Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Is Pain Affecting Your Job Performance?

   The average employee misses several days of work each year because of the common cold; two or three more for personal or family emergencies; and a few extra "just because."

   With the exception of those seven or eight days, plus scheduled vacation time and holidays, the average employee spends his or her time engaged in blissful work productivity, right?

Well, not exactly. Just because you're at work doesn't necessarily mean you're being productive.

   In fact, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, U.S. employers lose more than $60 billion a year because workers aren't as productive as they could be.

   The culprit: pain.

Researchers tracked nearly 30,000 working adults over a two-week period to determine lost productive time attributable to common pain conditions, including arthritis, back pain, headaches, and other musculoskeletal discomfort.

   In terms of hours per worker per week, workers who experienced lost productive time from a pain condition lost an average of 4.6 hours.

   Some of the statistics relative to specific pain conditions were even more startling: Workers who suffered headaches averaged 3.5 lost productive hours per week; those who suffered arthritis or back pain averaged 5.2 lost hours per week.

  And for employers, this lost time translated into approximately $61.2 billion annually in lost productivity!

   Is pain affecting your job performance? If it is, chiropractic could be the solution to getting rid of your pain and getting the most out of your time at work. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Is Zoloft Giving You A Pain In The Neck?

Zoloft (sertraline) is a very commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medication and can be connected to neck pain in a number of ways.  Some patients taking Zoloft for anxiety disorders report developing headaches and odd pains in the head and front of the neck or throat. These symptoms may appear similar to some symptoms of panic attacks, including the closing up of the throat, lightheadedness and pressure in the head and neck. The irony is that a low dose of Zoloft ineffective for treating anxiety may still induce side-effects and, essentially, worsen some patients’ anxiety symptoms, whereas a higher dose could help with the anxiety but present more problems in terms of side-effects.

Zoloft may be causing your neck pain due to one of the potential side-effects of sertraline, namely involuntary jaw-clenching. The muscles in the jaw may freeze up, as may those in the neck, with patients having difficulties getting the muscles to relax even with massage and myofascial release. Tension in the jaw and the neck may then lead to neck pain and stiffness, along with headaches and referred pain in the arms and upper back.

The effects of this jaw-clenching can cause people with temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ) disorder to experience a worsening of their symptoms, including right-sided or left-sided jaw pain only. 

Those who are advised to continue taking Zoloft despite connected neck pain and jaw clenching may then decide to begin using a dental night guard or mouth guard so as to not wear away enamel on the teeth. Other medications and supplements, such as magnesium citrate and phosphatidylcholine may be able to relax the tense jaw and relieve associated neck pain. Unfortunately, some patients report experiencing chronic jaw and neck pain when taking Zoloft which persists even after stopping taking the drug. This may be partly due to the development of the habit of jaw clenching and tensing with hope that treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapy may address this issue.

If you are suffering from neck pain, headaches, or TMJ pain, whether you are taking Zoloft or not, our office specializes in treating these conditions.  Using chiropractic, acupuncture, and cold laser therapy, we help relieve your pain quickly and comfortably. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

6 Ways to Improve Your Concentration

With so many stimuli hitting us from different directions these days (often all at once), it's hard to stay focused. Whether it's struggling to concentrate on work during the day while being beset with questions from staff or trying to tune out the TV, the barking dog and screaming kids long enough to balance your checkbook at night, here are five tips that can help improve your ability to focus.

1.  Manage Your Stress. When you experience stress, your brain releases stress hormones, which can accumulate over time and affect your brain's ability to focus. Chronic stress can also lead to anxiety or even depression, which will interfere with memory and concentration. Anger, which is more likely during times of stress, can cause even more stress hormones to be released, compounding the problem.

2.  Get Enough Sleep. Lack of sleep, particularly long-term, has numerous negative consequences, not the least of which is reduced ability to focus. Anyone who's been sleep deprived understands how true this is. In an interview with CNN, Dr. Kathleen Nadeau explains that fatigue influences the production of brain chemicals, which can lead to symptoms such as forgetfulness and lack of concentration.

3.  Stay Active. Studies suggest people who exercise have better concentration and focus than people who forgo exercise. Who hasn't felt more focused and alert after taking a brisk walk? Stay active and you'll avoid the "stuck at your desk all day" syndrome that can keep you staring at the computer monitor, struggling to focus.

4.  Eat Healthy. Fruits and vegetables contain antioxidants, which provide vital nourishment to brain cells. Along with other heart-healthy foods, they also discourage the formation of cholesterol, which can eventually clog arteries and impede blood flow to the brain. Also remember to eat multiple small meals and snacks throughout the day; hunger affects blood sugar levels, which can inhibit your ability to focus.

5.  Train Your Mind. A busy mind is a healthy mind, better able to concentrate and focus. To keep your mind busy (not overwhelmed, mind you, but sharp), learn a new skill, do crossword puzzles or play board games that make you think, read consistently, or do any number of other mind-stimulating pursuits. This will also help build mental endurance, allowing you to maintain focus even when faced with multiple tasks.

6.  Get Adjusted! An improperly functioning nervous system can cause a whole host of problems. Not to mention squirming around in your desk chair because of back or neck pain is no way to focus on your work. Chiropractic adjustments ensure the nervous system is functioning properly and helps relieve those aches and pains! 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Still Smoking? Here Are Some Things You May Not Have Thought About.

You already know that quitting smoking has enormous health benefits. You would have to be from another planet to not know that and if you're reading this I'm going to assume you're from Earth.

Maybe there are some things you haven't thought about though. Certainly you've heard that smoking greatly increases your chance for heart attack, stroke, and lung cancer. But have you given consideration to what that really means?

Have you ever known anyone personally who's had a stroke? Have you seen how they live? Problems with paralysis, speech, walking, concentrating, and more. Have you thought about how different your life would be if one side of your body was paralyzed and you couldn't say what you wanted to say? Not to mention, with many stroke victims these are permanent effects, not temporary.

Have you thought about not being able to get on your computer? Some types of strokes can render your brain's ability to connect with your fingers on the keyboard useless. It's the same connection as inability to talk normally. It affects the same part of the brain that does writing and typing. You can't even write out a message.

What about other things you like to do? Well whether it's going to a kids' Little League game or college football game or a party or maybe just a walk in a park or on a beach, you may not be able to do it. You could find being extremely difficult or even impossible to do even simple things like walking into a restaurant.

And that's just a stroke. Ever known anyone that's had a mid to severe heart attack? It knocks them on their butts and with some it's permanent. A heart attack can cut off vital blood flows to various organs. If this happens for anything but a short amount of time, a heart attack victim can end up with permanent damage to their kidney, liver, and other organs. Not to mention that the heart itself is damaged and to what extent determines your future which may affect your energy levels, breathing, and much, much more.

We're human beings and that means we have a tendency to bury these types of cold hard facts in the far reaches of our minds. But every smoker has to face them at some time or another.

The big question is this: If you don't die early then are you prepared to live on with the consequences of your actions now? Are you ready to possibly live a life as described above?

As if those are not good enough reasons to stop smoking then also be sure to take these under consideration:

- Your blood pressure will drop within the first hour. Smokers typically have higher BP.
- In the same day your oxygen levels increase. This gives you more energy, increases blood flow, helps heart rate.
- Your chance of a heart attack starts to decrease within 2 days, how cool is that?
- In 3-4 days your bronchial tubes will ease and open up and you'll experience even more energy and vigor.

- In an average of 6 months your breathing problems will get better, you'll cough and wheeze less and your lung capacity will increase by 10-15%.
- In 12 months you'll have a 50% less chance of a heart attack
- Your chance of having a stroke drops to that of a non-smoker after 5 years
- Within 10 years your chance of lung cancer returns to a level of non-smokers have.
- Your chance of having a heart attack will return to what someone who doesn't smoke has after 15 years.

And we haven't even talked about the cost: If you smoke one pack a day at $5 a pack (more in many states/cities)  then you spend $150 a month. That's $1,800 a year! What could you do with an extra $1,800? And if you're a 2-person household of smokers then how much would an extra $3,600 a year help you?

No matter what method you use to quit smoking, just do it. And remember to not get discouraged. Statistically, people aren’t successful until their 2nd or 3rd try. Don't give up! If you slip, take note as to what happened. Learn from it. Address it. And then get back on your horse.

Monday, November 19, 2012

5 Ways to Get Better Sleep Tonight

It's one thing to fall asleep; it's another to stay asleep all night and even another to enjoy a full night of peaceful, restorative sleep that gives your body and mind an appropriate setting to repair, recharge and renew.

Too many Americans don't get enough sleep and when they do, it's often interrupted by constant tossing and turning. That's bad news from a health perspective, both in the short and long term. According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, "a lack of adequate sleep can affect judgment, mood, ability to learn and retain information, and may increase the risk of serious accidents and injury. In the long term, chronic sleep deprivation may lead to a host of health problems including obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and even early mortality [death]."

Suffice it to say that sleep is a big deal, which makes ensuring you get enough sleep of prime importance. Here are five ways you can get better sleep tonight and every night thereafter:

1. Wind down: Transition from your busy, hectic day at least an hour before bed so you're not up half the night. Stress and sleep are bad partners, to say the least, so your pre-sleep routine should emphasize calmness and relaxation. Take a bath or shower, listen to soft music or meditate – whatever it takes for you to leave your stress-filled day behind you (at least until morning).

2. Exercise early: Physical activity has plentiful health benefits, but if you work out before bed, it can make sleep difficult. On the other hand, exercising first thing in the morning will make sleeping at night easier because your body will be fatigued after a long day. Exercising right before bed can leave you amped up, sore and/or unable to settle in for a long, relaxing night's rest.

3. Shut the fridge: Put police tape around the fridge after dinner and you'll likely get better sleep because your inability to pursue late-night eating (cheating) will let your body relax and doze off. The premise is simple, if you think about it: The body is a factory, processing and burning food all day. If the factory doesn't close for the evening, it keeps on processing – and you stay awake while it does. Try eating a cheeseburger and fries an hour before bed; your eyes may feel sleepy, but your stomach will stay wide awake – and so will you.

4. Timing is everything: Ever heard of a circadian rhythm? As sleep goes, it's our body's internal "clock" and it runs on a 24-hour schedule. To maximize restorative sleep, regulate your internal clock by going to sleep and waking up at around the same time every night and morning, respectively. It might be difficult to go to sleep on a regular schedule because of various factors, but you can usually control when you wake up – it's just a matter of willing yourself out of bed.

5. Don't push it: One of the worst habits of chronically poor sleepers is the tendency to push it; to stay up longer than the body is willing. Sometimes that's unavoidable, but too often Americans spend hour after late-night hour glued to the television (or these days, the computer), fighting off sleep and suffering the consequences. When the body says rest, listen and go to bed. You'll be thankful you did.

If you‘re having difficulty sleeping because of stiffness or soreness, it may be time for a chiropractic adjustment.  Call our office at 303-463-0722 to set up an appointment today!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Have you bought your Halloween candy yet?

Did you buy the stuff that you love or the stuff that you know you won't eat?  If you're like many, of my patients, you buy the candy that you like because you know that between visits from trick or treaters you'll indulge in a few of the snacks.

This can be a disaster if you're trying to lose weight.

If you want to get candy that will do the least damage, stick to the choices that are lower in fat.

Tootsie Rolls, Starburst Fruit Chews, Dum Dum Pops, and York Peppermint Patties are among the better choices according to the American Council on Exercise.  None are that great... but hey, at least you're trying.

Worse choices include: Kit Kat Bars, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and Almond Joy Snack Sized Bars.  These chocolate treats tend to have more fat and more calories.  Which means, YOU ARE GOING TO GAIN SOME WEIGHT

Be Savvy and Practice Moderation

I know it's hard, but here me out.  If you are handing out candy, or if your kids come home with a candy cache that defies avoidance, keep portion control in mind. Remember that a single serving of most snack size bars is only one bar - not five.

Pick one or two items and set them aside to enjoy.  Then have healthier snacks available to munch on throughout the night.  Healthy SNACKS... get it.

You can also create a finger-food style dinner that you consume throughout the evening. Make diet-friendly protein foods like chicken skewers or sushi along with some cut veggies, hummus and fruit.  Enjoy your dinner while playing cards or doing some other activity that keeps your mind, and your fingers, OFF the candy.

P.S. Don't forget. We're not closing early for Halloween, we're having a party. Anyone you bring to the party, who's not already a patient gets some FREE GIFTS and a FREE EXAM by Dr. Frankenstein (which is me but don't tell anyone).

Monday, October 29, 2012

Chiropractic Can’t Do It All…

As people go through the process of chiropractic care, they start to feel better.  Pain levels decrease while energy levels increase.  They also start to become more immune to everyday aches, pains, and illnesses.  Still, no long-term healthcare plan can work without making adjustments to other aspects of your life aside from your spine.  The overall goal of chiropractic care is to help people lead better quality lives, and there are certain things you can do to complement your regular adjustments.

Regular Exercise

Working out is often the last thing on the minds of those suffering from chronic pain.  While it’s never good to push your body too far, and you should try and start an exercise program when you’re ready.  Regular running, biking, and strength training exercises complement chiropractic treatments by strengthening muscles and increasing the flexibility of ligaments and tendons.  Alternative exercises like yoga and tai chi are also beneficial for the spine, and are great complements to chiropractic care.

Better Eating

A part of being healthy is to nourish your body with all of the nutrients it needs to function.  Americans are too reliant on processed foods, which can be devoid of nutritional value and full of fat, sugar, salt, and toxins.  Too much of these foods can make you more susceptible to illnesses and can disrupt your body’s natural ability to heal itself. 

For your best bet, try to avoid pre-packaged or prepared foods.  If possible, eat organic foods whenever you can.  While they may be more expensive, they do tend to be more ‘nutrient dense’ and have fewer toxins.  If you are confused about a certain product, consider how many ingredients it has.  A product with more than three ingredients is usually indicative of a processed food.

Adequate Rest

Have you ever noticed that extreme stress and a lack of sleep make your neck and back ache?  As stress creeps up into your neck, your spine gets out of whack.  Also, a lack of sleep can cause you to slouch more, which places more pressure on your lower back.  Gaining adequate rest is crucial to the overall success of your chiropractic treatments.  Aim for at least seven hours of sleep per night, and take cat naps as often as you need to.

Stay Hydrated

Dehydration can lead to fatigue, over eating, and bloating.  If you have trouble remembering to drink enough water, try filling a large water bottle every morning and bring it with you to work or school.  With a container of water at your side, it’s easier and more convenient to drink.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Protect Your Back When Traveling

Frequent traveling for work or fun is becoming more and more common and the back pain that results from those trips is something I see in my office every week.  While some of us do it more than others, the aches and pains associated with traveling are the same.  Sitting in a car or airplane seat, especially without any lumbar support, compresses the discs between the vertebrae and stretches the small joints and muscles in the back, putting everything in the ’wrong’ position.  When traveling, the last thing you want is back pain interrupting your trip.  Fortunately, there are some things you can do to prevent back pain and ensure your trip is full of ’smooth sailing’.

Get Up and Move
Frequent movement is critical for prevention of pain.  When flying, a short walk up and down the aisle every hour creates motion in the spine and increases circulation in your legs.  This also helps prevent the risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis, or (DVT), an painful condition where a blood clot forms in a vein deep in the calf when blood thickens and clumps together. 

Long periods of sitting can also weaken the ‘core ‘ muscles that support the spine. Core weakness prevents optimal functioning of the hips and lower spine.  Here are very simple ways to engage your core while traveling.

Hands Over Head
Raise your hands over your head and press your palms together with light pressure for 5-seconds. You can do this while sitting or standing.  The reason this works? Whenever you out your hands over your head it forces your spine into extension (backwards bending). The abdominals function as anti-extension muscles. Your brain 'fires' the abdominal muscles to prevent too much extension.  Pressing the hands together at the end of the movement contracts the muscles further, waking up the upper back muscles that are tired from slouching.  Obviously, if you are driving, wait until you stop to perform this movement.

Mini-Reverse Lunge
People that sit for long periods of time can develop what’s called 'gluteal amnesia'.  Basically, after long periods of sitting, the ‘butt’ muscles forget what to do and when to do it.  When this happens, the muscles in the lower back have to take over, often resulting in lower back pain. 

To alleviate this, stand with both legs together. Take a slight step backwards while squeezing the buttock on the backwards leg. Hold position for a count of 6 and repeat 5 times per side. The action of stepping backwards fires the buttock muscles and the isometric contraction help sustain the movement.

Breathing is very important for core stability and neck strength.  Most people tend to inhale and exhale using too much of their chest and lungs as opposed to the diaphragm. The diaphragm is an inner core muscle that contributes to intra abdominal pressure and helps prevent back pain.  Breathing with the chest uses the anterior neck and upper shoulder muscles too much causing those muscles to fatigue.  To improve your belly breathing, put one hands on your chest and one on your abdomen. Take a deep breath in through your nose and make the bottom hands move before the top hand, inflating your abdomen like a balloon. If your chest hand moves first that means you are breathing with your chest too much. Breathe this way for 3 minutes.

Travel does not have to be stressful or painful.  Try these simple exercises and take care of your body while traveling and you can enjoy  transit… the trip can be painless.  And what better way to relax on vacation or arrive on business after travel, than stress free and pain free!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Study Finds Pharmaceutical Companies Push Doctors to Over Prescribe Drugs

Know anyone taking prescription drugs? The odds are you do and it's likely they are taking drugs they don't need.  Doctors are becoming more likely to prescribe drugs because of the influence of pharmaceutical company’s aggressive drug sales reps.

Consider these statistics: almost half of all Americans are currently diagnosed with a chronic condition and 40 percent of those older than 60 taking five or more medications. Is it really possible that many people in the U.S. have illnesses that need to be treated with multiple drugs?

This question obviously raises issues about the nature of the relationship between the expanding definition of chronic illness and the explosion of prescription drug use in the U.S. -- issues Michigan State University anthropologist Linda M. Hunt, PhD., decided to research.

Dr. Hunt looked into dramatic increases in the diagnosis of common, chronic conditions and the use of prescription drugs to treat these health woes . She specifically looked at two conditions which can often be relieved with lifestyle changes -- type 2 diabetes and hypertension -- that were treated in 44 primary care clinics.

Her research team interviewed 58 clinicians and 70 of their patients, and observed 107 clinical consultations in order to assess the doctors' treatment strategies and the factors influencing their treatment decisions. They found that doctors usually prescribed at least two or more drugs per condition.

More than half of the patients studied were taking five or more drugs. Interviews with these people showed the cost of the drugs was often a hardship and the patients were often made sicker because of adverse side-effects.

So why are so many people taking so many drugs? The new study, just published in The Annals of Internal Medicine, concludes more drugs are prescribed because the threshold for what constitutes an "illness" keeps getting lower and lower, thanks in large part to pharmaceutical company’s influence. For example, what was once normal blood pressure is now too high or, if approaching high, is called "pre-hypertension" and pharmaceutical companies recommend treatment. And instead of telling someone with high blood sugar to lose weight and exercise and eventually they could improve or normalize their condition, it's likely a doctor will emphasize that a person found to have type 2 diabetes will need to rely on medication for life.

Dr. Hunt points out in her study that physicians are caught up in an "auditing and reward system." That means doctors are rewarded by drug companies for prescribing more and more drugs. Perhaps most disturbing is what Hunt calls a "prescribing cascade." Simply put, drugs are prescribed to help relieve side effects caused by other drugs. Then still more drugs can be prescribed to relieve any new side-effects from the recently prescribed drugs.

To reverse and limit the influence of the Big Pharma on clinical practice, Dr. Hunt recommends the following:

* Policies are needed to exclude individuals or organizations with financial conflicts of interest  
         from involvement with clinical guideline-writing panels.
* Doctors should be discouraged from seeing drug representatives.
* Monitoring of doctor auditing and reward plans must be put in place to search for evidence of 

         unintended negative effects on patients.
Another study just published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), by Harvard researchers reveals another problem caused by pharmaceutical companies: business executives are unaware they could be wasting billions of their gross profits on ineffective, even harmful drugs in their health plans. They are also paying for treating the side-effects of these drugs.


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Women and Heart Disease

There are an estimated 42 million American women living with cardiovascular disease, but many don’t know the threat they face.  Approximately 250,000 women die from heart disease every year, making it the leading cause of death for women in the country.

As with men, the reasons women develop heart disease vary, but the most common risk factors include hypertension, smoking, obesity and lack of exercise. A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Women's Association examined these factors, and provided the following suggestions for lowering the risk of heart disease:

Maintain healthy blood pressure. Studies have found that women with high blood pressure have a 3- to 4-fold increased risk of CHD, but that even minor reductions in diastolic blood pressure can have a significant lower the risk of CHD. Among the best ways to reduce hypertension are lifestyle changes, such as increasing physical activity, reducing weight, and decreasing alcohol and salt intake.
Quit smoking. To help female smokers fight their addiction to cigarettes, the researchers recommended using nicotine replacement products, and adding agents such as buproprion to reduce cravings. They also stressed the role of the health practitioner in providing counsel and support.
Maintain a healthy weight. While there is no direct evidence that losing weight alone reduces the risk of CHD, weight loss does decrease blood pressure and may improve blood cholesterol levels, both of which are important factors for heart disease. As with smoking, the researchers noted that health care providers can affect their patients by providing information on diet and nutrition and encouraging them to adopt healthy eating habits.
Get consistent exercise. Dozens of studies have shown that a lack of exercise can increase the risk of a cardiovascular event, while regular exercise strengthens the heart and increases blood flow. Health care providers should encourage regular exercise as one of the best ways to lower the risk of CHD.

By living a healthy lifestyle, exercising regularly, eating a nutritious, well-balanced diet and avoiding (or stopping) smoking, women can significantly lower their risk of heart disease. Your doctor of chiropractic can create a lifestyle plan that incorporates elements of the above factors, and will help reduce your chances of suffering a cardiovascular event.  You can also help prevent heart attacks with regular chiropractic adjustments so call today and schedule an appointment with us!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

5 Ways To Help Prevent Food-Related Illnesses

      Even though the weather is beginning to cool, there’s plenty of outdoor grilling and picnicking to be done.  Whether it’s a barbecue in the backyard, the company picnic, or just toasting marshmallows around the camp fire.

     The hot temperature and casual attitude are not only ideal for humans but for microorganisms as well such as bacteria. These organisms also feast during the summer and are able to cause illnesses by contaminating the food.

     Here are 5 suggestions to ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable summer, free from food borne illnesses.  Remember, even though these types of illnesses are more common in the summer, these rules should be followed year round!

     1. Always clean your hands meticulously and completely for around 20 seconds, using warm water and soap, every time you handle food and go to the bathroom.

     2. Maintain the cleanliness of your surfaces and apparatus. This includes soaping up your countertops, utensils, cutting boards, kitchen equipment after handling them and before handling food.

    3. Handle individual foods independent of each other. Bacteria can go from one food to another via cross contamination. Avoid handling eggs, raw meat, and seafood all at the same time since this is prone to contamination. Each food type should have its own chopping board. Wash the surface immediately especially those in contact with raw food.

    4. Vegetables and fruits should be washed thoroughly under running water, making sure that the skin is clean using a vegetable brush. Bacteria can be transferred from the skin to the food when peeled or cut.

     5. Cook food thoroughly and completely to eradicate any bacteria present in it. Make use of a meat thermometer especially when grilling to ensure that the meat is thoroughly grilled.

     I hope you enjoy the rest of the summer and remember, an enjoyable summer is a healthy one. Stay safe!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Use A Tennis Ball To Relieve Your Back Pain

A tennis ball can be used as a massage device can help loosen knots in the neck and back and relieve tension and back pain.  A tennis ball can work so well that you may start to wonder why you spent so much on massages.

How does ‘tennis ball therapy’ work?  First off, you need a tennis ball – preferably a newer one that your dog hasn’t been using as a chew toy.  Put the ball on the floor and lie down on top of the ball, with it positioned underneath a tender spot in your back.  If this is too painful, try putting the tennis ball on your bed instead as this will reduce the pressure on your back when you lie down.  Try to relax (don’t hold your breath, breathing helps) and you will find that, after a few minutes, the pressure of the ball has lessened. You can then move the tennis ball to another tender spot in your back, if necessary, and repeat the process.

Using a tennis ball can be just like having someone apply pressure to the knots in your back, helping to relieve the spasm and improve the circulation to the area.  You can use this type of therapy on the muscles of the back, buttocks, and legs to help relieve sciatica or cramps in the hamstrings or calves.

If this form of therapy only provides temporary relief from your muscle spasms, you may need to schedule an appointment for a chiropractic adjustment.  If the joints of the spine are inflamed or irritated, the muscles over the top of the joint will spasm to act as a protective mechanism.  Only by addressing the underlying joint dysfunction will you get the muscles in the back to relax.

Monday, July 23, 2012

What's Causes Nighttime Leg Cramps?

Leg cramps at rest are very common, especially in older adults, but can be experienced at any age.  They frequently occur at night and while not life threatening, can be very painful, disruptive of sleep, and can recur throughout the night or many nights each week.  There are several possible reasons for leg cramps. Sometimes, such cramps are initiated by making a movement that shortens the muscle. An example is pointing the toe down while lying in bed, which shortens the calf muscle, a common site of muscle cramps.

Dehydration: Sports and other vigorous activities can cause excessive fluid loss from perspiration. This kind of dehydration increases the likelihood of true cramps. These cramps are more likely to occur in warm weather and can be an early sign of heat stroke. Chronic volume depletion of body fluids from diuretics (medicine that promote urination) and poor fluid intake may act similarly to predispose to cramps, especially in older people. Sodium depletion has also been associated with cramps. Loss of sodium, the most abundant chemical constituent of body fluids outside the cell, is usually a function of dehydration.

Body fluid shifts: True cramps also may be experienced in other conditions that feature an unusual distribution of body fluids. An example is cirrhosis of the liver, which leads to the accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity (ascites). Similarly, cramps are a relatively frequent complication of the rapid body fluid changes that occur during dialysis for kidney failure.

Low blood calcium, magnesium: Low blood levels of either calcium or magnesium directly increase the excitability of both the nerve endings and the muscles they stimulate. This may be a predisposing factor for the spontaneous true cramps experienced by many older adults, as well as for those that are commonly noted during pregnancy. Low levels of calcium and magnesium are common in pregnant women unless these minerals are supplemented in the diet. Cramps are seen in any circumstance that decreases the availability of calcium or magnesium in body fluids, such as taking diuretics, hyperventilation, excessive vomiting, inadequate calcium and/or magnesium in the diet, inadequate calcium absorption due to vitamin D deficiency, poor function of the parathyroid glands (tiny glands in the neck that regulate calcium balance), and other conditions.

Low potassium: Low potassium blood levels occasionally cause muscle cramps, although it is more common for low potassium to be associated with muscle weakness.

If you're suffering from cramping or pain in the legs during the day, the cause of your problem may be from pressure on the spinal nerves that exit from the lower spine.  Call (303) 463-0722 or book an appointment online today, and schedule an appointment to see if chiropractic can help relieve your leg cramps.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Are Your Kids Getting Fatter?

     According to the World Health Organization, more than 1 billion adults are overweight with 300 million of them being obese.  People have been getting fatter and fatter every year for the past 25 years and this increase is not limited to adults.

    The percentage of young people who are overweight has more than tripled since 1980. Among children and teens aged 6-19 years, 16 percent (over 9 million young people) are considered overweight.  Being overweight increases the risk for diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), coronary heart disease, stroke, and certain forms of cancer.  Type 2 diabetes also sets children up for shortened life spans and more health problems in their later years.

      The main culprits in the alarmingly fast growth of child obesity are without a doubt, fast foods.  Fast foods are loaded with what has become the new primary food groups - salt, fat, and sugar.  Too much of any 'one' of these ingredients can lead to problems, but with all three you're begging for trouble. 

You should also be wary of so called 'health foods' as foods advertised as 'low-fat' often compensate with ‘high sugar’ while foods low in sugar may be high in salt.  So what can you do?  Watch more closely what you and your children eat by choosing meals with more vegetables and unprocessed meats when you‘re at a restaurant and the grocery store.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Is Texting Ruining Your Child’s Posture?

Poor posture, especially Forward Head Posture (FHP) is much more than just not looking your best. Poor posture is an outward indicator that your body is out of balance.

Being out of postural alignment causes an increase in tension of the muscles in the upper back and neck, like the tension on a bow-string needed to launch the arrow. It also causes increased downward “compressive” forces that adversely affect the disks and joint surfaces in the neck.

Have you noticed your teenager suffering from more and more frequent neck pain and headaches?  It’s happening across the globe. The trend started just a generation ago with backpacks for school, then video games, increased computer use and it has culminated with the biggest stressors of them all, texting. An average 14-year-old will send and receive 11,000 text messages a month. Texting puts the head in 4.5” of forward head travel. That is a lot of stress, and unfortunately will cause the muscles in the back of the neck to stretch and the muscles in the front to shorten.  This can cause increased "wear and tear" on the joints of the neck and cause the muscles to become weak and inflexible.

Every school district in the country requires a scoliosis exam, but none of those look at FHP.  If your child is experiencing headaches or neck pain, FHP could be the cause and they can benefit greatly from Chiropractic.  Call today and schedule a free evaluation (303) 463-0722!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Truth Behind Chiropractic

Since beginning in 1895, chiropractic has grown into a reputable and well-respected form of healthcare. Yet, over the years quite a few “myths” have developed about chiropractic care. Below are five of the biggest myths and truths behind them. 

Chiropractors aren't "Real" doctors
Truth - Chiropractors are licensed Doctors of Chiropractic (DC) who have earned degrees from nationally accredited colleges and universities. Chiropractors receive as many or more hours of college instruction, especially in anatomy and physiology, than medical doctors and the average chiropractic student is in college for 9 years. Chiropractic students must also pass up to five different parts of the national board exam before obtaining a state license to practice chiropractic. 

Chiropractic is not a "legitimate" form of healthcare
Truth - Chiropractic is recognized by the National Institutes of Health and licensed in all 50 states as an effective form of healthcare. Researchers worldwide have published studies and reports on the numerous positive effects of chiropractic. It has helped provide relief for millions of people suffering from chronic and debilitating pain and dysfunction including celebrities, professional athletes, and military veterans. 

Chiropractic adjustments are "Dangerous"
Truth - Hundreds of clinical studies have proven chiropractic adjustments to be a safe and effective treatment for people of all ages. Chiropractic is an all-natural, holistic healthcare practice, which can help people avoid surgery and drugs. A chiropractic adjustment should only be provided by a licensed Doctor of Chiropractic and it is not safe for a lay person to try to provide a spinal adjustment. Proper adjustment techniques require the training and experience of a chiropractor. 

Chiropractic isn't covered by insurance
Truth - Chiropractic care is very affordable and much less costly than surgery and medications. Medicare and most insurance companies cover chiropractic visits because research has shown chiropractic to be an effective preventative and rehabilitative therapy in addition to very cost effective. Further, chiropractic can help many people avoid costly and invasive surgeries. 

Chiropractic only helps back pain
Truth - Chiropractors are trained to address the biomechanics of the spine and how it effects the nervous system of the body as a whole.  Although they regularly also treat patients for leg, back, hip, neck, and shoulder pain. Other conditions that respond well to chiropractic include headaches, fibromyalgia, arthritis, digestive disorders, fertility and many other ailments. In addition, chiropractors are advocates for healthy lifestyles and injury prevention. Thus, chiropractors regularly treat patients for general health and fitness to prevent injury before it occurs. Many athletes, both amateur and professional, see a chiropractor as part of their training regimen.

Chiropractic is an all-natural healthcare practice backed by scientific research and millions of personal testimonials. Our office provides initial consultations free of charge to determine if chiropractic can help your problem or condition and a chiropractic examination can help determine if there are any problems with your body's alignment, symmetry, range of motion, or mobility. The health benefits received from chiropractic care can lead to a greatly improved quality of life.  Call our office today, at (303) 463-0722, to set up an appointment to see if chiropractic can help you!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Is Sleeping Becoming a Pain In The Neck?

If you frequently wake up in the morning with neck pain or headaches, your pillow may be the reason.

Sleeping night after night on a flat pillow without any support can cause a lot of unnecessary pain.  Because of this, some people resort to using pain medications and sleep aids to get through the night. If you are forced to use pain medication or sleeping pills to get to sleep and are still uncomfortable throughout the day… a cervical pillow might be just the thing for you.

Cervical pillows help put the neck in a “neutral” position when you are laying in bed or sleeping. These pillows are designed to work whether you are a side or back sleeper. They provide support to maintain the natural curve of the neck while laying on your back and keep the cervical vertebrae in a straight line when laying on your side. Stomach sleeping is discouraged in general as it puts undue stress on the neck and lower back, leading to painful, uncomfortable mornings.

There are many types of cervical pillows advertised, using everything from rice to space age foams and even water filled ones.  We have several types of pillows to choose from at our office that vary in cost, design, and materials.  Stop in and we can help you find which one will work best for you.

Of course sleeping positions can also have an effect on the quality of sleep you get as well.  If possible, try to sleep on your back or side to prevent too much stress from being put on the lower back or neck.  If that doesn’t help and you still have neck pain, it may be time for a chiropractic adjustment!

Monday, May 7, 2012

I Have Spinal Stenosis, Now What!?

What causes spinal stenosis, or narrowing of the openings in the spine?  People can develop spinal stenosis due to traumatic injuries or congenital defects, but the most common cause is age-related degeneration.  If you have been diagnosed with spinal stenosis, some of the most effective conservative treatment methods available are chiropractic and stretching. In fact, depending on the cause of the narrowing within your spinal canal, stretching and exercise can do a great deal to help alleviate back or neck pain associated with spinal stenosis.  Of course, it’s important to always consult your chiropractor before beginning a new exercise or stretching regimen, especially if you suffer from the pain, tingling, numbness, and/or muscle weakness and spasms caused by spinal nerve compression.

The goal of any stretching and strengthening program is to strengthen the “core” muscles that support the torso while improving flexibility and reducing pressure in the spinal column. Here are some simple exercises you might want to try:

Knee to chest – Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat. Grasp one knee with both hands and pull it toward your chest as far as is comfortable. Repeat with the other knee, then both knees simultaneously.  This stretch can be very helpful when performed in the morning, before getting out of bed to start your day.

Plank - Lift up off your knees so that you are supported on your forearms and toes with a level back.  Almost like a modified push up position.  Keep your head in line with your body and spine in a neutral alignment, pull your navel in, bracing your abs tight.  Try to hold this position for as long as possible.

Side Plank - Lie on your right side, supporting your upper body on your right forearm, with your left arm at your left side. Lift your hips, keeping your body weight supported on the forearm and the side of the right foot.  Again, try to hold this position for as long as possible then switch sides and repeat.

Tips on Technique:
    - Keep breathing throughout the held contraction.  Don't hold your
    - Don't let your body sag in the middle. Lock in a solid position.
    - Gradually increase the hold time, up to 60 to 120 seconds.
    - Focus on bracing your abs as you hold the position.
    - Increase difficulty by placing your feet and/or arms on unstable
       objects like an exercise ball.

“Superman” - Lie on your stomach on an exercise ball (or the floor).  Raise your right arm and left leg as far as you comfortably can (or about 5-6 in. if you’re laying on the ground) and hold for 5 to 10 seconds.  Repeat with opposite arm and leg.  These will help strengthen the muscles of the upper and lower back.

There is a chance that stretching and strengthening alone won’t be enough to manage severe spinal stenosis symptoms. However, exercise and stretching in conjunction with other conservative treatments – Chiropractic adjustments, proper body mechanics, and others – will frequently help reduce your back and neck pain.

Monday, April 30, 2012

We've Made Some Big Changes!

In case you missed it, we’ve made some big changes at the Chiropractic Wellness Center.  First off, we’ve expanded our office hours!  We’ve added more evening and morning hours to help make it more convenient for you.  Our new hours are:

Monday: 8:00 am-12:00 pm & 3:00 pm-6:00 pm

Tuesday: 8:00 am-12:00 pm & 3:00 pm-6:00 pm

Wednesday: 8:00 am-12:00 pm & 3:00 pm-6:00 pm

Friday: 8:00 am-12:00 pm & 3:00 pm-5:00 pm

Also, we’ve taken on a massage therapy intern from Heritage College.  Greg McCole will be with us through June to complete his degree before becoming a Licensed Massage Therapist.  While we have him, we’ll be able to offer full body massages at great “student prices”.  Just $20 for a 30 Minute Full Body Massage, $30 for a 1 Hour Full Body Massage, and a package of four 1 Hour Massages is just $100!

And maybe best of all, through June we’ll be celebrating “Stress Free Fridays!”  All of our active (and inactive!) practice members can come in to the office on Fridays and get a FREE Chair Massage to make sure you start the weekend off right!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Better Brainpower

Recent research has shown that you can actually improve your I.Q by up to 20 points over four years. How can you do it? Here’s 12 easy ways to get started!

1. Play Words With Friends: Studies have shown that playing word puzzles can help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia.

2. Get Some Exercise: In one study, the thinking ability of subjects was tested and re-tested after running on a treadmill for thirty minutes. The follow-up tests showed an increase in the speed of decision making and an increase in the accuracy of the responses.

3. Learn A New Language: Mastering a second language gives your prefrontal cortex a workout. This can affect decision making and emotions.

4. Join A Knitting Circle: Grab those needles and get to work on a scarf for Grandma. Refining your motor skills can help improve cognitive ability.

5. Play Violent Videogames: Numerous studies have found that videogames can quicken reaction time, improve multitasking, and reduce hostile feelings after performing a stressful task.

6. Hydrate: There are a host of different reasons that you should drink more water and now add another one. Dehydration can force your brain to work harder and can reduce its planning ability.

7. Become An Expert: Master a task you really enjoy doing and your brain will perform more efficiently when you do it. This can then translate to your brains ability to do other tasks more efficiently as well.

8. Drink Coffee: Women who drank four cups of coffee a day were less likely to suffer from depression than women that drank just one cup a week. Other studies have shown that coffee can also bolster short term memory.

9. Zone Out: A group of studies suggest that “zoning out”. especially when you don’t realize you’re doing it, allows the brain to work on “big picture” thinking.

10. Time Yourself: Using a timer to limit your work to 25 minute “batches” followed by a short break helps to improve mental agility, making you more productive while you work.

11. Eat Some Yogurt: Pro-biotics can help your digestion and some studies on mice suggest that they are good for your brain too. The mice who ate them handled anxiety better and showed increased activity in sections of the brain handling emotions and memory.

12. Check Out the Denver Art Museum: Visiting a museum and viewing art has been shown to reduce stress, letting you focus more clearly on the things that really matter.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

7 Reasons Your Back Hurts… and What To Do About It.

1. You Smoke.
A recent study on smoking and low back pain examined 1,337 physicians who graduated from Johns Hopkins University and found that a history of smoking was associated with an increased incidence of lower back pain. The study concluded that development of lower back pain was possibly due to the damage that smoking does to the vascular structure of the joints and discs in the spine. They think it may also cause Cancer but I digress.

Solution: Quit smoking. It may not be easy but pretty much everyone in your life and every organ in your body will thank you.

2. You’re Lazy.
What do eating dinner, your job, and watching TV have in common? You’re sitting during pretty much all of them. Long hours of sitting results in weak and inflexible abdominal and spinal muscles, a.k.a. the core muscles. What’s wrong with that? Nothing, until you have to shovel the driveway, pull the skis off the roof rack, or try and kick a home run playing kegball.

Solution: Get off your butt. If you have a desk job, every 30 to 40 minutes get up and move. Even if it’s just getting up to stretch or walk around your desk, it will help. Exercising 3 to 4 times a week will strengthen the core muscles around your spine and reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease or diabetes. It also helps you avoid reason number 3.

3. You’re Fat.
The American Journal of Epidemiology found overweight people were more likely to suffer from both chronic lower back pain and flares of back pain more often than non-overweight people. Increased lower back pain may be aggravated even more by people with a “beer belly” due to the excess weight pulling the pelvis forward and causing increased strain on the lower back.

Solution: Again, pretty basic solution, lose some weight. If Atkins, the Paleo Diet, Weight Watchers, the South Beach Diet, and 50 million other eating plans have you confused, start with something simple: Burn more calories than you take in. This means eat less and move more. It may not turn you in to Mr. Olympia but it’s a start and that’s half the battle.

4. You Spend Too Much Time Behind The Wheel.
Vibration experienced during long hours driving trucks, buses, and heavy machinery can cause the muscles of the lower back to fatigue. That, combined with increased pressure on the discs of the spine from being in a seated position can cause the discs in the lower back to “creep” backwards, bulging toward the spinal cord and spinal nerve roots. If this goes on long enough, small cracks can form in the disc, weakening it and setting the stage for a “blown disc” (more commonly called a herniation).

Solution(s): If your job requires long hours of driving, make sure your vehicle has a high quality seat to dampen the vibration. Periodic breaks from sitting and driving can help prevent some problems. Also, just as importantly, after driving for long periods, walk around for a few minutes before loading or unloading your vehicle.

5. You’re Doing It Wrong.
It may not be a surprise but using poor body mechanics is one of the fastest ways to wreck your lower back. Lifting with the back and twisting causes torsion in the spine. This puts the structures of the spine in their weakest position and can easily lead to injury. Unfortunately, aside from work, swinging a golf club, softball bat, or tennis racquet also requires a lot of bending and twisting.

Solution: Bend with the knees, not with the back, and always keep your feet pointed in the direction you’re working (no twisting). Also, shot-gunning a beer before the game does not count as a warm up. Take the time to loosen up those tight muscles in the legs and lower back before you attempt to relive your “glory days”. And yes, you can use #5 as a reason to spring for those lessons with the club pro.

6. You Sleep on Your Stomach.
When lying on your stomach, your head and neck will turn to one side which isn‘t that bad, until you stay in that position for a few hours. Imagine moving your computer monitor 70 or 80 degrees to the right of your keyboard, now re-type the entire Penske file. How’s your neck feel? Lying on your stomach also increases the lordosis (forward curve) of the lower back, stressing the spine and causing that stiff and sore feeling you have when you get out of bed.

Solution: Train yourself to sleep on your side or back. Using a good quality cervical pillow and a pillow between your knees will help keep you from rolling on to your stomach. It may take some time to get in the habit of a new sleeping position but if you stick with it, your neck will thank you.

7. You‘re Out of Whack.
Being a chiropractor, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention spinal dysfunction (chiropractors call this a subluxation) as a common cause of back and neck pain. Spinal subluxations can result from a slip and fall, auto accidents, or even simply doing the same thing over and over again. When a vertebrae becomes subluxated, it becomes “locked” outside of its normal position. This causes inflammation of the joints and capsules associated with that vertebrae. When a joint become irritated or inflamed, the muscles around it will tighten to protect it from further injury. The muscle tightness and joint inflammation combine to cause pain and a loss of motion to that area. If these are severe enough, they can also irritate the nearby spinal nerves resulting in conditions like Sciatica or headaches.

Solution: Once again, a simple answer, go see a chiropractor and get adjusted. Chiropractors specialize in finding and adjusting the areas of the spine that aren’t working properly. Chiropractic adjustments are safe and typically result in a rapid improvement of your ache or pain.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

10 Reasons Parents Take Healthy Children To Chiropractors

Some adults may wonder why more and more people are taking their children to see chiropractors. That’s a good question and the answer is simple: whether we have a large, full grown spine or a little, growing one, if that spine is not functioning properly, our bodies won’t work the way they’re supposed to.

The second question then, would be “Why would a kids spine not work correctly?”

Spinal dysfunction (or vertebral subluxations) occurs as a part of normal daily life. Typical causes in children are from physical stressors like falls while learning to walk or off of playground equipment or collisions on the soccer field or basketball court. It is also important to keep in mind that the nervous system of a child isn’t fully developed until they’re in their late teens. That is why children can take a fall that would knock you or I senseless, and they pop back up and head off again. It’s not that they’re not injured, their body just isn’t good at telling the brain about it.

When soft tissue like joints, ligaments, and capsules are injured, they will heal whether you treat them or not. The problem is that an untreated soft tissue injury will heal like a scab on a cut, becoming thick and fibrotic, unable to bend and flex properly. These injuries are often the beginning of the “bad” knee, shoulder, or lower back that many people suffer from later in life.

Because the developing spine doesn’t send “pain” signals very well, children don’t frequently complain of back and neck pain. Instead, they suffer from things like colic or irritability, an inability to suckle and breastfeed, poor sleep, developmental delays, digestion issues, asthma, behavioral problems, low energy, inability to concentrate, headaches, etc – the list is endless. In fact, regardless of what the end result or symptom may be, all roads lead back to the nervous system – to the body’s ability to self-regulate and function at a peak level.

This leads to… 10 reasons parents take their kids to see a chiropractor:

1. To prevent spinal problems later in life.
2. To enhance their child’s overall health and wellbeing.
3. To strengthen the immune system and reduce the incidence of colds and ear-aches.
4. To help with colic and “Irritable Baby Syndrome“.
5. To help with asthma and allergies.
6. To improve spinal posture.
7. To improve their child’s ability to concentrate.
8. To assist with behavioral disorders and enhance emotional well-being.
9. To help alleviate digestive problems.
10. To assist with bed-wetting and sleep issues.

Please contact our office and schedule a FREE Consultation and Exam to see if your child could benefit from a Chiropractic adjustment.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Chiropractors Cause Strokes?!?

Opponents of Chiropractic have attempted a ‘smear’ campaign over the last several years by suggesting that chiropractic adjustments to the neck increased the risk of a certain type of stroke.

This campaign was never based upon scientific evidence but rather on ‘biased’ opinions.

A study was published in the medical scientific journal Spine on February 15, 2008 that puts those false accusations to rest and clearly shows that chiropractic does NOT increase the risks of these types of problems.

Spine is an international journal and recognized as one of the most prestigious publications on spinal health matters. In this study, researchers looked at 818 patients (the largest study of it’s kind, to date) with a specific kind of stroke that some suggested might be the result of neck manipulations. The difference in this study was that the researchers checked the prevalence of visits to chiropractors and to medical doctors related to this problem.

Dr. Frank Silver, one of the researchers and a professor of medicine at the University of Toronto noted that there was NO incidence of increased stroke for a visit to the chiropractor than for a visit to the medical doctor. He stated “We didn't see any increased association between chiropractic care and usual family physician care, and the stroke."

This scientific study shows that past assumptions attempting to relate chiropractic care with certain types of strokes were not due to the care, but rather to the fact that the people who went to chiropractors and medical doctors with certain types of problems were slightly more likely to suffer this type of problem anyway. Dr. Silver explained, "The association occurs because patients tend to seek care when they're having neck pain or headache, and sometimes they go to a chiropractor, sometimes they go to a physician. But we didn't see an increased likelihood of them having this type of stroke after seeing a chiropractor.”

Dr. David Cassidy, a senior scientist at the University Health Network and a professor of epidemiology at the University of Toronto, added these comments, “If someone says ‘Has it ever happened that a chiropractor has caused a stroke?' I can't say it's never happened. But if it's happening, it's not happening at a greater risk than when it is in a GP (General Practitioner, MD) office.”

If you are concerned that you may be having a stroke, look for these warning signs:

1. Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body.

2. Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.

3. Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.

4. Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.

5. Sudden, severe headache with no known cause.

If you are experiencing any of these complaints, call 911 immediately.

Monday, March 5, 2012

10 Reasons To See A Chiropractor

#10. You don't want to catch the latest “bug” going around the office.
Regular chiropractic adjustments may boost the body’s immune response. A study done by the Journal of Manipulative and Physiologic Therapeutics (JMPT) found that chiropractic adjustments increased levels of polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMN) and monocytes. These are the white blood cells associated with a healthy immune system.

#9. You want to avoid surgery.
An article published in the medical journal Spine reviewed records from 1,450 patients in the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation database that had suffered from back pain. Half of the patients had surgery to fuse two or more vertebrae in hopes of relieving their low back pain. The other half didn't have surgery, even though they had similar diagnoses. After two years, 26 percent of those who had surgery returned to work compared to 67 percent of patients who didn’t have surgery. Researchers also determined that there was a 41 percent increase in the use of painkillers in those who had surgery.

#8. You don't get enough sleep.
A 2005 study examined data on 221 patients under chiropractic care and found “one third of the 154 patients who completed the semi structured interview reported their sleep pattern was changed immediately after their chiropractic adjustment. All but one of these 52 patients reported improvement”. Of the 20 patients with insomnia, improved sleep was noted in the six days following the chiropractic adjustment.

#7. You've got a “case of the blues”.
Pain often makes it difficult to sleep, leading to fatigue and irritability during the day. This can affect a person's ability to work, interact with others, and even limit sexual activity (which is enough to give anyone the blues). Investigators followed 15 clinically depressed adults and had them complete a standard assessment for depression (the Beck Depression Inventory II) before and after receiving a chiropractic adjustment. Results revealed a marked reduction in depression scores following treatment, possibly due to chiropractic adjustment's ability to reduce pain and increase the quality of sleep.

#6. You're not as “sharp” as you used to be.
In a study involving 500 adult volunteers, researchers mapped brain function in the cortical portions of the brain before and after chiropractic adjustments of the cervical spine. They found that “cervical adjustments activate specific neurological pathways” in the brain, potentially stimulating cognitive function. Researchers in Zealand conducted a study involving 30 volunteers and used reaction time to various stimulation as a gauge. After chiropractic adjustments, the volunteers demonstrated improved cortical processing and response selection.

#5. You suffer from ADD/ADHD.
ADD/ADHD is the most commonly diagnosed behavioral disorder of children, affecting between 3 and 5% of school aged children. The symptoms fall into three groups: Lack of attention, Hyperactivity, and Impulsive behavior. Dr. Joel Alcantara, DC, MPH, performed a cohort study on children with ADD/ADHD and found a 53% reduction of symptoms (when reported by parents) and 45% reduction (when reported by teachers) following chiropractic care.

#4. You're Pregnant.
Chiropractic adjustments during pregnancy can help relieve and even prevent many of the common complaints of pregnancy. Dr. Bill Sears, Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine says:

“It is our personal theory that chiropractic attention in pregnancy not only helps avoid or relieve back pain, but also can affect your labor by helping your back and pelvic structures be better prepared to handle the stresses of labor and birth”.

#3. You suffer from headaches.
Researchers writing in JMPT examined the results of 21 controlled clinical trials and found chiropractic adjustments to be one of the most effective ways to reduce and relieve headaches. Researchers at Duke University found that chiropractic adjustments “resulted in almost immediate improvement for cervicogenic (originating from the neck) headaches and had significantly fewer side effects and longer-lasting relief of tension-type headache than a commonly-prescribed medication.”

#2. You want to save money.
A four-year study compared the experiences of 1.7 million patients in a California managed-care plan and discovered that the patients that received chiropractic care had lower total health care costs, fewer in-patient stays in hospitals, received fewer radiographs and MRIs, and had fewer surgeries.

#1. You're an athlete.
Exercise physiologist, Dr. Sean Atkins, estimates that “in excess of 90% of all world-class athletes use Chiropractic care to prevent injuries and to increase their performance potential.” Research has also shown immediate muscle strength gains in... arm muscles, back muscles, and knee extensor muscles following Chiropractic adjustments.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Feeling Stressed? Take a Hike!

Everyone knows that exercise is a great way to lose weight but it’s also a great way to relieve stress and depression! Studies have shown that exercise can relieve stress as effectively as some medications.

Mild forms of exercise for just 20 minutes a day helps reduce our stress levels in many different ways:

Endorphin Release: Exercise causes our bodies to release Endorphins, which are the bodies natural “Attitude Adjusters”. They help relieve pain and elevate our mood, making it easier to deal with the ups and downs of a stressful day.

Improved Sleep: Increased physical activity can help you get to sleep faster and deeper. Studies also show that sleep deprivation causes a lowered pain threshold and a increase in feelings of depression. Neither of which are good when you’re stressed.

Cardiovascular Benefits: The heart is a muscle and just like every other muscle in our bodies, it gets stronger with exercise. A healthy heart reduces the risk of stress related conditions like strokes, hypertension, and congestive heart failure.

Emotional Release: Physical activity is a great outlet to release pent up anger, stress, and negative feelings.

Relieve Tight Muscles: Exercise can help reduce tightness in the muscles of the neck and back which can also cause headaches and back pain.

Everything from a brisk walk to stretching can be considered physical activity so don’t worry if you can’t go out and run a 10k just yet. Another great way to relieve stress and the aches and pains that go with it is to see your chiropractor and get an adjustment!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

3 Day “New Year’s” Detox Program

This month we are offering a special 3 Day “Detox” Program that includes a complete 3 day eating plan, supplements, and 2 ionic foot bath sessions… for only $40.

If holiday celebrations left you feeling fat, achy, and lethargic, you’re not alone. Millions of Americans are in the same swollen boat. Well, there’s good news! During the month of January, we are offering a special 3 Day “New Year’s” Detox Program. This 3-day detox will help blast away bloat, boost energy, burn fat, and ensure you regain your mojo in just 72 short hours.

Our 3 Day Detox Package includes:

3 Day Detox Diet Plan that uses REAL food.
This complete 3 day diet plan uses real food to help cleanse your body, stimulate your metabolism and kick start your holiday weight loss.

2 Ioncleanse Detox Foot Baths.
The ionic foot spa helps stimulate the body's own natural detoxification systems and create a positive cellular environment that will assist the body in detoxifying naturally.

3 Days of Nutritional Supplements.
These whole food supplements will help boost your energy and replace valuable nutrients.

Why Detox?

The human body is constantly being exposed to harmful substances. Since the start of the 20th century, 80,000 new chemicals have been introduced into our environment and as of 2007, less than 300 of them had been tested by the Department of Public Health and Safety. We come in contact with these substances in the food we eat, air we breathe, and the water we drink, not to mention the lotions, perfumes, and soaps we use.

Fortunately our bodies have the natural ability to detoxify themselves. Using the lymphatic, respiratory, urinary, gastrointestinal systems and even the skin, our bodies are constantly working to rid themselves of toxins. When the body can not rid itself of these toxins fast enough it becomes overloaded and stores them. This is when the problems begin. Toxins are stored in fat as well as in bone and organs. It may take a relatively short amount of time to several years for people to notice the effects of these stored toxins. The symptoms often manifest themselves in many different ways and appear to be unrelated. Treatment of these symptoms with prescription medication may relieve the complaint but will just add to the body’s toxic load.

To add to our exposure to harmful substances, our bodies are also weakened by excessive physical and emotional stress. Studies on stress show that it not only causes mental exhaustion but actually has physical effects as well, like pain, weakness, and physical exhaustion.

In addition to the 3 Day “New Year’s” Detox Program, here are some other helpful hints:

Limit your intake of dietary toxins- Foods high in sugar, refined flour, caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol add to our bodies “toxic load”.

Increase your intake of nutritional whole foods- Start by replacing snack foods with fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Cooking at home is also a great way to reduce the amounts of processed foods you eat.

Minimize the presence of allergens- Allergens can stress the gut and immune system and compromise their functions. By limiting the amount of ingested allergens, the intestinal tract has a chance to repair and heal and to be in optimal condition for processing waste and undesirable or harmful compounds.

Improve your digestion- Properly chewing your food, consuming enough dietary fiber, and taking a Probiotic supplement will help improve digestion and reduce gastrointestinal problems.

Reduce your exposure to potentially hazardous substances- Read the labels on household cleaning supplies. Often times there are special instructions on properly using and disposing of these items.

Drink more water- Start by replacing the soft drinks and juices you already drink with water. Using a water purification system (Reverse Osmosis systems are considered the best) will provide a great source of pure water and in the long run, can be much less expensive than bottled water.

Reduce stress and increase stress relieving activities- Yoga, meditation, and various forms of exercise all help relieve the daily stresses we experience.

If you want to get 2012 off to a great start, contact our office and pick up your 3 Day “New Year’s” Detox Program today!