overlaps the C7 and T1 vertebrae can have a direct impact on the C8 nerve, which has a unique place between the two aforementioned bones. Though it mainly controls the muscles of the arms and fingers, damage or severe impairment of the C8 nerve can lead to full body paralysis. In addition to this, the posterior spinal and vertebral arteries, which supply blood to the spinal cord and the bones around it, run close to al-kahil, along either side of the cervical vertebrae.

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Words won’t illustrate the concept of spinal regions better than this image will (2)

Cupping the systemic points can regulate the endocrine system too. Located close to the anterior (front-facing) surface of the spine, the thyroid gland rests could be considered near to the top systemic point, roughly on like with the C5 and T1 vertebrae, with its respective arteries branching off from the same position. The solid body of C7 supports the weight of both the neck and head with the help of the erector spinae muscles and the nuchal ligament attached to it. These anatomical structures play a role in the main movements of the neck and head and are often subjected to considerable tension. Over time, they tend to become strained and riddled with trigger points, leading to recurring cramps, stiffness and burning sensations. Hijama can restore the flow of blood to the pressurised muscle and ligament fibres, allowing them to heal from all of the daily wear and tear.

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Tada! There is the thyroid gland. And there is the spine (3)

Since cupping therapy affects the area directly beneath the cup as well as its surrounding tissues, it can efficiently treat entire organs. This is relevant particularly where the other two systemic points, al-akhdain, are concerned. As we mentioned before, the lungs and the heart are normally within reach of the therapy’s benefits, resulting in improvements of the circulatory system. When influenced by Hijama, the lungs become better at drawing in and distributing oxygen throughout the body. Why is this important? Because oxygen is needed for cellular respiration, a chemical reaction that causes cells to release energy. Energy is responsible for a number of bodily functions, such as muscle contractions, tissue repair, calming of the nerves and cleansing of waste via a process known as oxidation.

ribs spine
Must I really point out where the lungs would be? (4)

Chemical waste, for example the substances left over from cell metabolism, is supposed to be removed from the body as quickly and as thoroughly as it is produced. During oxidation, oxygen carries cellular waste to the surface of the skin, where it is disposed of before it can accumulate and poison the cells. Once it has left the body via pores in the skin, this waste is generally known as perspiration or sweat. The nervous system is also strongly influenced by the supply of oxygen. Brain cells especially are very sensitive to oxygen deprivation and neurons (nerve cells) consume a lot of oxygen when activated. Therefore, al-akhdain have a significant effect on the nervous system which, in turn, can influence everything in the human body due to its extensive reach.

The reason that we treat these selected points should be obvious by now but further research could prove that they have even greater clinical implications in the future.

We hope that this information has benefited you, our dear readers, and we would love to hear from you. Comments, questions and weekly topic suggestions are always welcomed and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for reading!

The Pure Therapy Team

Images referenced from:
(1) http://www.just-health.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Sunnah-days-and-points-e1476541010513-269×300.jpg
(2) https://www.mayfieldclinic.com/Images/PE-AnatSpine_Figure2.jpg
(3) http://www.clubupton.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/location-of-thyroid-gland-best-collection-larynx-cricoid-cartilage-trachea-vertebral-spine-neck-human-internal-organ-anatomy.jpg
(4) https://i.pinimg.com/736x/dd/40/99/dd40994570338de3f466871b7ecdcb7c.jpg

What are we made of?

Before anyone rushes to prove their worth – though it’s highly unlikely that the answer is steel – or decides to give the text-book, smarty-pants response – yes, we are made up of atoms but let’s think bigger, shall we? – we should probably mention that the title of today’s post requires a biologically and visually inclined answer. One that we, personally, have spent the last week studying about in more depth; we are made up of bodily tissues. And, as usual, we intend to share what we have learnt with you, our reader.

The human body is an ever-changing, non-static formation of approximately 50 – 106 trillion cells. The exact amount of cells differs from one individual to another, often influenced by a variety of factors such as their age, sex, height, bone density and over all body mass, including the percentage of fat and muscle in his or her body. These cells are normally divided into multiple groups, depending on the shape and type of each cellular unit. A group of cells that share the same structure and functions are called tissues.

There are 4 types of tissue present in the human body and each one in unique in appearance and purpose. They are:

  • Epithelial tissue, which covers the organs and other structures of the body
  • Connective tissue which supports the organs and structures of the body
  • Muscle tissue which moves the body and supports the posture of its skeletal framework
  • Nervous tissue which is responsible for controlling homeostasis

Most organs contain all four kinds of tissue, just in varying amounts.

For more about homeostasis, check out our previous post: Hijama and Homeostasis

Epithelial tissue is a sheet of cells that cover areas of the body, lining both its internal and external surfaces. Though it may be riddled with nerves, epithelial tissue or epithelium does not have its own blood supply. Any nutrients it receives are drawn from nearby blood vessels. Therefore, the speed at which it divides and regenerates – also known as healing – is heavily influenced by the state of those blood vessels. When lining hollow organs and blood vessels, epithelial tissue is referred to as endothelium. Regardless of its name, epithelial tissue has six main functions:

  • absorption
  • protection
  • excretion
  • secretion
  • filtration
  • sensory reception
Illu_epithelium
Epithelial tissue is a bit more complicated than you might think it is (1)

Connective tissue is the most abundant form of tissue found within – not upon the surface of – the body, usually acting as a base for epithelial tissue attachment. It has a rich blood supply due to the many blood vessels that run through it. There are four kinds of connective tissue: connective tissue proper, cartilage, bone and blood. Working together, these various cellular groups have five primary functions, including:

  • binding tissues to one another
  • reinforcement
  • insulation
  • protection
  • support
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Connective tissue … also not as simple as you might have hoped it would be (2)

Muscle tissue is exactly what it sounds like, consisting of long fibres that are able to generate a considerable amount of force. Muscle tissue exists in any part of the body hat requires movement or maintenance of posture. It has been sectioned off into three different classes, each with a special function: skeletal, smooth and cardiac. Skeletal muscle tissue, as its name suggests, is usually next or joined to the skeleton. In this position, it is able to move bones as well as hold them in place. Smooth muscle tissue is located in hollow, internal structures, such as the vascular system and gastrointestinal tract, where it can propel both fluid and solid substances from one area to the next. Cardiac muscle tissue – again, one that is betrayed by its name – can only be found in the heart, enabling it to contract repeatedly.

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Muscle tissue comes in all shapes and sizes (3)

For more about muscles and skeletons, feel free to check out our other posts: Why do we have skeletons? and Hijama and the Muscular System

Nervous tissue makes up the nervous system and can be split into two distinct types: neurones and neuroglia. Neurones are the functioning units of the entire system, responsible to spreading signals from the brain throughout both the central and peripheral nervous systems. Neuroglia are formed to nourish, protect and support neurones, allowing them to function in prime condition.

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Not … Not quite what we were talking about … (4)

Due to the differences in physiological properties, each type of tissue varies in how fast and how well it is able to repair itself. Epithelial issue – which endures a lot of wear and tear on a daily basis – contains stem cells that help it renew itself rapidly. Most kinds of connective tissue are also capable of renewal, however cartilage often takes longer to heal as a result of its naturally reduced blood supply. Both muscle and nervous tissue have poor regeneration properties, usually because most muscle fibres divide slowly whereas nervous cells cannot replace themselves at all!

For more information about tissue regeneration, please have a look at one our earlier posts: Hijama and Tissue Repair

We hope that this information has benefited you, our dear readers, and we would love to hear from you. Comments, questions and weekly topic suggestions are always welcomed and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for reading!

The Pure Therapy Team

Images referenced from:
(1) https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8f/Illu_epithelium.jpg
(2) https://www.exploringnature.org/graphics/teaching_aids/tissue_connective.jpg
(3) https://www.sciencelearn.org.nz/system/images/images/000/002/357/original/Types-of-muscle-tissue20161111-16640-1c2x74o.jpg?1478820928
(4) https://c2.staticflickr.com/8/7095/7185299876_4fd38e3d0e.jpg

Can Hijama (cupping) cure sciatica?

Sciatica is a distressingly common condition normally associated with a variety of unpleasant sensations, such as bolts of pain shooting down one leg or a persistent ache in the lower back or hip area. For some, sciatica can be triggered by drastic physiological changes such as pregnancy or specific injuries. For others, the condition gradually creeps up on them in the form of over-worked and under-rested muscles, which can eventually lead to recurring or increasing pain. Despite the amount of people affected by it, sciatica and its symptoms are often misunderstood by many, even those that have been diagnosed with it themselves! In this post, we aim to clarify some of its usual causes and how they can be rectified with the right treatment.

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Sciatica pain can be crippling, especially if it is left to progress (1)

The symptoms of sciatica generally result from compression of the sciatic nerve, which exits the spinal canal as a group of nerves, all of which pass between the vertebrae or discs of both the lumbar region (L4 and L5) and the sacral region (S1 – S3) of the spine. From these points, the nerves then merge into the longest nerve of the human body, passing through the greater sciatic notch of the pelvis and down the leg through muscles such as the piriformis and hamstrings. Though many believe that sciatica can only result from slipped or bulging vertebrae, the muscles and other anatomical structures surrounding it – such as bones, ligaments and tendons – are also capable of applying pressure anywhere along its length. This can lead to constant and steadily increasing discomfort. Intermittent symptoms – which occur on and off – are often caused by actions that make these muscles move in specific ways or considerably increase the blood supply to them in a short space of time. Examples of such actions can be found in different types or extended periods of exercise.

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The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body, which could be why it has such a significant effect (2)

Though dependant on its cause, sciatica can usually be identified by the presence of some – if not all – of the following symptoms:

  • Pain in the lumbar (lower back) or hip region
  • Pain in the posterior region (rear) or leg that worsens whilst in a sitting
  • Burning, tingling, weakness or numbness of the leg or foot
  • Problems when trying to move the leg or foot
  • Continuous pain in the posterior region, particularly on one side
  • Shooting pains that prevent or restrict an individual from standing up
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Though it may vary in intensity and sensation, most people with sciatica feel discomfort in the same places (3)

All of these pains can become aggravated by involuntary physical responses, such as coughing or sneezing, and may affect one or both sides of the lower body and limbs. Most of the time, sciatica symptoms last no more than several weeks. However, those with severe or chronic (long-term) sciatica may experience symptoms for a year – if not longer – especially if their condition remains undiagnosed and untreated. Though it may be possible for sciatica to affect anyone with sciatic nerves, some people have a greater chance of developing it, including but not limited to:

  • pregnant women
  • office workers
  • students
  • overweight people
  • bus and taxi drivers
  • inactive elderly people

Using this knowledge, Hijama practitioners can place cups along the length of the nerve and upon any structures that may be compressing it. By applying negative pressure or suction to any tight muscles surrounding it, they could alleviate the pressure caused by them and nourish parts of the nerve that may have been damaged by restricted blood flow. In addition to this, treating the areas with wet cupping could remove any trapped cellular waste that might be hindering the function of the sciatic nerve. Though we do not treat pregnant women at Pure Therapy, those with post-pregnancy sciatic pain are always welcome at our clinic.

We hope that this information has benefited you, our dear readers, and we would love to hear from you. Comments, questions and weekly topic suggestions are always welcomed and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for reading!

The Pure Therapy Team

Images referenced from:
(1) https://www.spineuniverse.com/sites/default/files/lead-images/article/3897-sciatica_legpain15482326_m.jpg
(2) https://neupsykey.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/B9781455709885000166_f16-02-9781455709885.jpg
(3) https://www.practostatic.com/fit/243c0526e4e2d60c5b12280c3c2759403a55474b

Has healing aided my writer goals?

As mentioned before, my last blog holiday wasn’t entirely planned. If it had been, I would’ve spent my time off being delightfully idle. By idle, I mean that I would’ve taken a break from the constant battle between getting somewhere in life and being an unproductive member of society, using the time to sleep and recover from the rest of the year instead. However, despite the merciless ambush of hay fever and heat, my journey as a blogger – as a writer – continued without end. During Ramadan, alongside my unsuccessful attempts to sew Eid outfits, I worked on a health-related article that wasn’t meant to be published on this blog. Instead, I aimed for one of my long term goals as a writer and today I want to tell you how I managed to reach it.

For the first time in my life, an article written by yours truly was published in a magazine! An actual, physical magazine. And it wasn’t just any old magazine either. The idea of writing for Sisters had been on my mind since I read one of their issues, which was roughly 6 years ago. The Sisters magazine was initially the product of best-selling author, Na’ima B. Robert, and her business partner, Umm Zakariyya. Together, they began to work on the first two magazines, both of which were based online. Once they had put together the third issue, they then decided to distribute it in print. As a magazine for fabulous muslim women, Sisters was created to inspire women all around the world and strengthen their connection with Allah (god), with themselves and with their family and friends too. In 2010, I believe that I joined the ranks of those they had inspired.

For more about the origins of Sisters, check out this interview with one of its creators, Nai’ma B. Robert: How Sisters Magazine Started

My first encounter with Sisters occurred in a small tea-room set up by our local community. I’d always been interested in magazines since I was young, especially those that were marketed towards the muslim population. My favourites had been Al-Jumuah and a magazine that – as far as I can remember – used to be called Voices. As an amateur fiction writer, I’d often wondered what it was like to write for one of these magazines, marvelling at those who could make non-fiction so engaging. Until I flicked through that Sisters issue, that day in the tea-room, I had never felt such a persistent urge to contribute to anyone else’s efforts. But the collection of talent that I had unwittingly stumbled across – its beautiful colours and page designs – along with its written content, all seemed so fresh in comparison to the regurgitated religious views that I had been exposed to before, even within my favourite magazines. And I just wanted to be a part of that.

However, as a fiction writer with no known article-writing skills, I wasn’t sure if I could offer the magazine anything suitable and substantial. In 2012, I reached out to the magazine with a fiction-related suggestion and was warmly received, first by marketing manager Aneesa Sidat, and later by content director, Brooke Benoit. They were very patient with me during our intermittent exchange of emails, offering many helpful suggestions along the way. During this time, I began to study Hijama (cupping) – and other topics linked to health and science – with the intention of becoming a professional therapist in the near future. In 2015, I made a Facebook account for our Hijama business and contacted Brooke, who had previously suggested that I make one to connect with other muslim writers. She directed me to a group created for Sisters writers and, from then on, I was able to keep an eye out for any Sisters-related news. Due to this, I found out that the magazine, which had gone out of print, would be making an epic comeback during Ramadan.

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Excuse my indecipherable writing. Believe it or not, those are words. Words written in English

Around that exact time, most likely during my Hijama-related studies, I came across the term autophagy, a physiological mechanism of the human body that responds to food deprivation. I was fascinated by everything that I learnt about it and wondered if others would be find it just as interesting, particularly if it were connected to the religious practice of fasting. By then, I had been running the Pure Therapy blog for just over a year and realised that my posts were somewhat written like articles as well as blog posts. So,  at the beginning of 2017, I reached out to Brooke yet again. She welcomed my suggestion as enthusiastically as usual and I started the process of writing for Sisters for the first time. Seven months later, I’m now the proud author of an article that can be found in their May 2017 issue. And that is how becoming a Hijama therapist, a healer, helped me publish my writing in a great magazine like Sisters.

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Still can’t believe that this is actually a thing. Something that I wrote. In a real magazine

Perhaps you found this blog after reading the magazine recently. Have you read my article already? If so, then you have my sincere thanks. Are you as much of a Sisters fan as I am? Do you want to write for them too? Or for any other magazine? I would love to hear your stories as well. If you enjoyed mine, well,  you know where the like button is, right? (Hint: It’s at the bottom of this page. Shhhh!) And if you know anyone else who would be inspired by this virtual trek towards publication – towards one of my goals as a writer of both fiction and non-fiction – you know where the share buttons are, right? (Hint: If you don’t, refer back to the first hint. I said, shhhh!) Thank you so much for reading all of this, now and always.

With Introverted Interest

SB

 

Why do we need Hijama (cupping)?

Is the blood extracted during Hijama (cupping) suitable for donation? Is menstrual blood the same as Hijama blood? Is the sticky substance left in a Hijama cup simply partially dried blood? Many of these are common questions asked by people who share an interest in the topic. The answer to all of the above share a single answer: No. However, the title of our blog post today is a shockingly rare question. Though we have covered the basics of how Hijama aids the body and touched upon some misconceptions linked to these enquiries in a previous post, there is always enough space for a little more detail. We aim to provide relevant information by answering a single query: What is extracted during Hijama sessions? Or, rather, what exactly are toxins that are removed from the body?

For more information about blood and cellular waste, check out one of our very first posts at Hijama and “Bad Blood”?

The toxins referred to in this post are those that have invaded – or been produced by – the body itself. The word toxic is a synonym of the word poisonous, meaning that a substance is capable of damaging the cells of the body enough to cause illness and even death. Whether they may be released due to specific chemical reactions or present because they have penetrates the outer layers of the body, toxins prevent the cells from functioning in an optimal state. Every living organism is continuously threatened by the production and invasion of toxins from the day they are born until the day they die. Hence the reason that an intricate mechanisms, such as the immune response, are constantly being developed over time.

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There are many types of bacteria, viruses and fungi. Sometimes there are too many (1)

Many kinds of toxins exist in the environment of an individual even before they reach the internal tissues of his or her body, usually via ingestion, contact or airborne channels. Some make their way through open wounds in the skin, such as superficial cuts and surgically created openings. Others are often drawn in through the natural orifices of the body, such as the mouth, nose and anus. However, there are also toxins that are formed within the body due to chemical processes such as digestion, respiration and cell metabolism. Examples of both internally and externally manufactured toxins include:

  • Viruses e.g Hepatitis and HIV
  • Bacteria e.g Staphylococcus and E. Coli
  • Fungi e.g Candida Albicus and Tinea Pedis
  • Cells that have been damaged or devitalised by injury or disease
  • Fragments of bone from certain types of fractures and significant or repetitive impact
  • Foreign matter such as inhaled dust and mold or splinters of wood and glass
  • Chemicals from food preservatives and pesticides
  • Pollutants in the air from cars, factories and various scented sprays
  • Small mineral particles left over from digested food
  • Cellular waste that has not left the body via urine, excretion or lymphatic drainage

Usually, the body counters these toxins by sending out white blood cells, such as leukocytes and macrophages, to destroy or ingest them via a process known as phagocytosis. If a cell dies due to apoptosis, which is a naturally occurring cellular death, parts of its structure can be broken down and used again to form a new, fully functional cell. On the other hand, some cells are subjected to necrosis, meaning that they have been destroyed by an external factor. When this happens, the cell releases microbial substances that are capable of damaging the surrounding tissue which triggers the body’s immune response. Specialised cells known as phagocytes flood the area that has been damaged and proceed to ingest any toxins that they encounter. If the level of toxins remain uncontrolled by the responding leukocytes and nearby phagocytes, the healing process can be severely inhibited and have a significantly negative impact on the body.

inflammation-2
The process of inflammation (2)

The accumulation of excess interstitial fluid that fills the space between cells and pus – comprised of white blood cell remains, liquefied tissue and cell debris – are often signs of infection and also classed as toxic substances that can be removed with Hijama. The answer to our very first question should now be obvious.

We hope that this information has benefited you, our dear readers, and we would love to hear from you. Comments, questions and weekly topic suggestions are always welcomed and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for reading!

The Pure Therapy Team

Images referenced from:
(1) http://media.istockphoto.com/vectors/virus-bacteria-and-fungi-vector-id480412286?k=6&m=480412286&s=612×612&w=0&h=RBVQxTJzNhHCsOTHi_b1gPADsBItwT8_86ItGiyEqYk=
(2) http://suntvett.no/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/Skjermbilde-2013-10-25-kl.-16.05.40-750×506.png

Sincere apologies to you all

My month long Blogiday was only semi-planned. I had already been thinking of taking the month of Ramadan off, if only to focus on religious activities, but I wasn’t sure. Ramadan started in the same sudden way that it always does and I considered putting off my blog post for another week until I adjusted to fasting. I was then hit with two wrecking balls one after the other.

The first was my hay fever, having returned with a vengeance after being away the past three seasons. I could swear I’ve spent more time blowing my nose in the past month than I have during the eleven months that preceded it. It’s hard to think in a straight line when you’re sneezing your eyeballs out, much less work on something for other people to read and successfully comprehend. I wouldn’t inflict that content on anyone, much less my dear readers.

The second was the heat. As you may have realised from my previous blog posts, me and the heat are not friends. If fact, I think we’re closer to being arch enemies. The heatwave that hit the UK pretty much stopped me from functioning as a human, instead turning me into a thoroughly baked potato. Crispy on the outside, mushy on the inside and utterly flavourless. Getting burnt by the heat of my laptop was something I could definitely do without.

So yes, I’ve had a lot of fun and I hope you all had equal amounts of delight – the kind that is actually delightful, not my kind of fun – than I did. The next blog post should be up this Friday as usual and we’ll be resuming our normal posting schedule, God-willing. Awfully sorry for the exceptionally long wait. And, as always, thank you for reading.

With Introverted Interest

SB