The American Academy of Family Physicians recommends the use of mind-body therapies, in combination with each other or alone, to reduce symptoms of migraine, tension and mixed-type headaches, according to a research review published in the journal American Family Physician (2007; 76 [10]; 1518-22, 1523-24). Authors of the review defined mind-body medicine as focusing on “interactions among the brain, mind, body and behaviors, and on the ways in which emotional, mental, social, spiritual and behavioral factors can affect health.” Common mind-body therapies include biofeedback, cognitive behavior therapy, guided imagery, hypnosis, meditation, psycho-educational approaches and relaxation training.

The investigators conducted a meta-analysis of hundreds of randomized, controlled, clinical trials that included studies of adults, adolescents and children suffering from a variety of headache types. Investigators noted, among other findings, that relaxation training, biofeedback, stress management training and cognitive behavior therapy, in combination or alone, reduced migraine symptoms in adults by 32%-49% compared with those who received no treatment. For children and adolescent sufferers of chronic headaches, biofeedback, relaxation training and cognitive behavior therapy reduced the severity and frequency of headaches by more than 50%.

Side effects from mind-body treatments generally are minimal, especially compared with the potential adverse reactions to drug therapy. Some patients, however, are fearful of mind-body therapies, and others experience intrusive thoughts or distressing sensory reactions, such as chest pain. The authors of this review recommend that provider and patient maintain a good clinical relationship when initiating and continuing these therapies.

This research underscores the importance of staying current with educational advancements in the field. The more you refine your expertise, the better able you are to help others connect with wellness on multiple levels. Make the Inner IDEA Conference 2008® an integral part of your strategy. Located in Palm Springs, California, September 11-14, 2008, this invitation to transformation will be rich in program diversity, offering you the opportunity to explore many different types of education alternatives. The 2008 conference brochure and schedule is now available online. Register now [link], as space is limited.

With more than 150 diverse and creative program topics to select from, the opportunities for self-exploration and discovery will be endless. Some topics offer deep inner focus, with programs such as yoga, meditation, Pilates and Gyrotonic® exercises. Other programs offer new ways to become highly interactive, offering skills such as coaching and learning enhancement. Download the 2008 conference brochure (PDF).

The ambiance at Inner IDEA is very calm, balanced and focused, with a strong sense of community and oneness; there is no sense of separation; but, instead, a sense of belonging and connection.

This year’s highlights include:

  • Opening ceremony with keynote presenter Patrick Gentempo and a meditation with Swami Veda Bharati.
  • A faculty of world-renowned presenters dedicated to the principles and practices of holistic wellness.
  • Presentation of the second Inner IDEA Inspiration Award, this year honoring the community outreach efforts of Silver Age Yoga in San Diego, California.
  • Community events that include the welcome reception to meet old and new friends, the opening ceremony to inspire your experience, five unique meal experiences that emphasize conscious eating and community connection, special Friday evening moonlight sessions, and closure at Sunday’s final session.