Dena Foran LMT: Total Health Systems of Macomb County Massage Therapy Department Head
In the early 70’s, the summer I was 12, while riding my bike, I was hit by a car. I flew up in the air so high almost hit the traffic lights above. I was knocked unconscious and came to in the hospital. I ended up with abrasions behind and on my left ear and on my left shoulder, bruises everywhere, and a badly sprained ankle. I don’t exactly remember how many days I laid in my bed recovering, but I do remember the muscle spasms and screaming in pain. When I attempted to get out of bed I felt sick and had to be put back down. Within 2 weeks I was up hopping on one foot playing baseball. I was not prescribed any kind of physical therapy and was not diagnosed with a closed head injury or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
Back in school in the fall, I was not able to comprehend what I was being taught, struggling with my grades. Looking back now, a missed diagnosis of brain injury may have been the culprit. Just before high school, I started drinking and experimenting with drugs. This chosen path was full of headaches, heartache, turmoil and complete insanity.
At 16 I stopped going to school and started having children. I managed to obtain My G.E.D and my driver’s license, working in the service industry at restaurants and bars. I also started working out in a fitness center to relieve stress and heard it helped you feel better.
When I was 29, I enrolled in classes at a technical training school for medical assistant, obtaining a Pell Grant to pay for the training. While sitting on my couch reading through the class curriculum, I said to myself, “I don’t want to do this, I want to do massage“. I grabbed the phone book and tried to find massage schools, coming across one listing. I called to inquire about classes and training, the woman that answered replied “come on in and we’ll teach you what you need to know in a half hour”. I told her no thanks. When I mentioned my idea of massage to a friend, the next day she called me at work to tell me the chiropractor we both knew went to class with a woman that taught massage.
So, in March of 1989, I started classes at the Muscle Therapy Center in Southfield. While in class, along with anatomy, physiology, hydrotherapy, therapeutic Swedish massage techniques, and theory and practice of massage hygiene, I learned of the mind, body, spirit connection. At the same time, outside of class, I started a 12 step program and became sober and later the same year I graduated and was certified a massage therapist.
In 1992 I started working as a massage therapist for a chiropractor. I had only been to one chiropractor in my life. I had neck and severe arm pain a couple of years prior, the chiropractor took an x-ray and adjusted me and the pain vanished…I was amazed. At the chiropractic clinic, I did my own marketing, placed flyers everywhere I could, and started a clientele, The clinic was sold a couple of times, and then, purchased in 1995 by Total Health Systems of Macomb County, I kind of came along with the building.
When Total Health Systems of Macomb County came in they brought a chiropractor, a Medical physician, and a physical therapist. This began my exposure to a multi-disciplinary healthcare concept. Our office truly is unique with all the services we offer, to get you out of pain, fix what’s going on and utilize preventative healthcare services for your optimal health and well being. I’ve been with the company for 16 years, and truly believe in this concept for overall physical, mental, and spiritual well-being.