You guys. My class I took last weekend. Intro to pain management and scar therapy using the Dolphin MPS.
Yes, that’s a mouthful, but let me try and break it down for you because even I had trouble understanding exactly what I was getting myself into when I signed up for the class, but here we go.
The Dolphin MPS is kind of acupuncture but kind of not. It’s kind of a TENS unit but it’s kind of not. First off, let’s chat about your autonomic nervous system, pain management and your health. The two main branches of your ANS are your parasympathetic (rest and digest, healing, calming, you’re chilling out with a glass of wine and your favorite book) and sympathetic (fight or flight, stress, a bear is chasing you or you’re about to give a huge presentation in front of 1000 people). Unfortunately, most of the general population spends too much time in sympathetic and usually have a very hard time stepping into parasympathetic mode. Have you ever been in bed trying to fall asleep, your body is tired, but your mind is racing? That’s your sympathetic nervous system being a pain in the butt. Your blood pressure may be higher than normal, your breathing may be shallow and rapid, and you just want to calm the eff down, am I right?
Let me tell you about the experience I had last night with my friend who, when she got home from work, she rated her stress level as a 9. (out of 10, so not good!). After she went out and had a couple of beers she was down to a 7, and a while later she was still hanging out at 7 and in full on sympathetic mode, and it was 9:30pm, time to down regulate! So I sat her down and worked some of the parasympathetic points on her hands and feet. Literally 5 points and under 10 minutes and she sat back and said she was down to a 2 with her stress. She looked visibly calmer (and it wasn’t the beers talking, she drank those hours ago). When I checked in with her the next morning she said that she slept like a rock (and I did too because I treated my own points and I felt like I had drank half a bottle of wine!).
And let’s talk about scars for a moment. The photo below is me, and that scar is 3 years old. The top photo was before any treatment, middle is immediately after and the bottom was 48 hours after my treatment. I will still need to do a couple of treatments on it, but a typical scar will need 1-5 treatment sessions (of course everyone is different). And I know, the bottom photo doesn’t match up entirely, and I am a stickler for matching photos, but I also don’t believe in BS’ing people and there really is something to this work!
So how, exactly, does the Dolphin MPS Neurostim work for pain management?
Microcurrent Point Stimulation (MPS) Therapy is the world’s first integrative therapy developed exclusively to sympathetically DE-Regulate the ANS (autonomic nervous system) and fight chronic pain. The theoretical underpinnings of MPS Therapy are based on combining the “therapeutic pearls” of acupuncture, osteopathy, integrative dentistry, neural therapy with modern neurology and microcurrent.
You may be wondering what exactly microcurrent is, and how the Dolphin MPS is different than a TENS unit that you can buy over the counter. Well, the Dolphin uses DC (direct current) electro frequency and reduces sympathetic stress by about 36%, increases vagal tone by 54% and heart rate variability (how quickly you ‘bounce back’) by 39%. While a TENS unit actually INCREASES your sympathetic stress (which remember, we have enough of already so we don’t need more) by 4%, REDUCES your vagal tone by 31% and reduces your HRV by 39%.
Confused? Me too, so let’s make it easier to understand:
Sympathetic stress is bad, parasympathetic is good. Stress causes pain, and your parasympathetic system can help with pain management.
Your vagus nerve is a fundamental component of your parasympathetic nervous system, so we want to INCREASE that vagal tone because it will INCREASE your parasympathetic nervous system.
Your HRV (heart rate variability) is a measure that indicates the time between heart beats. Say you’re sitting, minding your own business and your resting heart rate is 60bpm, and all of the sudden, there’s that damn bear again racing toward you, so you jump up, and your heart rate should jump up with it. And your HRV is governed by your autonomic nervous system. So you want the whole variability thing, right?
And also, working with the acupuncture points with the Dolphin, we are affecting change throughout the entire body. But nothing is being punctured, so if you have a fear of needles, fear not. The unit is more like a retractable ball point pen and while it might feel a little tender in some spots, that’s a good indication that it needs to be worked on. And I think I know why they call it the Dolphin-because it emits this high pitched frequency, and I feel like that’s what it would sound like if an actual dolphin was swimming around. The frequency changes as it gets closer to the acupuncture points and the unit acts as a little metal detector for your meridian lines (which ironically acupuncture points and trigger points are very similar!)
So to end this chapter, let me just say this: everyone needs more parasympathetic regulation in their life and I am very excited to bring the Dolphin MPS therapy to my practice at Michigan Massage and Wellness to help with pain management, scar tissues, neck pain, back pain, trauma and more.
In Good Hands,
Rebecca Tamm, LMT