- Known as The Nerve Whisperer, Kimberly Burnham, PhD (Integrative Medicine) spent nine weeks bicycling from Seattle to DC this summer, racking up over 3000 miles. She raised money for Hazon’s (Vision in Hebrew) sustainability, organic agriculture and food justice programs. In her private practice in West Hartford, CT she uses alternative medicine approaches to help people with brain, spine and vision related issues such as Parkinson’s disease, seizures or macular degeneration. To work with her or have her speak to your group, visit www.KimberlyBurnhamPhD.com . Watch her interview at the 2012 Consciousness Raising Summit at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhG3-qwkvVk and http://youtu.be/5t8z9MA0Rds .
1. Have alternate therapies become more popular in recent times?
As more and more people find success with complementary and alternative medicine approaches, they are telling their friends and family. The popularity of alternative therapies is also rising with the number of people without insurance coverage. If someone has to pay out of their pocket for treatment they are going to move towards those treatments that give good results and have few or no side effects / downsides. Also with the rise in the number of alternative therapy practitioners, the best ones are successful and those that are not getting results for their clients go out of business, leaving more and more great practitioners in practice.
With social media and more information available, more and more clients are coming to my alternative medicine practice looking for solutions to common conditions like Parkinson’s disease, diabetic neuropathy, macular degeneration and more. As the average age of the population rises, so do the number of people with chronic conditions. More and more of these people are looking to alternative therapies.
2. Your views on some people not being open to alternate healing?
There are a number of people who are not interested in or open to working with an alternative medicine practitioner. They typically fall into several categories:
1) People who get great results with traditional medicine. They are not looking for an alternative.
2) People who are not knowledgeable about what options and alternatives they have.
3) People who have heard a story about bad results or are worried they will not have good results.
Many alternative healing clients come because someone they know has gotten excellent results.
In my practice, for example, I see very few people who have had a seizure, taken a medication and the seizures have stopped. I see the children who have a seizure, take a medication, and the seizures continue. They go back to the medical doctor who changes the medication but it still doesn’t stop the seizures. The parents of children with seizures, autism or attention deficit disorder, who are not helped by the medical system, typically start looking for what other options are available to them. Those are the people who often find solutions in the alternative medicine field.
3. What kind of miracles have you seen in your patients?
There is a quote from science fiction writer, Arthur C. Clarke: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” There are some who would say the miracles seen in alternative medicine practices around the world, come from advanced ways of looking at the body, and more holistic ways of approaching healing and recovery.
During my PhD dissertation in Integrative Medicine on using manual therapy (hands-on work) to improve the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, the client made significant improvements during the two week treatment period. According to his neurologist, who didn’t know anything about the study, he improved 10-15 percent in terms of activities of daily living, balance, walking, and speech. To put this in context, the medical literature indicates that no matter what you do with Parkinson’s disease you are likely going to get worse at a rate of four percent per year. This means this client turned the clock back three or four years on his symptoms. According to the client his back and hip pain also decreased from a 7 out of 10 to a 2 out of 10.
Another client was diagnosed with a genetic brain disorder called Huntington’s disease. Two years after her diagnosis her walking is better. Her speech is more easily understood and she walks almost every day. In addition to the hands-on therapies she is exercising and taking supplements. Her neurologist, who is wonderful says, “I don’t understand what you are doing but by all means keep doing it.”
She, the client, has published her story in an anthology called Tears to Triumph, Stories to Transform Your Life Today, an Anthology from the Authors of Pebbles in the Pond and more.
Recently, an 80 year old client with an eye disease of the cornea has reported being able to read better and recently passed her driving test, which she had been worried about. She gets about one hour of alternative therapies per month to help her continue to feel better and be active.
4. What do you think is the future of the self-help industry?
With finances tight, the most successful practitioners in the self-help industry will be those who deliver great care, compassion and results for their clients. Great results often include developing an individualized self-care program that includes; physical exercises adapted to what will help the person the most, a look at diet and nutrition, as well as visualization and other forms of energy medicine that can be applied easily by the individual at home.
In the future some people will become more reliant on someone telling them what to do and doing the treatment to them but I see more and more people looking for ways to help themselves feel better, move more easily, increase their energy levels and improve their vision and hearing. These people are highly motivated and often are just looking for some guidance in what they can do for themselves and for their family. Empowering these people and educating people who are not yet able to help themselves is the future of the self-help industry.
Her Website: www.acaringtouchmassage.net