Newsletter Archives > ChiroPlanet.com Monthly Health Newsletter: February 2010 Health Newsletter

February 2010 Health Newsletter


Current Articles

» Is Visiting The Chiropractor Better For Your Immune System Than A Flu Shot?
» Benefits of Cold Laser Therapy
» Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
» Foot-Body Connection
» Headaches & Migraines
» Indiana Colts Dwight Freeney Using Chiropractic To Heal Ankle
» Patients in Medicare Demonstration Project Give Chiropractors High Marks
» Chiropractors Get Involved with Haiti Relief Mission
» Green Tea Assists Mood In Elderly

Is Visiting The Chiropractor Better For Your Immune System Than A Flu Shot?

 

Is Visiting The Chiropractor Better For Your Immune System Than A Flu Shot?

 

With all the news today about the flu and especially the Swine Flu, people everywhere are wondering whether to get a flu shot or not.  They wonder if they have other options to help prevent them from losing work or being out of commission from sports or child care this winter.  Has anyone considered chiropractic care as a preventative method?

 

When we are sick our immune system goes to work to fight off the offending virus or bacteria.  It also works to prevent us from getting sick in the first place.  Statistics show that those who receive chiropractic adjustment at least once a week kick their immune system into overdrive.  It can increase the function of their immune system by up to 400%. 

 

Chiropractic adjustments remove irritation in the nerves which are the pathway of information from our brain to our body.  If the pathway gets blocked or congested, the flow of information is slowed down or interrupted.  Symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, back pain, neck pain and more result from impaired nerve function.  When the doctor adjusts the body, he removed the irritation and restores the flow of information resulting in symptoms diminishing or disappearing entirely. 

 

While most people who visit the chiropractor do so in a reactive way as a result of an injury, headaches, and unexplained back pain, leg pain or neck pain.  What people do not realize is that aside from a known injury that caused the pain, other pains can often be caused by irritations that come from stress, viruses, bacteria and a variety of other causes.  A good way to be proactive is to visit a chiropractor during the winter months.

 

Frequent adjustments will keep the pathway clear and nerves in optimal health.  This increases the immune function and wards off any threatening bacteria or virus.  While you won't really know if it worked, you would get the same result with a flu shot.  Do you really know if the reason you didn't get the flu was because of the shot or because you wouldn't have gotten it anyway.  Same with the preventative measures taken with adjustments.  Will you know for sure if it prevented the flu?

 

Chances are if you work at an office, ride the train, are around children, or really anywhere out in public this winter and if you come out the other side this spring without having caught the flu or any bad colds, you can chalk it up to your adjustments.  In contrast to the flu shot, that can actually make you feel sick the day you get the shot, adjustments do not put anything foreign into your body and is also beneficial for more than just the flu. 

 

 

 

 

Author: Dr. George
Source: Catchfire Coaching
Copyright: 2010 2010


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Benefits of Cold Laser Therapy

 

Cold Laser Therapy – Painless Acupuncture

 

Want to try acupuncture but are afraid of the needles? If so then Cold Laser Therapy might be a more viable option for you than going the traditional route.

 

Cold laser therapy is also known as photobiomodulation or laser biostimulation. The theory behind it is that exposure to low level laser light can help stimulate the flow of blood, healing and tissue growth.

 

The term "cold laser" refers to the use of low-intensity or low levels of laser light to heal tissue. Proponents claim that cold laser therapy can reduce pain and inflammation for just about any condition. These lasers are used directly on or over the affected area.

 

Cold lasers are also sometimes used for acupuncture, with laser beams substituting for the pinprick. This treatment regimen appeals to those who want acupuncture but who fear the pain of needles.

 

Cold lasers can treat a variety of conditions including --

 

  • Back pain from an old or new sports injury or accident
  • Repetitive strain injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Lower back pain
  • Migraine headaches
  • Addiction to painkillers (as the cold laser treatment can bring relief from pain and spare the need for them)
  • Skin ulcers and bed sores
  • Acne
  • Scarring form a recent surgery
  • Cold sores due to herpes simplex

 

Cold laser therapy can also help smokers quit smoking. The laser can be directed over acupuncture points that simulate the effects of nicotine in the brain. This can help balance the body to relieve addiction.

 

Cold laser therapy is by no means a new or alternative therapy especially in Europe where they have been used for a long time.

 

First of all cold lasers should not be confused with conventional hot lasers which are also used in medicine. In general High power lasers are used to cut through tissue and shrink tumors on the skin or in internal organs. They are also used to remove tumors or cancerous tissue.

 

Low-level lasers, on the other hand, are used to stimulate tissue repair through a process of bio-stimulation. The shining of the laser on the skin injures it minimally and speeds blood flow to the area thus facilitating healing.

Laser biostimulation was first discovered quite by accident by a Hungarian Endre Mester at the Semmelweis University in Budapest. Mester was conducting an experiment to find out if exposure to laser light could cause cancer.

 

Mestar shaved mice and divided them into two groups. He gave one a group a treatment with a lower level ruby laser. Neither group of mice developed cancer but the shaved hair grow back quicker on the treated group rather than the untreated group. This is was the birth of the discovery of how exposure to low level lasers, also known as cold lasers could stimulate growth.

 

Since that Mester's surprising discovery about mice, cold lasers have been used to treat all kinds of chronic pain and injuries. They have also proven to be successful when it comes to speeding up the healing of wounds and nerves.

 

However the area where cold laser therapy shows it's greatest promise is in the treatment of inflammation where the irradiation from the low dose laser helps speed blood to the affected area.

 

In fact cold laser therapy is thought to be so effective for inflamed joints and muscles that the results are comparable to the pain relief experienced when one takes a NSAIDS. Of course the benefit is that cold laser therapy does not bring with it the stomach upset and ulcers that can be the side effect of taking anti-inflammatories.

 

The positive physiological effects of cold laser therapy include –

 

  • Improved metabolism
  • Increase of cell metabolism
  • Improved blood circulation
  • Pain relief
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Stimulation of wound healing

 

In Europe cold laser treatment has been used for quite a long time to treat sore muscles, joints and chronic pain of all kinds. The laser that has been in use since 1975 in Europe is called the HeNe laser.

 

HeNE is short for "visible red light" This laser, which sets the standard for the visible red light lasers used in cold laser therapy has a 632.8 nm with a continuous non polarized light. This type of cold laser is also a gas laser and therefore expensive to operate as it is powered with a high voltage. Still it is one of the most commonly used of lasers in physician's offices, as they are inexpensive and been in use for so long that many of them are second hand.

 

There is also a cold laser that is more specifically designed to be used with muscle and joint problems that are associated with problems such as the shoulders, back spine and other joints. It also helps with problems such as trsimus, lymph edema and whiplash. This is called the GaAs-laser . It is a very powerful invisible infrared laser.

 

For deep lying problems the GaAs laser is penetrating best (because of its high peak power) and for problems in skin and mucosa the HeNe laser is the most effective one (due to the high degree of coherency). The 808 or 890 nm lasers are more all-round types and often battery powered. There are single- or multi probes.

 

Cold laser therapy is a very gentle and effective therapy that is also considered to be quite safe. However both the operator of= the laser and patient should wear appropriate protection for the eyes (dense filter spectacles) in case of accidental or reflected exposure, and the laser beam should never be directed at the eyes. This is especially true if the clinician is using one of the older red light visible type cold lasers.

 

So does cold laser therapy work?

 

In a compendium of studies reported in the October 7, 1994 of Dynamic Chiropriactics D.C. James White and Kendra Kaesbery White discuss several studies in an article.

 

These two chiropractors mention many studies in this article that touts the benefits of using cold laser therapy. One study involved the use of cold laser therapy treatments over 4,000 subjects who had suffered from conditions such as degenerative arthritis; muscle pain; tendonitis and tension myalgia. Researchers found that at the end of the research period more than 80 percent of the subjects found a marked lessening of their symptoms following irradiation with a cold laser.

 

Another study discussed in this article involved over 100 subjects and over 500 laser treatments. It was observed that acute soft tissue pain syndromes showed a dramatic response following the initial laser treatment with a marked reduction in tissue swelling, bruising and a substantial increase in pain relief.

 

Yet another study conducted in Northern Ireland found that cold laser treatment was effective for the treatment of myofascial and postoperative pain syndromes; rheumatoid arthritis; muscle tears; hematomas; tendinitis; shingles; herpes simplex; scarring; burn and would healing.

 

In the same study from Ireland, cold laser treatment was compared with four other modalities (interferential therapy, shortwave diathermy, ultrasound, and pulsed electromagnetic therapy), for use in pain relief and wound healing and came out first in terms of effectiveness.

 

The benefits of cold laser therapy are –

 

  • No need to take painkillers
  • Rapid relief in some cases
  • Spares the need for invasive surgery
  • Stimulates the immune system
  • Increases the blood supply in the affected area
  • Is an option for those who want acupuncture but fear needles?
  • Develops collagen and nerve tissue
  • Promotes wound healing

 

Low-level therapy uses cold (subthermal) laser light energy to direct bio-stimulative light energy to the body's cells without injuring or damaging them in any way.

 

The conclusion – cold laser therapy is precise and accurate; and offers safe and effective treatment for a wide variety of conditions.

To learn how they can help you call 817-358-3552, or e-mail info@mainstreetchiro.net

Author: Dr. George
Source: Catchfire Co. Inc.
Copyright: Dr. George 2009


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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

 

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

Carpal tunnel syndrome is compression of the median nerve at the wrist, which may result in numbness, tingling, weakness, or muscle damage in the hand and fingers.

  • Numbness or tingling in the thumb and next two or three fingers of one or both hands
  • Numbness or tingling of the palm of the hand
  • Pain extending to the elbow
  • Pain in wrist or hand in one or both hands
  • Problems with fine finger movements (coordination) in one or both hands
  • Wasting away of the muscle under the thumb (in advanced or long-term cases)
  • Weak grip or difficulty carrying bags (a common complaint)
  • Weakness in one or both hands

Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by pressure on the median nerve at the point where it passes through the wrist. The median nerve supplies sensation to the thumb side of the palm, and to the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and the thumb side of the ring finger. It also helps with movement to part of the hand.

The area where the nerve enters the hand is called the carpal tunnel. Since the passageway is stiff, any swelling in this area can put pressure on the nerve. This may also be called entrapment of the nerve.

Injury to the wrist area can cause swelling of the tissues and carpal tunnel syndrome. This type of injury may be caused by sports such as racquetball and handball, or occur during sewing, typing, driving, assembly-line work, painting, writing, use of tools (especially hand tools or tools that vibrate), or similar activities.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is common in people who perform repetitive motions of the hand and wrist, such as typing. The condition occurs most often in people 30 to 60 years old, and is more common in women than men.

Some people go this route: BUT THIS SHOULD BE A LAST RESORT!!!!

MEDICATIONS

Medications used in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen or naproxen. Corticosteroid injections, given into the carpal tunnel area, may provide relief of symptoms.

SURGERY - LAST RESORT!!!!

Carpal tunnel release is a surgical procedure that cuts into the ligament that is pressing on the nerve. Surgery is successful most of the time, but depends on severity and duration of nerve compression.

After surgery, the damaged nerve must heal for the symptoms to improve. This can take months. In severe cases, the nerve may not be able to fully heal. Certain types of damage (such as muscular atrophy) may not be reversible.

In severe cases, electromyography or nerve conduction studies may be used to check how well the nerve is recovering.

Avoid or reduce the number of repetitive wrist movements whenever possible. Use tools and equipment that are properly designed to reduce the risk of wrist injury.

Ergonomic aids, such as split keyboards, keyboard trays, typing pads, and wrist braces, may be used to improve wrist posture during typing. Take frequent breaks when typing and always stop if there is tingling or pain.

If the condition is treated properly, there are usually no complications. If untreated, the nerve can be damaged, causing permanent weakness, numbness, and tingling.

Call for an appointment with your health care provider if you have symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Call your health care provider if symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome do not respond to treatment, or if there seems to be a loss of muscle mass in the fingers.

Call office today if you have these symptoms, 817-358-3552

 

Author: Dr. Payne
Source: Conditions
Copyright: Dr. Payne 2009


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Foot-Body Connection

 

Your feet are the foundation of your body. They support you when you stand, walk, or run. And they help protect your spine, bones, and soft tissues from damaging stress as you move around. Your feet perform better when all their muscles, arches, and bones are in their ideal stable positions. The foot is constructed with three arches which, when properly maintained, give exceptional supportive strength. These three arches form a supporting vault that distributes the weight of the entire body. If there is compromise of one arch in the foot, the other arches must compensate and are subject to additional stresses, which usually leads to further compromise. It’s a chain reaction. Healthcare professionals know alleviating pain in one part of your body often requires treating a different part. The pain you feel in your neck could be caused by a misalignment in your spine that is caused by unbalanced positioning in your feet. See? It’s a chain reaction. By stabilizing and balancing your feet, Foot Levelers orthotics enhance your body’s performance and efficiency, reduce pain, and contribute to your total body wellness. Our orthotics complement your healthcare professional’s treatment when you stand, walk, and live your active life.

Nearly everyone can benefit from wearing high-quality, flexible, custom-made foot orthotics. You do NOT have to be suffering from foot pain or have 'fallen arches' to benefit from high-quality custom orthotics. I have fitted hundreds of folks with custom made orthotics with great results. Patients report less pain and/or improved athletic performance! In my clinical experience, custom orthotics are vastly superior to 'over the counter' foot inserts. Lastly, when dealing with orthotics the clinician MUST look at the "big picture' and examine the patient 'above the foot'. I perform a thorough history and appropriate gait assessment and palpatory exam on the entire biomechanical structure. Below is a pretty good summary of my philosophy regarding orthotics. Click on the image to learn more.

Dr. R. Brett Payne, D.C., C.C.C.N.

Click on image to learn more...


Click on image for more information

Author: Dr. Payne
Source: Foot Levelers
Copyright: Dr. Payne 2009


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Headaches & Migraines

 

Headaches

According to the latest research, 9% of men and 12% of women in the U.S. experience at least 1-2 headache episodes per month. And, more than 4% of the U.S. population suffers from frequent headaches, defined as headaches that occur at least 180 days a year. Needless to say, headaches have become a social and economic burden in the United States, as well as other parts of the world.

Scientists have identified over 300 causes for headaches. Various pain-sensitive structures and tissues including the skin, subcutaneous tissue, muscles, arteries, periosteal bone covering, and the upper cervical and facial nerves produce headaches when irritated or injured. Fortunately, only a handful of causes are responsible for the majority of headaches.

The most common of these headaches include:

  1. Cervicogenic- problems within the neck
  2. Muscle-tension- neck and upper back muscular spasms
  3. Post-traumatic- following head/neck trauma, i.e. whiplash
  4. Drug-induced- from analgesic overuse
  5. Migraines
  6. Cluster

Doctors of chiropractic successfully help thousands of individuals everyday obtain safe, effective, long-term relief from their headaches. This is because most headaches have a spinal, muscular, or habitual component which the chiropractor has been trained to identify and treat. In fact, surveys show that 10-25% of patients initiate chiropractic care for the relief of headaches.

To learn more about specific headache types, headache treatments, prevention tips, or to view various articles related to headaches, choose from the links menu above.

Author: Chiroplanet
Source: Chiroplanet
Copyright: Chiroplanet 2009


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Indiana Colts Dwight Freeney Using Chiropractic To Heal Ankle
Dwight Freeney's ankle injury is a major story leading into this weekend's superbowl. Though the Colts have kept their cards close to the chest on the whole matter, some details have leaked as to what they are doing to treat the issue. We do know that the Colts are very active with their treatments and Freeney is using some methods that have helped him in the past. The main one is Dr. Leon Mellman, Freeney's Chiropractor, is making sure not only his ankle is getting the proper care, but is also monitoring how his newly guarded walk is effecting the rest of his body. Most notably how his lower back could be adversely affected due to his newly acquired limp. Freeney's injury is being treated as any other low ankle sprain would be in the NFL with some minor tweaks. Although he was seen in a boot very recently, he spoke openly about keeping the motion in the ankle joint to promote healing. Very recently this became common place in joint surgeries; where immediately following the surgery, the joint is put into passive motion to prevent adhesion buildup and promote a quicker recovery. Freeney was spotted walking the beach without his boot on, most likely advised by team doctors for the same reason: a quicker recovery.

Author: John Cybulski
Source: Examiner.com. February 4, 2010.
Copyright: Houston Sports Medicine Examiner. 2010


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Patients in Medicare Demonstration Project Give Chiropractors High Marks
According to long-awaited results from a congressionally mandated pilot project testing the feasibility of expanding chiropractic services in the Medicare program, patients have a high rate of satisfaction with the care they receive from doctors of chiropractic.

When asked to rate their satisfaction on a 10-point scale, 87 percent of patients in the study gave their doctor of chiropractic a level of 8 or higher. What's more, 56 percent of those patients rated their chiropractor with a perfect 10.

Contributing to that satisfaction was the attention given to patients' needs and the accessibility of chiropractic care. Patients reported that doctors of chiropractic listened to them carefully and spent sufficient time with them. Some 95 percent said they had to wait no longer than one week for appointments.

"Doctors of chiropractic everywhere should feel pride in these patient satisfaction results and in being part of a profession that still sees the great need for spending time with patients and truly listening to them," said Dr. Rick McMichael, president of the American Chiropractic Association (ACA). "It's clear that patients deeply value the time their chiropractic providers spend with them and the expert care that DCs offer."

The pilot, known as a "demonstration project" in Congress, was conducted from April 2005 to March 2007 throughout the states of Maine and New Mexico, and also in Scott County, Iowa, 26 counties comprising the Chicago metropolitan area, and 17 counties in central Virginia.

Current chiropractic coverage under Medicare is limited to spinal manipulation. Under the demonstration project, however, chiropractic care was expanded to include diagnostic and other services, such as X-rays, examinations, physical therapy and rehabilitation services.

The final report to Congress also includes information on the costs of expanding chiropractic services in the demonstration sites. The report indicates that in all but one of the demonstration sites, patients' health care costs were not significantly changed by expanding coverage of chiropractic services.  In contrast, a cost increase was found in the Chicago metropolitan area. Further research into the reasons why the results in Chicago differ from the rest of the demonstration project sites is needed to better understand these findings.

"We already know that Medicare costs in general tend to be higher in Chicago than other similar areas of the country. We must find the underlying cause of the cost difference found in the chiropractic demonstration project and determine whether it had anything at all to do with the expansion of chiropractic services," Dr. McMichael noted.

To further analyze the results of the demonstration project, ACA is creating a taskforce of Medicare experts and researchers who will review the report and develop a response for the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services.

To view the report online, visit www.acatoday.org/pdf/demo_report.pdf.

ACA is the largest chiropractic organization in the United States, representing more than 15,000 doctors of chiropractic and students.

Author: American Chiropractic Association.
Source: Acatoday.com. January 26, 2010
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association. 2010


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Chiropractors Get Involved with Haiti Relief Mission
Chiropractor Peter Morgan had just left Haiti after completing a chiropractic mission there when the devastating earthquake struck.

"We just had a calling to go back," said Morgan, a chiropractor on East Boston Post Road for 25 years and founder of Mission-Chiropractic.

Morgan, 55, got together nine chiropractors and returned to the destroyed country on Jan. 20 to give out water and rice and offer chiropractic adjustments to the injured. They also brought five water filtration systems donated by Connecticut-based KX Technologies.

The group stayed with a New Rochelle cabdriver, one of Morgan's patients whose family home was spared, and were shocked when they arrived in Pétionville, a suburb of Port-au-Prince.

"There was one house, (then) five houses in rubble, one house, five houses in rubble," Morgan said.

With carloads of supplies, Morgan and the other chiropractors visited a partially collapsed ambulance company that was still trying to operate even as some workers lay dead under rubble.

Morgan adjusted ambulance workers who had back and shoulder pain from lifting debris and patients, and left them with a water filtration system.

They also came upon a makeshift hospital, where doctors were performing amputations and stitching without any drugs.

Minnesota chiropractic student Stephan Moje, who was part of Morgan's group, said that everywhere they went the stench of death was nearly unbearable.

"The most shocking thing for me was the smell," he said. "You needed to cover your mouth with a hankerchief, and you had Tiger balm to put under your nose."

Heather Rooks, a chiropractor from Wilmington, Del., said she could feel people's desperation as they handed out 400 pounds of rice and more than 500 gallons of water to hundreds of people.

She recalled riding in the car and being approached by two brothers. When one saw she had food, his mouth started to quiver with disbelief.

"The little kids came walking up and said, 'We're hungry. We're hungry,' and all I had was an apple," she said. "His face was like I had a block of gold. We gave it to them and said, 'Make sure you share.' The big brother gave it to the little brother, and he took a bite."

Morgan said he was struck by people's graciousness. They joined Haitians in singing hymns and were brought to tears.

"As we were about to leave, they put us in a circle and prayed for us," Morgan said. "It was one of the most touching things that happened in my life."

Morgan is working on getting support from other chiropractors to continue to send help.

"The people were thanking us, and the thing they were saying most of the time was, 'Don't forget us. Please come back. Please help us,' " he recalled.

Author: Lohud.com
Source: Lohud.com. February 2, 2010.
Copyright: Lohud.com 2010


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Green Tea Assists Mood In Elderly
Japanese researchers have found that elderly men and women who drink 4 or more cups of green tea each day significantly reduce their likelihood of suffering from depression. When compared with those who consumed 1 or less cups of green tea daily, those consuming 4 or more cups were 44 percent less likely to suffer from depression. These effects also did not fade after they factored in social and economic status, gender, diet, history of medical problems, use of antidepressant medications, smoking, and physical activity. According to researchers, it is thought that the amino acid present in green tea, theanine, is thought to have a tranquilizing effect on the brain which may explain the beneficial effect of lowering depression related symptoms. A number of other studies have also shown green tea effective in reducing psychological stress.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. December 2009.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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