Health and Healing Blog
Diane Brinsko's picture

Spring Cleaning

It’s that time of the year...


You’ve dusted and vacuumed your baseboards, pulled the weeds in the garden,
cleaned the gutters, washed the windows. What’s next?


This holistic practice is purported to improve oral health, whiten teeth, remove
bacteria that causes bad breath & gum disease (gingivitis), decrease formation of
plaque, and prevent tooth decay. It’s 5-6 times less expensive than commercial
mouthwash with chlorhexidine. It can strengthen your jaws, decrease sensitivity in teeth
and draws out mucous congestion from your throat, and loosens up sinuses.

Good general health involves a Body-Mouth connection. There are 500+ species
of bacteria in your mouth -- some beneficial, some harmful. Bacteria in the mouth
impacts so many other diseases in the body....we swallow, we absorb, we digest. If
absorbed sublingually, bacteria is directed into our bloodstream causing low-grade
inflammatory responses throughout our bodies, leading to stiff joints, skin disorders,
headaches, lung disease, insomnia, fatigue, digestive disorders, and heart disease to


It’s a simple “routine” to add to your daily oral hygiene practices. Before you
begin your busy, hectic day, put a tablespoon of unrefined, food-grade Sesame,
Sunflower, Safflower, or Coconut Oil in your mouth and gently SWISH the oil between
your teeth for up to 20 minutes. Try not to swallow. If your mouth gets tired, use less
vigor in your swishing! Don't forget to spit in the trsh and not down your drains.
Do this before eating or drinking. When finished swishing, rinse
your mouth out with water -- brush and floss your teeth, blow your nose and clear your
throat. You may activate your gag reflex The oil in your mouth will transform into a

Warning: Do Not use Oil Pulling as a replacement for standard, professional oral health

Have fun...hum a little tune, deep breathe through your nose, take a shower.


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Laura Pickens's picture

Being Present Each and Every Day

I have been hearing a lot of talk recently about how we here in Pittsburgh aren't going to have a Spring and that we will be heading right into Summer. I wanted to write a little bit about the ways we can make the most of it while it is here now. Also in how we can put a little pep in our step and clean house to make space for new things to come in.

So what can we do to be present during this lovely time of year?

Go out and be in the sun. Replenish your Vitamin D levels. I take a supplement also but use your own judgement as long as it doesn't interfere with other medications you may be on.

Go for a walk outside. Breathe in the fresh air. Walking helps wake up your body's energy system and boosts endorphins to help you feel good.

Relax and release. Take a pink Himilayan salt bath before you go to bed to let go of the stress accumulated throughout your day. I put 2 cups in a bath tub full of water.

Add a touch of color to your environment. You can switch out pillows in your house or add a new house plant or flower.

Garden. Go to the nursery and see what grows nicely this time of year. Or you can buy fresh flowers or replace a potted plant that might need it.

Find new scents to use in a diffuser if you have one. Let the aromatherapy help lift your mood.

Clean out you closets or kitchen pantry. Get rid of the stuff you don't use anymore by donating it and make space for new things to come in.

It's easy to think to yourself that when the weather truly turns to summer that you’ll be back to your energized self.  But just do it now. Take positive action for your health and well being, and do your best in the present moment.


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Carrie McCann's picture

Infertility Awareness Week

April 24-30 is Infertility Awareness Week.  With Mother’s Day coming up, this is an exciting time of year for many people.  It can also be a difficult one for those trying to conceive. This week, we want to honor those women and families that are impacted by infertility and celebrate those who have walked through our doors and seen success in their journeys.  Here are a few of their stories below. 

“Massage has completely transformed my life. It helped to regain my physical health and more fertility. I have a daughter as a result and in the process of trying to create another.”  -M.A.

“Massage therapy has positively impacted my life by bringing relaxation and well being into my life.  The greatest impact though came when I was trying to get pregnant. I had been trying for 7 months and after one fertility massage I got pregnant with my son. I am very grateful for the benefits of massage.” –K.T.

“I absolutely love the people that work at PCCHH.  I've been going there once a month since August and they recognize me and are cheering me on in my pursuit to conceive.  I really appreciate that.  I'm sure they have a ton of clients and the fact that they take such an interest in me is very moving.  I recommend them to everyone; including my fertility doctor at Magee.  After she reviewed my fertility charts she agreed that my sessions at PCCHH has made a huge positive impact and she will be promoting the facility to other patients. Fertility struggles is SO frustrating and this is the one place I feel hopeful.  It's kind of become my 'safe haven' and I really look forward to seeing them.” – M.H.

"Massage therapy has been a godsend.  The digestive massages that I received at PCCHH helped me to be able to eat again.  It has helped gotten my gastroparesis under control. Now I am hoping fertility massages can help get me pregnant!" -G.S.

"I've always enjoyed massages but Angie's fertility massages were unlike anything I've ever had.  She is amazing.  It helped me conceive!" -M.H.

 Take a look at the ways that PCCHH can support you here.


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Beth's picture

Save Time for Stress Reduction This Spring...on YOU TUBE!!!

Ahhh, the joys of spring.  Fresh dew filled air, green popping up with splashes of color all through nature.  The sun is shining again and we are finally seeing blue skies.   Usually,  this alone can lift one's spirits from the winter blues.  But sometimes others may need an extra boost.  Maybe lack of sleep is causing you to be moody.  Maybe the busy schedule and routines that we have are wearing us down, regardless of the beautiful spring weather.  I have felt this burden.  The burden of stress due to being too busy.  I may sometimes internalize it and feel it in my gut and chest.  Anxiety is not good for the spirit.  It is hard to enjoy the positive things in life if we do not make ourselves a priority sometimes.  It is important we take the time to stop and breathe in the fresh air.  It is so beneficial to take time at home to just be as well.   Even if it's only thirty minutes ...or just ten.  If we are going to have such a schedule in life, make this spring your first season to fit in some stress reduction time and make it a priority.   Make it a part of the daily routine. 
At home, my family has a growing interest in you tube.  My daughter makes videos, learns about science projects, has watched math lessons, and spends down time watching creative videos as well.  My son also has some zone out periods at home with you tube...watching trains and Lego videos just to name a couple.  I personally love relaxation music.  I find myself searching you tube for music to relax to in the evening.  Through this type of search I discovered online guided meditations.  Realistically, I can find the time in my busy schedule for this at home.  It helps with falling asleep or shutting down for a small time to be more present with myself with out having to leave home.  It's free.  It shows great example to my kids on how to take a minute and create a quiet space too...(because we all know it is hard to do that with kids running around at home).    But really, it can work.  I would like if you tried.  Believe me, I find myself pretty desperate these days to make this time fit in a schedule of work and activity and play.  But if I can do it, I have faith that you can too. 
Here are some you tube channels and names that I found that can maybe work for you.  I have used these meditations and relaxation music for a sleep aid at night, background relaxation music while working on something at home, or for bringing an anxious moment to a more calm way of being.  It has felt therapeutic and refreshing.  I hope you can benefit from this as well.  These are just a few options.  Taking the time to just search through these meditations finds one relaxation in itself.  Go ahead, give it a try. 
"Letting go: A guided meditation, the Magic Book, spoken word Guided Visualization, waterfall relax."    JASON STEPHENSON
"Surrender Meditation/ A Spoken guided Visualization (Letting Go of Control)"    JASON STEPHENSON
"Guided Meditation:  Deep Relaxation and Stress Release"   LINDA HALL
"Mindfulness Meditation: Guided Ten Minutes"      THE HONEST GUYS

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Angie Miller's picture

A Change of Pace

Sometime over this winter I began to have a harder time getting out of bed and starting my day early in the morning.  I felt sluggish and groggy.  My body felt stiff and even a little achy for the first hour or so. It happens every year, when the temperature drops and the daylight fades early, but with some outside stress, this year it was worse than usual.

I decided that I needed to create a morning routine to get me moving.  Something that would get my blood flowing, stimulate digestion, and set an uplifted tone for the day.  It would need to be quick and easy, or its likely I would not embrace it as a habit.  After a little thought and research I came up with these three components:

Hydration: After 8 hours of sleep the body becomes mildly dehydrated.  When I wake up sleepy I'm inclined to make coffee or tea my first consumed fluid, but what the body really needs is water.  Drinking it warm makes it more easily absorbable.  Add half a lemon and a couple slices of ginger and you get the benefit of digestive stimulation and a good dose of vitamin C to boot!

Meditation:  After enjoying my first cup of ginger lemon water, I sit in quiet meditation for just five minutes.  It's more of a contemplation.  This is where I set my intentions for the day and prioritize the chaotic to-do list cluttering my mind.  It always feels like I have a hundred things to accomplish every day, but once I've meditated, or contemplated, on what is most important, I no longer feel overwhelmed and I'm able to tackle more of that list!

Yoga:  Just 10-15 minutes each morning.  I created a little series that targets my tight and achy parts.  Sun salutations are also a great way to wake the body up.  If yoga is unfamiliar to you and you prefer the idea of stretching, we have a great little book called Trail Guide to the Body's Stretch and Strengthen at the center.
Pick out a few that address your tight and achy areas and repeat daily!


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